By Bryan Fischer
Follow me on Twitter: @BryanJFischer, on Facebook at “Focal Point”
The Scriptures are clear that homosexual behavior is contrary, as the Founders put it in the Declaration, to “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.”
In 1 Timothy, for instance, the Apostle discusses matters that are proper subjects for the law to address. “The law is good,” Paul says, “if one uses it lawfully” (1 Timothy 1:8), that is, for its God-given and intended purpose. The purpose of the law is clearly to prohibit and punish behaviors which are destructive to others and weaken the moral character of a culture.
Paul hastens to add that “the law is not laid down for the just, but for the lawless.” In other words, people of integrity and character don’t need the external influence of the law or fear of punishment to behave themselves. They have an internal restraint that channels their behavioral choices in life-affirming directions.
But not all members of a society have that internal gyroscope or pay attention to it if they have one. They must be restrained by the proper administration of the law. As James Madison so aptly put it, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” Alas, men are not angels and hence the external restraint of the law is necessary if we are to preserve stability and equilibrium in society.
Paul then gives a representative list of the kinds of behaviors that an intelligent society will sanction if its public policy is being guided by “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.”
Among the individuals Paul says should properly be sanctioned by civil authority are “those who strike their fathers and others…murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the...gospel” (1 Timothy 1:9-11).
So clearly Christianity teaches here that the law properly should be shaped by the moral standards found in the gospel in particular and in the Judeo-Christian tradition in general.
Several observations are appropriate here.
First, every behavior in that list is immoral, and its immorality rises to the level that it is an appropriate matter for legal restraint.
This means that if one has a biblical worldview, it is not only permissible to legislate morality, it is necessary. In fact, morality is the only thing you can legislate. Liberals prove this every time they argue for pet legislation, because it is inevitably supported on grounds that it is right or fair or just. They want to legislate morality as badly as we do.
So the issue is not whether morality will be legislated. The question is whose morality are we going to legislate - the morality of secular fundamentalists or the morality that comes from the laws of nature and its Creator.
A second observation is the Scriptures in general and Christianity in particularly is flatly opposed to slavery. “Enslavers” are included in the list of people whose behavior should be punished by civil authority. The lexicons define the Greek word Paul uses here in this way: “slave dealer, kidnapper, man-stealer.” So Christianity from day one condemned the slave trade.
In other words, it flatly condemned the practice by which African Muslims kidnapped fellow Africans and sold them to white slave traders who in turn sold them in the New World, beginning in 1619. If the value system of Christianity had shaped our public policy on this critical issue from the early days of our founding, we never would have had slavery in America, ever. No slave trade, no slavery. No slavery, no Civil War, no history of intense racial division.
Thirdly, we also see that “sexual immorality” is contrary to public policy, again according to the word of God. Thus all sexually illicit behavior, whether it’s adultery or what we used to call fornication, should never be normalized, legitimized, recognized, rewarded or subsidized. The implications for sex education in our schools and the subsidizing of out-of-wedlock births through welfare programs are obvious.
Fourthly, anyone who draws his world view from the Scriptures, as evangelicals do and as the Founders did, must place substantial weight on a candidate’s view of the normalization of homosexual behavior.
If evangelical Christians simply vote their values, there is simply no way they can cast a vote for someone who is in favor of legitimizing homosexual behavior in the military.
In the GOP field, there are just two candidates who support the presence of sexual deviancy in our armed forces: Mitt Romney and Ron Paul.
Romney told the editorial board of the Des Moines Register last Friday that he is just fine with sexually aberrant behavior in the military.
He was asked, "How do you feel about gays serving openly in the military?" His answer (emphasis mine): “That’s already occurred. I’m not planning on reversing that at this stage. I was not comfortable making the change during a period of conflict, due to the complicating features of a new program in the middle of two wars going on, but those wars are winding down, and moving in that direction at this stage no longer presents that problem.”
Ron Paul shares even more culpability on this issue since he voted not once but twice to normalize sodomy in the armed forces. Ron Paul likewise is in favor of legalizing prostitution, again in flat contradiction to the revealed word of God. In fact, the most basic meaning of the word “porneia,” translated “sexual immorality” in Paul’s text, is “prostitution.”
Bottom line: for values-driven voters who claim to be conservative and to draw their values from the Judeo-Christian tradition, Ron Paul and Mitt Romney are both likely to be - and should be - non-starters as candidates. If a voter only claims to be a social conservative but isn’t one in fact, then a vote for Romney or Paul is not likely to be a problem.
Tonight’s debate on Fox is the last one in Iowa before the January 3 caucuses. Will Romney’s opponents and Paul’s opponents have the courage to make this an issue for the first time in the presidential campaign? Inquiring minds want to know.
(Unless otherwise noted, the opinions expressed are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of the American Family Association or American Family Radio.)