BreakPoint: Waving the Rainbow Flag on the Field of Play

Christian Athletes Under Pressure

The pressure on Christians to wave the rainbow flag may be new, but the issue is as old as the church.

Imagine for the moment that you’re a world-class soccer star. You’ve worked for this all your life. Day after day and year after year you get up early, run, work on drills to hone your God-given talent. You’ve sacrificed many other things to rank among the best in the world. And now you may have to choose between your career or your faith. Why? Because you refuse to sell out to the crowd.

This is not make-believe. This is the plight of Jaelene Hinkle, a Christian athlete with the U.S. national soccer team. Jaelene, you see, has suddenly been thrust into a harsh spotlight—not for anything she’s done on the pitch, as they say, but for her decision not to play in games in which her team must wear rainbow jerseys in support of “LGBT Pride” month in June.

Now, Jaelene is not trying to make waves but simply says she’s bowing out for “personal reasons.”

But her views on the matter are pretty clear.  When the Supreme Court legalized what is called “same-sex marriage” in 2015, Jaelene stated on Instagram, “I believe with every fiber in my body that what was written 2,000 years ago in the Bible is undoubtedly true …. This world may change, but Christ and His Word NEVER will.”

After calling on Christians to become more loving, she added, “The rainbow was a [covenant] made between God and all his creation that never again would the world be flooded as it was when He destroyed the world during Noah’s time. It’s a constant reminder that no matter how corrupt this world becomes, He will never leave us or forsake us.”

Good, strong words! The rainbow, in case you haven’t noticed, has been appropriated by the LGBT rights crowd.

The response to Jaelene’s latest stand has been mostly vitriol. One of the few printable reactions in opposition was, “It’s so nice when the trash takes itself out.”

To this point however, Jaelene’s decision hasn’t cost her a spot on the national team. And one fair-minded gay sports blog said, “Hinkle has a right to her personal beliefs and if that means skipping a chance to play, that is also her right.”

It’s been clear for a while now that sport, like many other realms in our culture, is under siege from the forces of political correctness, sexual license, and marriage redefinition. A few years ago, the NFL threatened to take the Super Bowl away from the state of Arizona because of a religious freedom bill that the LGBT activists opposed—so Arizona’s governor vetoed the bill. North Carolina was threatened by the NCAA with economic blackmail over its so-called “bathroom bill”—and changed the law. And now the Seattle WNBA team is donating a portion of ticket sales to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. I wonder what any Christians on the team think of this.

But it isn’t just about sports. The pressure to conform is being ratcheted up everywhere—in business, politics, even religion. On a recent episode of “The Point,” my colleague John Stonestreet bemoaned that the LGBT “rainbows” have even turned up everywhere—even on bags of French fries! And I can sympathize.

Yet all this isn’t really a surprise, is it? Christians have always faced a choice between following God or the world, Christ or Caesar. In the early church, Christians such as Polycarp, who was bishop of the church in Smyrna, also had to choose. Polycarp, who was an old man, simply had to say “Caesar is lord” and offer a pinch of incense before Caesar’s image—or face torture and death. He refused to give in, saying, “Eighty-six years I have served Christ, and He never did me any wrong. How can I blaspheme my King who saved me?”

The pressure to go along with the world on human sexuality is probably only going to intensify. For the sake of God’s honor, the truth of His Word, and our neighbors’ flourishing, we simply cannot wave the rainbow flag. Thank God, Jaelene Hinkle hasn’t.

Waving the Rainbow Flag on the Field of Play: Christian Athletes Under Pressure

Take a page from Jaelene Hinkle’s playbook–choose to stand for your Christian convictions in a loving yet firm way. Read more about Jaelene by checking out the links below.

 

Resources

Christian soccer star refuses to wear rainbow uniform promoting LGBT
  • Fr. Mark Hodges | Lifesitenews.com | June 12, 2017
Just a Pinch of Incense
  • Trevin Wax | thegospelcoalition.com | August 25, 2012
Polycarp, entry
  • Theopedia

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  • Just One Voice

    God bless Hinkle, keep her & watch over her. That is a LOT of pressure to be under, especially in such a public spotlight.

    I really hope critics can take a moment and see what they’re doing. If Christians were to force others to wear a jersey with a cross, or sit on the bench, can you imagine the uproar & outrage there would be….

    That said, we Christians always need to do a double check too. Hypocrisy does not play favorites.

