Richard Mouw, president of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California writes (Newsweek, February 9, 2009),
Yes, I voted for Prop 8. Yes, I oppose gay marriage. But that doesn’t make me a religious fundamentalist. . . .
Angry shouts. Shaking fists. It makes me sad. This is something that happens on occasion in an intimate relationship. People who care deeply about each other start arguing about some touchy issue. As temperatures rise, so does the rhetoric. Mean-spirited things get said. The situation seems hopeless. That is why I want to issue this plea to my fellow citizens on both sides of this divide over sexuality: Can we talk?
I ask this as someone who has been one of the angry ones — angry about things that have been said about people like me. I’ve been on talk shows where people phone in to call me a fascist or equate me with those who burned accused witches at the stake. One remark that hit especially close to home was made by the editor of this magazine. He wrote that anyone–anyone!–who tries to make a scriptural case against same-sex marriage is guilty of “the worst kind of fundamentalism.”
That hurt. I have spent several decades of my life trying to spell out an evangelical alternative to “the worst kind of fundamentalism.” My friends and I have argued that the Bible supports racial justice, gender equality, peacemaking and care for the environment–views that often draw the ire of the worst kind of fundamentalists. But none of that seems to matter to folks who don’t like our views about same-sex relations. Because we also believe that the Bible frowns on sexual intimacy outside of marriage between a man and a woman, we are being relegated to the margins of the civil dialogue.
I refuse to go to the margins. . . .
I wonder what Richard would think of Jeremiah’s ministry?
We are in Jeremiah 11 tonight. The persecution starts. Everything begins to go downhill.