Recently, the Supreme Court of the United States heard arguments on two cases related to homosexual marriage. The first relates to the constitutionality of an amendment to the California constitution passed by the people of the state making homosexual marriage illegal. The second is to determine the constitutionality of a law passed several years ago by the U.S. congress. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) made it illegal for the federal government to recognize homosexual marriage for the purpose of federal benefits. It also protects states which don’t sanction gay marriages from having to recognize those conducted in other states. We will find out in a few months how the court rules.
Where Does the Concept of Gay Marriage Come From?
But what about the very concept of homosexual marriage? Where does it come from and how can we understand it based on a worldview analysis?
The first thing we need to know is that the concept of gay marriage, in its contemporary form, comes out of Naturalism. It actually doesn’t even make sense based on a Christian worldview. Even more basic than that, the very definition of the word marriage does not include the possibility of what is termed “gay marriage.” The word marriage refers to an institution which has existed since the beginning of man and includes only the monogamous relationship between one man and one woman. That being the case, the very notion of “gay marriage” doesn’t even make sense. Something like that is completely outside of the definition.
At this point, we do need to make one clarification. The fact that marriage cannot include homosexuals does not mean that homosexual relationships don’t exist. In fact, homosexual activity has existed in many cultures across many worldview platforms throughout human history. The existence of homosexual relationships is an entirely different subject than the legitimacy of homosexual marriage.
So, what is going on with the movement in our culture which is trying to include homosexuals in the marriage discussion? What we see happening here is coming from a group of people who are trying to break down the traditional family and legitimize behavior which, in the past, has not been culturally acceptable. They are trying to do this by changing the meaning of what it means to be family. One step in accomplishing this goal is to simply change the definition of the word marriage.
In Christian Theism, the structure of the family is based on the natural biological existence of human beings. Homosexual couples simply do not fit in this picture because they cannot produce children naturally. Beyond that, the Bible fleshes out how the family structure should exist. What the Bible teaches about family is based solidly on the natural biological existence of humans – one man and one woman in a marriage relationship.
So, where did the concept of gay marriage come from in modern culture? It came from the imagination of those who are Naturalists. Naturalism is the belief that there is no such thing as a supernatural existence – no God. And, since there is no God to reveal morality, they believe it is up to human beings to create moral rules which help society survive. So, in Naturalism there are no moral absolutes. Morality can be created and changed to suit contemporary cultural trends or the whims of those who hold power. Biblical morality is meaningless for Naturalists.
Problems with Gay Marriage
From a Christian worldview perspective, there are several serious problems with the concept of homosexual marriage. These problems are wide ranging in their scope.
The first problem is pretty straightforward. The Bible teaches that engaging in homosexual behavior is, itself, a sin.
A second problem is that any sexual relationship which exists outside of the marriage between a man and a woman is considered sinful. This is not exclusive to homosexuals, but certainly does include them.
A third problem with gay marriage is that it is not an ideal place for raising children. There are numerous disadvantages for children raised in a homosexual family structure which have been documented by social science research. Some of the issues which have been identified include: they are much more likely to have received welfare, they have lower educational attainment, they report less safety and security in their family of origin, they are more likely to suffer from depression, they have been arrested more often, and many others.
A fourth problem is that when marriage is allowed to be redefined to include homosexuals, there is no reason it cannot be defined in other ways, as well. There is no reason why the term can’t be made to include polygamy, bestiality, adult/child relationships and others.
A fifth problem, from a Christian worldview perspective, is that the legal acceptance of this (and any other) kind of immoral behavior degrades the entire culture. As immoral behavior becomes the norm for an increasing number of people, it leads to more crime, poverty, substance abuse, marriage problems, pornography, prostitution, child abuse, and so on.
Finally, the legalization of gay marriage destroys liberty. What happens, and is happening already, is that people who don’t agree with homosexual marriage are forced by the government to accept it in ways which go against their consciences.
Based on a biblical worldview perspective, homosexual behavior is immoral. Beyond that, the acceptance of gay marriage leads to bad things in the culture. But worst of all, it all leads to separation from God.
If there is no such thing as an absolute foundation for morality, then, certainly, there is no reason gay marriage advocates cannot have their way. With that assumption, there is no reason a culture cannot accept anything it wishes. However, since God does exist and has revealed to us the truth about morality, the concept of gay marriage cannot exist. It simply does not reflect reality.
© 2013 Freddy Davis