The Re-Imaging of Humanity – Part 4 – The Impact on Society

This past week I became aware of a couple of major churches and at least one significant evangelical Christian organisation who are burying their heads in the sand on the revolution that is taking place in our society.  For them it is too controversial and not nice.  Whilst they won’t take an anti-scriptural position, neither will they take a scriptural one. In seeking to be all things to all men, they are becoming increasingly irrelevant.  Why do I say that?  Because our concern here is not primarily the church, but the wider society.  And its to this we now turn.

The Re-imaging of Humanity – 3 – The Transgender Revolution

The gender fluid/gender identity revolution  will all have a tremendous impact upon society. I only have time today to identify a few of the main issues.

There is a cost in terms of political freedom and democracy – One of the key issues here is that we are moving from a Christian liberal democracy based upon the understanding of all human beings made equally in the image of God, to a human rights democracy where human rights is treated like a religion and where these human rights are defined by the elites, and moreover are constantly changing. What is happening is that democracy is being done away with. When you have the  US Supreme Court announcing it is going to look at the issue of bathrooms, you realise how far we are down this road.

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Furthermore we will soon have  our own religious thought police. For example Police Scotland  have just announced they are going to have their own LGBTI liaison officers – 90 of them. To deal with hate crime. These police are to be trained by the Equality Network. I just simply ask – why are there not trained police officers having to deal with anti-Christian hate crime?  Or indeed other forms of hate crime?

There is a cost in terms of the legal system – And the thought police come in other shape and forms. Take this in the legal system. I was sent the following judgement from a judge who decided that a child was being harmed by his mothers attempts to use transgender as an excuse… “I consider that M has caused significant emotional harm to J in her active determination that he should be a girl. I find that she has overborne his will and deprived him of his fundamental right to exercise his autonomy in its most basic way. Whether J chooses to present as a girl or not, ought to be his choice. This is not a case about gender dysphoria, rather it is about a mother who has developed a belief structure which she has imposed upon her child.”

Now the judge in this legal case is being accused by activists of being ‘transphobic’- for preventing a mother forcing her boy to be a girl!   And of course we have had the Ashers case this week where for the first time a State court has determined that the State now has the right to tell individuals and business’s what they must promote. We now have ‘protected beliefs’ which it has become illegal to refuse to promote, even if you don’t agree with them.

The same thing happens in the media and in general culture. The Dundee book prize was won last week by an American author whose book was a coming out story about a trans teenager. BBC Scotland had an hour long documentary this week about six trans ‘lovers’. It never stops. And all this for less than 0.1% of the population. This narrative is now being taught through our media, soap operas and social media.

It is being reinforced in our politics through government-sponsored lobbying agencies to ensure that everyone has to stay on track with their new philosophy of humanity. Today, in addition to the leaders of three of the five major political parties in Scotland, four ministers in the Scottish government are openly gay, as is the secretary of state for Scotland in Britain’s Conservative government. The one elected representative of the right-wing U.K. Independence Party in Scotland is gay, too.  The reason that this is significant is not because I believe that there should be equality and diversity and balance proportionate to the population, nor because I care two hoots if any politician is gay.  It is significant because you tend to find that LGB and T are all added together.  There is no reason why they should be…but they are.

And above all it has become the focus of our education system. There is a massive experiment in social engineering which is beginning at the school near you soon, if it has not already begun.   Time for Inclusive Education is the Trojan Horse which is being used to introduce this ‘gender identity as social construct’ philosophy.   It means that brainwashing in this doctrine will be complusory for all pupils – with no opt outs allowed, and no discussion permitted.  Jeremy Corbyn in September promised that Labour will change the national curriculum to reflect LGBT and historical figures and LGBT rights’.  Now we have the State telling teachers what they must teach.  We are told that the police should come into schools and talk about homophobic and transphobic crimes. LGBT History month taught that Florence Nightingale was a Lesbian and Isaac Newton was gay.

