Historic Heresies Related to the Nature of Salvation

The Wisdom Chronicle

The Wisdom Chronicle is designed to bring nuggets of wisdom from the dozens of books I read every year in all genres. Each week, I endeavor to share the best of what I have gleaned. The determination of relevance lies with you. Blessings, Jim Whiddon

March 24, 2014

51. TAXATION “An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy; because there is a limit beyond which no institution and no property can bear taxation.”

–Chief Justice John Marshall, McCulloch v. Maryland, 1819
52. ACTION “We live in a world that, when it’s all said and done, there’s a lot said and very little done.”

– Jim Stovall

53. THE NEXT GENERATION “I think with you, that nothing is of more importance for the public weal [or welfare], than to form and train up youth in wisdom and virtue. Wise and good men are, in my opinion, the strength of the state; more so than riches or arms. I think also, that general more so than riches or arms. I think also, that general virtue is more probably to be expected and obtained from the education of youth, than from the exhortations of adult persons; bad habits and vices of the mind being, like diseases of the body, more easily prevented than cured. I think, moreover, that the talents for the education of youth are the gift of God; and that he on whom they are bestowed, whenever a way is opened for the use of them, is as strongly called as if he heard a voice from heaven….”

– Benjamin Franklin

54. COLLEGE “In the sprawling zoo of bad ideas, the five-hundred-pound gorillas are relativism and materialism. Sending your children off to college without thoroughly arming them against these simian behemoths is like pushing them into a jungle river filled with parasites and piranhas and expecting the experience to toughen them up. No one should be surprised if they get killed by an infection or eaten alive.”

Excerpt From: James Robison & Jay W. Richards. “Indivisible.”

55. WHY EVIL? “The only way to get a bad thing is to take a good thing and spoil it. For example, darkness isn’t made up from nothing; you get it by blocking the light. Disease isn’t made up from nothing; you get it by ruining health. Notice that this doesn’t work the other way around—you can’t get light by blocking darkness or health by ruining disease. So God created only good things, but some of them have been spoiled. That’s even true about Satan. He’s just a created being—an angel who was made good but went bad. To be evil at all, Satan needs good things that he can abuse, things like intelligence, power, and will. Those good things come from God.”

Excerpt From: Budziszewski, J. “How to Stay Christian in College.”

56. ROLE MODELS “No written word nor spoken plea Can teach our youth what they should be. Nor all the books on all the shelves. It’s what the teachers are themselves.”

—Unknown

57. GOD’S WORD “One of the disciplines I have found helpful in meditation is to repeat the verse again and again, putting the inflection on a different word each time. It is amazing how much insight comes from this simple practice for the young and the seasoned believer alike. The early church father Augustine said, “God’s Word is shallow enough not to drown the young, but deep enough that the greatest theologian will never touch the bottom.”

Excerpt From: O. S. Hawkins. “The Joshua Code.”

58. THE TRINITY “The Bible translates the Hebrew word Elohim here as God. The significance is that the word is in its plural form. It is a plural noun, thus hinting to us in the initial verse of Scripture that God is one pictured as three: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Interestingly, the verb created, which follows this noun, is in the singular form, seemingly making a mockery of grammar. Yet it should be singular in that He is the great Three in One. We see this truth revealed later in Genesis 1 when we read, “Let Us make man in Our image” (Genesis 1:26, emphasis added). And then the following verse reads, “So God created man in His own image” (v. 27, emphasis added). The doctrine of the Trinity is one of the great mysteries of the Bible. Yet, beginning with this first verse, the idea of the Trinity is woven throughout the Scripture. It is often illustrated by its similarities to H2O, two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. We all know this to be water—a liquid. However, it can also be a solid (ice) or a vapor (steam). Yet, in all three manifestations, it is still the same in nature: H2O. And so it is with God manifesting Himself in three persons.”

Excerpt From: O. S. Hawkins. “The Joshua Code.”

