Tuesday, February 03, 2015

"A Parody Of Marriage"

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A parody (pronounced /ˈpærədiː/; also called send-up or spoof), in contemporary usage, is a work created to mock, comment on, or poke fun at an original work, its subject, author, style, or some other target, by means of humorous, satiric or ironic imitation.

A unified alliance of Evangelicals and Catholics led by Pastor Rick Warren, professors, commentators and theologians have signed their names to an 8 page declaration that opposes society's growing acceptance of same-sex "marriage."

The statement, to be published in March, claims homosexual unions called "marriage" are a "graver threat to marriage than wide spread divorce and co-habitation because it is a parody of marriage."

Speaking to a group of television and screen writers last Friday in Washington DC, First Lady Michelle Obama praised the movie and television industry in the United States for "promoting same-sex marriage."

It is understandable that the institution of marriage is the grand prize of those who seek to "remake" America, and those who are blinded by their own passions, because marriage and family is the oldest and most fundamental human social component.

It predates all civilizations.

Why this declaration? And why now?

Mrs. Obama old those who write the scripts for television shows and movies, "Every day, through the movies and the TV shows and ads you all create, you have the power to shape our understanding of the world around us."

She said, "You challenge our most strongly held beliefs. You influence our opinions on current events."

She has not spoken truer words.

She said, "For example ,,, It wasn't all that long ago that gay rights was a third rail kind of issue, not just in politics, but in entertainment as well. It was considered sensitive, even controversial."

She said all that has now changed because of the influence of the entertainment industry, citing Tom Hanks' winning an Oscar for his portrayal of a gay character in the film "Philadelphia", "The Real World" with an openly gay cast member, and over the years she says there was "Ellen", Will and Grace", "Milk" and "Brokeback Mountain."

This and much more "entertainment" being fed into our homes, the theaters and ultimately into our minds, has, according to the First Lady, served to "challenge our most strongly held beliefs" and "shape our understanding."

She encouraged the industry to do "more" not "less."

A few years ago there was a running debate as to how much influence television had on the culture. Those concerned about the direction of the culture claimed the industry had a negative effect, while the industry claimed it merely reflected what was happening in the culture.

It appears, at least in the mind of the First Lady, that issue is settled.

Perhaps these kinds of speeches by these kinds of influential people attach more urgency to the war on marriage and prompts Christian leaders to speak out on the issue.

Perhaps this new declaration is also related to the US Supreme Court agreeing to hear a same-sex marriage issue in March or April, with a ruling expected by June.

Pastor Rick Warren and 49 other Catholic and Evangelical scholars and intellectuals, professors and pastors have signed their names to an 8 page document entitled, "The Two Shall Become One Flesh: Reclaiming Marriage".

It will be published nationally next month.

The declaration labels homosexual unions as a "graver threat" than divorce and cohabitation by unmarried couples.

Clearly there are differences of beliefs within the group, such as birth control, etc., however, there is no disagreement on the issue of marriage.

The declaration will say: "An easy acceptance of divorce damages marriage," but so-called same-sex "marriage" is a "graver threat because what is now given the name of marriage in law is a parody of marriage."

"And," it says, "The acceptance of same-sex marriage ultimately degrades humanity."

The declaration says that society's push in the last decade to legalize gay "marriage" and make it more widespread could easily lead down a slippery slope, ultimately causing the destruction of the traditional family.

It says, "The law no longer recognizes the primordial, complimentary natural roles of mother and father. The natural family as the fundamental context defining where we have come from and who we are is set aside. The family becomes a creation of the state, and where the family is a creation of the state, children become, in important legal aspects, the property of the state."

This declaration also specifically addresses the argument often heard from those activists seeking to redefine marriage that reasons since divorce and cohabitation is increasingly accepted in many churches, churches can now accept homosexual "marriages" as well.

Robert Gagnon, Associate Professor of New Testament at Pittsburg Theological Seminary, and one of the signers, says, "This is a faulty use of analogical reasoning. One can't logically or reasonably move from limited accommodation in lessor offenses to full accommodation of greater offenses."

The document reads, "As Christians, we must state, unambiguously, that same-sex marriage contradicts the gospel."

It says, "Christians who wish to remain faithful to the Scripture and Christian tradition cannot embrace this falsification of reality, irrespective of its statutes in law."

The declaration says, "Instead of freely accepting God's gift, we seek to dominate (and even alter) nature, constructing our own moral truths. The result is a deceptive pseudo-freedom that degrades our humanity."

We are at a threshold where we may be forced by the falsification of reality, and denial of Scriptural Truth and nature itself, to take our stand "irrespective of its statutes in law."

New Testament Christianity is clear about an ordered government and a Christian's responsibility to "obey the laws of the land."

However, there is an occasion in the book of Acts that puts the light on an exception.

In chapters 4 and 5 of Acts, there is a growing controversy regarding the beliefs of the Apostles. The fact that they believed what they believed was not challenged so much as the fact that they were sharing it publicly and their message was a problem in the city of Jerusalem.

They were first warned (4:19-20) and responded saying they had to share the Truth that they had heard and seen, suggesting the officials would have to decide whether they should listen to God or man.

In chapter 5:28-30 the Apostles are brought before the Council, with the authorities reminding them that they had been ordered to stop preaching the part about Jesus dying and being resurrected , particularly the part that they the authorities had played in the crucifixion.

"We gave you strict orders not to continue teaching in this [Jesus'] Name, and yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and intend to bring this man's blood upon us," they warned.

A politically incorrect gospel. And an unwillingness to "evolve" with the culture.

I wonder if 21st Century American Christians could respond as they did: They told the authorities, "We ought to obey God rather than man."

Be Faithful. Be Strong. Be Bold. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.