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Kentucky’s stance on marriage has changed drastically, God’s hasn’t

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By Brian Owens

Last week, federal Judge John G. Heyburn II struck down as unconstitutional an amendment to our state constitution that made it illegal for Kentucky to recognize same-sex marriages or perform civil unions.

The amendment, which was approved by 75 percent of Kentucky voters in 2006, reads, “Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Kentucky.

A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized.”

This referendum might have been approved by the majority of Kentucky voters just 8 years ago but that was 8 years ago and there have been seismic shifts in the moral landscape of our nation and state since.

There is no doubt that society is becoming increasingly accepting of gay marriage and the homosexual lifestyle.

I say “accepting” rather than “approving” because, I think this growing “tolerance” is not so much an approval of homosexuality as it is a desire to be on the “right side of history.”

The fact that gay marriage has become more acceptable is due in no small part to Hollywood and the media, as well as left-leaning politicians, Democrat and Republican alike, who have crumbled under the pressure of those in their party who have assured them that not coming out in support of homosexuality, in general, and gay marriage in particular will ruin their hopes of any lasting careers.

People like Judge Heyburn want to be spoken of positively in the media as champions of equality, ensuring a positive nod in their Wikipedia entry.

With this reality looming on the horizon, what are those of us who believe in God’s irrevocable standards of human sexual ethics in general, and covenant marriage in particular, to do?

I have written before on the prophetic role of the church and the individual Christian’s role as salt and light (Matthew 5).

This role has not changed. In fact, it is needed just as much now as ever.

We must continue to speak loudly, lovingly and regularly. Speaking loudly, however, is not enough to see positive, godly change take place.

We must also live lovingly and consistently, even if we are no longer taken seriously in the public marriage debate.

We must strive to be examples in our own marriages of the very truth we are promoting.

Basically, we need to live out what we say we believe. We need to model what God intends for marriage to be – one man and one woman covenanting together in a lifelong relationship with the purpose of bringing glory to God, good to each other and human flourishing in the world.

Whatever the form marriage might take in the eyes of the state, the standard of marriage is still God’s design as seen in His Word (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:4-6).

This standard must be promoted and practiced in everyday life. This is the most compelling argument that can be made for marriage. It is one that is practiced with honesty and sincerity, although imperfectly.

This is the one that is the hardest to argue against.