59. INTERNET REGRET “Tattoos were once thought to be permanent. Now, they can largely be removed by special lasers. Your vasectomy can be reversed, death penalties can be commuted, and lifetime bans from sports rarely are. But the Internet? That, my friends, is forever.”

Excerpt From: David Avrin & Joe Calloway. “It’s Not Who You Know — It’s Who Knows You!.”

60. CARBON TAX “A British parliamentary committee proposed that every citizen be required to carry a carbon card that must be presented, under penalty of law, when buying gasoline, taking an airplane or using electricity. The card contains your yearly carbon ration to be drawn down with every purchase, every trip, every swipe. There’s no greater social power than the power to ration. And, other than rationing food, there is no greater instrument of social control than rationing energy, the currency of just about everything one does and uses in an advanced society.”

Excerpt From: Krauthammer, Charles. “Things That Matter.”

21 replies
  1. Stephen B says:

    “And, other than rationing food, there is no greater instrument of social control than rationing energy, the currency of just about everything one does and uses in an advanced society”

    The aim is not social control but environmental preservation. Burning fossil fuels can be seen as a right, but it’s a right that comes with a price, and not one paid immediately by the person enjoying that right.

    “In the sprawling zoo of bad ideas, the five-hundred-pound gorillas are relativism and materialism”

    Yet without methodological materialism you wouldn’t have been able to post this blog and we wouldn’t be able to read it!

    Reply
    • Jim W. says:

      Renowned Stanford economist Thomas Sowell discusses a term he calls “Thinking beyond stage one” which essentially speaks to how most people ignore the unintended consequences of their position. In other words, they are bad chess players.

      By attaching oneself to the bumper sticker position of “burning fossil fuel is bad” or “save Mother Earth” or whatever, one disregards the incredible living standards brought to civilization as a result of the discovery and innovation of transforming decayed vegetation from deep below the earth’s surface into energy for every light, automobile and electronic device on the planet. Where would we be without it? (See early 1800′s life)

      So while there is a certain amount of waste product which comes from the utilization of fossil fuels, there is also a direct correlation between the Industrial Age and life expectancy improvement as well as lifestyle improvement. Looked at another way – compare the fossil fuel gobbling economies with third world economies and tell me which has happier, healthier and longer living citizens. Can there be any legitimate debate that the miracle of fossil fuel can be counted as anything other than a blessing for planet earth? I say we praise God for His foresight and provision.

      And even IF social control is not the aim, then it will certainly be the result if rationing becomes a reality. (By the way, here is headline in today’s paper…”Brazil scrambles to avoid power rationing as costs soar” – Yahoo News)

      By mentioning Methodological Materialism, I am assuming you are in the camp that excludes any form of Intelligent Design from science, right? This is a complex and longer discussion. If you want to verify my assumption and elaborate a bit on just what you mean, I maybe could comment.

      Thanks for reading.

      Reply
      • Stephen B says:

        “one disregards the incredible living standards brought to civilization”

        No, one doesn’t disregard that at all. You could perhaps say that if the UK Gov had been discussing banning the burning of fossil fuels COMPLETELY. It’s simply about recognising the effect of burning fossil fuels. You’re strawmanning the position.

        “See early 1800′s life”
        What, there’s no middle ground at all between the way people lived in 1830 and the vast amount of resources being used now?

        “I say we praise God for His foresight and provision.”
        Did God provide unlimited amounts of this resource? Are you sure your great-granchildren will thank you for using up so much of it, such that they can’t enjoy the same “incredible living standards” you’re unwilling to compromise in the slightest?

        “Can there be any legitimate debate that the miracle of fossil fuel can be counted as anything other than a blessing for planet earth?”

        Yes. Obviously there can be legitimate debate on that issue. I’m astonished you think there can’t.

        “tell me which has happier, healthier and longer living citizens”
        Well America gobbles by far the most and has less healthy citizens than Western Europe. As for happy, you really think possessions like a gas-guzzling motor car brings happiness? I thought you were less materialistic!

