Monday, October 24, 2011

Would You Go?

Recently, Albert Mohler posted a blog about homosexual marriages (Found here). One of the questions that flows out of that blog was whether or not a christian committed to the biblical truth on marriage and homosexuality should attend a homosexual wedding.

Here is the question for this week:

Would you attend a homosexual wedding? Would your answer be "yes" or "no" across the board or would it be situational? If it is situational, what criterias do you use to determine when it would be OK and when it would not be. However you answer, make sure you have a scripture or two to explain and support your thinking process.


  1. This is an easy one Tony. I definitely would not go to the homosexual wedding. I do have friends that are gay and they know exactly where I stand. "Don't you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don't fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people--none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God," 1 Cor 6:9-10.

    It would not be a "real" wedding in the sense that God would not bless that union. If my friends would be offended at me for not attending the wedding I would just tell them their relationship is offensive me and to God Himself since He created marriage to be between one man and one woman "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." Gen 2:4

    Marriage is sacred and holy. Man has no right to go about changing God's definition of it. Even though a homosexual marriage is recognized by the state, it will never be recognized by God. Therefore, I am confident that God would not want me at the wedding and watch His design be blasphemed...yeah pretty sure about that.
    Like I said, this is an easy one. But what about weddings where a person is unevenly yoked or they are both unbelievers? What do we do then?

  2. The simple answer is no.

    I would not attend a homosexual wedding, even if it was a person that I was witnessing to or who considered me a friend. In fact even more so if I knew the person in any way. Because, it would be the condoning of sin, and I dare say even the celebrating of sin that is clearly laid out in scripture as being sin (Romans 1:25-28). I would not want to be like those described in Romans 1:32 who knew what was wrong but eventually did the same sins as the world and approved those that did. It reminds me that I need to be more watchful of areas that I unwittingly condone or celebrate sin; such as movies that I pay for or TV shows that I watch, or the things I think and the words I say without a thought, lest I be counted a hypocrite and defame the name of Christ.

    I will say that I would be truthful if asked why I would not attend. The person should already know of my faith and stance before being invited anyway. Finally, it would be ever so important NOT to condemn the person but in truth & love witness and show them they need a savior just like I do, regardless of the sin.

  3. No. Not only is homosexuality a sin that I would never want to endorse, but I believe that marriage is a very important illustration of God's relationship with the church. Homosexual marraige and polygamy are both attempts to break this picture making it hard for those involved to grasp a key analogy that helps us to understand our relationship with God.

    Ephesians 5.23 says the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church. There is only one God, and only one Body. Jesus points out that God made them male and female. The woman made for the man as the church was made for God.

  4. I think Michelle and I would have to seek the LORD on this. My default answer would be "no" because a same-sex marriage is a celebration of a relationship openly founded in blatant sin. However, that would raise the question, "Would we attend the wedding of friends whose relationship was dishonoring to the LORD?" or "Would we attend the wedding of two atheists?"

    We might have to make that decision in the near future because of some very good friends who practice that lifestyle...

  5. I have been trying to think of a situation where I would go to a homosexual wedding. Does it matter if it is your sister, close family friend, between two Christan's (I do believe you can be saved and “be gay”), between two non-believers or someone you are witnessing to? In all cases I haven’t come up with a scenario that I would attend the wedding.

    I believe homosexuality is a perversion of God’s creation and attending any wedding shows approval of the relationship (although I am sure people go to weddings disapprovingly). There are many other ways to show someone you love and care for them outside of going to their wedding.

    However, I am not convinced the statement “God would NEVER have a believer go to a homosexual wedding” is true. I am having a hard time proving or disproving that statement through scripture.

  6. My presupposed response is the same as that of Albert Mohler, that I would not attend a same-sex wedding ceremony, yet I think that there are some additional questions that must then be addressed and that will likely be thrown at us in light of this response. Here are the things that I am convinced of thus far:

    • If in the process of deciding whether to attend, ones conscience is uneasy, they absolutely should not attend (1 Corinthians 8:7, Romans 14:22-23)
    • It is my conviction that Christians should weigh whether or not their mere presence will likely be construed as giving assent to the ceremony, and if so they would do well to not attend (Romans 1:32 – if the attendance could be construed as “hearty approval,” even if it is not an actual approval as this verse implies). I think this can be deduced especially for those in ministry who are called to be “above reproach” in their conduct.
    • I would not go so far as to proclaim it a sin for a Christian to attend the ceremony, as I do not think this can be proved Biblically unless the conscience is in violation

    With these issues in mind, we also must return to our original call as a church, to proclaim the name of Jesus Christ and to make disciples (Matthew 28:18-20). This includes outreach to the homosexual community, which unfortunately I have never seen Albert Mohler address (although I generally like his articles).

