The right teaching.

15 Dec

Received from a working Lutheran congregation:

 

JESUS AND GAY MARRIAGE

Among the many news headlines this past week, was the news that the ALP passed a motion in their conference to support gay marriage. Perhaps some of you saw the scenes of politicians, and gay and lesbian couples hugging and kissing each other when this motion passed. It was seen as “a great day in the history of our nation.” A bill will be presented in parliament in the new year, seeking to change the Marriage Act. Although this bill will struggle to pass and become legislation, yet it almost seems inevitable that at some stage in the future, we will see same-sex marriages.

As Christians, then, how do we respond when such discussion takes place on the issue of same-sex marriage? First, people need to be reminded that Australia was founded on Christian values, so therefore God’s Word, the Bible, should be the only authoritative source in our society. When this is pushed aside, then as in the days of the Judges, every man (does) what (is)right in his own eyes, (Judges 17:6). In other words, if the Bible no longer applies, then everyone has his or her own opinion about what to do. Thus is the case today with marriage. The Bible, and what it clearly says on marriage, has been pushed aside, and instead, if two homosexual or lesbian couples love each other, then that is enough. The argument is that they should have the right to marry and be seen a ‘doting couple,’ able to experience all the joys of married life, just like any other married couple in a husband and wife relationship.

But when it comes to marriage, the Bible has plenty to say. Jesus (who created us and therefore owns us and has the authority to determine right and wrong), as the God-man, dealt directly with gay marriage. In Matthew 19:4-6, He said: “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning “made them male and female,” and said, ‘That is why a man will leave his father and mother and be united with his wife, and the will become one flesh?’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore let no one separate what God has joined together!” Christ quoted directly from the book of Genesis as literal history, to explain the doctrine of marriage as being one man for one woman. Thus marriage cannot be a man and a man, or a woman and a woman.

Because Genesis is real history (as can be confirmed by observational science, incidentally), Jesus dealt quite directly with the gay marriage issue when He explained the doctrine of marriage.

Not only this, but in John 1 we read: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. Everything was made through Him, and not one thing that was made was made without Him.”

Jesus, the Creator, is the Word. The Bible is the written Word. Every word in the Bible is really the Word of the Creator – Jesus Christ. Therefore, in Leviticus 18:22, Jesus deals directly with the homosexual issue, and thus the gay marriage issue when He says: You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination. When the Bible uses the word ‘abomination’ it means an evil act that will bring God’s wrath on those who do them. There are also warnings in the New Testament. For example, Romans 1:26-27 states: “For this reason God gave them up to dishonourable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.” Again, in 1 Timothy 1:9-10, “…understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine.” Because Jesus in a real sense wrote all of the Bible, whenever Scripture deals with marriage and/or the homosexual issue, Jesus Himself is directly dealing with these issues.

Even in a secular context, the only answer a Christian should offer is this: The Bible is the Word of our Creator, and Genesis is literal history. Its science and history can be trusted. Therefore, we have an absolute authority that determines marriage.

God made the first man and woman – the first marriage. Thus, marriage can only be a man and a woman because we are accountable to the One who made marriage in the first place.

And don’t forget – according to Scripture, one of the primary reasons for marriage is to produce godly offspring. Adam and Eve were told to be fruitful and multiply, but there’s no way a gay marriage can fulfil this command!

The battle against gay marriage will ultimately be lost (like the battle against abortion) unless the church and the culture return to the absolute authority of God’s Word, beginning in Genesis. Then and only then will there be a true foundation for the correct doctrine of marriage – one man for one woman for life.

End of copy

 

Barney

Image

HE is Risen

12 Nov

HE is Risen

For You, me and every one else

LCA: In my Opinion – On Excluding people.

8 Nov

LCA: In my Opinion – On Excluding people.

A variety of people have responded to this blog, not all of the same sexual persuasion.  I like the opportunity to agree to dis-agree where it happens.  In the topic “On Excluding People” a number of sub-topics have surfaced, I like the opportunity to address some of them.

