Monday, June 8, 2015

The Porneia Collison

There is a collision coming, and it will involve two players in the debate on the definition of one Greek word. “Porneia”

The first player is the homosexual Christian. The recent push for same-sex marriage is not strictly confined to the atheists and unbelievers of this world. There are those who would call themselves Christians who believe homosexuality is not a sin, on the fact that since the Lord Jesus Christ never specifically addressed this “sin”, this sin must be acceptable. This is like saying that the Lord Jesus Christ never said anything about bestiality, so this must be acceptable.

These “gay” Christians also believe that the evangelical church has no business telling a homosexual to repent of sin when they have already dropped the ball on divorce and remarriage.  The thought is that how can a divorced and remarried person call out the homosexual’s sin, when a remarriage after divorce is adultery? This logic on this goes so far, right up to the part when the same-sex partner files for divorce.

In a recent article Come on Christians, "It’s Time To Let Go of Your Aversion to Gays", the author Susan Cottrell tries to make a point that it is hypocrisy to call out the sin of a homosexual, when you are on your fifth marriage, as is the Texas lawyer Tony Tinderholt. She then goes on to make this remark…”Blindness to their own hypocrisy is pretty common among those who are non-affirming.

This article was made complete with a picture of a church sign which read…”WE TRULY REGRET THAT GAY MARRIAGE ATTACKS THE SANCTITY OF YOUR FOURTH MARRIAGE.”

There is a problem with this logic. First off, the Lord Jesus Christ, though he never did mention a single word on the homosexual (I might add that this word "homosexual" comes from the Greek words that translate into “same-sex”…more on this later), specifically reverted back to the beginning for the origin of marriage. He specifically said that a “husband” will leave “his” father and mother (Not father and father, or mother and mother), and cleave to his “wife”, and they will become one flesh. Therefore, marriage is one man and one woman in a one–flesh (never to become two) covenant for life. 

Secondly, since marriage is one man and one woman, “gay” marriage is impossible and totally illogical. A man can only be a husband, and a woman can only be a wife. The biological purpose of sexuality is to pro-create. Therefore, the word “same-sex” is not only illogical to the idea that a man and a man, or a woman and a woman can pro-create, it is illogical to associate the word “same-sex” with marriage. It would be like asking you to draw me a square circle. 

Thirdly, since marriage is one man and one woman for life, what is wrong with a person who is on their fourth marriage? Before, you jump to conclusions, could a man be on his fourth “marriage” if his first three wives died? Sure, we may question the deaths of his first three wives, but we should never disagree on the fact that a man can be married for the fourth time. 

Fourthly, even if this was a fourth marriage through three divorces and four “remarriages” (There is a difference between a “remarriage” and a marriage…more on this later) does a “gay” married person have the option to divorce if he or she finds a reason to divorce? As stated earlier, the moment a “same-sex” couple divorces and remarries into another same-sex marriage, puts this sign and article out of order. What is even more alarming was the comments on this article defended the idea that divorce is acceptable in certain cases. Ironically, these were comments against those who believe marriage is one man and one woman for life. How can you write an article bashing something you defend, or will defend in the future? I would like to see Susan’s theology on divorce and remarriage of “gay” marriages.

Is this the logic of the “homosexual” Christian? (Homosexual Christian is illogical since it is illogical to be “same-sex”, and that same-sex is defined as sinful) 

In another recent article, "Lexical Lies and Dictionary Deceptions", a proponent of homosexual Christians makes the claim that “porneia” in the case of Matthew 15:19 is specific to “fornication”, or at the very least that this word says nothing about homosexuality. The thought is that “porneia” is specific in language, and not the broad term of sexual immorality, which would include homosexuality. The author’s thought is that since the Lord did not specially address homosexuality, it must be “ok, because it is obvious to him that the lexicons and definitions are not entirely accurate.” My question to him would be if “fornication” is specific to elicit sexual intercourse between heterosexuals outside the confines of marriage, on what grounds can a same-sex spouse divorce for “fornication” (Matthew 5:32 and 19:9)?   