    The problem that arises in my mind from Albert Mohler is the difference with which he treats this issue, clearly saying that he would never attend such a wedding, versus the issue that he wrote about on the very next day (Article on Cohabitation), in which he goes on to state that he would not perform a wedding ceremony either for an unrepentant cohabitating couple. I agree with this, but my question is then would he attend that ceremony? The implication in his article is that he would, which seems to show that he views the marriage of an unredeemed homosexual couple as more of a sin than the wedding of an unredeemed cohabitating couple. I think that this is a tough argument to make Biblically, as these sins are listed side by side in 1 Corinthians 6:9, and is something that could be very divisive in the evangelical outreach to the homosexual community. Indeed, this is a common indictment of Christians from the gay community, that Christians treat homosexuality as a far greater sin.

    My point in this is that I feel that if we are going to take the stand to not attend the ceremony (which I personally am likely to do – although if it were my own child I think I would struggle), we must be prepared to answer why in a way that reflects accurately the Biblical view of sin. For me, this would be to return to the fact that while both the marriage of a homosexual couple and an unrepentant cohabitating couple represent sin, a homosexual marriage at its core (regardless of the individuals involved) is against God’s intention for the institution of marriage. I think that would be the primary basis on which I would make an argument on why not to attend.

    With that said, I think that any decision to not go to one of these ceremonies should also include an honest outreach to the individuals involved. I could see how the argument could be made for people to attend since Jesus dined with sinners, however I cannot think of an instance where He simply sat back while the sinful situation was unfolding (the cleansing of the temple comes to mind). But that mindset of outreach is correct, Jesus came “to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10) and as His ambassadors we should do the same in the power of the Spirit. We should explain why we would not attend the wedding, or if we did attend we should at least take our stand that we are there out of incredible love for them and a desire to see their lives transformed by the gospel.

    Tough topic, but one that will likely become increasingly relevant. May God pour His grace upon the church and win the souls of the lost for the sake of His name!

  7. This question was difficult to swallow. It evoked a significant sense of discomfort & awkwardness from the moment I read it...

    Speaking for myself, I can honestly say that, “I would not want to or desire to attend.” To attend a same sex marriage would both grieve me and cause me to be uncomfortable from beginning to end. Having said that, I should also share that I have watched Super Bowl commercials that have produced the same emotions. However, while my answer may not be popular- my answer is simply: SITUATIONAL.

    IF my best friend of 30+ years son or daughter were engaging in a same sex marriage—and my Christian friend needed the love of a friend and/or the caring moral support of a friend ... I believe I would be willing to attend on the basis of “love...”
    1Cor 13:4-13
    Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.

    IF my presence would afford me the opportunity to share the gospel ... I would be willing to go where ever the Holy Spirit called me...
    Jude 1:17-25
    But you, beloved, ought to remember the words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, that they were saying to you, "In the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts." These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit. But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. And have mercy on some, who are doubting; save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh. Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

    I realize my answer will not be pleasing to some – but I learned a valuable lesson years ago... I don’t have the privilege of telling the Lord where I will and will not go for the sake of the gospel. Jonah... being sent to the Assyrians (those brutally barbaric folks) in Ninevah stands as a great example!

  8. I have been thinking long and hard about this question. There is no easy answer for me, especially with the rising openness our culture and world is having to homosexuality. Taking such a beautiful gift as marriage and distorting it in such a way is harmful and destructive on so many different levels. However, so is sexual immorality, disobeying parents, lying, cheating, stealing, etc.

    Taking into consideration the implications of one involved in ministry, and a future pastor’s wife, I find myself resting in the fact that I would go to a homosexual wedding. I can say that this would not be comfortable, and more than likely even painful for me to watch, but my desire to love as Christ does would overcome this. I do not see myself being joyful and probably wouldn’t even stay for the entire reception, but I would love that person with an emptying of myself and with a filling of the Spirit.

    Biblically, I cannot help but refer to the life and ministry of Jesus to sinners, specifically, eating with them. Matthew 9:10-13 speaks of one of many occasions in which Jesus went out of His way to call sinners, not the righteous. To a Jew eating with people was an extremely important act and if you were to maintain the law, you would only eat with someone who was clean. You were identified with those you ate with; therefore, if you ate with a sinner, you were a sinner.

    Yet, in this, fully knowing the ramifications of eating with the “tax collectors and sinners”, Jesus sought those that were sick. We see this act of reaching out despite cultural taboos with the Samaritan woman (John 4) and Zacchaeus (Luke 19) as well. I cannot imagine what perfect and holy Jesus felt inside when faced with such sin as Matthew, the Samaritan woman, Zacchaeus and many others, yet he loved because he was sent to glorify the Father. Furthermore, knowing all sin is equal, He must cringe at the awful things I do, yet sees the blood of Christ and commands me to go and tell (Matt. 28:19-20).

