News and reality are not always the same. Take the matter of marriage.
When a prominent evangelical leader, like Tony Campolo, announces his support for gay marriage, it’s likely to get reporters’ attention. It is indeed news, in that it is still unusual to hear an otherwise orthodox Christian announce heterodox views on sexuality. But in the case of Campolo, it may not be the kind of news that garners much attention. (One reason: His organization Red Letter Christians has argued for same-sex marriage several times.)
But we were surprised when former CT editor David Neff on Facebook praised Campolo’s move. As he put it in an email to me clarifying his comment, “I think the ethically responsible thing for gay and lesbian Christians to do is to form lasting, covenanted partnerships. I also believe that the church should help them in those partnerships in the same way the church should fortify traditional marriages.”
At CT, we’re saddened that David has come to this conclusion. Saddened because we firmly believe that the Bible teaches that God intends the most intimate of covenant relationships to be enjoyed exclusively by a man and a woman. We’ve stated this view explicitly in many editorials, and it is implicit but clear in many of our feature stories.
Still, many of our readers become alarmed when a prominent evangelical leader says otherwise. Add the changes of mind to the legal juggernaut sweeping through the land to legitimize gay marriage, and the orthodox can become demoralized. They fear that history will sweep all of us into this view eventually.
But it’s not at all certain that the rapid cultural shift in America on gay marriage will be mirrored in the Christian ...1