(Photo: Dan Delzell)
Jewish and Christian students of the Bible have been given a detailed historical timeline in Scripture. We know that God created Adam and Eve about 6000 years ago. The biblical timeline reveals that Noah was born roughly 1000 years later. Abraham was born close to 1000 years after Noah. David was born around 1000 years after Abraham. And Jesus was born close to 1000 years after David. Christ's miraculous birth took place roughly 2000 years ago, which was about 4000 years after God created Adam and Eve. Do the math. It is laid out clearly in God's Word.
When God created man and woman, He made them equal. He created them to be incredibly satisfied with one another. He created them to produce children. That's why a man and a woman can "make a baby." Two men can't do that, and neither can two women. Two men are not equal. They are simply homogeneous. Two women are not equal. They too are simply homogeneous. Marriage equality is defined by God as a man and a woman who are equal before Him and with one another. It really is a beautiful thing the way these two beings complement each other.
When Adam and Eve chose to sin, it brought all sorts of wrong desires into the heart of man. Some of these impure desires fall in the realm of sexuality, such as tendencies toward fornication, adultery, and homosexuality. We are all sinners. In that sense, we all have a "sinner equality." We all far short of God's standard. Some people struggle with a short temper. Others struggle with jealousy. Still others struggle with greed. And some struggle with fornication or some other sexual temptation. But we all are guilty. We all need God's forgiveness.
In our culture, people creatively attempt to explain away sinful desires. I suppose we have all done it in one way or another. The latest attempt involves using the term "marriage equality" in an effort to promote same-sex marriage. Whatever "rights" a society may decide to give a pregnant mother, or a same-sex couple, does not guarantee that society has chosen to stay within God's boundaries for protecting life and within God's boundaries for marriage equality between a man and a woman.
Man has gone his own way for the past 6000 years. What is happening in America today is similar to the way many societies throughout history have sought to establish their own definitions of right and wrong, regardless of what God has to say about it. In this country for example, many Americans were on the wrong side of slavery. They did not consider men of all races to be equal. That sin brought much judgment upon our land, and much pain upon those who were oppressed.
Today, many people feel that same-sex couples are being oppressed unless they are given the same legal status as traditional married couples. When a moral wrong is turned into a civil right, a society suffers greatly. Does that mean it is acceptable to oppress same-sex couples? Of course not, anymore than it would be acceptable to oppress a fornicator or an adulterer or a thief. We are all sinners. Not one of us is justified to throw stones at others. All we can do is share the truth of God's Word with a heart of love for all people.
Marriage equality in God's world was established 6000 years ago. Anything the Supreme Court or any other court says about it will not change what God established when He created man and woman for one another. Some civil rights in our land are consistent with God's Word, while other civil rights go against God's Word. Just because society says you have the "right" to do something doesn't make it right. God is the One who ultimately defines right and wrong.
A well-known media pundit said recently that conservatives should not use the Bible when addressing the issue of same-sex marriage. That all depends. If you are a conservative who knows the truth about marriage equality as taught in the Bible, why would you want to hide that liberating truth from others? If on the other hand, you are a conservative who is not sure what you believe about the rightness or wrongness of fornication and homosexuality, you may tend to shy away from using the Bible to define marriage equality from God's perspective.
If we toss aside the Bible, we turn away from God. If we thumb our noses at God's Word, we have no right to think that "civil rights" are actually going to help those they are aimed at helping. As Christians, we know that unless we help people have a relationship with God during their life on earth, they will be eternally lost. In other words, there are no civil rights in hell. That is why Jesus went to the cross and rose again. He laid down His rights in order to redeem us.
God wants a relationship with us that will last forever. If we get caught up in the "spirit of our age" rather than flowing in the power of the Holy Spirit through faith in Christ and obedience to His Word, we can end up convincing ourselves that certain "civil rights" trump the moral wrongs which the Bible forbids as being out of bounds.
But then again, man has a sordid history over 6000 years of constantly stepping out of bounds. Since his first violation in the Garden of Eden, man has developed the skill to explain away his imperfect behavior and actually make it sound respectable and tolerant. Who do you think gave man the intelligence with which he creatively attempts to thwart God's design with his fine sounding arguments? Man sure is good at convincing himself he is correct. But man goes astray every time he leaves God out of the equation. God established the natural order for life and marriage. Man has just been doing what comes naturally to him ever since our first parents allowed their hearts to become entangled with sin.
Your definition of "marriage equality" will reveal whether you know and believe God's plan, or instead, have been seduced by the spirit of our age. If it wasn't so seductive, I suppose very few would ever fall for it. At the end of the day, we are all equally sinful before God. We all need God's grace and mercy. We all need a new heart that can begin to discern and detect when we are stepping out of bounds in our behavior, or in our affirmations.
Be careful what you affirm. If it doesn't have God's stamp of approval on it, the end result will not be what you expected. Just ask Adam and Eve. They still speak to us today through the pages of Holy Scripture. Their choices and their example are as easy to see as the biblical timeline over 6000 years. It's as plain as day for the one who will look at it with an open mind. But we live in a land where darkness has fallen as a result of man closing his heart and his mind to God's commands, and only the Lord can help us now. Come to think of it, He has been our only hope all the way along.
Some people live and die having promoted moral wrongs in the name of civil rights. Others, by God's grace, see the light and humbly seek to walk in the truth and share it graciously with others. Where does your life fit in the grand scheme of things? Are you on God's side, or are you merely a mouthpiece for the spirit of our age? Don't think that you are too smart to fall for that spirit. Many people much smarter than you and I have been led astray by it.
There are "smarts," and then there is wisdom. One will make you popular in the world. The other will have God's approval. Only God can give us this much needed wisdom. Two paths. Two totally different outcomes that are anything but equal. You get to choose which direction you will go. But just remember: 6000 years is a long track record for anyone who is willing to honestly assess where human beings have tended to miss the mark. There is still time for each of us to get on board with God's agenda.
Who knows? There may only be 6000 hours left before Christ returns to judge the world and bring His children home to heaven. (In case you are wondering, that would be another 250 days.) Sooner or later, Jesus is coming back. Even man's creative attempts to redefine sin won't stop that from happening. The end of this life as we know it will be as dramatic as it was "in the beginning" when God created the heavens and the earth. Doesn't that record of accomplishments qualify Him to be the One who gets to define "marriage equality" in the true sense?
Or can you point to a universe and a population which you created that qualifies you to redefine marriage according to your senses and your level of spiritual understanding? Can your work history compete with God's accomplishments? When it can, you will have the right to define "marriage equality" in any way you want. Until then, you remain a created being who has a Creator and who depends upon your Creator to enlighten you with wisdom. Without that enlightenment, people get lost in a "black hole" so to speak in God's universe by allowing dark ideas to fill our minds and our way of life.
Are you living in the light of Christ, or in a black hole? If you are not sure, try examining your current definition of "marriage equality." That can be your first clue to getting a read on where you are at spiritually in relation to your Creator. And don't forget. He was around even before these 6000 years began. And here we think we are so enlightened with our modern definitions of equality and civil rights. Our unbridled arrogance is only exceeded by our spiritual naivete. If that simple fact doesn't demonstrate that we all descended from Adam and Eve, nothing does.