    On a personal note, when I moved out of my house and was living in sin, my parents could not have been more hurt and disappointed. They made their opinions to me very clear, but on the day I was moving everything in, they came and saw where I was living. The look on their faces is imprinted in my mind and pained the depths of my soul. I was angry that they even came, thinking they should have just left me alone. Yet, it was in their un-comfort, their pain, their heartache that they showed me their love more than ever. The fact that they left an open door for me whenever I decided to come back, meant more than I can say and more than I understood at the time.

    I am not called to a life of comfort. I certainly know that God does not need me, should he decide to call someone to Himself and pour His grace on him or her, but if by my willingness to love the unlovable he allows me to be a apart of His plan for salvation, I wouldn’t want to miss it. Furthermore, I would want to show with my actions, how much Christ loves this person. He or she would know my stance, but they would undoubtedly know my/God’s love and affection for him or her as well.

  9. No, I would not attend.

    Would I attend a homosexual's birthday party? Maybe.

    But not a wedding. Here are my reasons.

    1. Marriage is something that God created at the beginning of time when He set up the order of the earth. Marriage - between one man and one woman. God takes marriage very seriously it is the picture of our relationship with Him and not one to mess with.

    2. Attending a wedding is giving a yes and amen to the marriage. Even if I could somehow tell myself that I was supporting the person and not the wedding - I don't think it would be very difficult to find other Christians to attend a homosexual wedding and when I was at the wedding with them - them for their wrong reasons and me for my right reasons, I would have a hard time explaining and justifying it to them. I would consider that stumbling my weaker brother.

    3. In support of this homosexual person, while I may attend their birthday party, I would not attend the ceremony of some gay pride award they were winning. That, like the wedding would be giving a hurrah and cheer for the sin, not the sinner.

    4. While Jesus associated with sinners he did not attend their sinful ceremonies or rituals. He didn't go to award parties for the tax collector who stole the most, he didn't attend church where there were prostitutes. All of the above would be condoning the sin, all of the above would be participating by association.

  10. I apologize in advance for the lengthiness of my response, but when approaching situations such as these, as much as I would like to have a blanket "yes" or "no" answer, I would have to subject each situation to set of questions.

    1. Does the Bible clearly state that I should not attend or that my attendance would be sin? (I do not believe that God would ask me to do anything that was contradictory to His word.)

     - I personally have not found a specific verse that I can point to that clearly states my attendance would be sin.

    2. Would my presence or absence violate my conscience?
    (James 4:17 - So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin)

    - I could not in good conscience celebrate, condone, or support a union that clearly violates God's design and purpose for marriage. At the same time, if for any reason I was absolutely convinced, upon seeking the Lord, that the Lord wanted me to attend, I could not in good conscience decline. 

    3. Would my presence or absence hinder the furtherance of the Gospel in terms of my witness? (Mt 28:19-20 - Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.)

    - I am not convinced that my absence would hinder my ability to communicate the Gospel and the love of Christ to a homosexual friend or family member. Nor am I convinced that my attendance at such an event would make my witness more effective. I feel I would better communicate the love of Christ and the Gospel through time invested one on one where I am actually able to have meaningful conversation. I do not find weddings to be an environment where that typically takes place apart from with other guests. I do feel that my attendance could afford others confusion about where I stand and in turn where the Lord stands on the issue of homosexuality and homosexual marriage.

    4. Would my presence or absence cause my brother to stumble?
    (Rom 14:21 - It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble.)

    - For some brothers or sisters in Christ, my attendance at such an event may be offensive.  I also believe my attendance might cause a brother or sister in Christ to think that homosexuality or homosexual marriage is okay. My fear would be that my attending such an event would result in offending or stumbling my brother or sister in Christ.

    5. Would my presence or absence run the risk of misreprenting Christ?
    (2 Cor 5:20 - Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.)

     - As an ambassador of Christ I would not want to do anything that would misrepresent Christ or His character in anyway.I would be concerned that my presence at such an event would run the risk of falsely conveying God's stance on such a union.

    6. Would my presence or absence create an opportunity for someone to raise an accusation against me and call into question my postion in the church?
    (1 Tim 3:10-11 - And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things.)

    As the wife of a man in ministry and a person who is actively serving in the church, I would be fearful that my presence would subject myself and my husband to scrutiny and perhaps create an opportunity for someone to call into question our position or stance on this issue, regardless of the purtiy of our motives.

  11. My simple answer is no, I would not attend. I cannot agree with an act of celebration that God clearly calls sin.

    What this topic has done is make me rethink my view on many other worldy things that celebrate or make less of sin. Things like marriage of unbelieving couples or parties with children in attendance that involve excess alcohol consumption thus showing young children that it is ok.

    I feel more and more responsible for the actions I "tolerate" just because the world accepts them.

    Thanks for this first topic of conversation, it definitely got my brain working!