    • Phoenix1977

      Oh, but Christians HAVE been doing this to all non-Christians for the better part of 2000 years. Even now Christian employers are free in 18 states to fire employees for no other reason than being gay. Christian schools are free to fire any employee that refuses to pray for lunch, for example. And Christians HAVE been mandating what was fit to wear and what was not.
      Please read up on the terrible things Christians HAVE done before blaming others, please. Because what is being done to Jaelene Hinkle (or better, what she decided to do to herself) is nothing compared to what Christians have done to the LGBT community for centuries.

      • Just One Voice

        Well, those are CHRISTIAN employers, as you said. So I imagine they are going to abide by Christian values, right? I imagine they come to some level of cooperative understanding before one gets hired, right? (Ex. you agree to work for us, therefore, you agree to do a, b and c, and abide by x, y and z values. Otherwise, you’re out.)

        What they’re doing to Hinkle seems more out of the blue like, “Oh by the way you must to do this now, otherwise you sit out.”

        Don’t get me wrong, I know there are places that abuse & harass…even for non-Christian reasons. But let’s BOTH be careful not to argue the exceptions.

      • gary_greene

        “what is being done to Jaelene Hinkle (or better, what she decided to do to herself)”
        Jaelene Hinkle did not decide to call herself trash.

        • Phoenix1977

          If that had been the worst Christians had ever called me I would be more than fine with that.

      • Scott

        “Oh, but Christians HAVE been doing this to all non-Christians for the better part of 2000 years.” Oppression happens all the time and Christians do less of it than others. For every act of oppression that you credit to Christianity I can cite 5 more that have nothing to do with Christianity… I can also show you the scripture that condemns such oppression in the first place and show you that not only were those acts not Christian, but they were committed out of either greed or power. The Bible condemns this.

        Christian schools teach Christian values. If you don’t have Christian values, how can you teach them? For this same reason, Out Magazine should be able to fire a Christian if they do not comply with LGBT values. Simple.

  • Zarm

    I am curious what proponents of the this movement believe that anyone who morally disagrees with it *should* do. Acting in accordance with their beliefs is called hatred, but simply recusing themselves from participation is… also called hatred?

    I’m not trying to be sarcastic, I’m genuinely curious. I understand that activists do not believe that anyone *should* disagree with the cause, but for those who do, what is considered an acceptable way to not participate in what objectors find morally objectionable?

    • Just One Voice

      I would like to know the answer to this too. Seems there is no way to disagree without being accused of hatred.

  • Just One Voice

    You still didn’t answer the point/question that, these are Christian employers, yes? Meaning, isn’t there some discussion & understanding before getting hired that, “hey, we’re a Christian company, so if you work for us, you agree to abide by x, y, z principles”? If that discussion & agreement DOES NOT take place before hire, then yeah it would be discrimination to fire a worker; or negligence to say the least.

    Otherwise though, it’s a contract. Two parties agreed to working principles & conditions of employment. So discrimination does not apply. One party violated the terms of agreement.

    Just curious, where can I find a list of these 18 states and what their laws say? Or maybe you can point me to one as an example? Thanks in advance.

    • Phoenix1977

      Well, such a discussion would be illegal since employers aren’t allowed to ask about private circumstances not directly related to the job at hand. And the Supreme Court ruled someone’s sexuality is a private matter others have no business knowing about (Lawrence vs. Texas, 2003).

      I’ll even give you three as example: North Carolina, Texas and Mississippi.

      • Just One Voice

        True that. Shows I’m no lawyer I guess, hah 🙂 I took a law class for my undergrad & graduate programs, but that was only as it pertained to sports.

        So, what about 501(c)3 companies? Are the hiring laws different for them?

        I guess what I’m really not understanding is: how does any organization with clear religious and/or behavioral boundaries go about hiring, WITHOUT addressing the issues you deem discriminatory? ‘Cause for many places, the issues would very much directly relate to the job.

        Thanks again for the examples.

        • Phoenix1977

          “what about 501(c)3 companies?”
          I have absolutely no idea what that means. All I know is no employer is allowed to ask about the personal circumstances of a (potential) employee unless those circumstances relate directly to the job. But so far the courts have not allowed any leeway in this. For example, a few years ago there was a hospital in the San Francisco area refusing to hire a nurse because she was a single mother and there were concerns whether or not she would have childcare for all her shifts. The courts ruled the hospital was not allowed to ask her about how she planned on dealing with those issues. And even the American Catholic Church under current law they are not allowed to question priests or seminar students whether or not the agree with all the church’ teachings.

