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A Misguided Methodist & Marriage

December 13th, 2013 1 comment

wesleyI am teaching a college course in our ROAR Bible College entitled, The Consequences of Ideas, in which we highlight the power of ideas in shaping the world around us. The thesis of the course can be boiled down to this one simple truth: When our ideas mirror God’s, the result is great blessing both for the individual and society. Conversely, when our culture is built upon lies, people suffer.

Just this week, we highlighted the powerful impact of John Wesley’s ministry upon a sin-ravaged and morally bankrupt Britain during the mid-eighteenth century. In just two centuries after the Reformation, Britain had become a cesspool of corruption. Family breakdown, child abuse, alcoholism, pornography, public lewdness and perverse forms of entertainment had become the norm. The misery level was at an all-time high.

It was through the powerful, prophetic preaching of John Wesley, who called the people to repent of their sin and to turn to God, which helped to bring about one of the greatest cultural awakenings in history.

Perhaps this is why the news of a leading Indiana Methodist Bishop’s lack of support for the Marriage Amendment (HJR6) is so disturbing, and frankly, so “un-Wesley!” Wesley’s whole ministry was built upon the firm conviction that individual redemption leads to social regeneration. He believed the gospel not only transforms individuals, it also gives us firm principles for building healthy nations and a common social life under God. While he steadfastly loved his enemies, he never shirked from his God-given mandate to call his nation to return to the Lord. While history reveals that Wesley’s own marriage was in dire need of a tune-up, he nevertheless would have recognized same-sex marriage for what it truly is: a perverse, counterfeit and a direct assault upon God’s revealed design for healthy marriages and families.

William Wilberforce, a disciple of Wesley, understood the role of Christ’s Church in promoting biblical morality for the glory of God and the good of the people. His twin callings, “the suppression of the slave trade and the reformation of manners” helped to end the oppression of slavery and the reform the moral climate of Britain’s culture. Wesley’s ministry and message spawned a whole generation of reformers. May that legacy continue among the faithful Methodists of our day.