For God’s wrath is revealed from heaven against all godlessness and unrighteousness of people who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth, since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them. For His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse. For though they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God or show gratitude. Instead, their thinking became nonsense, and their senseless minds were darkened.
Here is the intro from a chapter in my book explaining a bit the above:
Now, let us read a bit from both The Declaration of Independence:
…the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them.
Founding.com explains succinctly what is meant by “laws of nature” penned in one of our many founding documents:
Obviously God’s laws are not arbitrary. But according to the Founders, nature is not either. And it is this non-subjective portion of nature that every culture tapped into, based in God’s character/attributes.
For instance, people have a distorted view of Greek culture (B.C.). One is that homosexual acts with boys was accepted in-situ as equal to male/female relations. This is not the case.
NOR were the moral giants from that time that so influenced our Republic silent on the matter. Here for instance is Plato in dialogue with a detractor who ends up agreeing with him on the morality of the two relations compared:
Now, what lives are they, and how many in which, having searched out and beheld the objects of will and desire and their opposites, and making of them a law, choosing, I say, the dear and the pleasant and the best and noblest, a man may live in the happiest way possible…
Speaking generally, our glory is to follow the better and improve the inferior, which is susceptible of improvement, as far as this is possible. And of all human possessions, the soul is by nature most inclined to avoid the evil, and track out and find the chief good; which when a man has found, he should take up his abode with it during the remainder of his life…. every one will perceive, comes the honour of the body in natural order. Having determined this, we have next to consider that there is a natural honour of the body, and that of honours some are true and some are counterfeit…. but the mean states of all these habits are by far the safest and most moderate;
…but they will not wholly extirpate [root out] the unnatural loves which have been the destruction of states; and against this evil what remedy can be devised?…
Either men may learn to abstain wholly from any loves, natural or unnatural, except of their wedded wives; or, at least, they may give up unnatural loves; or, if detected, they shall be punished with loss of citizenship, as aliens from the state in their morals.
- ‘I entirely agree with you,’ said Megillus,…
This is excerpted from The Dialogues of Plato, in 5 vols (Jowett ed.) [387 BC]
Another “big-wig” in the roots of philosophy our Founder knew so well is that of Aeschines:
Aeschines (390-314? BC), in his work Against Timarchus, acknowledged that there were laws on the books that prohibited sexual harassment or assault of young boys.
1. He further records that Greek law prohibited male prostitutes from holding office in civic affairs, or participating in religious observances.
2. He recognized that laws that regulate moral conduct are the best means of establishing and maintaining an orderly society.
3. This work indicates that there were laws prohibiting these things, and that the punishment was fine or death, depending on the severity of the offense.
Even the Greeks had a reference to nature that exuded a universal moral application. An ideal.
As an aside, no founder of any of the worlds great religions supported the measure of same-sex relations as equal to those of the hetero lifestyle. For instance, the Buddha was alerted to the problem and he issued a rule for the community not to give any ordination to a homosexual, and those ordained gays are to be expelled (Vin.I, 86).
What Christianity did is apply both the Book of Revelation in God revealing His plan to us. So, in Genesis 2:24 God sets up the parameters of the laws of nature and what the Greeks were really tapping into when we read:
This is why a man leaves his father and mother and bonds with his wife, and they become one flesh.
Remember, in Genesis 1:26 you have a clear reference to the Plurality of the Godhead. This is continued through chapter two with the reference to Lord God. Elohim is a plural hint at the Godhead.
Who is part of this Godhead Paul references in Romans? In classical understanding God is: God the Father, Jesus the Messiah/Son, and the Holy Spirit. So Jesus is in the mix, fully God. Theology 101. So what did Jesus [God] have to say on the matter?
…If you want to limit yourself to the words of Jesus Himself (as distinct from NT testimony as a whole) you have I think only two specific texts to argue from:
1) Matt 19:4 ‘And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ (repeated in Mark 10:6 “But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female.’) In Matt. 19 it is important to notice the words that follow; “and SAID ‘For this reason …”, quoting Genesis 2:24. But this latter text doesn’t say ‘God said’ … which means that Jesus attributes the simple statement of Gen. 2:24 to God, thus testifying to the divine authorship of this verse and by implication the whole book of Genesis.
