Abortion, Homosexuality or Starving Children?

Which wing of the aircraft is the most important, the left or the right? I don’t mean to shut down legitimate debate about what takes priority in the complex social issues of our world, but we do sometimes get caught in a left/right debate that causes us to lose perspective. And I readily include myself as one who can get off balance.

One of the challenges to me in recent years has been the question: Why do you always default to abortion and homosexuality (supposed issues on the right) in regard to America’s sins? What about the crime and deprivation in our cities?  What about starving children? Why isn’t it more important to feed children who are starving than worrying about unborn children destined to live a life of poverty (supposed issues on the left)?

I could respond to those questions defensively and I think make a compelling case why abortion (which seems to be losing support) and homosexual rights (which are rapidly gaining support) are at the top of grave concern for America’s present and future. The sanctity of life and the sanctity of marriage are cornerstone issues that impact poverty and social stability.

But the questions are well taken that suggest we should not  be so “one issue” focused that we ignore pressing human need. I agree that comfortable well to do evangelicals on the right have not empathized with the poor as much as we should, and even though evangelical Christians have been on the front lines of human need far more than credited, it doesn’t mean we should be satisfied. I am delighted to see members of our church invest their time in responding to the tragedy of human trafficking, investing themselves in relationships with immigrants, and prayerfully  opening their hearts, homes, and families to older and hard to place adoptable kids.

But back to an issue of the supposed right, particularly, same-sex marriage.  This summer, I’m preaching a series at Faith Church from 1 Corinthians 5-7, Sex in a Broken World    I told the congregation last Sunday that I would post supplementary material on my blog, so this is a beginning of that promise.

Eric Teetsel is the executive director of the Manhattan Declaration, initially championed by the late Chuck Colson. I urge you to read the declaration at the above site. I also invite you to read Why I Fight Against Same-Sex Marriage by Teetsel.

He addresses the dangers of reductionism as reflected in a comment by Rich Stearns of World Vision who has criticized the energy spent on debating marriage as opposed to poverty issues, arguing “No one ever died of gay marriage.”  This is consistent with Stearns imbalance in his book, The Hole in Our Gospel, Don’t get me wrong!  There is much good in Stearns book and I strongly endorse the great work of World Vision that Stearns leads.

But Teetsel argues convincingly that same-sex marriage is not without major and costly consequences and that a proper understanding of marriage is not to be relegated as a minor appendage, but is a vital and foundational structure piece to keep our culture from a devastating crash.


3 thoughts on “Abortion, Homosexuality or Starving Children?

  1. The secularists want to focus the debate on fairness in tax, medical, and inheritance issues, rather than the bibical or cultural questions. The so-called economic fairness could be solved by legislation that would get less push back, rather than manner in which these issues have to be tied to the the long standing view of the great majority of people. I spent a fair amount of time in the Netherlands thirty-years ago. I think they were th first western country to recognize same sex unions and certainly the first to allow open use of drugs. It was not a culture I would wish on this country, but it is on its way to reality with drugs, sex, any time with anyone,


  2. Good comments on abortion and homosexual marriage. There is one very minor point that I would have a little different perspective on, but which really is an important part of the issue. If you look at the history of the homosexual marriage issue it appears to be very unpopular. Every case where homosexual marriage has been put to a ballot it has been overwhelmingly defeated. Even very liberal states like California and Massachusetts have overwhelmingly defeated it. In states where traditional marriage has been put on a ballot, such as in California and Iowa it has been overwhelmingly supported. In the last decade popular support for homosexual marriage has declined.
    The court in overruling a state’s or the Congress’s right has assumed for itself an authority the Constitution has never given it. In so doing they effectively fundamentally reshaped our government from a Republic to an oligarchy. We are now a country whose authority no longer lies in either elected representatives or the people, but in unaccountable judges. The June decision of the court answered Lincoln’s question as to how long a republic governed by the people can endure. If decision stand than we no longer live in a Republic governed of, by or for the people.


    1. Glenn, I hope you are right about the people, but Minnesota in the last election broke from that pattern and failed to support biblical marriage. And polls indicate a major divide at about age 35 of those who oppose same sex marriage, 35 and older; and those who support same sex marriage, 35 and under. I’ve effectively concluded that the culture has shifted; and thus the faithful church is an increasingly isolated position on these matters.
      However, that is no cause for despair, but makes us more like the Corinthian church, at odds with the popular culture. Thanks for your comment!


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