Carl Trueman has responded briefly to last week’s Newsweek cover story by Lisa Miller, “The Case for Gay Marriage.” Trueman makes an excellent point about Miller’s article that is worth more than a moment’s reflection:
“Behold the future. The piece is prophetic because, in a week where a high-ranking member of the NAE had to resign because he was `shifting’ on gay unions, at a time when the full weight of the opinion forming social media is behind the normalisation of homosexuality as acceptable, challenges such as this are clearly going to be coming thick and fast. I grew up in some ways as the hidebound, unthinking traditionalist on sexual morality at which Ms Miller takes aim: everyone knew homosexuality was wrong (even if only from a basic anti-gay bigotry), and so there was no need to mount arguments against it either in the church or the wider society. That is not the world of my children. They need to be given reasons as to why their gay friends are following a lifestyle that is sinful. And those reasons need to be well-thought out, calm, and articulated with a Christian grace and love. At the level of theological education, this means that the issue of biblical authority and interpretation needs to be very carefully addressed. For example, Ms. Miller’s implicit contrast of individual passages of the Bible with its overall message raises the very legitimate interpretative question of how these things are related; church and colleges and seminaries need to make sure they can give a thoughtful answer to that one or the Ms. Millers of the world are going to take them to the cleaners.”
Trueman is right on target here. The argument that Lisa Miller is making in Newsweek will be made very soon by some who call themselves evangelicals. The issues will be hermeneutical, and they will have everything to do with the authority of the Bible. Some ‘evangelicals’ who would ostensibly endorse the importance of the Bible are actually adopting interpretive strategies that undermine the authority of scripture. This is why we all need to be vigilant. We are in a new era.