          “how does any organization with clear religious and/or behavioral boundaries go about hiring, WITHOUT addressing the issues you deem discriminatory? ‘Cause for many places, the issues would very much directly relate to the job.”
          And why would it be directly related to the job? Would a non-Christian nurse take less care of her patients than a Christian nurse would do in a Christian hospital? Do you have to be a Christian to make the sandwiches at Chick-Fil-A? Why would a math or science teacher have to be a Christian to teach his or her field in a Christian school? Would a Christian accountant find more tax deductions when working for a Christian charity than a non-Christian? And I can go on like that for a while.
          Fact is, religion is hardly ever directly related to any job and therefor should never be asked about in a job interview. Or in any other meeting between employee and employer. And so far the courts agree on that.

          • Just One Voice

            “I have no idea what that means.” It’s a not-for-profit organization. Sorry, I shouldn’t have gotten too technical there.

            “And why would it be directly related to the job?” Because a candidate’s ability to carry out the required tasks–in accordance with what the organization/company practices–directly relates to that person’s beliefs & practices. Take a pastor for example. How can you NOT ask a pastoral candidate questions about his/her beliefs?

            Let’s take another example. Let’s say it’s company policy to practice good hygiene & appearance, as many do. Well putting on chemicals is against Joe’s practice. Plus, Joe is trying to grow out his beard, so he may appear scruffy.

            According to what you’ve said, if the company asks Joe anything about personal hygiene, then they have discriminated against him.

      • Scott

        This is true… but when someone else’s sexuality is forced upon you (like when you have to make a wedding cake for a same-sex wedding for example) then it no longer becomes a private matter.

        • Phoenix1977

          Also true.
          However, as I said before, the law makes no distinction anymore between opposite-sex marriages and same-sex marriages. So for a baker, a florist or a photographer who does wedding specials it should also not matter. And if it does matter that means your are discriminating and therefor are punishable by law. Well, in 32 states, at least. And after the Supreme Court rules on the Jack Philips case most likely in all 50 states.

          • Scott

            That is true as well. I would propose that we could and should make a distinction, giving business owners the option of being a Christian wedding venue vs. other (name religious or ideological view here) similar to book stores.
            Giving people the ability to be/live differently (when it does not harm – I know words can harm but we can’t eliminate free speech) would go a long way towards peaceful coexistence.

            No matter what, people are always going to disagree. : – ) Giving people the ability to live out those differences without fear of physical or financial ruin is a good goal.

        • gladys1071

          How is anyone’s sexuality being forced upon anyone? Baking a cake is a service and does not in anyway make anyone change their beliefs about same-sex unions.

          As a Christian, i would have no problem baking a cake for a gay couple, i would not feel in anyway that i was being forced to approve by baking a cake. I would be providing a service, what is the big deal?

          I can bake the cake and go home to my husband i go on with my life , in no way is a same sex union affect my marriage or my life.

          • Scott

            And you have a right to that choice… but why should the government tell you how to make that choice? There are some Christians that believe by making that cake they are participating in a celebration that dishonors God. By refusing to make the cake, they are not hurting anyone… they may not even hate the people they refuse (I don’t want to assume intention here). But they should at least have the right not to make the cake.

          • gladys1071

            I agree that the baker should not have to bake the cake. My thing is what kind of example are we as Christians are we showing by not baking the cake? We are showing our self righteousness and not being Christ like. I agree that nobody should be compelled or forced too by the government at the same time we should be gracious and bake the cake.

          • Scott

            I don’t agree with self righteousness either. : )

            We also must consider that Christians disagree on what it means to be Christian. Jesus said He did not come to abolish the law and some Christians take that quite literally. I don’t know the baker’s heart, but I wouldn’t presume to think he is being self righteous when he could be trying to obey the law. He should at the very least be afforded the right to refuse.

          • gladys1071

            Jesus did seem to make clear that loving are neighbor more important . I would consider baking the cake part of loving our neighbor , that is how I interpret Jesus words.

          • Scott

            You will receive no judgement from me! : )

            I personally don’t know what I would do… pray first (probably read some scripture too) and hope the Holy Spirit gives me a clear answer. I just want people to consider that the baker might not be acting out of hate… after all Jesus did rebuke sin and He loves us ALL.

            Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

            These are my favorite verses.