Again this week I heard of a primary school that was setting up (unknown to the parents) a children’s LGBT committee to ensure right attitudes – why does this remind me of Chairman Mao’s little Red Brigades?   And where the signposts saying boys and girls were being removed from the toilets.   A government funded agency has given another group £200,000 to spread their propaganda, which amongst other things promotes puberty blockers for pre-teens and urges teachers not to use the terms boy/girl/he/her!    Teachers Told to Stop Using Boy/Girl    This is not the future – this is happening now.  And woe betide any parent or teacher who dares to question.

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One of the many Stonewall posters that are now everywhere in our State schools.

And it gets worse.  Jenny Murray, the presenter of Women’s Hour last month argued for porn in the classroom.   She needn’t bother.  Pornography is a massive problem. One which our government should be addressed.  Very young children are seeing the most hardcore porn which damages them in so many ways.   incredible harm that pornography is doing – its far more significant than trans or homophobic bullying (by the way it should hardly be necessary for me to point out in this gathering that as Christians we are opposed to all forms of bullying).

In Scotland this has now become the predominant, in fact even the sole State ideology. AS Ruth Davidson said “We’ve come a very, very long way in a really short time,” she said. The New York Times on Scotlands Cultural Change

 There is a cost in terms of economics. This week I heard on the news that it costs around £40-£50,000 per year for each child refugee taken into care. These children are refugees from war and poverty. And in my view it is correct that a wealthy nation like ours does all we can to help. There are hundreds of such children. But there are hundreds of thousands of children who are refugees and victims from the war on marriage, the attack on humanity, coming because of humanities pride and arrogance in seeking to go against the Makers instructions.  Who is counting the cost of the social disintegration that is occuring because of the foolish attempt not only to reinvent the family, but also to reimage humanity?
I sometimes argue that I am an IKEA Christian.  When I take something home from IKEA, I simply follow the makers instructions.  Is it not an act of total arrogance and stupidity for human beings to think we can ignore the Makers instructions, reinvent humanity and not pay the cost?
Next week we will look at what’s next….

 


40 thoughts on “The Re-Imaging of Humanity – Part 4 – The Impact on Society

  1. “rights are defined by the elites,”

    And yet what was actual Christian and what Christianity meant was also decided by the elites. The universities, the academics, the powerful minister, the monarchy have all played a role in deciding what the Bible meant and how it should be used in Christian Britain. Even now, religious elites like you take different positions to others like Steve Chalke. The hypocrisy you display complaining about constantly changing human rights is staggering.

    “trained police officers having to deal with anti-Christian hate crime?”

    Are they needed? When was the last Christian attacked for wearing a cross on North Bridge in Edinburgh. When was the last street preacher assaulted for their public displays of Christianity? Other groups do hate crime training for police. The disability sector organisations for example. If you think that Christians are being assaulted by those who hate them because they are Christian then seek government funding to develop training for the police.

    “This narrative is now being taught through our media, soap operas and social media.”

    Because it is the current topic of choice for Tragic Life Stories (TLSs). Which, for reasons that escape me, is what a lot of people feast upon. If there wasn’t a negativity around being LGBT, if being LGBT wasnt actually a problem, if being LGBT when young didn’t result in parental abandonment, if people were not being assaulted and killed for being LGBT and if there weren’t people actively writing against LGBT then TLSs would move on. And the need for LGBT support would diminish.

    “I believe that there should be equality and diversity and balance proportionate to the population”

    So you only get equality and rights on a pro-rata basis dependent on population size? So by rights, Christian equality and rights should be diminishing due to the falling numbers of Christians?

    “And above all it has become the focus of our education system.”

    Pretty sure maths, science, English etc are all still qualifications to get via exams. Pretty sure that is still the focus of education.

    “Now we have the State telling teachers what they must teach.”

    This has been the case for quite some time. Well over a century if you want to check. Remember all the early devolution stuff about Keep the Clause. That clause was there because the state was telling teachers what they must teach.

