This is a copy of a message that I sent to Hugh Hewitt on his question about whether a Christian should attend a same sex marriage ceremony. http://www.hughhewitt.com/that-question/
Let me offer further insight on your story and reflection on the question of attending a same sex marriage. The Bible is certainly the right place to start when looking for an answer. I am not sure that your example and interpretation of the section of the Bible in which Jesus meets and talks with the lady at the well will offer you a complete answer to your question. Jesus certainly was teaching at the well, but He was not teaching participation in others sin. Just His act of talking with the woman was one of the central points of His teaching.
A Jewish man, but especially a Rabbi talking with a woman of that day was not looked upon as proper, but talking to a Samaritan woman outside the land of Israel was certainly condemned by the Jewish leadership even more, and therefore this discussion with the woman was an even greater demonstration of love. Jesus was definitely teaching love, but more importantly He was teaching that the Gospel was for everyone, everywhere, for all time. Jesus was not teaching or demonstrating approval of her sin. In fact, He pointed out her sin. If you are going to use this story in the Bible as an example, you would need to go to the same sex wedding and point out their sin.
Every person needs to know and share God's love and Jesus' example of sacrificial love, but this does not extend to participation in sin. Yes Jesus spoke and ate with sinners, but the act of speaking and eating is not a sin. The act of same sex marriage is a sin. Christians can condemn acts of sin that God has already classified as sin.
The Bible tells us to come out from those that sin.
Re 18:4 Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you take part in her sins, lest you share in her plagues;
This is a lengthy passage, but notice in these next verses Christians are to remember the full impact of sin and be clean; storing up the knowledge of the Lord in order to be fruitful in the Gospel not in the participation of the sin of others.
2 Pe 1:3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 2 Pe 1:4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. 2 Pe 1:5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 2 Pe 1:6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 2 Pe 1:7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.
To be fruitful in carrying the Gospel, Christians are to practice Holiness.
2 Pe 1:8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Pe 1:9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 2 Pe 1:10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 2 Pe 1:11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
With our witness, we are to bring sinners back, not go with them approving in their sin.
Jas 5:20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
Even most Christians do not know that God classifies sins into two categories…inside and outside of the body. This division is by sexual immorality. We do not fully understand this division, but if God is doing the dividing it is important.
1 Co 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.
The woman at the well was a story to teach that the gospel message was for all and not an approval of her sin. There is another story of a woman in sexual immorality and Jesus told this woman “to go and sin no more”. This is a teaching of forgiveness, but with a warning of continuing in sexual immorality. If the warning is from the Lord, it is important.
Jn 8:10 Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” Jn 8:11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.”
2 Ti 2:19 But God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.”
Ps 119:115 Depart from me, you evildoers, that I may keep the commandments of my God.
In these next verses, John is talking to what scholars believe to be Mary, the mother of Jesus, after the death of Jesus. Even if it is an unknown woman, the message is the same and it is a message in the Bible from God about the participation in the sins of others. First John defines Christian love, and notice that Christian love only includes what is according to the commandments.
2 Jn 4 I rejoiced greatly to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as we were commanded by the Father. 2 Jn 5 And now I ask you, dear lady—not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another. 2 Jn 6 And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it.
But in these next verses John warns that this love does not mean we are to participate or even greet known sin and sinners. To even greet these sinners is to take part in their wicked ways.
2 Jn 8 Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward. 2 Jn 9 Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. 2 Jn 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, 2 Jn 11 for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.
Unbelievers are asking the question of participation and approval of same sex marriages and we should not expect them to have the biblical answer, but Christian candidates should. These candidates do not need to form their own answer…God has already provided them an answer. The Bible holds the answer. My reflection on the question of participation in the sin of others is only a portion of all that the Bible holds on this subject. Christians should know and understand that God would provide many answers and He has.
Published on Sunday, April 19, 2015 @ 4:31 AM CDT