Monday, April 15, 2013

Abortion in Christian and World History

Abortion and Infanticide have been opposed as murder by Christianity throughout church history (and often also outside of Christianity). Some early Christians, influenced by Aristotle (Colossians 2:8), wrongly advocated "delayed ensoulment", while still opposing abortion. We could not be saved if Jesus' full humanity did not begin at conception (Hebrews 2:17, c.f. Genesis 2:7).

As Machen said, “To
 that doctrine it is essential that the Son of God should live a complete human life upon this earth. But the human life would not be complete unless it began in the mother's womb. At no later time, therefore, should the incarnation be put, but at that moment when the babe was conceived. There, then, should be found the stupendous event when the eternal Son of God assumed our nature, so that from then on He was both God and man.”

Below is a non-exhaustive selection of quotes condemning abortion and infanticide from a variety on sources up to the end of the seventh century:

"I will give no deadly medicine to any one if asked, nor suggest any such counsel; and in like manner I will not give to a woman a pessary to produce abortion." - Hippocrates, 5th Century BC.

“a woman should not destroy the unborn in her belly, nor after its birth throw it before the dogs and vultures as a prey.” - Pseudo-Phocylides, 50 BC - 50AD.

"you shall not murder a child by abortion nor kill that which is born" - Didache, 1st Century. 

"The law, moreover enjoins us to bring up all our offspring, and forbids women to cause abortion of what is begotten, or to destroy it afterward; and if any woman appears to have so done, she will be a murderer of her child, by destroying a living creature, and diminishing humankind." - Flavius Josephus, 97.

"Thou shalt not murder a child by abortion, nor again shalt thou kill it when it is born" - Barnabas, 2nd Century.

"We say that women who induce abortions are murderers, and will have to give account of it to God." -Athenagoras, 2nd Century

"women who, if order to hide their immorality, use abortive drugs which expel the child completely dead, abort at the same time their own human feelings." - Clement of Alexandria, 150-215.

"Murder being once for all forbidden, we may not destroy even the foetus in the womb. ... Now we allow that life begins with conception because we contend that the soul also begins from conception; life taking its commencement at the same moment and place that the soul does" - Tertullian, 160-240.

"women who commit fornication, and destroy that which they have conceived, or who are employed in making drugs for abortion, a former decree excluded them until the hour of death." - Council of Ancyra, 314.

"She who has deliberately destroyed a fetus has to pay the penalty of murder. ... Moreover, those, too, who give drugs causing abortion are deliberate murderers themselves, as well as those receiving the poison which kills the fetus." - Basil, 329-379.

"The poor get rid of their small children by exposure and denying them when they are discovered. But the rich also, so that their wealth will not be more divided, deny their children in the womb and with all the force of parricide, they kill the beings of their wombs in the same fruitful womb." - Ambrose, 340-397.

"You may see many women widows before wedded, who try to conceal their miserable fall by a lying garb. ... Some, when they find themselves with child through their sin, use drugs to procure abortion, and when (as often happens) they die with their offspring, they enter the lower world laden with the guilt not only of adultery against Christ but also of suicide and child murder." - Jerome, 347-420.

"Why sow where the ground makes it its care to destroy the fruit? Where there are many efforts at abortion? Where there is murder before the birth? For even the harlot thou dost not let continue a mere harlot, but makest her a murderer also." - John Chrysostom, 347-407.

"It is never licit to give something that will cause an abortion" - Theodorus Priscianus, 4th Century.

"No woman should take drugs for purposes of abortion, nor should she kill her children that have been conceived or are already born." - Caesarius, 470-543.

"Those who give drugs for procuring abortion, and those who receive poisons to kill the foetus, are subjected to the penalty of murder." - Penthekte Synod, 692.