    “There is a cost in terms of economics.”

    There is also a cost in lives. The lives of LGBT people who commit suicide because the have been taught that what they are is wrong. The lives of LGBT people who are assaulted and murdered because they are open about being LGBT.

    At least with IKEA stuff you know what it is supposed to look like and should have been provided everything to make that happen. And if it doesnt, you get to take it back and get another one or your money back. Problem is, humanity is not like that. There is no option to get a replacement or a refund. So we make do because any instruction set we have does not take into account the complexity of life. We are making do, recycling and reinventing ourselves because the cost of not doing so is very very high indeed.

    1. Oh Douglas – you are really buying into that post-truth thing wholesale! All emotion and little reasoning!

      When you start calling me one of the ‘elites’ you have made language all meaningless!

      You also seem to forget just how much the bible in the hands of ordinary people helped change and reformed the society…

      Yes – there have been many Christians attacked. You don’t hear about them because we don’t have lobby groups funded by government to push the narrative. Also you don’t want to hear.

      And again you miss the point about the media – its not done primarily to deal with tragedy – its done to promote a particular agenda – thats what soap operas are for.

      And you also missed the point on the balance etc (this seems to be becoming a habit!)…Its the liberals who demand that x% of people on TV/Politics/Company Boards be gay/trans/female according to proportion of the population…

      Its also quite frightening that as a Secular official you don’t know the law on education. It is a basic principle of Scottish education that politicians do NOT tell teachers what to teach.

      And then in that post-truth way you have developed you bring out the ‘you are responsible for causing LGBT suicide’ line. This thought may shock you – whilst there are those who are bullied (shamefully) and doubtless those who are shamed into suicide – what if the majority of depression, ill health and suicides comes because of other reasons. If so then you are guilty of encouraging that by promoting LGBT as a way of life which should be encouraged.

      And yes – the Makers instructions do take into account the complexity of life, unlike the simplistic narrative of humanism. How is this re-invention going? In my view your humanist philosophy is actually harmful to humans…

  2. Multifarious programmatic secularism in operation.

    It is living a life without having a big picture meaning to life that will be upheld throughout suffering, that excludes our God who brought salvation, saved from our sins, born as a boy, named Jesus, with a royal edict for his death, a migrant, a family, dishonoured, misunderstood, abused, rejected, name called, mocked, hated. lied about. wrongfully arrested, tried and convicted by the Elites of the day and new life through pain, suffering, rejection, public torture and being killed on the cross – all for us, to take our place, broken for us that we may be whole

    Our God who was and is hated to death while all the while He was loving us to a new life in Him, through His birth, life death and resurrection.

    So Mr McLellan, what’s true Christianity?

    It is the difference between Chalke and Jesus.

  3. So, who are the Christians being physically assaulted in Scotland for being Christian? If people don’t hear about them, why don’t you use this opportunity where someone was asking about it to publicise the incidents?

    1. Don’t worry we are working on it. Firstly you can’t publicise without people’s permission (and lots of people are running scared)…secondly we don’t have a government funded lobby group who can push these, nor is there a sympathetic press or media.

  4. So, things are changing such as LGBT rights and issues being addressed, taught, made visible to the public and you’re moaning because, well actually you’re moaning because of a number of reasons, I’m not going to address them but instead point out this isn’t the end. What’s happening is society adjusting to include a group, the same thing happened with women too. They got rights and to vote and people to notice them and not be 2nd class citizens. Would you have gret about that too?

    Society doesn’t stop, it never ceases to move, it’s also very open to paradigm shifts as well so don’t worry those pesky trannys will be the least of your worries when the next moral panic ensues.

    With you being a good Christian, somebody who loves his fellow man (don’t worry, I’m not calling you gay), why don’t you open your church to LGBT people, they really do need support because they walk a tough path. Show them compassion and kindness instead of writing passive aggressive nonsense on the internet.

