Wednesday, August 13, 2014

All Around the Web - August 13, 2014

Philip Bethancourt - The Total Package: Support for Same-Sex Marriage and Shifting Sexual Ethics
Sociologist Mark Regnerus released new data chronicling the correlation between support for same-sex marriage and shifting sexual ethics. Specifically, church-going evangelicals who support same-sex marriage are significantly more likely to support more liberal views on sexuality in other areas.

In other words, when it comes to sexual ethics, people tend to embrace the total package. Here’s the key chart showing Regnerus’s research:

Liberate - There are No Strong Christians

Denny Burk - How will gay marriage impact your marriage?
If you’ve ever been in a debate with someone about gay marriage, one of the conversation stoppers that proponents often throw out is this: “How does gay marriage hurt traditional marriage?” Or more personally, “How does my gay marriage corrupt your straight marriage?” The thinking goes like this. What two people do in the privacy of their own home ought not concern you, even if they choose to reinvent society’s most basic institution. After all, who are you to judge someone else’s pairing? If some people want to call gay unions a “marriage,” what’s that to you?

The assumption in this line of argument is that marriage is a private good with no public consequences. But is this assumption valid? Is it not the case that a redefinition of marriage affects all marriages? Certainly a redefinition of marriage to allow gay nuptials will continue to sever the link between marriage and procreation. But this is not the only public consequence.

Hanna Rosin had a piece on last year titled, “The Dirty Little Secret: Most Gay Couples Aren't Monogamous.” Gay marriage proponents frequently argue that gay marriage should be treated as equal with traditional marriage. Proponents put forth examples of gay couples and their domestic life together to illustrate the point that gay marriage is not different than any other kind of marriage. Rosin argues, however, that such examples are not the norm. She cites one study that “found that about half of all gay couples have sex with someone other than their partner, with their partner knowing.” Many gay couples are not monogamous butmonogamish.

The Telegraph - We may not like it, but Isis and Iraq remind us that we need America to be the world's policeman
God bless America. Following the announcement last night by Barack Obama that the United States is about to resume military operations in Iraq, it appears the Yazidi will not now be killed with their families. There is also hope that Iraq’s other minorities may face some form of protection from their persecutors.

It’s an announcement that won’t be welcomed by everyone. The old charges of US adventurism and imperialism will be trotted out. And with some historic justification. Iraq is after all the scene of the United States most catastrophic foreign policy misjudgement.

“It’s not the job of the US to act as the world’s policeman,” some people will cry. Again, with some legitimacy. Chile, Cuba, Panama, Vietnam, Iraq. The post-war Pax Americana casts a long shadow.

Pastors Today - Homosexuality, Divorce, and the Biblical Family
Building a biblical family is not easy. It is even harder to build a church culture that recognizes the biblical family structure and seeks to see that structure flourish. So often in evangelicalism, we settle for something far less than the biblical standard and that is true on the issue of family structure. Certainly, we argue that we are trying to protect the family by opposing homosexuality, but if heterosexuality is the only characteristic we recognize of the biblical family, we are falling far short of the biblical standard.

We have failed families by preaching and teaching against homosexuality (as we should) while not standing firm on other detrimental issues like divorce, parenting, sacrificial love, leadership, submission, and financial provision. In my church setting, if I preach on homosexuality, there are hearty rounds of “amen” as I expound the scriptures that speak against this sin. If, however, I preach on divorce, there is discomfort all around as members furtively glance sideways, knowing how many people in our church have been affected by the sin of divorce (Mal. 2:16).

When I preach on the parenting, I normally receive emails and phone calls from people who explain to me how their situation is “different,” or how their children are not “like yours.” Yes, for many people, homosexuality is the sin of “others”, and while we are busy digging the sawdust out of their eyes, the plank in our own is getting in the way.

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