Of course, this staunch Christian opposition to abortion and infanticide continued. To give one example:

"The fetus, though enclosed in the womb of its mother, is already a human being (homo), and it is almost a monstrous crime to rob it of life which it has not yet begun to enjoy. If it seems horrible to kill a man in his own house than in a field, because a man’s house is his place of most secure refuge, it ought surely to be deemed more atrocious to destroy a fetus in the womb before it has come to light." - John Calvin

I will conclude this post with a quote from the Presbyterian theologian, Meredith G. Kline:

"As we observed at the outset, induced abortion was so abhorrent to the Israelite mind that it was not necessary to have a specific prohibition dealing with it in the Mosaic law. The Middle Assyrian laws attest to an abhorrence that was felt for this crime even in the midst of the heathendom around Israel, lacking though it did the illumination of special revelation. For in those laws a woman guilty of abortion was condemned to be impaled on stakes. Even if she managed to lose her own life in producing the abortion, she was still to be impaled and hung up in shame as an expression of the community's repudiation of such an abomination. It is hard to imagine a more damning commentary on what is taking place in enlightened America today than that provided by this legal witness out of the conscience of benighted ancient paganism!"

Societal morality is worse than ancient paganism on the issues of abortion and infanticide. A damning assessment indeed.

Let us pray, that the culture of death's slaughter of children might cease, that human lives will be saved, that abortion might be criminalized around the world, and that those guilty of abortion or infanticide would be punished. Let us all pray for the salvation of those human beings who are in the firing line to be murdered by abortion or infanticide, and also for the salvation of those who have performed or had an abortion. And let us thank God that He is just, and for the life of every child that has not been murdered. 

(C), Jonathan Williams, created January 2013, last updated April 2013.

Christians: focus your attention!

Earlier this week, I had an interesting conversation, diagnosing and discussing pressing areas of belief or practise, where Christians need to focus attention unto the future, for the sake of the church. That conversation is what spurred this quick post. In no particular order, five of my top "look here's"  would be:

1. The need for a biblical understanding of saving faith, that sees trust in Christ as the crowing element of saving faith. This is crucial for everything from safeguarding against every works gospel imagined to having assurance of salvation. Those who believe put no confidence in what they have done, but trust in Jesus Christ (who lived, died, was buried, has risen and will return) alone to save them a sinner, resting solely upon  (clinging to) Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins and to be counted right before God. We who trust in Christ, that is collective, are a saved people through Jesus Christ.

2. The need to stand up for the historicity of the Old Testament - creation, a literal Adam and Eve, a literal Garden of Eden, a literal Flood, a literal Exodus, etc. It is beyond me how anyone could read the New Testament alone and doubt any of these things are taught in the Bible. Suppression of the Scriptures to accommodate the world shows disdain for Christ's Lordship. Those who under the guise of being "thoughtful Christians" treat God's word no better than a medieval writing, turning the Bible into a theory to be critiqued, are demonstrably dangerous to other Christians and Christianity as a whole. I have never met anyone who has denied a literal Adam and Eve, while showing a love for God's word.

3. A proper view of the severity of sin the holiness of God, and to be more thankful. Justice = Christ did not become man and die on the cross at all - rather you are in hell right now under the wrath of an eternal and holy God who must punish sinners. Who God is and who we are before God is the antidote to the "this isn't fair", "how could God", "where is God" crowd. Be thankful He sends not only rain, but He even sent His Son! We ought promote a greater thankfulness to God for what we do have (and we have a lot to be thankful for), especially undeserved fellowship together as God's people in Jesus Christ, awaiting His return - our best life is not yet.

4. Acknowledgement that Christians are different. The greatest form of antinomianism I see today is the culture that promotes salvation in sin, rather than salvation from sin. Usually be making grave sins or lifestyles matters of Christian Liberty. Those who believe have turned from sin, to submit to the risen Christ as Lord. We are not saved as people who dwell in sin and are mastered by sin - we are new creations in Christ, who purpose to follow Him in duty and gratitude, serving Him awaiting His return - together, as a redeemed people.

5. The urgent need for proper education and accountability. Francis Schaeffer said, "Tell me what the world is saying today, and I'll tell you what the church will be saying in seven years." Theistic evolution? Separation of God and state? Homosexuality is natural? Gender identity? What is next? Welcome to the next generation of Christians, tossed around by atheistic education, where an increasing majority believe or tolerate all four. One century ago, would you believe me if I told you that theistic evolution would be the majority view in many once conservative denominations? We are seeing the same trend on those other issues. Christian children need to be trained to see Christianity as a worldview that actually interprets and assesses the world, they do not need to be trained to see Christianity as irrelevant to or being 'fixed' by the real world.

