Is the Gay Marriage Debate Over?

Mark Galli has a fascinating article in Christianity Today titled “Is the Gay Marriage Debate Over?” He says that the culture’s shifting views on marriage are due in part to radical individualism. He argues that, unfortunately, this individualism has already caused some slippage among evangelicals on the marriage question.

‘Evangelicals are sensitive to this reality, but are less aware of how much we proactively participate in the culture of individualism. While stopping short of abortion, we have not given much thought to our easy acceptance of artificial contraception. I’m not arguing for or against contraception here, only pointing to the reality that contraception has separated sex from procreation. That, in turn, has prompted most couples, evangelicals included, to think that sex is first and foremost a fulfilling psychological and physical experience, that a couple has a right to enjoy themselves for a few years before they settle down to family life.

‘In essence, we have already redefined marriage as an institution designed for personal happiness. . .

‘We are, of all Christian traditions, the most individualistic. This individual emphasis has flourished in different ways and in different settings, and often for the good. . . But it is individualism nonetheless, and it cuts right to the heart of one of our best arguments against gay marriage.

‘We cannot very well argue for the sanctity of marriage as a crucial social institution while we blithely go about divorcing and approving of remarriage at a rate that destabilizes marriage. We cannot say that an institution, like the state, has a perfect right to insist on certain values and behavior from its citizens while we refuse to submit to denominational or local church authority. We cannot tell gay couples that marriage is about something much larger than self-fulfillment when we, like the rest of heterosexual culture, delay marriage until we can experience life, and delay having children until we can enjoy each other for a few years.

‘In short, we have been perfect hypocrites on this issue.’

This is a great article. Read the rest here.

2 Responses to Is the Gay Marriage Debate Over?

  1. Joe Blackmon July 25, 2009 at 11:55 am #

    Our hypocracy doesn’t help matters. However, the fact is that we’re going to lose on this issue. As much as I would love to see our country make abortion illegal and continue to make homosexual marriage illegal, the fact is our culture has been contaminated to the point that the idea of absolutes simply isn’t tolerated anymore.

  2. Mickey Gentle July 27, 2009 at 6:45 pm #

    I agree with you, Joe. The problem that I have seen is those who ask me who I am to tell them that my way is better than theirs. I even heard an advocate of gay marriage throw your very obervation right back and suggest that when we Christians get it right on divorce, maybe he will listen. And he is right in a sense. I have heard of people getting divorced and justifying it with “Well, God wants me to be happy.”

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