It matters because it is a redefinition of the term “marriage” – and marriage is integral to our theology, our familial structure, and to our exercise of our beliefs. As Christians, marriage is the earthly picture of our relationship to Christ, as His Church. By redefining the term marriage, you are asking us to redefine what we are, as believers, and who Christ is. This is not a small matter. Sure, there are those who confess Christ who don’t see the issue – but someone who is ignorant of the faith they claim to profess should be given less weight when it comes to other aspects of that profession, should they not? We are not saying that they are ignorant because we dislike them – but because it is a statement of simple fact.
In the last half of Ephesians 5, there is a lengthy discussion of marriage, and of it’s analogy to Christ and His church. Whatever novelties that others want to present, it remains the case that this chapter hasn’t changed meaning because societal norms have done so. The drumbeat of SSM proponents is that an acknowledgement or affirmation of SSM doesn’t affect us, as Christians. That assertion is just that – an assertion. We not only will not acknowledge or affirm the validity of that redefinition, but it is the case that we, quite simply, cannot do so. Marriage, as Christ explains in Matthew 19, is between a man and a woman, and humanity was created with two genders, who are meant to marry each other, and complement each other. That union is that which becomes one flesh. There cannot be a complementarity of man with man, or woman with woman. There is no union. That union is a picture of Christ and His church. Union with Christ is also a fundamental doctrine – and not one which allows for redefinition, either.
This redefinition involves, by the nature of the case, a commensurate redefinition of human nature, of love, of sexuality, of union with Christ, of sin, of scripture, and all the interconnected issues that, in any system, necessarily intersect when any individual point is touched by every other. You are not dealing with disconnected idiosyncrasies when you address Christian doctrine at any point. You are dealing with a system, at each and every point of Christian doctrine you speak to. It matters because everything we believe has a necessary connection to each and every other thing we believe. Modifying that belief to suit your preference is not going to happen – because it necessarily modifies everything else along with it, or results in a hash of inconsistencies. If you think that is already what you are dealing with, as I’m sure some of you are thinking right now – think again. What you think we believe is probably a lot further off than you know. If you’re really willing to learn what we believe, ask us. We’ll be happy to tell you.