And "pastors" - please start taking the teaching qualifications in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1 seriously. If you cannot teach the first five words of the Bible to your congregation, or teach them that God really did create a literal Adam and Eve as husband and wife, you are not "able to teach".

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Reformed Christians Guide to Facebook:

Firstly, Facebook is not to be viewed as or treated by any Christian as a replacement for attending church on Sunday. This goes for every Christian.  Hebrews 10:24-25, “let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”

To quote the Belgic Confession, “The marks by which the true Church is known are these: If the pure doctrine of the gospel is preached therein; if it maintains the pure administration of the sacraments as instituted by Christ; if church discipline is exercised in punishing of sin; in short, if all things are managed according to the pure Word of God, all things contrary thereto rejected, and Jesus Christ acknowledged as the only Head of the Church. Hereby the true Church may certainly be known, from which no man has a right to separate himself.” Simply, the sacraments cannot be administered on Facebook. Excommunication cannot be carried out on Facebook. You are not physically assembling with other Christians when on Facebook. Facebook is not a church service. You must attend a church.

However, Facebook can still be used as a helpful and edifying medium for theological fellowship, debate and discussion on Facebook. And, there is lovely international dimension to this – I have had the pleasure of meeting and praying for Christians from every continent (inhabited by mankind) through Facebook. So, here is a short guide to some of the better Reformed Groups on Facebook.

Undoubtedly the most active Calvinist group on Facebook. The group (CFDD) is actively moderated, and “exists primarily for dialogue and fellowship between Calvinists", though non-Calvinists are still welcome to join, learn and participate. If you obey the rules, you will learn some theology, and benefit from and enjoy the fellowship in this group, away from a lot of the nastiness in groups that are not moderated. The members mostly get along, so you might even have some fun … once you are up to date with the jokes.

A more relaxed version of CFDD (the group described above). Probably more theological diversity, but if you are Christian and respectful, chances are, you will be invited to have coffee with other Christian friends. This group is in many ways that scenario.

Created in the aftermath of the closure of the original “Calvinism: The Group That Choose You”, due to controversies over Kinism [refutation of Kinism here]. This group is a new Kinist-free group, and a replacement of the original. Similar to CFDD, this group exists for moderated dialogue and fellowship between Calvinists, while allowing pleasant non-Calvinists to participate where appropriate.

This group isn't so much a place for debating lapsarianism or eschatology – it is more for those who are already married with children or gearing towards that direction. If you are a high school student who just wants to debate baptism – this is not the place. The Godly Home is a closed group designed to “help Christian parents in their pursuit to train their children up in God's word as well as be a resource to encourage godly marriages.”

5.        The Book Club
I have never met an informed Calvinist who does not enjoy reading. Though not incredibly active, this is a group where Reformed Christians are able to discuss what they are reading. The books discussed are more likely to be out of print than on the New York Times best-seller list – so to those like-minded people who read mostly dead theologians – there is no need to worry.

This is a closed group for dialogue and fellowship between Christians who understand the Bible by covenant theology.  This group is not incredibly active, but there are often worthwhile threads untangling deeper aspects of God’s covenantal relationships and dealings with His creation.

7.       The Reformed Steakhouse
Similar to Reformed Covenant Theology in some ways. Though the Reformed Steakhouse is not as active as it once was, there are still some threads well worth reading.

Another CFDD spin off. As the name suggests, this is a group exists primarily for dialogue and fellowship between Reformed Baptists, while allowing other Christians to participate on the side. Even as a Reformed Paedobaptist, there are many beneficial discussions in this Baptist group. They are not the Baptists who think Jesus only drank grape juice, or play antichrist guessing games.

Yet another CFDD spin off, and the Paedobaptist equivalent to the Reformed Baptist group. Even though you will likely disagree with either the Reconstructists or the Westminster Seminary-ites, this group contains many ‘iron sharpening iron’ discussions and debates on a variety of topics from perspectives within [Confessional] Reformed Theology.

