Many philosophical fads and currents should be considered as differing attempts at rationalizing the world in such a way that sexual immorality is no longer sexual immorality. And when the philosophical fog machine is completely up and running, and the incoherence fills the room with a misty haze, the chances are good that this is being done so that somebody can grope someone else. Modernity thought of human bodies as just so many impersonal machines, and so, why not have at it? Kinsey the scientist was actually Kinsey the lecher. Postmodernity takes a different route, but the telos of the thing is telos of all rebellions against God — sexual incoherence. The point is to get yourself a world in which it is okay to get into beds you shouldn’t be in. And this is why the homo marriage deal is such a big deal.
And this is also why those Christians who still want to drop a pinch of incense at the altar of secular politics are not going to succeed in defeating homosexual marriages. The problem is not that they want to defeat such silliness and perversion in the public square. The problem concerns how. We are simply saying that we must not bow down to this idol in order to defeat that idol. Some out there have taken the issue of Credenda on this topic, where we counsel a repentant owning of the curse, as a counsel of despair or surrender. As St. Paul might say, their condemnation is just. If Christians are debating whether to fight against a particular enemy (homosexual marriage) with an army (political activism) or with a navy (liturgical and doctrinal reformation in the Church), the Christians who favor the former cannot charge the latter with wanting to go over to the enemy simply because they argue for a different strategic vision. And further, if those favoring political activism cannot be made to comprehend how worship could possibly be potent in this fight, the chances are good that their tactics have become an idol to them.
In the meantime, in order for us to keep our liturgical and doctrinal reformation intact, we have to recognize that the source of the problem here in America is within the Church. Currently, the Church is not the answer to America’s problem; the Church is America’s problem.
For instance, a post or two back, I mentioned that I had begun to read Brian McLaren’s book A New Kind of Christian. Then today I was up in Spokane (taking my father to a post-heart-surgery doctor’s appointment), and there had some exposure to waiting room news magazines. One of them was Time, and on the cover they were touting the 25 most influential evangelicals in America (all linked to the election of Dubya, doncha see). One of them was Brian McLaren, and how was he marked out for distinction? He was asked about homosexual marriage, and his answer said it all. He said that what broke his heart was the fact that no matter what he said, he was going to hurt people on one side or the other. Of course hurting people on the other side is what you are supposed to do in a war. If you know what side you are on.
And so here is the bottom line. If any exegete, theologian or preacher tells us that homosexual marriage is an issue that the Church has to “wrestle with,” and having to do this somehow “breaks his heart,” then said clergy-guy is an important part of the problem.