2) The other useful text is Mt 24:38 “For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, etc”. Here Jesus testifies to the historical reality of the flood, Noah and the ark. Most theistic evolutionists believe that the first 11 chapters of Genesis are mythology and not to be taken literally or as historically true. (But this may not apply to everyone who accepts macro evolution).
Um… in case you are confused… Jesus was one of the “Hombres” present when He made essentially the first contractual obligation for mankind to follow. The perpetuation of mankind.
This law from nature or God’s law (or both!) have inherent benefits, or an ideal situation for offspring to be raised and benefit society ~ as a whole.
Which is why one of the most respected Canadian sociologist and homosexual, Paul Nathanson, writes that there are at least five functions that marriage serves–things that every culture must do in order to survive and thrive. They are:
- Foster the bonding between men and women
- Foster the birth and rearing of children
- Foster the bonding between men and children
- Foster some form of healthy masculine identity
- Foster the transformation of adolescents into sexually responsible adults
Note that Nathanson considers these points critical to the continued survival of any culture. He continues “Because heterosexuality is directly related to both reproduction and survival, … every human societ[y] has had to promote it actively . … Heterosexuality is always fostered by a cultural norm” that limits marriage to unions of men and women. He adds that people “are wrong in assuming that any society can do without it.” Going further he stated that “same sex marriage is a bad idea” …[he] only opposed “gay marriage, not gay relationships.”
Here is the crux of the matter in regards to “nature’s order:
“…take gold as an example, it has inherent in its nature intrinsic qualities that make it expensive: good conductor of electricity, rare, never tarnishes, and the like. The male and female have the potential to become a single biological organism, or single organic unit, or principle. Two essentially becoming one. The male and female, then, have inherent to their nature intrinsic qualities that two mated males or two mated females never actualize in their courtship… nor can they ever. The potential stays just that, potential, never being realized…..
“….Think of a being that reproduces, not by mating, but by some act performed by individuals. Imagine that for these same beings, movement and digestion is performed not by individuals, but only by the complementary pairs that unite for this purpose. Would anyone acquainted with such beings have difficulty understanding that in respect to movement and digestion, the organism is a united pair, or an organic unity?”
So you see, the two heterosexual organisms that join in a sexual union cease being two separate organisms for a short time and become one organism capable of reproduction. This is what the state and the church are sealing in a marriage, this intrinsic union. The homosexual couple can never achieve this union, so “natures order” has endowed the heterosexual union with an intrinsic quality that other relationships do not have or could never attain. Both the atheist and theist [gay and straight] can argue from this point, because either we were created this way or we evolved this way.
Whichever it is, nature has imposed on us certain realities that a healthy society should adhere to.
Keep in mind all societies have supported the superiority of the male-female relation over and above other forms. When Christianity cam on the scene, it not only supported that reality (and in fact explained it’s Origins), but had from Genesis to the Epistles supported marriage as being bewteen only two people.
This had a net benefit for society as well. By supplanting polygamy women and children are better protected from exploitation. Often times women are treated as chattel in these relations. And young boys are shunned as the older patriarchs are after the “younger-better-models” that in a healthy society would pair up typically with their opposites of similar age.
The reality of polygamy, like slavery, was dealt with in the early church. For instance, we see Paul dealing with the reality of polygamy by calling people to a higher standard, a Godley standard:
“But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband. The husband must fulfill his duty to his wife, and likewise also the wife to her husband.” (1 Corinthians 7:2-3)
Monogomy is clearly taught in the Bible.
Granted, there are exceptions to the rule — I will give an example I learned in seminary about missionary work in countries that practice polygamy.
In discussing this matter with my professor, he noted that when a family comes to a saving knowledge of God, and the man has multiple wives. You do not go in and then break up that family. These women are better off than being single in that society, not is it right to break up families and release the kids “into the wild” so-to-speak.
Through guidance and teaching God’s principles, the children from these relationships typically throw off their paganism and marry in a way that is honoring to God.
