We will occasionally post real-life questions posed to Dr. Sanchez from his students. The following is an excerpt from a letter recently submitted to Dr. Sanchez from one of his students concerning the issue of gay marriage:
I’m not sure if you’ll have an answer, but I figured as my Apologetics teacher, you’re the best person to ask. I’ve been thinking about gay marriage laws and I’ve been going through a line of logic to present my ideas if asked. Is there an answer I haven’t seen yet? I’m wondering if my thinking is flawed because I’m looking for a solution that would please both sides of the gay marriage argument when there possibly isn’t one.
Dear Wanting Help:
You’ll discover that the issues around the question of gay marriage are not as simplistic as they first appear; they precede your present generation - at minimum, half a century or more.
Most of us work "backward" from a presenting cultural or moral issue (pro or con gay marriage, civil unions, etc.). We respectfully, but pointedly, ask questions about the issue, do our research, and seek to sincerely comprehend a proponent's underlying logic, rationale, or ideology upon which their stance purports to rest.
As a Christian, you’ll discover that innovative moral positions built upon select personal ideology are usually more emotive than thoughtful, more committed to certain outcomes themselves than to the long-term human implications of those ideas. Regrettably, recent history and innumerable graves are marked with the cultural scars of such views.
However, God's laws for humankind cannot and will not be broken; history has repeatedly demonstrated that all moral innovation, personal and political, will always be shattered when we throw ourselves against God's laws and ways for his world, including desacralizing sexual identity and union.
Yes, our human laws can be changed and sometimes should (i.e.: slavery); but God’s laws cannot - they endure forever, written into Creation and into our creation. We can vote "outdated" moral ideas out of office and replace them with advocates who support our more tolerant views. But God wasn't voted into office and he cannot be voted out (see Psalm 115, MSG). We humans, and all of our ideas, have an "expiration date." But God's Word will endure long after our place in history evaporates; the immoral and their ideas will not long be remembered.
So, how are we to respond to contemporary moral issues such as gay marriage? Here’s some old-school, ancient but time-tested wisdom:
· Know the gospel well (embrace your own story).
· Learn and have your own wisdom shaped in a gospel-shaped community of faith.
· Live the gospel in the marketplace alongside real people.
· Listen carefully to the groans of culture coming from the weight of its own sin and misdirection.
· Study the insights and approaches of good thinkers, not angry legalists, on both sides of an issue.
· Learn to articulate the deepest questions of people honestly, and apply the gospel to their deeper concerns.
· And if necessary, be willing to make a principled stand, even die for, the privilege of presenting the only good news with divine power to rescue men and women from themselves and the insanity of broken ideas.
Left to ourselves, we are always blind and desensitized to what really awaits us on the other side of our misdirected loves. As apologists, however, we are called to stand between the very people Christ died to redeem and the ideas/schemes of the one who, for yet a season, exists only to lie, steal and destroy.