Sunday, April 5, 2015

Discrimination vs Religious Beliefs

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
(Amendment I, United States Constitution)

Our Constitution tells us that we shall have no laws prohibiting the free exercise of religion, but yet Christians are being attacked from all sides with words like bigot, hypocrite, homophobic, and discriminatory for simply trying to stand on their faith and the Word of God. 

Indiana is now making the news of in the battle of Christians vs the LGBT community with their Religious Freedom Restoration Act.  This act would give businesses the ability to refuse to provide services on the basis that these services would go against their religious beliefs.  This would be a step toward our the First Amendment rights; as a Christians who is in support of this, I feel it would give business owners the opportunity to stand up against our current societal trends in favor of our Lord.  

The other side says it is only a ploy to promote discrimination.  I can see situations where it would not apply, for example a business such as a restaurant should not be allowed to turn customers away because of sexual preference since they are not a specialized business.  

Who should it apply to then?  A good example of this is all the publicity surrounding same sex marriage.  I am not going to get into my feelings on this, a previous blog posting sums them up well.  But I will say that a business that caters to weddings or receptions should be able to choose their clientele as much as the clientele chooses them.  The Bible defines marriage and sexual relations as existing only between man and woman numerous times, but it also tells us that those who give approval of unnatural behavior are also committing sin.  

Romans 1:26 -28 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.

1 Corinthians 7:2 But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.

Mark 10: 6-9 But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

Romans 1:32 Though they know God's decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.

And yes, one of these verses speaks of death, but that is not the point I am trying to make or even believe.  I feel that our choices and actions are between the individual and God.  We are not to set in judgement, but we also do not have to encourage or assist in these actions.  If we know something is a sin, we are told not to support this behavior.  The Bible instructs us to remain true to God and do what is according to His will. 

Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

This is not going to be the easy road and will, most likely, end up the harder of the two choices but it is the better for our relationship with God. 

2 Timothy 3:12 Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,

We need to come together , as Christians, and pray that God speak to the hearts of our political leaders and bring this type of legislation to pass where we can not only reclaim our lost Constitutional rights, but more importantly we can serve our Lord God in the manner that He deserves.