  1. My statement; “… as Lutherans we are bound to have a lot in common … “.  On reflection “as Lutherans we ought to have a lot in common.” is closer to what I should have written.  All our Pastors, many Chaplains and many Theologians who call themselves Lutheran are – or should be – aware of the Formula of Concord, it was written at the time when early in the Reformation those who followed Martin Luther’s view on Christianity were in need of clearly defining the tenets of our denomination.  I will quote here from the Book of Concord (Tapper Tr.):

i.      FORMULA OF CONCORD.  A Thorough, Pure, Correct, and Final Restatement and Explanation of a Number of Articles of the Augsburg Confession on Which for Some Time There Has Been Disagreement among Some of the Theologians Adhering to this Confession, Resolved and Reconciled under the guidance of the Word of God and the Comprehensive Summary of our Christian Teaching. (pg 463)

ii.      PART I EPITOME.  1.  We believe, teach and confess that the prophetic and apostolic writings of the Old and the New Testaments are the only rule and norm according to which all doctrines and teachers alike must be appraised and judged … . (pg 464)  It would be too long here to quote the rest of article 1 but the reader is encouraged to do that personally.

  1. One of the theses on pg 466 stands out in response to those who believe that our bodies today are the same as those of humankind in creation:

i.      “God not only created the body and soul of Adam and Eve before the Fall, but also our bodies and souls after the Fall, even though they are corrupted, and God still acknowledges them as His handiwork … .

Same physical body, but born in sin, and stained and corrupted by sin of which only Christ Jesus was free.  “Therefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, so death passed onto all men, for all have sinned. Romans 5:12.

  1. “doing a little spot quiz … on the Lord’s Supper.  Is the idea realistic?  Does it matter if the idea can be understood or if we accept our Lord’s Words as given?  I think – with Dr. Luther – that our Lord’s Words can be taken to mean what He says; Dr. Luther, in his conversation with the Swiss Reformer Ulrich Zwingli, clearly stated “Hoc est corpus meum” [this IS my body] removing all doubt from the Words of Christ in the discussion whether this is realistic or not.
  2. “Lutheran pulpits are for Lutheran Pastors only.  Lutheran Altars are for Lutheran Communicants only.”  Strong statement; but what is behind it?  If we were to permit an Calvinist or Arminan Pastor to preach from our pulpits the we  – Lutherans – would be exposed to Calvinist or Arminan beliefs, this is the reason and safety measure to protect the members in the pews.  If we were to openly admit other Christians to a Lutheran Altar they may think that the elements at Holy Communion are mere pieces of bread and some wine or fruit juice, this we must avoid.  That is why many Lutheran Orders of Service state “If you truly believe that you receive the true body and blood of Christ you may partake at the Table” or words to that effect.  The Lutheran doctrine about the true presence is quite clear.  This does not prevent a Lutheran Chaplain from co-operating with other Christian Chaplains, it pertains to Pulpit and Table Fellowship.
  3. “On homosexuality, there is a proscription not to even eat with such an immoral person. 1 Cor. 5:11”  This is NOT a personal invention or vendetta, IT IS WRITTEN.  Immoral:
    1. NIV; sexually immoral or greedy, an idolator or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler.
    2. KJV; fornicator [having sex outside marriage, including adultery], or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer [to use harsh or foul language], or a drunkard, or an extortioner.

If you have such a person among you then with such a one do not even eat.  Now this seems harsh, but who wrote it?  “God’s chosen instrument!” Acts 9:15.  Now pick up your Bible and read Cor. 5:11.

  1. This might put the cat among the pigeons, but I end with:
    1. “Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.  Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he [inclusive] who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.  Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’  Then I will tell them plainly, I never knew you.  Away from Me, you evildoers!*” Matthew 7:20-23 (NIV) *workers of iniquity.

Barney – 20111108