Our culture is roiled over controversies regarding marriage and gender. The Supreme Court has imposed same sex marriage on the entire country, and policies in one municipality after another require fathers to accept males in their daughters’ bathrooms if the males think they are trapped inside a female body.
While these issues may seem complex, they aren’t. How do we know the answers are simple and straightforward? Because Jesus gave them to us.
In Matthew 19, Jesus answers our questions about gender. Now as you are aware, Facebook offers its users 51, 56 or 58 different gender choices (depending on who’s counting). Included are options such as “bigender, gender fluid, genderqueer, non-binary, pangender, two-spirit” and the ever-useful “neither.”
But Jesus cuts through all this fog and confusion by telling us flatly that there are two and only two genders. “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female...?” (Matthew 19:4). When Jesus asks, “have you never read,” he is referring to Scripture, for he himself is quoting from the book of Genesis. In other words, Jesus’ guide for understanding gender was the word of God. And it should be our guide too.
Science corroborates Scripture at every turn on this subject, by the way, for every human being has either male DNA or female DNA from the moment of conception until the end of life. So Christ’s view of gender is not just biblically correct, it is biologically correct.
Likewise Jesus slices through all the sturm und drang regarding marriage, again by quoting Scripture. “Have you never read that he who created them...said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh?’” (Matthew 19:4-5).
It’s impossible to get clearer than that. Marriage is the union of a man (that’s one man) and his wife (that’s one woman). You have the word of Jesus on that.
Let’s also not miss that Jesus uses the phrase “from the beginning.” Marriage as a man-woman institution did not evolve and gradually develop over the eons of time and cultural experimentation. It has always been, from the dawn of time, from the first man and first woman in all history, the union of one man and one woman. You can’t “evolve” upward from that; you can only devolve into some lower and inferior and clouded understanding of marriage.
Marriage has always been a man-woman institution and will be until the end of time. What God has defined, man may not redefine. Any other kind of “marriage” is a counterfeit, a fake, something bogus, something pretend. It is not and never can be the real thing.
You will find that ultimately people on both sides will cite some authority to support their position. It might be some politician, it might be some psychologist or psychiatrist, it might be some academic from Harvard, it might be some historian, it might be Lady Gaga or Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook. Worse, it might even be the Supreme Court of the United States. So let’s not pretend that only one side in this debate makes an appeal to authority. We all do.
Our appeal to authority is an appeal to Jesus himself. His position on gender and marriage is clear, unmistakable, and authoritative.
The question in the end is not complex at all but very simple: when it comes to gender and marriage, I can listen to Facebook and the Supreme Court or I can listen to Jesus.
Bottom line: to those of you who vigorously and even hatefully disagree with me about gender and marriage, your issue is not with me. It’s with Jesus. Maybe it’s best if you take it up with him.