CFDD is basically the Superman of Reformed Theology on Facebook. A lot of spin-offs, but all for different purposes.  The Men of CFDD is a closed version of CFDD, to discuss topics relevant to guys.  The group members are close, so unless you know someone in it, or are known by a member from elsewhere, you won’t be let in.

Another off shoot of CFDD. Designed the same as the men's group, but for women, rather than men. I could not tell you what exactly is discussed in there - and even if I could, I probably wouldn't understand it.

And I’ll conclude with one final spin off of CFDD. This group, administrated by Calvinists, is a closed group deigned to be a place where Christians [Calvinist or not] can share prayer requests – the group is not for theological debate. Just as with the two previous groups, only Christians are allowed in the CFDD Prayer Request Group.

A place for Open Theists, Pelagains, Moral Government Theorists, Sinless Perfectionists and everyone else condemned by the early church to be united in misrepresenting Calvinistic Christians, despite being corrected about 237 times. A group to stay out of, in order to avoid formulaic straw-men and not waste time. My point is: use your time on Facebook wisely. You should have higher priorities. You should use theological interaction on Facebook for mutual benefit from Christian discussion and fellowship, not to waste time.

I hope that the Reformed Christians on Facebook find this useful and helpful. But even more so, I hope you all attend church this Sunday, and the Sunday after that.

©Jonathan Williams, December 2012.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Kinism: What is it? What should I think & do about it?

Recently, Kinism has once again become an issue of theological discussion, division and contention. This issue has broken Christian friendships and caused tears. The best thing that we can do for Kinists is pray for them, and edify the body of Christ despite what Kinists believe. Below is a brief definition of Kinism, a quick refutation of Kinism, then lastly a practical Christian response to Kinism.

(1) A Brief Definition of Kinism:

Kinism is the belief that the God-ordained social order for man is tribal and ethnic rather than universal. Mankind was designed by its God to live and to thrive in extended family groups, in that people of the same ethnicity are to clan together, to the exclusion of those of other ethnicities. This is dangerously unbiblical.
(2) A Quick Refutation of Kinism:
(a) The verses/concepts commonly appealed to by Kinists:

(1) Genesis 1:25: "according to kind" is not talking about Japanese and English - an example of a violation of that would be man and animal, or dog and reptile. Leviticus 18:23, 1 Corinthians 15:39.

(2) Genesis 9:20-27: The descendants of Canaan were infamous for their idolatry and sexual perversion. Nothing to do with race. Skipping over the fact that NOAH said "‘Cursed be Canaan" right at that time!

(3) Genesis 11:1-9: Their sin involved a failure to spread through the earth, Genesis 11:4b (stemming from pride).

(4) Israel as separated from other nations: The point was faith - there was capital punishment for apostasy and non-Israelites (by natural birth) joined the nation of Israel. Those who were not nationalistically Jews could by faith join the people of Israel, and would then receive the sign of circumcision that identified them with God's covenant people.

(5) Verses that talk about boarders: Yes, there are boarders and nations. There is a difference between nations being defined by citizenship regardless of culture, and nations being limited to races within that culture. Remember how Paul appeals to his Roman citizenship (Acts 22:25, c.f Romans 9:3)
(b) Seven reasons why Kinism is dangerously unbiblical:

(1) All men descend from Adam (Acts 17:26), then Noah (Genesis 6-10). So, there is really only one race (Genesis 1:26-27). Nelson Mandela and I both trace back to Noah, and before that Adam.

(2) Joseph (Semitic) married Asenath (Egyptian). Genesis 41:50.

(3) Moses married a Cushite woman (area now Ethiopia-Sudan). God punished Aaron and Miriam for criticising their inter-racial marriage. Numbers 12:1.

(4) What about those who joined the nation of OT Israel? Were their children just not to marry? What about Rahab - a Canaanite? Joshua 2:9-13, 6:17, 25, Matthew 1:5.