        Reply
        • Jim W says:

          What “middle ground” living standards would you propose? Perhaps you would care to list the standards and innovations you currently enjoy that you are willing to forgo?

          No one knows how much of the fossil fuel resource remains. But if it runs out before God ends the world, He has given us minds to innovate and create new energy forms AND a free market which will allow those ideas to come forth and prosper when the time is right. So as long as market freedom remains intact, the problems we face as far as energy options go will be naturally resolved.

          Also, since you don’t know me personally, it is interesting that you would opine on my unwillingness to compromise or my materialistic inclinations. (Although, I would humbly admit to you now I need to constantly be vigilant about my covetous desires.) But yes, my car brings me freedom of mobility, and thus quite a bit of happiness!

          As far as Western Europe, according to the website “Inequality Watch” – hardly a right-wing opinion base – life expectancy is 80.3 years vs. 79.3 for North America. So they are “healthier”, I guess.

          Take care.

          Reply
          • Stephen B says:

            “No one knows how much of the fossil fuel resource remains”

            Indeed, but that it is not limitless is accepted by everyone. The fossil fuels we began burning in earnest in the past couple of centuries took millions and millions of years to build up. Many estimate we’re probably over half-way through the earth’s reserves, and it seems we’re using it faster and faster.

            You have great faith that we can find alternatives that will do the job just as well. Renewable resources such as solar, wind etc seem a good avenue to explore, but why wait till after the inevitable happens to give them a good shot?

            “So they are “healthier”, I guess.”

            Jim, no guessing is needed. Compare obesity levels!

            “Perhaps you would care to list the standards and innovations you currently enjoy that you are willing to forgo?”

            How do you know I’m not already forgoing things? If you want to know what I’m willing to give up for the sake of my children’s future, the answer is quite a bit (though admittedly I can’t assume everyone loves their kids as much as I do). But if you want a list of measures I already take, here’s a short one (my time is limited):
            • Recycle as much as possible
            • Walk to the local shops for everything but the largest weekly shops
            • Take plastic bags to the shop rather than get new ones every time
            • Try to keep to 70mph rather than 80mph or so on the motorways, as this is more fuel efficient
            • Holidays in my own home country rather than flights abroad.
            • Energy saving lightbulbs
            • Try to put on sweaters in the house rather than pump up the heat another notch.
            • Favour showers over baths, (or share the latter!)

            And so on. None of these make me feel like I’m living in the 1820s. It seems absurd to me how cosseted this generation has become. Our ancestors would be astonished about our standard of living, and our descendants will be astonished how little we were willing to compromise it in the face of scientists warning us of the dangers (and I could quote you quite a few recent headlines of my own).

            “But yes, my car brings me freedom of mobility, and thus quite a bit of happiness!”
            Who said anything about getting rid of your car? I’m talking about whether a gas-guzzling Humvee bring greater happiness than a standard 1.6litre Ford. I’m talking about the notion that happiness comes through material possession. And yes, I don’t know you, but my point was that I suspect you don’t really believe that that’s how you become happy. I’ve travelled in Asia. The people there want much of what we have, but to be honest they don’t seem less happy than us, and I doubt that extra stuff will make them happier either.

            I read a fair bit myself, Jim, and all the studies show that getting a new expensive gadget makes us pretty happy for a few weeks, after which we go back to being about as happy as we were before. In fact even winning the lottery gives a high lasting no more than a few weeks, after which the winners find new things to get stressed about. I’m not saying desperate poverty and hunger doesn’t bring a special level of misery, just that extreme consumption and wealth don’t necessarily bring extra happiness. And I’m sure I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know.

    • Terry L says:

      “Yet without methodological materialism you wouldn’t have been able to post this blog and we wouldn’t be able to read it!”

      How do you justify this statement?