    Thanks

    1. Leonard, thanks for posting your thoughts. I’m sorry that you are not able to address the reasons that apparently I am moaning – mainly because I do not know myself what they are! and I’m not moaning! Your definition of what is happening in society is demonstrably false – the question is not whether society is adjusting to include a group but whether the whole definition of humanity is being adjusted in such a way that it ends up excluding anyone who dares to disagree. You also seem to be an incredibly judgemental person. You presuppose what I feel, you condemn me for attitudes I don’t have and worst of all you imply that my church is not welcoming to LGBT people – or open to them. Anyone is welcome in our church and all are shown compassion and kindness – as for passive-aggressive? I would suggest you reread your own post.

      1. David,

        How is it false? It is happening, we are adjusting, new norms are coming about replacing the old ones. This isn’t s invisible, this something you can see in the increased awareness of these issues and the increased emphasis on them. You can read Thomas Khun’s work describing Paradigm Shifts in science and apply it to this. The definition of humanity is fairly basic, you also couldn’t expect people to be reflected in such a way, we aren’t basic, we all individuals trying to live together collectively, what humanity means can’t be defined so basically. As far as the people disagreeing being treated as an outgroup, this does happen and will continue to as people seek to defend and define who they are, should there be no resistance? Should they not push back?

        I will leave the sarcasm out in future, let me say this, you clearly have attitudes, the moans I mention, sorry for not being specific are your gripes family and the massive impact you perceive with the introduction of teaching children about gender etc, it isn’t an issue, nobody is going to force their children to change, children aren’t going to come home and suddenly proclaim they have changed gender. This is like a paranoid scare story from the Daily Mail. There is such a conservative resistance to change, as I have said (change will happen whether you like it or not),

        your use of language surrounding transgender people, in your previous article,

        “Where is the harm? I think that transgender people need help. It is a genuine psychological condition…realising that a small group of people need help and support”

        and your reiteration of traditional family, your mentioning of how traditional family is best and then quote a report from a pro-life website that quotes a study that estimates, doesn’t provide evidence instead suggests that they would be worse off. These are examples (no, not all of them) of why I believe you wouldn’t be that welcoming. I don’t, from your writing feel that you would take transgender people at face value, oh they have a condition, actually they are just people. Also the church doesn’t have the greatest of track records with their views on gay people so I don’t hold out hope for those who aren’t part of the maker’s plan.

        Thanks

        Leonard Snart

      2. Yes – I have read Kuhn’s work…a long time ago. I have no problem with teaching children about gender…but its what is taught that is the problem. Teaching children they can choose their own gender on the basis that gender is just a social construct – is an absurd, impossible to verify, philosophy.

        “children are not going to come home and suddenly proclaim they have changed gender”…oh the naive views of the atheist keyboard warriors! Would you like to explain that to the father I met who said that his son had done precisely just that? Or the mother who phoned saying the same thing? Or the parents of the sevne year old who was told in her class that she could choose to be either a boy or a girl?

        Of course you would believe I wouldn’t be welcoming – because that is what you want to believe. You base everything on your fantasy ideology. You presume to judge those you do not know. And you set up strawman arguments – such as implying that I don’t think transgender people are people! Its about time you started dealing with facts, stopped basing things on your prejudices and came to grips with reality!

  5. I am not convinced that this is a real issue for the church. Surely we are called to welcome the stranger, turn the other cheek and be kind to all. I worry that what passes for some parts of evangelicalism these days is nothing more than a theological veneer for bigotry and discrimination, something which is anathema to the gospel. I am not referring to David here, of course, but someone in his position has to be careful that the words of the moderate are not used to justify the actions of those who are more extreme. It seems to me that as the church has shrunk it has become distilled down to smaller groups defined by ever narrowing doctrines. Of course, it is not all bad news, but it is a worrying trend none-the-less. As for assaults on Christians, I think I would want to see that broken down so we could see how many of those were Christians haranguing passers-by. I suspect quite a few were. Just as the brethren used to stand outside my window and shout at me while I was getting ready to go out to the Sunday evening service. I am reminded that when Jesus went into the hills to speak the people followed him because they felt drawn to hear him. He didn’t shout at them as they went past. Maybe a better model for modern day street preachers.