One must also keep in mind as well that in the Western tradition, laws are not written on outliers:
…Proponents of gay marriage fail utterly to comprehend the idea that laws are made with society, not the individual, in mind. That is why they also fail to grasp the idea that law is predicated upon averages, not outliers. Interestingly, both libertarians and progressives suffer from this lack of under-standing…
…But more often they try to undermine the link between marriage and childrearing by pointing to outliers—marriages in which couples choose not to have children or cannot have them because at least one partner happens to be infertile. But this argument only reveals the weakness of the progressive understanding of the law. Put simply, rules that are justified by the average case cannot be undermined by the exceptional case, otherwise known as the outlier. Thus the old maxim, “Hard cases make bad law.”…
Mike S. Adams, Letters To A Young Progressive (Washington, DC: Regnery Publishing, 2013), 81, 82.
And the one-man-one-women is the most natural way to curb man’s nature to go from one woman to the next propagating offspring and then leaving the child to have no contact with a father.
This being said, the most recent cases on same-sex marriage before the Supreme Court have paved the way for polygamy, as well as incest. People may be happy with the “freedom” they think lies in these rulings, but only when this younger generation is older will they realize what they have done to a once proudly Christian nation.
The bottom line is this. Those wanting male-male relations are not arguing against God, but against nature. Mind you, they are rejecting God’s Ideal as well — in their rebellion. However, you could argue from nature alone for the primacy of the male/female relation in the least.
HOWEVER, if one were to argue that the number in a marriage should be only two-people ~ they are specifically arguing from a Judeo-Christian platform. In arguing for the number two in some objective manner, they are inserting Biblical standards on to the law. Something I do not have a problem with, but point of fact, these people do have an issue with it.
When I say Christianity is true I mean it is true to total reality—the total of what is, beginning with the central reality, the objective existence of the personal-infinite God. Christianity is not just a series of truths but Truth—Truth about all of reality. And the holding to that Truth intellectually—and then in some poor way living upon that Truth, the Truth of what is—brings forth not only certain personal results, but also governmental and legal results.
Francis Schaeffer, The Complete Works of Francis A. Schaeffer, Volume Five (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1982), 425.
Raising one’s self-consciousness [awareness] about worldviews is an essential part of intellectual maturity…. The right eyeglasses can put the world into clearer focus, and the correct worldview can function in much the same way. When someone looks at the world from the perspective of the wrong worldview, the world won’t make much sense to him. Or what he thinks makes sense will, in fact, be wrong in important respects. Putting on the right conceptual scheme, that is, viewing the world through the correct worldview, can have important repercussions for the rest of the person’s understanding of events and ideas…. Instead of thinking of Christianity as a collection of theological bits and pieces to be believed or debated, we should approach our faith as a conceptual system, as a total world-and-life view.
Ronald H. Nash, Worldviews in Conflict: Choosing Christianity in a World of Ideas (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1992), 9, 17-18, 19.
Nor, do I agree that religion should be excluded from the law. To do so would mean a LOT of reversing of freedoms gained here in the West as well as in other corners of the world:
…Such “exclude religion” arguments are wrong because marriage is not a religion! When voters define marriage, they are not establishing a religion. In the First Amendment, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” the word “religion” refers to the church that people attend and support. “Religion” means being a Baptist or Catholic or Presbyterian or Jew. It does not mean being married. These arguments try to make the word “religion” in the Constitution mean something different from what it has always meant.
These arguments also make the logical mistake of failing to distinguish the reasons for a law from the content of the law. There were religious reasons behind many of our laws, but these laws do not “establish” a religion. All major religions have teachings against stealing, but laws against stealing do not “establish a religion.” All religions have laws against murder, but laws against murder do not “establish a religion.” The campaign to abolish slavery in the United States and England was led by many Christians, based on their religious convictions, but laws abolishing slavery do not “establish a religion.” The campaign to end racial discrimination and segregation was led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a Baptist pastor, who preached against racial injustice from the Bible. But laws against discrimination and segregation do not “establish a religion.”
If these “exclude religion” arguments succeed in court, they could soon be applied against evangelicals and Catholics who make “religious” arguments against abortion. Majority votes to protect unborn children could then be invalidated by saying these voters are “establishing a religion.” And, by such reasoning, all the votes of religious citizens for almost any issue could be found invalid by court decree! This would be the direct opposite of the kind of country the Founding Fathers established, and the direct opposite of what they meant by “free exercise” of religion in the First Amendment.