      Reply
  2. Jjim W says:

    Stephen, while I am sure we disagree on some points, I will say based on your “list” – and thanks for it by the way – that I think your motives are good ones based on these actions. We could all stand to emulate some of your behaviors as good stewards of the environment.

    A couple of last thoughts for this week:

    “Many” may think we are half way through our fossil energy stockpiles, but what do “many” really know? (In fact, who are “many”?) We could be only 1% through them. But the good news is, it does not matter even if we are 90% through them. When we get close to running out then the price will rise to reflect this. It is the simple “scarcity principle” of Economics 101. Otherwise known as supply and demand. At the point of optimal scarcity, enterprising geniuses will realize that there is enough money in a new solution to fund the R and D it takes to solve it. In fact, I am confident the technology for the next generation (pun intended) of fuel sources already exists. It is just that the “invisible hand” of the market has not yet signaled – via price points – that it is time to transition. But it will. So the free market is our safeguard of ever running out. Isn’t that good news?!

    The reason we don’t have to panic and do something now rather than “wait till the inevitable happens to give them a good shot” is because the “inevitable” is NOT defined as running out of energy without a viable alternative in hand as you fear; but the “inevitable” IS that the market will bring forth the solution at exactly the time it is needed. So we can’t artificially rush the process (like Spain tried and failed), or we will wreck the economy at the same time. Let the free market work.

    (By the way, what I just told you is also known by the guys in charge right now. They are really intelligent people with access to all this info and more. That is why I am so suspicious that they actually ARE after social control with all the energy policies that don’t make good economic sense.)

    Concerning obesity levels. Assuming you are correct on Americans being fatter, aren’t we each individually responsible for our own weight? (Absent illness which restricts our ability to regulate it.) In other words, obesity is not a national problem with a national solution, it is a matter of taking personal responsibility and thus a personal problem with a personal solution.

    God bless, Jim

    Reply
    • Nizie says:

      Great Discussion. I think both sides made some great points. I believe that there are several Scriptures that make it clear that, as Christians, we are to be good stewards of the creation God has given us! Taxing carbon emissions, however, may not be the best way to accomplish this end. It has not been conclusively proven that, in the long term, global scheme of things, taxing carbon emissions would have a significant effect on “environmental preservation.” And at what cost, to the economy and to our personal freedoms? Do we really want big government to have even more control of our personal lives?

      Reply
  3. Stephen B says:

    Jim, if you haven’t already read Jared Diamond’s book ‘Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed’, you should add it to your ‘Wisdom’ list. He looks at the historical reasons past societies have failed. He identifies five factors that contribute to this: climate change, hostile neighbors, collapse of essential trading partners, environmental problems, and failure to adapt to environmental issues.

    I see in your replies to me hubris – simple trust that we’re smart enough to get over any problem we encounter, and shrugging that there’s no point in trying to plan in advance for potential problems as ‘most of us are bad chess players’.

    “But the good news is, it does not matter even if we are 90% through them. When we get close to running out then the price will rise to reflect this. ”

    That isn’t good news at all Jim. A large rise in fuel costs could be catastrophic for the economy. You know this! Also, a future for my grandchildren where only the rich can afford to heat/cool their home properly is exactly what I want to avoid!

    “In fact, who are “many”?”

    The experts on the subject! The people who know about it than you or me – “Current data for the decline in oil fields’ production indicates that around 3 million barrels per day of new production must be achieved year on year, simply to sustain supply levels. This is equivalent to finding another Saudi Arabia every 3–4 years.”

    How confident are you?

    “The “inevitable” IS that the market will bring forth the solution at exactly the time it is needed”

    Sorry Jim, but history shows us that this isn’t inevitable at all. You can’t simply say that the only problem accounting for the collapse of other societies is a failure to honour the free market. The latter is not magic, it can’t solve all ills and to believe so is to worship another God to the one you truly believe in.

    “Assuming you are correct on Americans being fatter, aren’t we each individually responsible for our own weight?”

