Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Homosexuality, B+B's and Freedom

So today a court has ruled in favour of a gay couple who were refused a room in a B+B that was owned by a Christian couple.

Martyn Hall and his civil partner Steven Preddy took Peter and Hazelmary Bull to court for 'direct discrimination' against them. They were awarded £1800 each in compensation.

Go here for Mrs Bull's response to the decision. She believes Christianity is being sidelined in the UK and, as a Christian, you are no longer an equal in society.

Go here for Mr Hall and Mr Preddy's response. They believe this decision does not undermine Christian belief, but that it simply means that when running a business you cannot impose your beliefs on others.

This is an interesting story.

A lot has been said throughout this case about human rights and equality. A gay couples right to stay in a B+B. A Christian couples right to exercise their beliefs. People are talking about their human rights.

But what are human rights and how far should we take this? What is religious freedom?

Stalin banished religion and killed millions searching for an atheistic 'perfection'.

The Crusades were a war against those who did not follow perceived 'Christian' belief.

So whose human rights do we follow? What 'freedom' do we perceive to be best?

Now there is a law for businesses in the UK and if you don't want to get in trouble you follow the law. Now if you don't agree with the law then you have the right and freedom to stand against the law and suffer the consequences. And thank God for people who have during history stood against the law of the land for the rights and freedom of others.

I think this case is different though.

A belief about sexuality and the ensuing court case does not threaten the freedom to be a follower of Jesus in the UK.

The issue of homosexuality is not an issue of the Gospel of Jesus and who he is.

BUT,

Our response TO homosexuality does reflect to society who we think Jesus is.

And what this court case does is yet again polarise people into two groups, those who think homosexuality is ok and those who don't. And these two groups have Christians on both sides.

So some Christians will now complain that their religious freedom is being sidelined and some Christians will not.

And what we do get is a 'demonising' of groups on both sides where there is an enemy to be fought against. This is never a good thing.


Perhaps if we all sat back and thought about each other a little more and, rather than looking for a reason to condemn one another, but looked for a way to love each other, then maybe it would never come to what we have seen today on the news.

But then maybe I'm just a fanciful dreamer!

4 comments:

covnitkepr1 said...

I have added myself to follow your blog. You are more than welcome to visit my blog and become a follower also.

growup318.com said...

Maybe I'm a fanciful dreamer as well then.
Good post. I've been reading and discussing the topic of homosexuality with others for a few months now - trying to get my own answers and figure out what the proper way to respond to these issues, while still shining for Christ.
I've also been looking into the topic of being a "gay Christian" -- more to come on my blog about this in the not-so-distant future.
I've added you to my subscriptions. I look forward to reading your future posts.

Tony Mayes said...

Love the sinner, hate the sin comes to mind, which is the example Jesus gives us with the woman caught in adultery.

Joe Haward said...

Look forward to reading that Heather. I continue to think and grapple, so be good to read how others are grappling too.

I've been thinking about this phrase a lot recently Tony. I'm not sure about it... Can't say more than that right now cause I'm not sure why I'm not sure about it! Looking forward to seeing you soon my friend.