Historian Alvin Schmidt points out how the spread of Christianity and Christian influence on government was primarily responsible for outlawing infanticide, child abandonment, and abortion in the Roman Empire (in AD 374); outlawing the brutal battles-to-the-death in which thousands of gladiators had died (in 404); outlawing the cruel punishment of branding the faces of criminals (in 315); instituting prison reforms such as the segregating of male and female prisoners (by 361); stopping the practice of human sacrifice among the Irish, the Prussians, and the Lithuanians as well as among other nations; outlawing pedophilia; granting of property rights and other protections to women; banning polygamy (which is still practiced in some Muslim nations today); prohibiting the burning alive of widows in India (in 1829); outlawing the painful and crippling practice of binding young women’s feet in China (in 1912); persuading government officials to begin a system of public schools in Germany (in the sixteenth century); and advancing the idea of compulsory education of all children in a number of European countries.
During the history of the church, Christians have had a decisive influence in opposing and often abolishing slavery in the Roman Empire, in Ireland, and in most of Europe (though Schmidt frankly notes that a minority of “erring” Christian teachers have supported slavery in various centuries). In England, William Wilberforce, a devout Christian, led the successful effort to abolish the slave trade and then slavery itself throughout the British Empire by 1840.
In the United States, though there were vocal defenders of slavery among Christians in the South, they were vastly outnumbered by the many Christians who were ardent abolitionists, speaking, writing, and agitating constantly for the abolition of slavery in the United States. Schmidt notes that two-thirds of the American abolitionists in the mid-1830s were Christian clergymen, and he gives numerous examples of the strong Christian commitment of several of the most influential of the antislavery crusaders, including Elijah Lovejoy (the first abolitionist martyr), Lyman Beecher, Edward Beecher, Harriet Beecher Stowe (author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin), Charles Finney, Charles T. Torrey, Theodore Weld, William Lloyd Garrison, “and others too numerous to mention.” The American civil rights movement that resulted in the outlawing of racial segregation and discrimination was led by Martin Luther King Jr., a Christian pastor, and supported by many Christian churches and groups.
There was also strong influence from Christian ideas and influential Christians in the formulation of the Magna Carta in England (1215) and of the Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Constitution (1787) in the United States. These are three of the most significant documents in the history of governments on the earth, and all three show the marks of significant Christian influence in the foundational ideas of how governments should function.
Wayne Grudem, Politics According to the Bible [Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2010], 31, 49-50.
And it is this First Amendment that is under stress as of late. I will end with an excerpt from Francis Schaeffer’s “Christian Manifesto,” something I think every Christian should reacquaint themselves with if they have read it many years ago… or not at all.
When the First Amendment was passed it only had two purposes. The first purpose was that there would be no established, national church for the united thirteen states. To say it another way: there would be no “Church of the United States.” James Madison (1751-1836) clearly articulated this concept of separation when explaining the First Amendment’s protection of religious liberty. He said that the First Amendment to the Constitution was prompted because “the people feared one sect might obtain a preeminence, or two combine together, and establish a religion to which they would compel others to conform.”
Nevertheless, a number of the individual states had state churches, and even that was not considered in conflict with the First Amendment. “At the outbreak of the American Revolution, nine of the thirteen colonies had conferred special benefits upon one church to the exclusion of others.” “In all but one of the thirteen states, the states taxed the people to support the preaching of the gospel and to build churches.” “It was not until 1798,that the Virginia legislature repealed all its laws supporting churches.” “In Massachusetts the Massachusetts Constitution was not amended until 1853 to eliminate the tax-supported church provosions.”
The second purpose of the First Amendment was the very opposite from what is being made of it today. It states expressly that government should not impede or interfere with the free practice of religion.
Those were the two purposes of the First Amendment as it was written.
As Justice Douglas wrote for the majority of the Supreme Court in the United States v. Ballard case in 1944:
The First Amendment has a dual aspect. It not only “forestalls compulsion by law of the acceptance of any creed or the practice of any form of worship” but also “safeguards the free exercise of the chosen form of religion.”