  • Steve

    So you would feel more comfortable living in a Muslim predominant country than in one based on Christian values? Christians aren’t perfect, no one is, but really from what you say Muslims treat LGBT people better? Try traveling to Saudi Arabia and living as you wish.
    I doubt you will find a mosque anywhere that has rainbow flags on it like some churches.
    When you divide the world up between victims and oppressors and make everything fit your ideology you fail to reason.

    • Scott

      “There is no group of people, including Muslims, LGBTs have suffered more from than from Christians.” Steve is right, Christians are not perfect, but you cannot prove this statement. Perhaps you feel this way based on your own experiences… Also I use the word oppression in a broad sense and not just associated with LGBTs. You also failed to address the rest of what I said:

      “For every act of oppression that you credit to Christianity I can cite 5 more that have nothing to do with Christianity… I can also show you the scripture that condemns such oppression in the first place and show you that not only were those acts not Christian, but they were committed out of either greed or power. The Bible condemns this.”

      At the root of our faith is Jesus and I have quoted enough of His words for you to understand that we are messengers sent to show God’s love (Not beat His law into) to the world around us. We have not always followed His message the way He intended, I will concede this… but His message is not one of hate.

      • Phoenix1977

        “”There is no group of people, including Muslims, LGBTs have suffered more from than from Christians.” Steve is right, Christians are not perfect, but you cannot prove this statement. Perhaps you feel this way based on your own experiences… ”
        Simply pick up any history book not written or published by Christians (so I’d suggest by a Japanese or Chinese author) and the facts will prove themselves. You don’t need me for that.

        “but His message is not one of hate.”
        And yet hate is what non-Christians receive the most from Christians.

        • Scott

          The Japanese have a long sordid history of oppressing ethnic minorities as well as those around them… they also sided with Hitler in WWII.

          China has a long Sordid history of oppressing ethnic minorities (that continues today)… just ask Tibetans. When Christians went to these countries to help the oppressed minorities it would stand to reason that those in power might try to silence this effort.

          Two examples: Eric Liddell in China and Saint Antony Dainan in Japan. There are thousands more Christians that sacrificed their lives in eastern countries with the intention of helping the marginalized (not seeking power).

          There seems to be allot of history your statements ignore. Why do you refuse to acknowledge the good Christians do? Millions of Christians have lost their lives in an effort to help others. More evidence of love, not hate.

          • Phoenix1977

            “The Japanese have a long sordid history of oppressing ethnic minorities as well as those around them… they also sided with Hitler in WWII.”
            No argument there. And even today they are proud of being a xenophobic race.

            “China has a long Sordid history of oppressing ethnic minorities (that continues today)… just ask Tibetans.”
            Actually, the “long” part is debatable. It mostly began after the Communist revolution by Mao. Before that China was quite hospitable and tolerant towards others.

            “When Christians went to these countries to help the oppressed minorities it would stand to reason that those in power might try to silence this effort.”
            Except you forget 2 things: Neither Japan not China has a freedom of religion. The Japanese constitution even specifically states religion is not allowed to influence daily life in Japan. And in China only the religion sanctioned by the Communist Party is allowed.
            But, more importantly, Christians have a tendency to preach. And in both countries that is simply not allowed. Christians are more than welcome to help people in both Japan and China but they are required to keep their religion to themselves.

            “Why do you refuse to acknowledge the good Christians do?”
            Like I said, the good does not erase the bad.

            “Millions of Christians have lost their lives in an effort to help others.”
            And just as many others died thanks to Christian attempts to “convert”

          • Scott

            Your statement illustrates my point. Thank you.

            Also freedom of speech is something we all value… most people jump to the defensive almost immediately when their deeply held convictions are challenged. That is why you probably have experienced more “preaching” from Christians than those who don’t push back. : ) I’m not saying that is right or wrong, it is just human nature. When Christians share the gospel, most (not all) will accept a polite refusal. This is fine on an individual (person to person) level, but Christians cannot live in a place that does not allow them to share the gospel publicly. It goes against what Jesus requires us to do. There are millions of Chinese Christians that have to live in fear of persecution because of their governments laws (and oppressive behavior by individuals, similar to what you’ve experienced when those who disagree take “justice” into their own hands).

            When you keep saying “the good does not erase the bad.” Do you feel that gives you (*you is proverbial in this sentence) the license to act out as your oppressors? My father always told me that two wrongs don’t make a right. Just curious how you feel about that? In my experience, if you meet anger with anger, you end up receiving more anger in return. I’ve often wondered why people engage in such an endless cycle of destructive behavior?