    1. Hi Gordon. Thanks for commenting. I think you are setting up a false dichotomy. Just because something is a real issue for the church does not mean that we are not welcoming to all. Neither can we allow the agenda of the devil or the words of the extreme to prevent us from telling the truth of Christ in love. I also think it is very unwise of you to suggest that the main reason that Christians are attacked is because they are haranguing people! As for Jesus being heard by the people – you seem to forget that they crucified him!

  6. Another link to another critique, ‘Trans agenda forcing kids down dangerous road’ by Sarah Vine.

    http://www.christian.org.uk/news/trans-agenda-forcing-kids-dangerous-road/

    AlangDundee. You are totally misrepresenting the totality of the cumulative weight of David’s post, by reducing it mainly to violence. Nobody is condoning violence.

    And as for hatred, disagreement is not hatred. David somewhere on this site has explained all that is necessary for the police to record something as a hate crime – an entirely subjective evaluation, or statement. It may be in one of the Quantum of Solas recordings.

      1. Well – if that is the case your response was daft. You were responding to something I had not written. I was not attempting to downplay the violence being dealt to LGBT community. But in this post-truth world I suspect you will just believe what you want to believe and ignore what doesn’t suit your limited agenda.

    1. Yes AlangDundee, here is all the evidence from an independent non -biased source. Stop interpreting information and twisting it to suit your agenda, thanks.

      Leonard

  7. You responded to someone saying lgbt fowk are being killed for being lgbt by saying christians are being attacked too, then provided no evidence of it. You dont describe that as downplaying?

    Then when people point it out say that _they_ are ignoring what doesnt suit their agenda. Youre right on “post-truth”…

  8. Douglas ” if being LGBT when young didn’t result in parental abandonment, if people were not being assaulted and killed for being LGBT and if there weren’t people actively writing against LGBT then TLSs would move on. And the need for LGBT support would diminish.”

    You Responded by saying Christians were being attacked too but the lack of a lobbying group mesnt we didnt hear about it.

    That was you downplaying it.

    I provided a link to a wiki page detailing some of the attacks on lgbt fowk and asked for something similar on attacks on christians in scotland/uk

    You said you couldnt provide it because youd need permission from victims to post them.

    So responding to a point someone makes about lgbt people being killed for being lgbt you tried to claim christians were under attack too yet couldnt provide info to one being assaulted never mind killed.

    1. Alan, I’m not sure who you’re talking to hear but just in case it’s me I will respond! No one disputes that there are attacks on some LGBT people. And no one is downplaying that. Could you tell me how many LGBT people have been killed for being LGBT in Scotland in the past 10 years? My point is simply that whenever LGBT advocacy groups want money, they say that it is it is in order to combat bullying or persecution. I don’t believe them. Let’s see the evidence – and not just the “research” conducted at an LGBT stall in Glasgow…

  9. LS.

    After stating that you will desist from sarcasm, you persist: not a good example of a person true a person true to their word, to be relied on. I suppose you have objective evidence for the exerimental social engineering that is taking place in western culture. It is merely the imposition of imperialistic subjectivism, the dominance of subjective ideology.

    I didn’t take issue with the citing of wikki as being reliable because I didn’t oppose the point being made, that wikki was being used to crorborate, but is it really reliable and unbiased?

    And if you really think that teaching on gender “isn’t an issue” when it’s proponents argue that gender is merely a “social construct” and that it “has everthing to do with the gender they think they are.” (listen Quantum 91, below and follow the link to Hansard report) then I think you are sleep walking in darkness with your eyes wide shut.

