As a Christian I have heard the following verse many times in my lifetime:
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Gen 1:27 NIV
It has been used to teach me that I look like God, that His image was the template for my creation, and that makes me beautiful. It goes on in verse 28 to say that God blessed them (Adam and Eve) whom He created.
I have also been told this explains God’s intent for marriage being between a male and female and that any deviation from that is sin. The same additional verse 28 has been used to show that procreation (“be fruitful and multiply”) adds credence to that view.
So, what do we do with these two views – we are ALL created in His image, or LGBT people are outside of God’s plan?
I think the bigger question is, do we define WHO has worth in the eyes of God?
Too often we as Christians want to create parameters and push those that don’t adhere to our beliefs as outside of God’s plan/love/righteousness/fill in the word you’re thinking of. And it’s very clear based on today’s news with laws, lawsuits, boycotts, and calls for freedom of speech and/or religion that we are all ready to pick a side and fight to the death. But are we right to do so?
As quoted from this blog post:
“Do we believe an LGTB citizens ought to bring their identity into government, business, the media, and education without fear or discrimination? And likewise, do we believe a Christian holding traditional beliefs should be able to bring their identity into the public square without fear? Framed this way, the issue ceases to be about winning or losing, or which group gets control and which is pushed back into the closet, and it becomes about learning to share the public square as Americans with different beliefs about marriage and sexuality but all possessing inherent God-given worth.”
I think as Christians (especially as Christians?) we need to acknowledge that EVERYONE, whether or not they are a Christian or not, has been created in the image of God. Genesis has stated it as noted above as well. Additionally, we all have worth in the eyes of God – that is all over the Bible. To share a few (emphasis mine):
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:16-17 NIV
“…He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Mark 5:45b NIV (I take this as “everyone”)
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” Matt 5:43-44 NIV
I could go on and on, but the heart of the matter is that Jesus or Lord and Savior made it clear that we need to love those around us, EVERYONE around us. And while we need to adhere to beliefs and morals and so many other things as well, these ideals should never justify pushing ANYONE out of the public square or life.
I, as a Christian, have a right to publicly proclaim my faith is Jesus Christ without persecution.
I, as a Lesbian, have a right to publicly proclaim my love for my wife and be able to have our marriage legally recognized throughout this country.
You, perhaps as a very conservative Christian Pastor, have a right to say you view the Bible as saying it should be between a man and woman in public and as such will not perform weddings to them. You should be able to without a fight.
You, perhaps as a LGBT Affirming Christian Pastor, have a right to say you view the Bible as not excluding monogamous same sex relationships as wrong and not be persecute.
You, perhaps as a Muslim or Atheist or Buddhist, have the right to share your beliefs as well in safety and without the idea that my beliefs are somehow being broken down. And vice versa.
My having all views in the public square (regardless if those views align) allow EVERYONE’S WORTH to prevail. For we are all worth something to our God, whether or not we accept Him. The Bible makes that clear. Jesus even loved Judas, right?
So I challenge you to stop fighting for a minute and consider your worth in Christ. Now project that worth onto someone around you irregardless to their belief system, their “open sin”, or any other criteria. And love them instead of fighting. And yet, feel free to believe what you believe too. There’s no need for fighting. Consider it.
Please like our Facebook page here.