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Thread: Refusing Homosexuals Service or Commerce

  1. #11
    I guess I forgot about that part in Esther where Mordecai voluntarily runs for public office in Persia and then takes an oath to support the Persian constitution and faithfully execute the duties that come with the office, before he refuses to bow down to Haman.

    Respectfully, Rebecca, it's not the same. And I feel like this particular nuance of the story is worth seeing clearly. She took an oath to uphold, among other things, the laws of the commonwealth of Kentucky in her duties. She put herself in a position where obeying God and fulfilling her oath of office are at odds - it was not thrust upon her.

  2. #12
    Under Christ Roger's Avatar
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    Rebecca - forbearance and tolerance are interchangeable-synonyms. Romans: 2 And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God? 4 Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance (tolerance), and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance? 5 But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 6 who “will render to each one according to his deeds”: 7 eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; 8 but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness—indignation and wrath, 9 tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; 10 but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11 For there is no partiality with God. Romans3: 21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance (tolerance) God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

    God has tolerated that which is offensive to Him. Tolerance is not acceptance. We tolerate that which we oppose that some may be saved. But as it saws above His toleration will end. Judgment is coming. God hates sin but He loves and tolerates the sinner. Now there are some clear teaches that we should not tolerate actions inside the Body of Christ.

    Rebecca, let me apologize for the way it sounded when I brought up the four marriages. I'm sure she is a very nice lady and is sincere on her convictions. Years ago some county clerks would not issue marriage license for interracial marriage due to their religious convictions. That has not been forgotten and SCOTUS ruled the same on that and now they are being linked. So what lot of non-Christians hear (when they hear what she is doing) is we are all bigots. I do not want any walls that keeps me from preaching Christ. I worked in manufacturing and it was not allowed to discuss politics, or religion. I broke both of those rules but I felt convection for doing so later. I could have done that after work, at lunch or on breaks. My employer had purchased my time and I, as a Christian, should have been obedient because, by not doing so I lost part of my witness, was committing insubordination and technically stealing from them because they had purchased that time.

    Obedience and repentance are both non-negotiable biblical doctrines. She is not preaching the gospel at work but she which she allowed to do that after work. Her job is to administer and register a government documents. That is not a sign of approval or disapproval. While at work she should do the job she is hired to do. Her actions will end up as a loss for our cause. I think you have some valid insights and I thank you for sharing. Discussion is what this diverse group of lovers of Christ is about.

    Ephesians 6:5 Bondservants, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ, 6 not by the way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart, 7 rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to man, 8 knowing that whatever good anyone does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether he is a bondservant or is free. 9 Masters, do the same to them, and stop your threatening, knowing that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and that there is no partiality with him, Something to consider.

  3. #13
    Very grateful for everyone’s input! This is a difficult subject, as mentioned in the initial commentary; it can have some gray areas. One person wrote in support, "Civil disobedience must be the way of the Church going forward: marches on Washington, lying in the streets in protest, bullying our way into campaign speeches, and being loud, etc. The Left has shown us the way to victory, so let’s use their tactics, and turn this tide around into the direction facing “normal.” Let’s go all you clerks, start a movement!" That is unfortunately, exactly what is wrong with this reactive posture, responding like the ungodly.

    Another government office worker responds with sarcasm, "As a devout Evangelical Christian it is a violation of my deeply held religious beliefs to issue a building permit to religious groups that preach false doctrine (Catholics, Jews, Mormons, etc.). Consequently, I simply won’t place my signature on those permits even though I work as a permit officer at the Louisville Department of Permits and Licensing. That means Monday through Sunday, I have a right to believe and practice what I believe." Where do the personal offense and discrimination standoffs end?

    Certainly, pastors should hold fast to the doctrinal mandates for holiness and refuse to host or officiate a gay marriage. Gay's must not be allowed to serve at any capacity in the Church for obvious Scriptural reasons that don’t warrant repeating. However, allowing their attendance in a church is a whole different matter, the door must remain open. If the Word God is rightly divided, taught without waiver, they will either repent or depart anyway. Light correctly aimed and bright will always drive out darkness.

    I listened to "Honor the King" by Stephen Baker from July 2014, because I strive to remain open minded and receptive to all: http://clearnotefellowship.org/audio...ght/honor-king He addresses being salt and light in the public square related to civil magistrates. The importance to submit to government authorities, but with certain exceptions, where he is in favor of not issuing marriage certificates to gays. He presses that Christians have the duty to disobey (22:50 to 27:08). He uses passage about the midwives mentioned in Exodus 1, refusing to kill babies because they feared God, which is correct action as I had used as an example initially. The case of Daniel who prayed even when it was signed that such should be put death, he prayed anyway. Defying a mandate due to personal spiritual habits of praying three times a day is not the same situation. He referenced Shadrach Meshach and Abednego refusing to bow to the graven image as resistance to the civil magistrate, again, not the same situation. His proof text was “We must obey God as ruler rather than men.” (Acts 5:27-29) However, none of his illustrations were well connected to the matter of issuing a certificate of marriage for reason of personal religious belief. It was simply his personal opinion that it was wrong, delivered as an uncontestable absolute.

    John MacArthur shared a message in June of 2014 which provided a biblical view of this situation. He points out that commerce is one thing, but celebrating the union by participation or provision of that celebration, that is where the line must be drawn. We had discussed this a month or so ago, about attended a gay marriage celebration, how doing so crosses the threshold of coexisting with homosexuals into celebration of their openly defiant sin. John mentioned that no Christian is going to profile sexual preferences at a gas station, or at a grocery, or any other form of commerce or service. However personally and knowingly celebrating a gay union is a whole different matter. That is why the certificate issue is a gray area, as I had started the conversation. In one sense it is a marriage license of a legal civil union, in another is it aiding and abetting a sinful union by personal participation, but certainly not celebration.