            It seems like you blame Christians for an inordinate amount of suffering. You ate dinner with your Muslim neighbors and didn’t blame them for the Pulse Nightclub massacre or the hundreds of thousand butchered in the middle east in the name of Islam? You wouldn’t hold a rwandan with Hutu roots responsible for the hundreds of thousands of Tutsis killed by his people? You wouldn’t hold a native German responsible for Hitlers actions? I could literally continue on with thousands of world atrocities that have nothing to do with Christianity. Why then do you have such an unbalanced hate for Christianity? Please try to be objective in your answer.

          • Phoenix1977

            “When Christians share the gospel, most (not all) will accept a polite refusal. This is fine on an individual (person to person) level, but Christians cannot live in a place that does not allow them to share the gospel publicly. It goes against what Jesus requires us to do. ”
            And that’s one of the problems. The laws in most countries don’t acknowledge Jesus. In fact, even the laws in the US do not. Nowhere in the American Constitution is the word “god” mentioned, only the word “creator”. So what Jesus does or does not require you to do means nothing in the eyes of the law.

            “There are millions of Chinese Christians that have to live in fear of persecution because of their governments laws (and oppressive behavior by individuals, similar to what you’ve experienced when those who disagree take “justice” into their own hands).”
            They don’t have to. They can simply abandon their religion and join a state sanctioned church. Unlike ethnic minorities of LGBTs, who didn’t have a choice how they were born. Religion is a choice you can recall if things are too difficult for you. Many other things are not.

            “I’ve often wondered why people engage in such an endless cycle of destructive behavior?”
            That’s actually an easy question. Because we crave justice of the wrong that has been done to us.
            Let’s talk about my former class mate for a while. I told you about him, remember? Young guy, late teens, happened to be gay and committed suicide because his Christian mother said it was better if he ended his own life than to live as an abomination. Rings a bell?
            What do you think that boy got for justice? After he killed himself his mother refused to plan a funeral because “faggots don’t deserve to be paid their last respects”. Her Christian neighbors shrugged and went on with their lives like nothing happened. The preacher in her church even complimented her for “encouraging a stain on god’s creation to remove itself”. And do you think the police investigated her? Of course not! Because encouraging someone to commit suicide is not a crime. Even CPS never investigated even though there were 2 more children in that family. And the only people who cared were the boy’s father and my parents. Everyone else simply minded their own business and kept as far away from the situation as possible.
            Now you might think that boy was my friend and that’s why I’m so emotional about this, but that’s not true. The truth is I hardly knew him. If, before he committed suicide, you would have asked me who he was or mentioned his name to me I would not have known who you were talking about. You see, not only everyone else failed him. I did too. And not a day goes by with me not feeling guilty about that. So all I can do is trying to get justice for him. And if justice is not obtainable, I will settle for revenge. Which is exactly why I stay as far away from that woman who called herself his mother as humanly possible.

            “You wouldn’t hold a native German responsible for Hitlers actions?”
            Well, that’s a tricky one. As a people the Dutch still do. There is still a deep dislike and distrust against Germans in the Netherlands, although I’m not sure that’s because of the Second World War or because the German national team kept us from winning the World Cup in soccer in both 1974 and 1978. With the Dutch is difficult to say what is more important to them: disliking someone because of massive genocide or because they ruined a night of soccer.

            “Why then do you have such an unbalanced hate for Christianity? Please try to be objective in your answer.”
            Ultimately it’s not that difficult a question. The Pulse massacre, the slaughtering in the Middle-East and Rwanda, WW II and all those other things are abstract. Those are things you read about online and in books. Cruelty by Christians I experienced firsthand, making it far less abstract. You could even say it’s biblical: eye for an eye.

    • Phoenix1977

      I prefer a country like mine, where religion is pushed back from the public square into people’s homes and churches. Religion plays no part in public life here. Everyone is free to believe whatever he or she wants, as long as they obey the law. And that includes no discrimination against LGBTs.

      And for the record: I did travel to the Middle-East as well as to some traditional Christian countries. And my boyfriend and me were treated with more respect in the Islamic countries than we were in countries like Italy, Spain and Poland.

  • Steve

    Strange how no LGBT couple has tried to force a Muslim baker or photographer to celebrate their union. They seem to target Christians. Why is that?

    • Phoenix1977

      Well, for one the chance of encountering a Christian baker in the US is quite somewhat bigger than a Muslim baker. And second, we don’t have to. Court rulings setting a precedent by convicting Christian bakers will also bind Muslim bakers to the law. And third, because there is a lot of bad blood between the LGBT community and Christians and the LGBT community is set on paying back all they have ever received from Christians, with interest.

