Letter: Gay marriage — disagreement vs disrespect

I appreciate all of the perspectives and views that have been shared, and while I agree that legalising same-sex marriage is a life-changing opportunity for many and must be discussed, I would like to propose that there is a bigger issue here that needs to be primarily addressed over whether or not same-sex marriage should be legalised.

I ask everyone reading, that just for a moment, instead of focussing on what is right or wrong in this controversial topic, [to] focus on what we all collectively know and agree to be right and wrong, and to focus on holding everyone accountable for those standards.

To the Christians who are reading, although you have every right to disagree with same-sex marriage, please reevaluate how you make your approach.

There is a bigger problem happening here of which I would like to bring to your attention. This problem lies in the fact that our government feels comfortable publicly disrespecting and threatening the lives of homosexuals.

Most of us saw or heard comments from our electives, speaking of uninvitedly invading the privacy of a same-sex wedding, or electives who referred to his gun ‘Betsy’ while saying he would get it if anyone came around him talking about legalising same-sex marriage, and distasteful jokes such as ‘Gay-pril’.

The worst part, is that these people are calling themselves Christians. Dare I say that this is a greater injustice to the gospel and to the church’s mission than any law that gets passed.

This harmful behaviour directly opposes everything Jesus stood for.

Did Jesus not stop the Pharisees from stoning the adulterous woman, before showing her that her choices thus far led to death? (John 8:1-11). He saved her and protected her before he corrected her.

How dare we call ourselves Christians and think we have a right to correct those for whom we would not first defend, protect or die for in their times of need, just as our saviour did for us. Jesus died for us, while we were still living in sin (Romans 5:8), before we were even aware of the sin in our lives. How much more should we do this for others?

Am I then suggesting that you must accept lifestyles of which you believe to be wrong? No, you are not forced to accept.

As Pastor Al wisely pointed out in previous letters, acceptance does not always mean love, and disagreeing does not always mean hate.

However, if we want to make a difference in the lives of people, we must earn our place in speaking to someone’s heart, and not assume we have the right to tell people how to live simply because we are Christians.

I challenge every Christian in the Cayman Islands, stand firm in the lifestyle you believe to be right, and even when you do not agree with others’ lifestyle, do not neglect the opportunity to protect, serve and defend them just as Jesus did and continues to do in all of our lives.

Confront the ‘Christians’ who are speaking foul about homosexuals and who are threatening their well-being or safety; for this is the greatest disgrace to the gospel and ministry of Jesus. To the non-religious people and to homosexuals who have embraced this lifestyle or for those of you who are still searching for answers, I am sorry for the hurt you have endured from either false Christians, or imperfect Christians (aka all of us) and I ask for your forgiveness.

I encourage you to read the Bible for yourself and you will find it helpful in identifying who are Christians and who only claim to be Christians.

Do not allow hypocritical Christians to warp your view of Jesus or his true followers; for it was the hypocritical religious leaders who murdered Jesus Christ and denounced everything he stood for (Matthew 23:13-33).

Recognise that there are Christians who love you and want the best for you, who may not dabble in your lifestyle but want to be a part of your life and bear your burdens. You are not as far gone as they say you are, and you are loved deeply by God. If you are still searching for clarity on this topic, seek God, not answers.

If you are Muslim, Mormon, Christian, atheist, agnostic, gay, straight, transgender, I think we can all agree that this behaviour from the government is unacceptable and I would challenge us all, though different and though we may not agree with every detail of one another’s lives – [to] agree that everyone is deserving of being respected and feeling safe.

Let’s respectfully stand united against this type of hateful and belligerent behaviour from our leaders towards homosexuals, and any human who is being cast out or oppressed.

I will leave you with this quote from Andy Mineo: “You do not have to agree with somebody’s lifestyle to stand up for them when they are mistreated. Our hearts should break for any human being treated unjustly. Those of differing religious views, sexual orientation or ethnicity. They are made in God’s image and have eternal value.”

Amy Mobley