According to the owner of the Hitching Post, if gay marriage became the law, he would have to close his business. That was before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the 2006 gay marriage ban here in the state of Idaho. Now that gay marriage is legal in the state of Idaho, the owner of the Hitching Post has decided to sue the City of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho for “discriminating” against “his” religious freedom. To that end, the Coeur d’Alene Press had an editorial solution that I think is worth reading. If the owner of the Hitching Post wants to declare his “for profit” business to be a religious non profit, then he can certainly proceed to do so. Otherwise, under the non-discrimination ordinance that the city of Coeur d’Alene has adopted, he can’t discriminate against gays and lesbians getting married. But of course, the “my way or the highway” approach to this discussion, is the topic of the hour. Just as it produced the desired effect of inundating city hall with a lot of hate mail. Seriously? I think that the people “thumping the bible” over gay marriage, need to step back and get a grip.
The only thing that the bible says about homosexual behavior is, thou shalt not lie with a man in the same manner as you would lie with a woman. It says nothing about gay marriage. It discusses “sodomy,” as a type of rape of men. But instead, as is found in Genesis and Judges, you can sodomize a woman with no problem. But again, rape isn’t marriage. Nor is male prostitution, as a type of homosexual behavior, the equivalent of marriage. What the bible does not discuss, it can not frown upon then can it? Which ultimately argues, that the bible thumpers need to read that good book, a bit more thoroughly. Especially that part of the book where Jesus commands, “The hatred that lies in your heart toward your neighbor, is the same as murder.” He didn’t say who among your neighbors you could safely hate, that would not be classified as “murder.”
I regard the “Hitching Post lawsuit,” as first and foremost a publicity stunt. The said owners want their fifteen minutes of fame at the expense of the taxpayers. I don’t guess that they would take in to consideration the fact that Coeur d’Alene is a religiously diverse city. Not everyone agreed with that constitutional amendment banning gay marriage back in 2006. And what about the constitutional rights of gays and lesbians, which the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals confirmed? The two greatest commandments found in the midst of Jesus’ teachings: love God and love your neighbor; seem to be of greater importance in this day and age, than who enters into a committed relationship, or who does what in the privacy of their bedroom. The headline in this morning’s Coeur d’Alene Press, with reference to the Hitching Post lawsuit that sparks outrage. The “outraged” citizens are ignoring pertinent scripture, while acting like they want to “lynch” the elected officials of city hall, just because the state wide gay marriage ban was overturned. What’s that going to prove, besides informing everyone that the word of God should only be trotted out and used as a weapon?
Otherwise, it gets stored on the shelf and otherwise ignored, when it calls for your own personal moral obligations; both public and private.
If as a non-Christian, I am wrong about gay marriage or even about being a non-Christian, then I already have a good understanding about where I am slated to go. Now what about the people who use their bible solely for political reasons? I’d say that is a very good question immediately in need of an answer. The bible calls for the believers to be a decent human being even in the face of a sinner. If God can love someone who hates him by bringing forth both sunshine and rain; then the followers of Jesus, have an equal obligation to do the same. Precisely, to exercise the same pure love. Thumping the bible in order to declare, how “God” frowns on a secular state granting marriage certificates even to gays and lesbians; is not an expression of pure love. Acting like a virtual “lynch mob” with angry and hate-filled e-mails over a pending lawsuit, is also poles apart from Jesus’ teachings. well in that case, if I am wrong in my opinions, then I have plenty of company for my sojourn in Hell. Thus, I am reminded of a parable found in the New Testament. A man who being indebted to someone else, and is made a slave for that reason, is freed in a Jubilee year. You now know of the expression, “pay it forward,” this is where it comes from. The now “former” slave was expected to pay forward his good fortune to the next man indebted to himself. However, not only did the former slave decline to do so, he spoke and acted very harshly to that particularly poor man. Once his “former” master got wind of this particular act of ingratitude, he clapped his manservant back in chains. Letting it be known that as of now, the fellow would work off his still existing debt to his master. The point of this story? The owner of the Hitching Post has never confronted the possibility of his business being closed down. The only reason for the ordinance, is that gays and lesbians will not be discriminated against in housing, jobs, or where they may wish to do business. They don’t have to do business at the Hitching Post. They can get married before anyone with the authority to perform a marriage. That includes a judge. Any church could perform such a ceremony; it doesn’t have to be the Hitching Post. So, why is the owner wanting to sue the city? Probably while he was trotting out all of his “religious objections,” he was forgetting all about his religious requirements. Leave the judging to God. The scriptures pertaining to that can be found in Acts.