(5) How will they hear without a preacher? (Romans 10). The expansion of the people of God, is through the means of bringing the gospel to the nations (Matthew 28). This involves mixing with people of other cultures. Knism completely undermines the spread of the gospel.

(6) Kinism, replaces union with Christ with genetics (Galatians 3:28). Kinism is a practical denial of the Work of Christ, where he tore down the dividing wall between nations, so made people of all nations in covenant with God fellow citizens. Ephesians 2:11-22.

(7) Paul refereed to Himself as teacher of the Gentiles (Acts 26:4, 1 Timothy 2:7), which could not be the case if Paul was a Kinist.

(3) A practical Christian response to Kinism:

A Christian may marry one single Christian of the opposite gender who is not of certain relations or wrongly divorced, all according to the laws of the land. If a man from Canada married a woman from Ethiopia, and lived next to a man from Russia married to a woman from Brazil on one side, and a man from China married to a woman from Germany on the other side, brilliant. If there is a huge cultural divide between a man from Pakistan and a woman from New Zealand, it may be unwise to marry, but it would not be sinful. In a few years, they might be perfectly compatible to in wisdom marry and raise a family together.

I don't take this issue lightly. Within Christianity, I divide over damnable heresy, and beliefs that undermine Christian unity or common society. Sadly, Kinists do both: they would say that it was sinful for a British Christian man to marry a Korean Christian woman, and they would tell me to geographically separate from my Sudanese friends in order to stick to ones own race. If Kinist beliefs were popular, they would tear apart churches, communities, families and missions. It is to preserve Christian unity, care for the body of Christ and take our earthly duties seriously that we divide over Kinism.

I do believe that some Kinists are saved. And, I am thankful that they believe that all people are created in God's image, and can only find salvation in Christ. I really pray and wish each Kinist would abandon Kinism so that they can put such crucial orthodox beliefs into practise, and long for the day when all of God's elect from all nations (all those who trust in Christ alone) will be glorified as the eschatological church in Christ, in everlasting fellowship with Jesus Christ, who was born in Bethlehem.

(C) Jonathan Williams, November - December 2012.

Permission to use any ideas above, but please acknowledge the original author if you choose to directly quote this article.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Why Every Christian Should Vote for Mitt Romney

ROMNEY RYAN 2012. This will be my final pre-election post. I am supporting Mitt Romney. Prominent Christians including Joel Beeke and Wayne Grudem are too. 

In 2008, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano vetoed a bill to ban partial-birth abortion - the seventh piece of pro-life legislation she vetoed. She vetoed every single pro-life bill she met. Who did Napolitano defeat to succeed as governor? Matt Salmon - a Mormon.

"I believe marriage should be preserved as an institution for one man and one woman." - Mitt Romney
"I think same-sex couples should be able to get married” - Barack Obama

"I support the reversal of Roe v. Wade" - Mitt Romney
"Roe vs. Wade protects a woman’s health and reproductive freedom" - Barack Obama

"I will appoint conservative, strict constructionists to the judiciary." - Mitt Romeny.
Obama appointed the pro-infanticide Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor.

Five out of the nine current Supreme Court justices have been serving for 18-26 years, and there is expected to be 2-3 appointments in the next presidential term. Romney's Supreme Court appointments will be more conservative than Obama's. The effects of who wins this election - Obama or Romney - will be felt for longer than four years - the effects will be felt for decades. The life of the unborn child ought to be protected, and homosexuality is a final indicator of a debauched society. For the unborn, for the family and for society - for the short term and for the long term, I could not in good conscience do anything other than support Mitt Romney.

Vote. And vote for Mitt Romney.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Parents Should Be Allowed To Let Their Children Die!

