5 Reasons to Disentangle Sexuality and Race

The Gospel Coalition | 7/16/2019 | Rebecca McLaughlin
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“You’re on the wrong side of history.”

These words cut Christians seeking to defend orthodox Christian sexual ethics to the heart. The implication is clear: the gay-rights movement is the new civil-rights movement. Failing to embrace gay marriage now is like opposing mixed-race marriage then. Christians invoked the Bible to justify their racism then, and they’re using the Bible to justify their homophobia now. Hold your ground on this issue, and you’ll find yourself on the wrong side of history.

Bible - Cuts - Favor - Marriage - Marriage

But as strongly as the Bible cuts in favor of mixed-race marriage, it cuts against same-sex marriage for believers. Part of me wishes this wasn’t true. I’ve been romantically attracted to women since childhood. Were I not a Christian, I expect I’d be married to a woman today. But whichever way I hold my Bible, its message on marriage remains the same. And as I’ve dug more into the Scriptures, I’ve come to understand the purpose of marriage more deeply, and how the love-across-difference of marriage pictures Jesus’s love for us.

Meanwhile, as I’ve reflected on the “wrong side of history” claim—compelling as it first appears—I’ve come to see five fundamental problems with equating same-sex marriage to mixed-race marriage.

Heritage - Parents - England - Friend - School

We do not choose our racial heritage. I was born to white parents in England, and when I asked a part-Greek best friend in high school why her skin was going nicely brown in the sun while mine remained white she replied, “Because I’m from the Mediterranean, and you’re from the moon!” We don’t choose our racial heritage. But while we may not choose our sexual attractions, we do choose our sexual actions.

As strongly as the Bible cuts in favor of mixed-race marriage, it cuts against same-sex marriage for believers.

Analogy - Personality - Profile - ENFP - Campaigner

Perhaps an analogy will help. My Myers-Briggs personality profile is ENFP: “the Campaigner.” I enjoy public...
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