“Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.”
First, congrats to the Denver Broncos who are my third favorite team behind the Vikings and whoever is playing the Packers. A great performance by a football team few people thought could win. Now, on to more important things, like the half time show. Frankly, on the level of entertainment I found the half time show to be one of the best I've seen. Bruno Mars is an extremely talented musician and Coldplay did a great job. My one critique of Coldplay is that Chris Martin could learn a couple more dance moves. The one move over and over again was a little boring. I could live without Beyonce, but that isn't really the point. It's the theme of half time that is the point. It's the love and the rainbows. Don't get me wrong, I am all of love and rainbows!
Many are saying that the point of the show was to promote homosexuality and I have to admit that as a bunch of my friends watched with me at my house yesterday not one person said anything about homosexuality or critiqued the rainbow thing. That doesn't mean no one noticed, I certainly did. I chose not to say anything at the time because I didn't think it was the appropriate time or place. Part of me wanted to think that maybe the rainbow was becoming a symbol for something other than the LGBTQ agenda since I didn't observe any blatant references to the LGBTQ lifestyle. Perhaps my hopes are simply wishful thinking. Nevertheless, while the rainbow is a reference to a loving promise made by God and God is love (1 John 4:8), the premise behind the half time show is that it is hateful to say homosexuality is wrong or withhold support for same sex marriage. Therefore, as the argument might go, love is on the side of the LGBTQ agenda, in fact they are inseparable.
Is that really the case? Is love on the side of the LGBTQ agenda? I must grant that it is powerful rhetoric and the message at half time was clear and in a subtle sort of way very powerful. Many people got on Twitter and Facebook to complain about the message. I don't think that is particularly helpful. Nevertheless some people hold up love as the one and only moral value that rules all others. Perhaps, in some sense it is, but not in the sense that many people think. I won't bore you with all the arguments, but to put it simply homosexuality is destructive to individuals and society as a whole. A society that endorses same sex marriage and homosexuality harms the institution of marriage overall. That institution isn't just about love, it isn't about romantic feelings or erotic pleasure, it is about a stabilization of society as a whole. It is about stable home environments for children which can only be produced if a male and female are involved in the process. Marriage is about human flourishing in general. Sure, there are many ways marriage can be twisted into something it was never supposed to be. Polyamory, unfaithfulness, abuse, divorce, and cohabitation outside of marriage are all ways that the institution of marriage can be harmed. All of those things betray the institution of marriage. Those of us who say that homosexuality is wrong or more specifically that same sex marriage is wrong do so out of love. We say such things because we believe in love and marriage, because we want to see kids have a stable environment with both a mom and a dad, because we believe that society will be more loving when it fervently fights agains those things that harm it (not just homosexuality).
The irony is rich, a loving God gave a symbol of a promise to withhold righteous judgment and that same symbol is now being used to promote an unloving, unholy agenda in the name of love. I don't hate people who are gay or who struggle with same sex attraction. In fact, my wife and I both have friends who fit into those categories. We love them very much and, I think, they love us. That said, it is because of our love for them that when we talk about such things we are honest and forthright in what we believe. The half time show yesterday missed the point all together.
John Byrne is a pastor who has been spouting off his opinions his entire life (just ask his mom). This little blog is his venue for continuing in this tradition.