Life at the top was probably pretty good for Herod. His word was law. When he commanded it, it happened. But he was also a slave. He was in bondage to his own lusts. Firstly that of his lust for his brothers wife, and secondly he was in bondage to public approval. Both of these landed him in hot water and he was now plagued with guilt. He had killed a man because of his inability to resist his lusts.
On Wednesday night Mark Thompson, the principal at Moore Theological College spoke about a Christian response to the current Redefinition of Marriage. He urged us to make a stand about the impact that this redefinition would have on our society, our children and on heterosexual marriages. He outlined three possible responses.
1. Silence. Just say nothing about the issue for fear that we will be branded as bigots or intolerant
2. Acquiesce. Change our views to match the world
3. Confess the truth from the bible.
Of course standing up comes with a cost. What will happen to our approval ratings? Will we be in danger of bringing a bad reputation on the church? Will we be ostracised from our own community? Will we be charged with intolerance? Could we go to jail? Or worse!
John the Baptist spoke up about Herod’s incestuous and adulterous relationship and was ultimately killed for it.
Last year an Oregon baker refused to bake a wedding cake for a homosexual couple and was charged with discrimination. They were charged by the court for discrimination. They lost their business, they were condemned by their community and they face a lengthy legal battle ahead which will bankrupt them. They took a stand and it cost them dearly. Was it worth it? I will leave that to you to decide, but let me ask a different question,
“Is silence worth denying Christ for?”
Or as someone else recently put it: “Is the life we live worth Christ’s dying for?”
We have a difficult road ahead with the current Marriage Equality bill, especially when there isn’t even the opportunity to engage in debate. Public discussions about the negative impact of gay marriage often get shouted down before they have a say. The media equates our voice against same sex marriage as hate toward those with homosexual tendencies, but nothing could be further from the truth. All of us stand in slavery to sin. My sin is not in a different category to homosexual sin. All have been washed by the blood of Jesus. We need to show our homosexual friends jesus love, just as he has shown us. But this love must not condone sin.
May God give us a voice that speaks love in this situation and have the guts of John the Baptist and Jesus to go all the way.