    You don’t need to assume, Jim. A quick google brings me 2003 figures. The US is at number 1 with 30.6% of the population being obese. Mexico is number 2 with 24.2%, then UK at number 3 with 23%. I brought this up to answer your question: ““tell me which has happier, healthier and longer living citizens”.

    The answer to this is that America, a rich country that has by far the highest consumption of fuel, has the most obese population and languishes at number 35 in longevity. This doesn’t show that high-consumption causes health problems, but it DOES make it hard for you to make the argument that it leads to greater health and longevity!

    “They are really intelligent people with access to all this info and more.”

    Yes, and they have the majority of scientists warning them of the consequences of doing nothing to prevent future climate change. Ignoring this would be no more sensible than taking no steps to prevent a major terrorist that a large group of experts are saying has a high likelihood of occurring. In the latter situation, it would look petty to say that the steps should be rejected because they involve relatively small inconveniences and costs to the population. “You’re ignoring the benefits I get from being able to get on my plane quickly without removing my shoes first” etc.

    Reply
    • Jim Whiddon says:

      In 2008, the US government reported that the Bakken oil field discovery is the largest domestic oil discovery since Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay, and has the potential to eliminate all American dependence on foreign oil. The Energy
      Information Administration (EIA) estimates it at 503 billion barrels. Estimates indicate that there is enough oil to run the entire US economy for 41 years.

      “they have the majority of scientists warning them of the consequences of doing nothing to prevent future climate change.”

      Since when does the majority mean correctness? Could it be that because this issue has become a political issue – thus it is politically INCORRECT to oppose it – that researchers are more interested in keeping their cush salaries and tenure than finding the facts? Scandals have proven data distortion in this area – yet the compliant press ignores them. And this “peak oil, sky is falling environmental mindset” ignores the reason at the core of the “limited resources” argument – namely, if man can destroy the earth, the evidence for a God that promised to sustain the planet for his creation is refuted.

      Thank you Stephen, I did read Diamond’s book. Notably, his secular world view limits his possible solutions and also taints his perspective.

      Two books for you: “Blue Planet in Green Shackles” by Vaclav Klaus and “Basic Economics” by Thomas Sowell. Let’s talk more after you have had a chance to read these.

      As for the obesity problem: eat less, exercise more, and get regular check ups.

      Reply
      • Stephen B says:

        “As for the obesity problem: eat less, exercise more, and get regular check ups”

        Jim, I wasn’t asking for solutions to the obesity problem. I was answering your question “which has happier, healthier and longer living citizens”, and pointing out that America is way down the list of longevity, and tops the list of obesity. That point stands.

        “Notably, his secular world view limits his possible solutions and also taints his perspective”

        I’ve no idea what that means. Are you saying he’s ignoring supernatural solutions? If so, that seems an odd complaint to make (I could also say that Thomas Howell is going to be tainted by his climate denial stance). Thanks for the economics book recommendation, but I do understand economics – you don’t need to explain concepts like supply and demand to me.

        By the way, I’m sure you’re busy, but you never addressed this on your ‘Culture Chronicle blog earlier this month’:

        Jim: “You are also comparing an inherited trait which one cannot change (skin color) with a chosen behavior which one can change (homosexuality). ”

        Stephen: “To be fair, Jim, we’re either comparing two unchangeable inherited traits: skin color and gender; or we’re comparing two chosen behaviours: sleeping with another race and sleeping with the same gender.”

        My point there seems pretty cut and dried. Did it change your mind?

        Reply
        • Jim Whiddon says:

          Stephen, I did not realize I had left the issue hanging. I have not changed my mind. More than anything your response seemed non-sequitur and I was confused by it. So while I am still not sure what you were trying to say, let me restate my position more clearly and see if it helps.

          To attribute “Civil Rights” to any group of people based on their preference of sexual activity is not a valid argument and cannot be equated to the struggle that blacks (or women) had in order to obtain equal rights under the Constitution.

