Why “Love Thy Neighbor” Is Not a Support for Same-Sex Marriage
I was listening to “The Herman Cain Show” yesterday morning when a caller wanted to know how Christians, who are told to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39; Mark 12:31; Gal. 5:14), can stand against same-sex marriage. Herman Cain did not give a very good answer.
I’m always amazed when liberals quote some parts of the Bible for their authority and don’t quote others.
The Bible is only fashionable for liberals when they can squeeze out some support, and once they extract what they need, it’s put back in its “Break Glass When Needed” compartment.
Chris Cuomo, from the pro-abortion Cuomo family, “browbeat the Family Research Council’s Peter Sprigg by, among other things, pretending to speak for Jesus, ‘Jesus message to you was “Love until it hurts and keep loving.” That’s not what [this Indiana religious law] is. It’s exclusion.’”
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I don’t recall a verse where Jesus said what Cuomo manufactured, but it is loosely based on the Bible verses referenced above.
I’ll get back to the command to “love your neighbor as yourself” in a moment.
If I had been Herman Cain, I would have asked the caller if loving one’s neighbor means approving everything your neighbor does. What if your neighbor was beating his wife and children? What if another neighbor was stealing? Does loving one’s neighbor mean that these sins and crimes should be overlooked?
When someone quotes the Bible about loving your neighbor, that command does not stand alone. It’s in the broader context of the entire Bible. Consider this passage from Hebrews 12:
“You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin; and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons, ‘MY SON, DO NOT REGARD LIGHTLY THE DISCIPLINE OF THE Lord, NOR FAINT WHEN YOU ARE REPROVED BY HIM; FOR THOSE WHOM THE Lord LOVES HE DISCIPLINES, AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES.’ It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness” (vv. 6-11).
Loving your neighbor does not mean ignoring what your neighbor is doing. In fact, according to the above passage, discipline is a sign of love: “FOR THOSE WHOM THE Lord LOVES HE DISCIPLINES, AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES.”
The reason some of the above verses are in upper case letters is that they are based on Old Testament passages. The same is true of “Love your neighbor as yourself.” It comes from Leviticus 19:18. Most people don’t know this. They assume that “love your neighbor as yourself” originated with Jesus.
What’s interesting about the “love your neighbor” passage is that it’s found between Leviticus 18:22 and Leviticus 20:13, two chapters that address the subject of same-sex sexuality: “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.”
So if Chris Cuomo is going to take what Leviticus 19:18 says, then he needs to take the anti-same-sex-sexuality passages that are found in the same book as well. And once you start quoting Jesus, it’s necessary to see what He says about the candidates for marriage:
“And [Jesus] answered and said, ‘Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE [Gen. 1:27; 5:2], and said, “FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH” [Gen. 2:24; Eph. 5:31]? So they are no longer two, but one flesh [1 Cor. 6:16]. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.’” (Matt. 19:4-6).
“Wife” corresponds to “female,” not another man.
If Chris Cuomo is going to use Jesus as a reference, it would be helpful if he knew what Jesus actually said.