    I may believe that I’m a an 8 feet tall Chinese woman, but I’m not, That belief dosen’t correspond to reality. And this is not to denigrate, or belittle the Chinese, nor women , nor those who stuggle with identity, with gender disphoria, but to impose this fluidity teaching flies in the face of the evidence of basic scientific, physiological and psychitric evidence.

    I would posit that the gender flluidity ideology, construct is a particularly western affluent philosophy that needs to be deconstructed.

    1. That was a horrendous case – which as the judge says appears to have had a homophobic element….but it is one of out 1200 plus murders in that period. From that one incident do you extrapolate that all gay people are walking round Scotland in fear of being murdered?

  10. I was thinking of where to start the reply until the ending of this part provided a pretty obvious point where you are completely off the rails, sorry.

    “. But there are hundreds of thousands of children who are refugees and victims from the war on marriage, the attack on humanity, coming because of humanities pride and arrogance in seeking to go against the Makers instructions.”

    You mean the instructions to not have divorce, for wives to obey husbands, and to use harsh physical punishment of children (“the rod”)? You mean that children actually *suffer* because their parents do not stay in marriages they hate and do not enforce a strict hierarchy in the home?

    You may be an IKEA Christian, but Christ was not Ingvar Kamprad. He did not provide a manual for unthinking, step-by-step use.

    1. You do realise the harm that divorce does to children? That ‘the rod’ is speaking about discipline, not necessarily physical punishment (do you think that children should be disciplined – if so how?). As for unthinking, step-by-step use, given that is precisely what I was arguing against, maybe you should take a breath, do some thinking for yourself, and stop just emoting the prejudices of your culture? Next time I would like to have a little bit more informed comment please…not just a rant of prejudices.

      1. Divorce harms children in some cases and lack of divorce harms children in some cases. Divorce should not be taken lightly, but I do maintain that its availability, as such, is a positive social good. In the past, children were routinely harmed by abusive and high-tension families that should not have stayed together.

        I think that children should be disciplined in some cases, but sparingly, and yes, I openly disagree with the Bible when it says “spare the rod, spoil the child”; the rod should in fact be spared when at all possible. The main way of discipline I would support is removal of non-essential privileges such as TV/Internet. I do not see any place for physical discipline of a child who can understand words.

        You have avoided the “wives obey your husbands” part – which is even in the New Testament.

        And I was arguing specifically against your “IKEA Christian” quote, as well as against your contention that social ills come from “arrogance in seeking to go against the Makers instructions”. We just don’t have the kind of feasible detailed literal instructions that would justify this contention.

        Also, you do not know what culture I come from. Hey, I don’t know that exactly, I’m a cultural mongrel of massive proportion, having grown up in a secular family of Jewish roots in the last years of the Soviet Union, then under massive American missionary influence in the first post-soviet decade, and then on top of that living in Ireland for the last ten hears.

      2. The Makers instructions are NOT detailed. No one claimed they were. I just simply stated it is better to follow them.

        Wives obey your husband is a quote you have taken completely out of context without understanding any of it…sorry but time is too short….I actually preached about it at a wedding I did on Sunday. I find your position on discipline a little disturbing – you do see a place for physically disciplining a child you cannot understand words? Wow – I would normally call that abuse!

      3. I was stating what I see as absolutes from what we know now, and not going into complicated areas. Which is why I stayed out of the matter of management of very small children. where I am not aware of easy answers.

        The problem with “following instructions” is that it is too easy to go completely out into the left field while saying you are following what the Bible says. Divorce bans and strict family discipline are well known examples.

        Moreover, coming back to your original statement: “But there are hundreds of thousands of children who are refugees and victims from the war on marriage, the attack on humanity, coming because of humanities pride and arrogance in seeking to go against the Makers instructions.”

        What “war on marriage”? The same-sex marriage controversy definitely does not affect “hundreds of thousands” of children, as the number of same-sex couples is lower. So you must mean the availability of divorce and/or family discipline, or else I just don’t see what you mean.