      • Gina Dalfonzo

        Well then, we’ll all have the chance to see who’s correct about whether vengeance brings a person peace, happiness, and satisfaction: Jesus, or you. =)

  • Robin Benson

    Always appreciate your articles. As a UK citizen visiting the USA for a short stay, it’s a sad commentary on how far things have gone. The UK is not much different.

    But just one observation: this vocal minority have not adopted “the” rainbow, but a corrupted version of only 6 colours…not the true 7. Also interesting to note that in Biblical terms, the number 6 signifies fallen, rebellious Humankind.

  • Phoenix1977

    Yes, in part it is.

  • Scott

    If you can sell only Christian books, then why can’t you sell only Christian wedding cakes?

    • Phoenix1977

      Because there is no such thing as a Christian wedding in the eyes of the law.

      • Scott

        But there is such a thing as a Christian book?.. This is where the law seems, shall I say, a little less than comprehensive.

        • Phoenix1977

          There are books with content based on Christianity. That better? And the law is very comprehensible: everyone will be treated equally without exceptions. Can’t be any clearer than that.

          • Scott

            …And there are weddings with content based on Christianity as well. Events are very similar to books in that regard.

            Christian weddings are more about two people making their covenant with God than two people signing a legal contract.

          • Phoenix1977

            “…And there are weddings with content based on Christianity as well. Events are very similar to books in that regard.”
            Sorry, but no. While there are many different kind of books there is only one kind of marriage and therefor only of kind of wedding, which is a legal contract between two partners and between that couple and the state. The religious ceremony only has the same name (because that made it easier to make people comply with the new religion) but has nothing to do with the marriage / wedding as described in the law.

          • Scott

            So now you are telling me that my own wedding had no Christian content?

            Some people sign a legal contract at the Justice of the Peace and call it their wedding. The content in such a wedding would be very different than most Christian weddings… of which the legal contract is almost incidental to the content of the wedding ceremony. The legal contracts may be the same, but wedding ceremonies differ vastly.

            If we can respect each others differences, we can work together to make sure we all have equal footing under the law. I already know you won’t like this statement, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true. : – )

          • Phoenix1977

            But that legal contract you signed at your wedding is the only thing that makes your marriage legit. Everything else is a nice ceremony but nothing more than that. Your signature, along with your wife’s and the person who officiated the wedding IS your marriage, legally, just as it would have been if you had gone to a Justice of the Peace.
            Your wedding indeed did not have any Christian content because there is nothing Christian about signing a piece of paper. All the rest probably was beautiful but had absolutely no meaning for the law.

          • Scott

            But it did have meaning to those who participated… and the content was extremely important to all those participants as well. Vendors included. Much of their service was requested to compliment the content of the ceremony and had nothing to do with the signed contract.

            Also… our marriage is legit no matter if we had a contract or not. That piece of paper is nothing more than a formality. You could take it away along with all the legalities associated and it wouldn’t change a thing about what truly matters in our lives… Nor would it change the intent of how we live together.

          • Phoenix1977

            “But it did have meaning to those who participated”
            I truly believe that. Doesn’t make a difference legally, though. If I would get married in Disneyland with Mickey officiating the wedding, all food recipies coming straight out of Disney movies with is being swept away in Cinderella’s carriage I still would not have a Disney wedding because there is no such thing.

            “Also… our marriage is legit no matter if we had a contract or not.”
            Really? I suggest you try to invoke spousal privilige or file tax favors with that contract. You would end up in jail for fraud.

          • Scott

            “Doesn’t make a difference legally, though.” It certainly does to the vendors in charge of decoration… They are being asked/paid to participate in that theme by decorating for it.

            “I suggest you try to invoke spousal privilige or file tax favors with that contract. You would end up in jail for fraud.”

            I think you have missed my point. Spousal privilege and tax favors mean nothing to our marriage… if they were not given, it would not affect the nature of our relationship. Our marriage/union/whatever you want to call it is a covenant made between each of us and God. He (God) is the one we live to serve, not the government. We would of course “give Cesar what is his.” : – )

          • Phoenix1977

            “I think you have missed my point. Spousal privilege and tax favors mean nothing to our marriage…”
            And yet that’s what a legal marriage is about, just as legal protection between the two partners. That is what constitutes a marriage, not the religious ceremony because governments have no interest in that. And that’s exactly why the marriage discussion will never be solved, because we are talking about 2 different things here. LGBTs, at least the majority of us, are talking about legal marriage and whatever you do in your churches, mosques, temples or whatever means nothing to us. We want the legal stuff: the protections by and from the government, tax favors, recognition of our families in inheritance cases and who knows what else. That is marriage. What you mean is what the churches have called marriage in order to claim credibility for their ceremonies while they have no relationship to marriage in any way.

