SBC leader says gay marriage not 'live and let live' - Word&Way

SBC leader says gay marriage not ‘live and let live’

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (ABP) –- A Southern Baptist leader warned Sept. 24 that gay marriage is not a matter of “live and let live” but rather part of a “radical homosexual agenda” aimed at destroying the institution of marriage.

“The big problem is that most people think this is a live-and-let-live situation,” Richard Land, head of the Southern Baptist Convention Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, said on his weekly radio program. “It’s not. They want to normalize themselves and they want to abnormalize us — those who believe that the Bible teaches that marriage is only between a man and a woman — and reduce us to the level of the Ku Klux Klan.”

“We will be ostracized in society, and we will not be able to be licensed,” Land warned. “We will not have tax exemptions. All the ways a society can ostracize a detested group is the way they want to ostracize us.

Land made those comments during an interview with Rena Lindevaldsen, associate professor of law at Liberty University and associate director of the Liberty Center for Law and Policy. Lindevaldsen was lead counsel for Lisa Miller, who kidnapped her daughter and fled the country in order to avoid a court order awarding child custody to her former lesbian partner.

Land joined prominent evangelicals including Mike Huckabee and Tony Perkins in recommending Lindevaldsen’s new book on the case titled Only One Mommy.

Miller and partner Janet Jenkins lived mostly in Virginia but obtained a civil union in Vermont. After giving birth in 2002, Miller filed to dissolve the civil union, renounced her homosexuality and became a Christian. The two women were in a custody dispute when Miller disappeared early in 2009.

Miller became a cause célèbre in the Religious Right and Ex-Gay movement, but Land said she represents just one instance of efforts to “redefine marriage out of existence” by comparing opposition to gay marriage to whites who once supported segregation of blacks.

“They are trying to make us into racists like the Klan,” Land said. “They don’t throw the Klan in jail for being Klansmen, but they’re ostracized. They’re segregated to the nut fringe. That’s what they want to do to us.”

Land said: “The analogy to race is bogus, because there is no scientific evidence that people are born with one sexual orientation or another.”

He acknowledged: “Now, it certainly must be true that some people have more of it than others, because I must tell you it is the one sin I know about that I find totally incomprehensible, but obviously some boys do find it comprehensible, otherwise there wouldn’t be any homosexuality.”

But Land said discussing sexual orientation is different from trying to redefine marriage. “Marriage is the basic building block of human society,” he said. “I think the real issue is they want to destroy marriage, any kind of marriage. They want to define marriage out of existence.”

Land said “one side is going to win and one side is going to lose, and it has earth-shaking consequences for us if we lose.” Despite that alarm, Land said he is confident there are enough values voters to turn the country around.

“This is a tiny percentage of the population, and look at the impact they’ve had,” he said. “Think about what we could do as Christians if we got as sold-out to our agenda as they have to theirs.”

Land said the alternative will be “full-blown paganization” of America.

“They have already started talking about polyamory and pedophilia,” he said. “They are going to start talking now about lowering the age of consent. They already talk about it, saying who are we to deprive a child of his or her sexuality? We’re going to end up like Greece and Rome. If this dam breaks, the tidal wave will be just an outright sexual paganization of society.”


Bob Allen is managing editor of Associated Baptist Press.