    While I respect her choice to deny the certificate, we can reference Matthew the tax collector, a civil authority, when his heart was transformed, he did not remain in office, refusing to collect taxes due to a personal belief, but immediately acted in restitution and abandoned his office. I earnestly believe this would be the correct free-will action for this Kentucky clerk.

  4. #14
    Under Christ Roger's Avatar
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    Nehemiah and Daniel are great examples of knowing who is right in the gray areas. Daniel would not eat the royal food and wine from the kings table and God blessed him. Nehemiah is the cup-bearer of the king and ate everything from it. God blessed and used both.

    SCOTUS has caused a great dilemma for all working Christians who want to honor God. Whether it’s in the clerk’s office, cooperate or private work places, other government offices stress has but put on all Christian employees. Some people have written that there is only one Christian county clerk in Kentucky. By that standard then, is she the only one in the United States? Who is issuing marriage licenses in all the counties in the America? I know some clerks have resigned but does that mean that the ones that stayed or the ones who replaced them don’t love Jesus? I know that to not be true.

    Paul taught that we are supposed to control inside the body and leave the non-believers to God. 1 Corinthians 5:9 I wrote to you in a letter not to associate with sexually immoral people. 10 I did not mean the immoral people of this world or the greedy and swindlers or idolaters; otherwise you would have to leave the world. 11 But now I am writing you not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer who is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or verbally abusive, a drunkard or a swindler. Do not even eat with such a person. 12 For what business is it of mine to judge outsiders? Don’t you judge those who are inside? 13 But God judges outsiders. Put away the evil person from among yourselves.

    Jesus said Matthew 18:17 “If he pays no attention to them, tell the church. But if he doesn’t pay attention even to the church, let him be like an unbeliever and a tax collector to you.” So according to Jesus should we treat believers and nonbelievers differently? If we are going to be a light on a hill we cannot force our beliefs on others—God hasn’t forced it—He gave us freewill. We need to live our lives as living epistles and have an answer when asked for the hope we have. To achieve transparency and openness, in love for them, so they hear our message by tearing down walls and building trust. If we don’t we will be lumped in with the Westboro Baptist Church.

  5. #15
    Junior Member Atkina's Avatar
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    One tiny issue about this complex subject: the state of Kentucky does not have within their law the right for same-sex couples to be married. Quite the opposite is in their constitution (if any ruling negates the one-man, one-woman description in their law, it is to be disregarded); which even the judge acknowledged in his ruling was "problematic" as the other clerks stated they weren't sure they had legal authority to grant such licenses without proper approval. So if she is abiding the law of Kentucky in the matter, she is in the right regardless of the contempt finding.

  6. #16
    Personal preferences can't be used by individuals or groups to claim exemption from general laws. That much is clear. If we are going to permit any exemptions, we must be able to distinguish between mere preferences and objections of a deeper kind — ones that the state (or the courts) should recognize and respect. But on what basis is our pluralistic, publicly secular society to make such a distinction? What separates a group that thinks incomes taxes are unjust from a group that objects to abortifacient (causing an abortion) birth control on secular grounds from a group that objects to the same thing because the Catholic catechism declares it morally illicit? When it comes to religious freedom, these are interesting times.

  7. #17
    Under Christ Roger's Avatar
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    The problem is the governor ordered all county clerks to issue license. She is guilty of not follow what the governor said to do. She has refused to give license to gay or normal couples. The Governor of Kentucky Steve Beshear and the Attorney General Jack Conway left the clerks out to dry. They shouldn't have issued any instructions until the Kentucky legislature came back into session.

  8. #18
    Junior Member Rebecca's Avatar
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    No worries, Roger Chaney. There is no need to apologize. Although I disagree with a few things expressed through this discussion, it in no way will ever hinder the unity we all have in Christ. Thank you for all of the scripture shared.

    I think I thought you were referring to the kind of modern day tolerance we see defined by the world. I had a preconceived meaning when I read. You are right that forbearance and tolerance mean the same thing.

  9. #19
    Undeniably, the situation has downgraded into an unacceptable legal precedent. Davis’s lawyer, Roger Gannam with the Liberty Counsel, said following Judge David Bunning’s decision to imprison his client: “Today, for the first time in history, an American citizen has been incarcerated for having the belief of conscience that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, and she’s been ordered to stay there until she’s willing to change her mind, until she’s willing to change her conscience about what that belief is. This is unprecedented in American law.”

    Ordered to remain incarcerated until she changes her mind? The governor said he had no authority to use an executive order to relieve a county clerk of his or her duty; therefore they are going to hold her in duress to force change, the same action taken in countries hostile to Christianity. This exceeds the boundaries of the Constitutional Amendments; U.S. Bill of Rights... the same rights the homosexual Reich insists supports their freedom of choice to consummate in unholy matrimony. Unbelievable, but not unexpected considering the effective liberal-socialist encroachment.

  10. #20
    Follower of Christ cmnahrwold's Avatar
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    Thanks for the commentary SERay.

    I have been reflecting on Acts 5:29 in regards to this situation. Still pondering about this situation.

    It is hard to know for sure whether God disapproves of signing same sex marriage certificates. I know it states not to be a stumbling block or to cause your brother to sin, but in context that applies to fellow believers, not unbelievers. It becomes a matter of splitting hairs and what your conscience tells you. I feel for that lady and respect her ability to stand up for what she believes, but I pray that the Holy Spirit is leading her to what God would want in this situation.

    Interesting article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...t-of-your-job/

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