          Why is this? Having black skin is a hereditary trait – one of over 2 billion possible traits that human beings have. Blue eyes or big ears are also inherited. (Gender also is obviously predetermined for us.) There is no way one can affect these. Therefore to discriminate on this basis is despicable and wrong by any measure. (In fact, since we all literally came from Adam, we are literally all ONE race. So to even talk about different “races” is an insult to the group identified simply by skin color, the Creator Himself and has unquestionably divided this nation unnecessarily.)

          When someone CHOOSES to engage in unnatural sexual behavior – which is defined as ANY sexual activity outside of a legitimate marriage relationship as ordained by God (not just homosexuality) – that is not a basis for discrimination claims. To put clearly another way – BEHAVIOR is not a trait. It is an act of free will.

          If behavior preference becomes the new standard for discrimination (which I fear it is), then which behaviors should be logically and legally excluded from discriminated status? Polygamy? Pedophilia? Beastiality? Tell me.

          With all of this said, may we all be discriminating (as in “wise”) without being discriminatory (as in “bigoted”). All deserve to be treated with respect and deference – regardless of hereditary traits or behavioral preferences BECAUSE we all sin and fall short. Yet our Lord treats us with mercy even in our own sinful states IF we will turn to Him.

          Reply
          • Stephen B says:

            “Having black skin is a hereditary trait… Gender also is obviously predetermined for us”

            Right, black skin/white skin/male/female – all of these are set, nothing we can do about them.

            “BEHAVIOR is not a trait. It is an act of free will.”

            Right. Sleeping with the same gender / sleeping with a different race – both behaviors, both acts of free will.

            So either we have a comparison between two things based on unchanging traits – skin colour/gender; or we have a comparison between two things based on behavior – sleeping with the same gender/sleeping with a different race.

            So do you now see that your argument here simply doesn’t work: “You are also comparing an inherited trait which one cannot change (skin color) with a chosen behavior which one can change (homosexuality).”

            I get that you don’t agree with same sex relationships. I’m not saying you need to change your mind on that. But even given that, your rejection of the comparison to mixed race relationships on the basis that one is something one can change and the other isn’t, doesn’t work.

            Either both are based on something unchanging (race/gender), or they’re both behaviors (sleeping with same gender/sleeping with different race).

            You can argue that one behavior is acceptable and the other is not, you can argue that one is natural and the other isn’t, but arguing that one is a behavior and the other isn’t simply makes no sense. Either they both are or neither are.

            Do you now understand?

          • Stephen B says:

            “Polygamy? Pedophilia? Beastiality?”

            I’m happy to explain why I’m glad to ‘discriminate’ against any of these practices. Pedophilia is rape, as kids cannot give consent. Likewise bestiality. Polygamy is a slightly separate case – it’s already legal for groups of people to live together in one relationship, just not have it legally recognised in a marriage. To do so would be a legal nightmare. In theory a thousand people could all engaged in the same marriage, even if we restrict it to three people. I could be married to two women, and each of them could be married to one other guy. Both those guys could have one other wife, and so one. No-one has more than two spouses, but we’re all in the same marriage. It wouldn’t work, legally.

            I know loving, consensual same-sex adult couples. Their relationships are no different to my wife and mine, or other straight couples I know. I see no comparison with a woman sleeping with a horse or a man raping a child. I don’t see how letting gays marry opens the door for allowing these other things. The arguments for or against any of them stand on their own merits.

  4. Stephen B says:

    To put it another way, the flaw in the argument can be seen by reframing it:

    “You are also comparing a trait which one cannot change (gender) with a chosen behavior which one CAN change (sleeping with someone of a different skin colour).

    Reply
  5. Jim Whiddon says:

    To clarify, if a person chooses to have sexual relations with a person of the same gender, then this is against God’s law which I recognize as super-seeding any law man has enacted. Therefore, same-sex marriage does not even warrant consideration since sexual relations are an integral part of marriage.

    Concerning two people with different skin color having sexual relations – as long as it is within the confines of a God-ordained marriage relationship – against such, there is no law. So there is no problem.