      4. But you are aware of easy answers for the management of other children? Life is not that simplistic…!

        If you are not aware of the ‘war on marriage’ then you are not very socially and culturally aware. Since the 19th Century liberals have been trying to destroy marriage – the most recent attempt through “Queer theory’. I mean the undermining of marriage as a covenant between a man and a woman, for the purpose of mutual companionship, procreation and the bringing up of children.

      5. From your dating of “since the 19th century”, I take it that you are seeing the permission of divorce as the start of that war on marriage. In this case we are in direct opposition on this social issue. I see the permission of divorce as a positive social good that liberated men, women, and children from abusive and otherwise harmful situations.

        “Queer theory” in itself, with which I am quite familiar, has little to do with marriage. It has more to do with removing limitations on what persons of each sex can be and do in a social context, what is called “gender roles”. Most of those roles are not actually present in the Bible, except for “wives submit to husbands” and “I permit not a woman to teach” – instructions that, in their literal reading, you will probably not defend.

        In any event, anything related to same-sex marriage and to transgenderism and to queer theory could not affect the homes of “hundreds of thousands” of children. It simply does not have the numbers. So the quoted number, and the important dating of the 19th century, means that you have to mean the permission of divorce – is this correct?

        My position on that is mostly aligned with that of W.B.Yeats. a luminary who belonged to the same church as I do. And I actually translated his “Parnell’s Funeral” into Russian. The Parnell controversy was all about divorce and remarriage.

      6. No – you are wrong about the 19th Century – its not just divorce.

        And you are wrong about Queeer theory – at least according to Peter Tatchell and other main proponents. Its aim was to free us from the ‘patriarchal’ and oppressive institution of marriage.

        You are also wrong about SSM – because in order for SSM to exist all marriage has to be redefined. Marriage is now seen primarily as a civil contract rather than a religious covenant.

      7. Legal marriage is by necessity a civil contract, as opposed to a religious covenant, in any country without an established church. While same-sex marriage does involve a redefinition. it is certainly not a redefiniton from “religious covenant” in most countries, simply because the existing definition is not that. (And while same-sex marriage is debatable, I most certainly support separation of church and state – and I know that for the Church of Ireland, Disestablishment was the best thing that could happen).

        I am not really well versed in Scottish issues, but on the Continent, in many countries you have to conclude civil marriage in a civil registry office, separate from the religious service. In the States, a religious minister gets the power to conclude a state-recognized marriage, but the marriage is NOT primarily a religious covenant in the eyes of the State, it is a state-licensed civil contract. And all of this was the case before same-sex marriage. and is the case in many Continental countries that do not have same-sex marriage.

        Things might be somewhat different here on the British Isles. In Ireland, for some reason, the Catholic and Protestant solemnisers signed different registers. I have no idea why this happened but it does lend credence to your reading. However this is an anpmaly in Western civilization. And the only Western-ish country that clearly has the definition of marriage your way is Israel, where you can not conclude a marriage without a religious minister and then, importantly. the religion defines the rules of divorce.

        Also, I am very interested in your view of what was “the war on marriage” back in the 19th century. It is a potentially much more productive debate than whatever is happening now, simply because the facts are well documented, and so are the outcomes.

        I do actually know of a few changes related to marriage in the 19th century. But I am unable to fathom any of them that you would be criticizing except divorce. I would not suppose that you would support having the husband control the property of the wife and her right to work, or women having no vote.

  11. Also we must remember that very many things which we no longer accept have been done in the name of “following Biblical instructions”. Some of them are still being done with blessing of some churches in some parts of the world, like criminalization of adult consensual homosexual activity. Others are no longer done but were done before and have clear Biblical quotes to back them, like physical and legal attacks on heretics.

    So my point is that (1) it is an extremely dangerous position to claim to be “following instructions”, especially in social issues; (2) I do not see how big-time social issues can be traced to the lack of “following instructions”.

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