“You love only those who deserve it” “[A weak person] certainly does not deserve [love]. He certainly is beyond it" “Each man must live as an end in himself and follow his own rational self-interest" "A 'moral commandment' is a contradiction in terms” “Any laws restricting or prohibiting abortion are invasions of the rights of mothers” “The parent should have the legal right not to feed the child, i.e., to allow it to die.” Do these beliefs fit in the Christian worldview? Are they compatible with Christianity? Should a Christian promote this ideology? Those questions are rhetorical. The above quotes are all from Ayn Rand who wished to be remembered as "the greatest enemy of religion", particularly of Christianity, which she called the "kindergarten of communism" and “the great poison of mankind”; and Murray Rothbard who stated that “the parent should not have a legal obligation to feed, clothe, or educate his children” as he “either had to go on to anarchism or become a statist.”
Last month, I received an email from that correctly labelled Ayn Rand "one of the most important philosophical influences on contemporary libertarianism." Unfortunately, many Christians are advocating libertarianism and supporting politicians whose ideology had been shaped by Ayn Rand and Murray Rothbard. One prominent libertarian, Ron Paul said "I especially value” and having read “about everything Ayn Rand wrote”, Paul agrees that "she contributed tremendously" to modern libertarianism, including that “she had a lot of influence on me”. Ron Paul considers Murray Rothbard (whose photo hangs on his congressional office’s wall) “the founder of modern libertarianism”, saying after his death “America has lost one of her greatest men, and the Freedom Movement one of its greatest heroes: Murray N. Rothbard”. Paul praised Rothbard as “an inspiration” who “influenced thousands of students. I was one of them, for he taught me about economics and liberty.” We will now investigate what these important and tremendous founders of and influences on modern libertarianism had to say about a very important issue: abortion.
"The proper groundwork for analysis of abortion is in every man's absolute right of self-ownership. This implies immediately that every woman has the absolute right to her own body, that she has absolute dominion over her body and everything within it. This includes the fetus. Abortion should be looked upon, not as "murder" of a living person, but as the expulsion of an unwanted invader from the mother's body. Any laws restricting or prohibiting abortion are therefore invasions of the rights of mothers.” - Rothbard
"This means that a parent does not have the right to aggress against his children, but also that the parent should not have a legal obligation to feed, clothe, or educate his children, since such obligations would entail positive acts coerced upon the parent and depriving the parent of his rights. The parent therefore may not murder or mutilate his child, and the law properly outlaws a parent from doing so. But the parent should have the legal right not to feed the child, i.e., to allow it to die. The law, therefore, may not properly compel the parent to feed a child or to keep it alive.” - Rothbard
"In the libertarian society, then, the mother would have the absolute right to her own body and therefore to perform an abortion; and would have the trustee-ownership of her children, an ownership limited only by the illegality of aggressing against their persons and by their absolute right to run away or to leave home at any time. Parents would be able to sell their trustee-rights in children to anyone who wished to buy them at any mutually agreed price." - Rothbard
"Abortion is a moral right—which should be left to the sole discretion of the woman involved; morally, nothing other than her wish in the matter is to be considered. Who can conceivably have the right to dictate to her what disposition she is to make of the functions of her own body?” - Ayn Rand
Why any Christian would identify with, support or spread this unbiblical ideology is beyond me. As a Christian, I repudiate a system where a person who “contributed tremendously” taught that the weak are beyond love, “the influential founder” believed that parents should be allowed to let their children die, and both key figures supported abortion. As a Christian, I will never again call myself a libertarian or do anything that will support the unbiblical and inhumane ideological movement that is libertarianism. I pray for the end of the influence of libertarianism, and bpraise the Lord that I do not live in “the libertarian society”.
(C), Jonathan Williams, August 2012.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Christian View on Homosexuality: Part 2 – By What Standard?

