Last night I had to take some deep breaths after reading the internet. My friend Stephanie linked to this post by Thabiti Anyabwile and my initial response was just a blind rage. I have long thought that one of the primary objections to marriage equality is the “ick” factor, but I never thought I’d see a group like The Gospel Coalition put that forth as a valid argument against it.
The post is terrible. And other people who are much smarter than I am are going to talk about why it’s terrible.
But in the tweet storm that erupted last night, there was one that stood out to me. From Joe Carter, one of the editors at TGC:
@NishWeiseth We love our neighbor when we tell them the truth about sin. Lying about it being okay to stay popular is not love.
— Joe Carter (@joecarter) August 22, 2013
So here’s the thing. Well, two things.
First? Being gay affirming when you’re a Christian does not make you popular. It’s not nearly the bad thing that it was even a few years ago, but trust me, it’s not going to make you the most well-read blog, the most sought after speaker, or the most quickly published author. So let’s please put THAT to rest.
But more important,
That post wasn’t loving.
If I tell someone, “The way you have sex makes me want to vomit, therefore you are sinning,” it isn’t loving.
It. Isn’t. Loving.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, NIV)
I’m tired of good news that is hurtful in the way that it engages people. I’m tired of prejudice masquerading as love. I’m tired of the lives of gay and lesbian young people being brushed aside as some kind of diversion from what God really wants.
Yes, love tells the truth.
But when your truth degrades people, it’s not loving.
When your truth reduces relationships to sex acts, it’s not loving.
When your truth makes people want to hurt themselves, it’s not loving.
When your truth makes the gospel something that is only available to people who believe like you, it’s not loving.
When your truth pushes people away from Jesus instead of toward him, it’s not loving.
And if your truth isn’t loving, is it really truth?
A few months ago, I wrote about some of my favorite gay and lesbian Christian resources. I still highly recommend each of these. Additionally, I encourage you to check out The Gay Christian Network. I believe that the work being done there is important and worth supporting.