Today the separation of church and state in America is used to silence the church. When Christians speak out on issues, the hue and cry from the humanist state and media is that Christians, and all religions, are prohibited from speaking since there is a separation of church and state. The way the concept is used today is totally reversed from the original intent. It is not rooted in history. The modern concept of separation is an argument for a total separation of religion from the state. The consequence of the acceptance of this doctrine leads to the removal of religion as an influence in civil government. This fact is well illustrated by John W. Whitehead in his book The Second American Revolution.’ It is used today as a false political dictum in order to restrict the influence of Christian ideas. As Franky Schaeffer V says in the Plan for Action:
It has been convenient and expedient for the secular humanist, the materialist, the so-called liberal, the feminist, the genetic engineer, the bureaucrat, the Supreme Court Justice, to use this arbitrary division between church and state as a ready excuse. It is used, as an easily identifiable rallying point, to subdue the opinions of that vast body of citizens who represent those with religious convictions.
To have suggested the state separated from religion and religious influence would have amazed the Founding Fathers. The French Revolution that took place shortly afterwards, with its continuing excesses and final failure leading quickly to Napoleon and an authoritative rule, only emphasized the difference between the base upon which the United States was founded and the base upon which the French Revolution was founded. History is clear and the men of that day understood it. Terry Eastland said in Commentary magazine:
As a matter of historical fact, the Founding Fathers believed that the public interest was served by the promotion of religion. The Northwest Ordinance of 1787, which set aside federal property in the territory for schools and which was passed again by Congress in 1789, is instructive. “Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary tc good government and the happiness of mankind,” read the act. “schools and the means of learning shall forever be encouraged.”
In 1811 the New York state court upheld an indictment for blasphemous utterances against Christ, and in its ruling, given by Chief Justice Kent, the court said, “We are Christian people, and the morality of the country is deeply engrafted upon Christianity.” Fifty years later this same court said that “Christianity may be conceded to be the established religion.”
The Pennsylvania state court also affirmed the conviction of a man on charges of blasphemy, here against the Holy Scriptures. The Court said: “Christianity, general Christianity is, and always has been, a part of the common law of Pennsylvania . . . not Christianity founded on any particular religious tenets; nor Christianity with an established church and tithes and spiritual courts; but Christianity with liberty of conscience to all men.” . . .
The establishment of Protestant Christianity was one not only of law but also, and far more importantly, of culture. Protestant Christianity supplied the nation with its “system of values”—to use the modern phrase—and would do so until the 1920s when the cake of Protestant custom seemed most noticeably to begin crumbling.
As we continue to examine the question of law in relation to the founding of the country, we next encounter Sir William Blackstone (1723-1780). William Blackstone was an English jurist who in the 1760s wrote a very famous work called Commentaries on the Law of England. By the time the Declaration of Independence was signed, there were probably more copies of his Commentaries in American than in Britain. His Commentaries shaped the perspective of American law at that time, and when you read them it is very clear exactly upon what that law was based.
To William Blackstone there were only two foundations for law, nature and revelation, and he stated clearly that he was speaking of the “holy Scripture.” That was William Blackstone. And up to the recent past not to have been a master of William Black-stone’s Commentaries would have meant that you would not have graduated from law school.
There were other well-known lawyers who spelled these things out with total clarity. Joseph Story in his 1829 inaugural address as Dane Professor of Law at Harvard University said, “There never has been a period in which Common Law did not recognize Christianity as laying at its foundation.”
Concerning John Adams (1735-1826) Terry Eastland says:
…most people agreed that our law was rooted, as John Adams had said, in a common moral and religious tradition, one that stretched back to the time Moses went up on Mount Sinai. Similarly almost everyone agreed that our liberties were God-given and should be exercised responsibly. There was a distinction between liberty and license.
What we find then as we look back is that the men who founded the United States of America really understood that upon which they were building their concepts of law and the concepts of government. And until the takeover of our government and law by this other entity, the materialistic, humanistic, chance world view, these things remained the base of government and law.
Francis Schaeffer, The Complete Works of Francis A. Schaeffer, Volume Five (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1982), 433-436.