          • Scott

            “And yet that’s what a legal marriage is about, just as legal protection between the two partners.”

            That is not at all what my marriage is about… and you are now realizing that there are differences between marriages as you state below.”

            “because we are talking about 2 different things here. LGBTs, at least the majority of us, are talking about legal marriage and whatever you do in your churches, mosques, temples or whatever means nothing to us. We want the legal stuff:

            Well Christians say you can have it (at least this one : – ). You just can’t force us to accept your idea of what it represents.

          • Phoenix1977

            “You just can’t force us to accept your idea of what it represents.”
            I don’t have to. The law already forces you to do that because the legal definition of marriage is all the counts in a court of law.

          • Scott

            Force is so totalitarian don’t you think? Sorry that question is rhetorical. : – )

            “legal definition of marriage is all the counts in a court of law.” Fortunately my marriage will never need one of those.

          • gladys1071

            You don’t understand the legality of marriage and how important that is. You making a convent before God is great, but does nothing for your legal rights as far as your children and your wife.

            Be careful downplaying the legal side of marriage, it matters.

          • Scott

            Okay. But please explain to me why you think it matters so much?

          • gladys1071

            Because without it you have no legal recourse , in regards to your children, assets . You are just two separate people living together playing house.

            The government grants you certain right for being married that unmarried people don’t get. Their are also responsibilities that come with legal marriage, like any children your wife has you are the father , even if biologically you are not.

            Your wife is protected from you abandoning her and not providing for her and the children. Look up all of the benefits of being legally married, too numerous to mention.

            God sees legal marriage as valid as long as their are witneses.

          • Scott

            Okay, so I will try to explain my thoughts on each of these one at a time.

            “Because without it you have no legal recourse , in regards to your children, assets . You are just two separate people living together playing house.”

            In a Christian marriage where both partners honor God, no recourse is needed. Two become one flesh… essentially my wife and I are one person in God’s eyes. God is our authority and we do not need man made laws. Please note that throughout history many people have had to secretly marry when forbidden to do so because of hostile government laws.

            “The government grants you certain right for being married that unmarried people don’t get. Their are also responsibilities that come with legal marriage, like any children your wife has you are the father , even if biologically you are not.”

            Two Christian people will give unto Cesar what is his (as long as that does not interfere with our faith (honoring God). Whatever the government grants or doesn’t grant makes no difference to nature of my covenant with my wife. I will do everything I can to honor her before God. God requires fathers take care of their wife’s and children’s needs.

            “Your wife is protected from you abandoning her and not providing for her and the children. Look up all of the benefits of being legally married, too numerous to mention.”

            Yes! Eternally… God holds me responsible for these things in a way that the laws of the land could not. Again, in a Christian marriage where both partners honor God, abandonment, neglect, abuse, greed and any other form of such things are forbidden by God and thus not an option in a Christian marriage.

          • gladys1071

            Ok iam confused by your statement. You said the legality of your marriage does not matter. If that is the case then couples that live together , should not me berated for not getting married?

            A legal marriage is required for one to be considered married.

          • Scott

            That isn’t exactly what I said though. My point was the government could take away our paper contract along with all the legalities associated and that would not change the nature of the covenant we (my wife and I) made with God. My wife and I would still honor our commitment to one another (meaning all things associated with that commitment) no matter if the government recognized our union or not. The most important part of our marriage is God. We both place Him before each other and this orientation is the rock our marriage/union/lives together is built upon. Is that a better illustration?..

            I’m not sure I agree with berating anyone just because they sin… but I get your point. : – )

          • gladys1071

            though i agree with what you say, couples that live together can say the same thing, they don’t need a piece of paper to be commited to each other.

            you are effectively making the case to live together without marriage. Marriage even a secular marriage performed at the court house is a marriage before God too.

