One of the unfortunate things about politics is the way political discussion, especially about social issues, tends to polarize the public arena making neither party a very good ally of the gospel. Truth rarely lines up completely on one side or the other of a political debate. If it does, it is only in one small area or for a brief time (even a broken clock is right twice a day.) We have all been caught at times wishing we had more choices than just Republican and Democrat. I have a feeling, were we to map a truer political allegiance from the Scriptures, we might find a Christian to be looking more like a Republocrat or a Demlican.
The current debate over the rights of gays and lesbians to marry is a good case in point. While on one hand, to a devoted Christian who lives under the authority of Scripture, this seems like a clear cut, black and white issue, it is not, at least in the social arena, because there is not one rule of law that governs everybody, or better said, that everybody acknowledges as the primary authority. In the public sector, the constitution would be closer to a governing rule than the Bible would. And, indeed, gays and lesbians have chosen the constitution as their rallying point based on the way it is dedicated to protecting the unalienable rights of its citizens. Gays and lesbians believe their right to be married is guaranteed by the same law of the land that gave women, blacks, workers and immigrants their rights, and these issues will be won or lost in court based on that law, not the Bible.
This is where it gets difficult for a Christian, who may believe based on the Scripture, that this is a moral issue, but also live in the public arena as one who supports the equal rights of all citizens. We live in a country that is not the Kingdom of God nor is everyone required to acknowledge the Bible as the primary authority in his or her life. A Christian in the public sector has to respect the way other people see things, and I believe the gospel of Jesus Christ compels all Christians to live this way anyway—in honor and respect for the those who believe differently than they do, including differently from what they believe the scripture teaches.
Unfortunately, the polarization of this issue has many people perceiving Christians as condemning gays and lesbians (based on the moral issue), and trampling on their rights as citizens (based on constitutional law). And this is why someone who loves God and loves his gay and lesbian neighbor and realizes that when it comes to sin, there is no difference between us—we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God—might want to try and come out of this discussion not entirely on one political side or the other. We are ultimately on the side of the truth and seeking to obey God and scripture as best as we know how. This is why even as Christians, we will not all line up the same way politically, and we need to respect each other’s attempts to live out this process as best we can.