This brings us to the other player of the collision. The evangelical Christian will tell you that “porneia” is the broad term for all kinds of sexual immorality, including homosexuality. They will make the claim that the “exception clause” in Matthew 5:32 and 19:9 is clearly including all kinds of “unrepentant” sexual behavior, thus an innocent “believing”  spouse can initiate a divorce on the grounds that the other spouse proves impenitent. Ironically, they refuse to acknowledge the other Gospels on the subject (Mark 10:11,12; Luke 16:18), or the very least, they will use Matthew’s account as the reference for the case of divorce. HERE is my recommendation for a great book on the use of Greek and the evangelical's view of the exception clause- Except For Fornication-Why Evangelicals Must Reevalaute Their Interpretation Of  Matthew's Divorce Exception Clause. by Daniel R. Jennings

Luke 16:18 makes no mention of “innocent” or “guilty”. It only makes it clear that marriage is one man and one woman for life. Remarriage after a divorce of a living covenant spouse is adultery, and not a lawful marriage. It also makes it clear that it is adultery to “marry” a divorced person of a living covenant spouse, thus the “remarriage” is unlawful. Both Romans 7:2,3 and 1 Cor 7:39 state that death of either spouse gives the freedom for the widow or widower to marry in the Lord.  

If “porneia” is the correct term and it is specific to fornication, why do the evangelicals use it in the broad sense for a “reason” to exit a consummated marriage? In Matthew’s account we even have the case of Joseph and Mary (Matthew 1:18-25) If Joseph had the right to divorce Mary, because it was assumed she committed “fornication” during the year of betrothal, why didn’t he?  The evangelical will tell you that it is God’s intention that marriage is one man and one woman for life, but He provides loopholes in case your spouse proves unfaithful and unrepentant. They also say…”Well, your spouse sinned against you, but you still have the option to forgive so there is reconciliation.”

Do not get me wrong. There are churches that seek reconciliation of a marriage through repentance of a “guilty” spouse, and this is through church discipline (Matthew 18:15-17) and forgiveness of the innocent spouse. But we need to be clear that this is suspect in many churches, and that the rate of divorces and remarriages is not unlike the unchurched. The spouse that remains in covenant is the spouse that trusts the Lord in marriage definition. This has more to do with a solid relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ than is has to do with anything else.

Marriage definition is not decided by what we think ought to be, marriage definition is what God spoke it to be. Paul was only reflecting the words of Lord when he wrote that a man is not to divorce his wife, and a woman, if she is put away, is to remain unmarried or reconcile the marriage. (1 Cor 7:10,11) Marriage must be a reflection of Christ’s love for His bride, the Church. (Eph 5:32)  It is a perversion to deviate from or add to the definition of one man and one woman for life. Death ends a marriage, and if you believe divorce is an option, you need to check to see if you have the Holy Spirit living in you, or you have a desire for the flesh. 

In conclusion, there are two forces coming to a collision on the word porneia.  On the left is the acceptance of same-sex marriage, and on the right is the evangelical church that created, accepted, participates and approves of loopholes to divorce and remarry.  The fact that there is a collision coming, or it has already arrived, is not a bad as it would seem. What this collision only proves to show is the true definition of one man and one woman for life was always there, and we either just missed it, or maybe we were trying to avoid it all along. 

As always there is still time to repent. For the homosexual and the adulterer, it is time to repent of your sin and embrace the cross of Christ. One day marriage will be a thing of the past, because we will either be married to the Lord in His presence, or we will face eternity without Him. We cannot fully understand the things of the spirit unless we kill the desires of the flesh. A new life in Christ is sufficient of itself, because it is in relationship of the One who not only saved us from our sin, He delivers us from the bondage of sin. The joy of Christ is knowing both to be true.  

Hebrews 4:14-16 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

In Christ’s love,

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