Thursday, November 16, 2006

Gay Marriage is Weird

The Christian view of marriage used to be simple: man meets woman and they develop a good friendship. Later on the relationship deepens and they decide to commit to one another for the rest of their lives. They get engaged and then married. Once they are married they seal the marriage covenant by having sex for the first time.
If either partner is unfaithful, the marriage covenant is seriously damaged and could lead to divorce. After all, if they abstained from sex before marriage, why should they get away with having sex with anyone else after marriage? The marriage covenant and sex work together.
Enter the "modern" view of sex: you can have it before marriage with anyone you like, and after marriage if you can get away with it. Since it's "natural" to be gay, it is as unthinkable to expect gay people to remain celibate before marriage as it is to expect straight people to remain celibate.
But this poses some interesting side-effects: can a gay couple (once married) file for divorce on the grounds of infidelity? Is there any expectation of a monogamous relationship in a gay marriage or not? If not, then what is meant by "a committed long-term relationship"? Does it mean that you commit to one partner in the long term, but reserve the right to random short-term relationships as well?
If this applies to gay relationships, why not to straight ones as well? Surely it would be discriminating against the rights of married couples to allow for divorce on the grounds of infidelity?
Should gay men be expected to remain celibate until they marry "Mr Right"? If not, why not? If so, then why is it not part of current gay culture?
Personally, I find the whole concept of "modern" marriage weird. To me it indicates that the arguments about why the "sexual orientation" simply don't wash. It's got nothing to do with orientation: it's got everything to do with sinful behaviour. Men who have other sex partners before, during or after marriage do not have a different "orientation" to men who don't. So why are gay men treated different?
I'm not gay, nor am I rabidly homophobic or a gay basher. I just think that people who try to explain away or justify sexual brokenness as anything else eventually land up in some weird moral and ethical dilemmas.
Personally I think that gay or lesbian behaviour is immoral, and that these powerful sexual urges are indicators of more deep-seated spiritual and psychological issues. They can't just be explained away and I know of no quick fix solutions. What I do know and can testify to is the healing power of Christ crucified and resurrected. Unfortunately most Christians have no idea what that truly means, let alone the rest of the planet. But that's another story.

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