    Reply
    • Stephen B says:

      Yes Jim, I understand that you are against gay marriage and that you have no problem with inter-racial marriage. I understand that you see one as unbiblical and one as compatible with the bible (just as those who originally outlawed inter-racial marriage saw THAT as unbiblical).

      I wasn’t arguing against either of those things. I wasn’t trying to say that gay marriage is biblical, and I wasn’t trying to argue that inter-racial marriage is not. You don’t need to clarify those positions – as I said before, I get it. I understood both from the start.

      My point is that the argument you gave before – that one couldn’t compare the two because one was a behavior while the other was something inherited/unchanging – doesn’t work. Either both are a behavior/choice or neither are.

      Saying “Inter-racial sex is about unchanging skin color, gay sex is about making a choice” is a category error. The comparison is either “One is about skin color, the other about gender”, or it’s “One is about the choice to sleep with a different skin color, the other is about the choice to sleep with the same sex”.

      Again, replying with your reasons for accepting inter-racial marriage while rejecting gay marriage is simply responding to an argument I’m not making.

      Reply
  6. Jim Whiddon says:

    Thanks Stephen. Let’s let others weigh in if they care to. I will posting 10 more excerpts next week and a Culture Chronicle for March as well. Plenty more discussion ahead. Best, Jim

    Reply
  7. Charles says:

    Actually both of your arguments carry good points.

    Stephen,
    I think you are accurate with respect to the inter-racial / inter-gender issue. It seems to simply boil down to a “human rights” issue and for temporal reasons same sex marriage will inevitably be legal worldwide; save for perhaps Russia and the Middle East. I happen to think when abortion became legal solid family structure and reproduction became less important and helped give rise to promiscuity which carries its own host of problems.

    By religious standards same-sex marriage is obominable as it is contrary to “natural affection” or the union of male and female with which I agree with Mr. Whiddon. Its just my opinion but I think the rubber meets the road with regards to structure and reproduction. Enter Psalm 127:3 which speaks of children being both God’s gifts to us and in turn our gift to God. Children are a creation indicative of God’s decision to create out of pure love. Pure love (to the Christian) facilitates the creative process through reproduction but with same sex relationships natural reproduction is impossible and renders any consummation in vain. There is no fruit to bear.

    I think we all know this. Today love has so many connotations that people obscure the foundation of what (to the Christian this would be Who) Love is and merely associate it with physical attraction and affection without consideration of sacrifices and integrity. Based solely on attraction and/or affection, regardless of gender profile, the relationship is superficial and has no solid foundation. This happens to be, also in my opinion, why the divorce rate is so high even among the religious (especially among Christians). Many heterosexual couples are unable to bear children but with the structure intact the foundation remains stable therefore young minds aren’t so confused by “feelings”. I’m not saying its impossible for same sex couples to live productive lives and be supportive of communities, prosper or make sound decisions as some assume. What I am saying is that ultimately it becomes a serious challenge to maintain a nation, or nations, without solid foundations, structure and stable reproduction rates.

    So in closing, I don’t think it is enough for the Christian to simply state; “same sex marriage is wrong because its not natural!” (I’m not saying that either of you said this) We need to understand what’s not so natural about it. We should also be gracious enough to tolerate differences of opinion and understand that when civil rights are in question we are really speaking about “human rights” and give respect to humanity gay or straight. The state may recognise same sex marriage and it is what it is but as believers we should understand that it is a decision for each individual and whether they truly believe or not or don’t care is for God to judge.

    Thanks.

    Reply
    • Stephen B says:

      If it helps, I wasn’t making any argument for gay marriage. Simply pointing out that the particular ‘comparison’ argument Jim was offering didn’t work.

      Side note, gay marriage becomes legal in Britain this week. Also another landmark court decision in the US, made by a Reagan appointee. I note he was particularly withering about the infamous Regnerus study.

      Reply

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