This week, I plan to release three blog posts dealing with the issue of homosexuality; specifically in regards to so called ‘same-sex marriage’. I will reiterate that God defines marriage, and He defined it as being between one man and one woman.
In yesterday’s first instalment, I briefly outlined the biblical perspective on homosexuality. Today’s second instalment is an article that I wrote to refute a pro same-sex marriage television advertisement. Later this week, I will release a more comprehensive essay that deals with the subject in relation to how Christians can engage politically on this issue, and refute the common objections to the Biblical position on marriage. The issue that Ideal with in this article is at the very foundation of the issue: presuppositions.
“Get up” and support Gay Marriage because I think it is “the right thing to do”:
On December 3, the ruling Australian Labor Party (ALP) held a ‘conscience vote’ on the issue of gay marriage. The party voted to in favor of changing their official party doctrine to support gay marriage by a margin of 208 votes to 184. Liberal Party leader, Tony Abbott, rejected calls for the opposition to likewise hold a conscience vote on the issue. Abbott, who opposes gay marriage said in an interview with Sky News that "the fundamental duty of every politician is to keep his or her commitments”, so because  “every single one of us went to the last election saying marriage is between a man and a woman”, his party will not hold a conscience vote. In the absence of a conscience vote within the Coalition, the bill will be unable to obtain a parliamentary majority, which will mean that gay marriage will remain illegal in Australia.
In the weeks before the Labor Party conference, the Australian left wing lobby group “Get Up” created a public petition promoting gay marriage, which they delivered to the ALP Conference on the day of the conscience vote.
“Get Up” is a group of radical leftists. For example, in 2006, they lobbied the Government to release David Hicks (a terrorist found guilty of providing material support for terrorism) into the Australian community. Although the views of “Get Up” do not represent the majority of leftists on every issue, their advertisement has been very popular among those in favour of gay marriage.
So, according to the campaign, why should gay marriage by legalized? The advertisement used a technique wherein they made the protagonist appear genuine and likeable to force the audience to positively empathize with the protagonist, before it was revealed that he was a homosexual. This is nothing but an appeal to subjective and emotional reasoning.
Suppose that Craig created a home video showing snippets of his life. In the video, you saw Craig enjoying a cruise, laughing at a theme park, playing beach cricket, spending time with his family and helping other people move furniture. Craig so far seems like a genuine and likeable guy. But, in the final scene, he takes a ring out of his pocket, gets down on one knee, and proposes: not to a woman, not even to a man, but to a toddler. You can substitute “toddler” for “dog” or “mother” if you would rather. Do you still think Craig is a genuine guy?
Apart from the proposal being man to man, rather than man to toddler, the “Get Up” add is exactly the same. It proves nothing; the debate on gay marriage is still at square one: is it moral for a man to marry another man (or is it moral for a man to marry a toddler)?
The video concludes with firstly a famous political slogan from the Whitlam era (“It’s Time”) [my American readers can substitute Obama’s slogans about change], then secondly with a plea to “end marriage discrimination”. Said otherwise, the advertisement asserts that “now is the time to legalize gay marriage”. The problem is that “now is the time to legalize gay marriage” is nothing but a subjective opinion. If I were to present the rebuttal of “I disagree”, on what ground could the gay marriage advocate say that their opinion is right, but my opinion is wrong? By what objective moral standard can the gay marriage proponent prove that their position is correct? A subjective opinion is just that.
The ‘Get Up’ campaign slogan is “the overwhelming majority of Australians support full marriage equality and it is the right thing to do”. Why is legalising gay marriage “the right thing to do”? By what objective standard is legalising gay marriage “the right thing to do”? The reason why you cannot think of an answer is because there is no answer. If God does not exist, then absolute morality cannot exist. If God does not exist, no one cannot prove that anything is moral or immoral; in fact morality cannot exist, period. But, proponents of gay marriage are already borrowing from and supressing the Christian worldview in asserting that morality exists.
“Helping other people is ‘the right thing to do’” is only your opinion. “Legalising gay marriage is ‘the right thing to do’” is only your opinion. “Legalising adult to toddler marriage is ‘the wrong thing to do’” is only your opinion.
Only if the God of Christianity who has revealed Himself in the Bible is presupposed, can objective morality exist. Morality expresses the holy and righteous nature of God. Something is moral because it is in conformity to the character of God. Something is immoral because it is not in conformity to the character of God. God’s commands are in conformity to His character. So, according to God, is homosexuality moral or immoral?
“If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act;…” – Leviticus 20:13
“Realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching.” – 1 Timothy 1:9-10
“But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother, and the two shall become one flesh; so they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.” – Mark 10:6-9
By God’s standard, the only objective standard, legalising gay marriage is not “the right thing to do”. Homosexuality is a sin. That is the objective truth.
(c) Jonathan Williams, Created December 2011, Updated April 2012.