          • Scott

            I’m not really advocating for that at all, let me explain:

            I am saying the legal piece of paper is not as important as the ceremony before God. My wife and I recognize that covenant first and it matters very little to us whether the government does or not. I would make the case (for Christian believers) that the man and woman getting married should make such a covenant, placing God as their authority not the state. Perhaps all couples need a legal contract under the law for the government to recognize that marriage, but that contract has very little (if anything) to do with the nature of a Christian marriage. God is the arbitrator of our marriage and a Christian marriage should never need the governments involvement.

            Also, one has to recognize God to place their marriage before Him. Otherwise wouldn’t it be a marriage without Him?

          • gladys1071

            I respectfully disagree with you, marriage is not specifically a Christian ceremony. You can be married by a buddihst monk or a magistrate or at the courthouse and that is also a marriage. Are you saying people that marry from other religions are not married? or are athiests that have secular marriages not married?

            Marriage is both a legal and spiritual contract that transcends all religious and non-religious belief, basically one not need be religious to be married, God recognized marriage Christian or not as binding yourself to another person.

          • Scott

            Please forgive me! I am doing a terrible job of explaining my thoughts to you. I do believe we agree about more than you may think.

            “Are you saying people that marry from other religions are not married? or are athiests that have secular marriages not married?”

            Not at all.

            I am simply placing God before man made contracts when it comes to my own marriage. I recognize Jesus/God as my ultimate authority (in all things not just marriage) and believe He defines marriage for me. I believe all Christians should recognize Jesus/God as their final authority but that is their personal decision to make. Jesus defines marriage as being between one man and one woman. This is a Christian marriage which is fundamentally different than an same-sex marriage. Both legal (and I believe should be), but different none the less.

            The legal part is less important if you place God as your authority (not the state).

          • gladys1071

            i agree with part of what you say, marriage being between a man and a woman is not “Christian”, it is universal definition of marriage for everyone. You can be a buddhist, hindu or athiest and marriage is STILL between a Man and a woman, always has been and always will be.

            You are making marriage out to be more religious then it needs to be, marriage transcends religious belief, that was all i was trying to emphasize.

          • Scott

            This is because I believe in marriage as defined by God in the Bible. I believe God defined it first for us in Genesis with Adam and Eve… anything after that must come from Him, not man. I also believe God created moral laws just the same as physical laws and marriage is a part of His moral law.

            I do not have a problem with the legality of marriage… it just means very little to my wife and I.

          • Scott

            Also, while the law is very comprehensible, it most certainly is not comprehensive.

            Comprehensive: Complete; including all or nearly all elements or aspects of something.

  • Scott

    I don’t think one hard fast rule for all has ever been a good idea… people are different just like religion, food, books, etc. Space needs to be allowed for these differences.

    • Phoenix1977

      I don’t agree with that. The law needs to be exactly the same for all individuals and judges (or juries, in the American situation) get go decide whether or not there are extraordinary circumstances. Aftet all, justice is supposed to be blind, right.

      • Scott

        When it comes to assault… yes. When it comes to forcibly imposing one persons will over another (like whether or not one has to make a cake for an event)… no.

        • Phoenix1977

          No, in all cases. The law cannot make arbitrary exceptions or it would simply lose it’s value. The law is the law is the law very everyone. And judges will decide whether an exception can be made or not.

          • Scott

            Judges and juries decide in our country and yes there are exceptions… even in murder cases.

            I know you want LGBTs to be able to impose their will/ideology/beliefs/agenda over Christians and silence them once and for all. But I don’t believe that agenda will play out in our country… If we stick to what the principles our country’s “founding fathers” laid out then we will create space for both Christians and LGBTs to live without placing ones beliefs over the others. Again this space must allow room for different ideologies and that means we can’t take a “one size fits all” approach.

          • Phoenix1977

            Like I said, I don’t think Christians rights and LGBT rights can exist together. And seeing that the courts have sided with human rights over religious rights every single time in the past 5-6 decades …

          • Scott

            I can see why you are not optimistic… You are not willing to work with the Christians that are willing to work with you. Through our conversations you have not been willing to see another person’s perspective. Everything you say is based off the assumption (your assumption) that your beliefs are right and seemingly no one else has anything of value to offer. You take and do not give.

            I on the other hand am more than willing to work with you. I have done nothing but respect your viewpoint and would see you on equal ground if given the chance. A courtesy you have not reciprocated. I will not give hopelessness a chance though… if nothing else I will always remain optimistic. : – )

          • Phoenix1977

            No one who really knows me would ever accuse me of being optimistic 🙂

          • Scott

            I am learning that. : – )

            I wish I could give you the hope/optimism I have.