My friend Mike McNihcols dean at a Fuller regional campus, and author has written this thoughtful blog post about Brian McLaren officiating at the same sex wedding of McLaren’s son Trevor. Christianity Today have a blog post announcing it with the expect variety of comments.
Brian is a friend, someone I know, someone I have travelled with, talked for hours with and spoken at events with, love and respect very much. I find Mike’s comments similar to my own thoughts and reflections.
So many angles to this that the comments pick up. On one side are those comments with the implication, claim and inference that support of same sex marriage means you are possibly a) liberal b) can’t be evangelical and c) potentially not even a Christian and are going to hell. On the other side are those incapable of seeing any claims against gay marriage as non-Christian. And then those in-between with other gradations.
I find most sad that Evangelical Christianity, with it’s larger tradition about the cross, conversion, activism and embrace of the authority bible (see David Bebbington), can be reduced to one issue of gay marriage. Too many well known Evangelical christian leaders repeat the awful refrain that practicing homosexuals whether married or not, are to be considered as depraved as drug addicts, paedophiles, rapists, and those practiving bestiality (I saw a statement just a couple of month ago to that effect online by someone well known in the UK).
And equally sad are those who are unable to see why this is an issue and problem for many christians, labelling all those who see gay marriage as incompatible with Christianity as ‘bigots’. Which is appalling.
I know some amazing Christians who are gay and put most of the non-gay Christians I know to shame, in terms of how deeply they practice their faith. And I have many amazing Christians friends who are not bigots but have thoughtful and considered reasons for not supporting gay marriage.
One thing for sure, this isn’t going to go away anytime soon. We need a better approach than beating each other over the head with comments about who is Christian and who isn’t.