Participants: Michael Carducci, Ron Woolsey
Series Code: PC
Program Code: PC000104A
00:01 The following program discusses sensitive issues.
00:04 Parents are cautioned that some material
00:06 may be too candid for younger children.
00:41 Welcome to Pure Choices. My name is Mike Carducci.
00:44 And I'm here with Ron Woolsey.
00:45 And we're the co-directors of Coming Out Ministries.
00:49 And today our program is going to be about The Gay Wedding.
00:52 One of the questions that we get quite often,
00:54 almost every time
00:55 that we have a Q and A in our presentations
00:58 is should I attend my son or my friend's gay wedding.
01:02 So we want to talk about that in our program today.
01:04 Welcome, Ron. Thank you.
01:06 All right.
01:07 So basically we want to start off
01:09 with a little bit of foundation
01:10 about the whole gay agenda, the gay issue.
01:14 So if you could, Ron, help us understand
01:17 how the gay movement got the minority status
01:20 and what the minority status is?
01:22 Well, you know, Mike, in my lifetime
01:23 I've seen the gay issue advance
01:28 from first just being tolerated to being accepted,
01:32 from being accepted to being celebrated
01:35 and promoted.
01:37 We have a lot of legislation going on now.
01:39 But back in the mid '80s the political branch,
01:44 the political activism branch of the gay movement decided
01:47 it was time to go
01:49 for a higher level of acceptance.
01:53 There seems to never be any satisfaction
01:55 with whatever comes their way.
01:57 And so they wanted minority status
01:59 which is a privilege status.
02:01 And I looked up some information about that.
02:04 And according to the Civil Rights Act
02:07 it recognizes minority status only for those groups
02:10 who meet three criteria, number one, they have suffered
02:14 a long history of discrimination.
02:17 Number two, they are powerless
02:19 to help themselves as a community
02:21 and number three,
02:23 interestingly is that they are born that way.
02:28 So we read that the legalization of sodomy
02:32 by way of minority status is the secret to understanding
02:36 why gay activists adopted the strategy claiming
02:41 that people are born gay.
02:43 In other words, this is kind of a hoax
02:45 that has been perpetrated upon society.
02:48 You know, it's interesting, Ron,
02:49 having come from gay culture both of us.
02:52 And I remember watching Ellen DeGeneres come out
02:56 on television, you know had a huge dinner party.
02:59 And I remember that we celebrated,
03:01 I remember feeling entitled to minority status
03:04 because of all of those points that you just brought up.
03:07 One of the things that I think is important
03:09 is that I think that
03:11 there are genuine people that believe that.
03:14 However, explain a little bit more about
03:17 what this movement has become if you would?
03:21 Well, there's been a great push to gain
03:26 the legalization of marriage.
03:29 And back in, well, last year
03:34 there was a Supreme Court case
03:37 that I think most people know about the US Supreme Court case
03:41 called Obergefell versus Hodges.
03:44 And again I'm looking at some notes
03:46 that I have taken here.
03:48 It's not the culmination of just one lawsuit,
03:51 instead it is the result of a consolidation
03:54 of a six lower court cases
03:57 originally representing 16 same sex couples,
04:02 seven of their children,
04:04 a widower and adoption agency and a funeral director.
04:08 And these original cases come from four different states,
04:12 Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee.
04:16 All six of the federal district courts ruled
04:19 for the same sex couples ruled
04:22 in their favor and other claimants,
04:24 and these rulings were then appealed
04:26 to the higher court.
04:28 So on April 28 last year,
04:31 this went before the Supreme Court
04:34 of the United States that heard
04:35 the oral arguments over whether
04:38 or not gay marriage is a right guaranteed
04:40 by the US Constitution.
04:43 And whether or not gay marriages
04:44 performed in states
04:46 where it has been legalized must be recognized in states
04:49 which ban gay marriages.
04:52 Then a couple months later on June 26 of last year,
04:57 the court ruled five to four that gay marriage
05:01 is a constitutional right meaning
05:04 that all 50 states must allow it,
05:07 that all existing bans are now invalid.
05:10 And the decision concluded this decade's long battle
05:14 over whether gay marriage should be legalized.
05:16 Now that Chief Justice Roberts came out
05:19 with a dissent and he criticized the majority,
05:23 and I think this is rather interesting
05:25 what he said,
05:27 he criticized the majority for ordering, for ordering
05:30 the transformation of a social institution
05:33 that has formed
05:35 the basis of human society for millennia,
05:38 for the Kalahari bushmen and the Han Chinese,
05:42 the Carthaginians and the Aztecs.
05:45 And then he goes on to say just who do we think we are.
05:51 Interesting. Wow.
05:52 You know, it's interesting to note
05:53 that since that decision was made
05:55 in June of 2015 that there have been
05:57 over 100, 000 same sex marriages now.
06:01 So, Ron, I want to move a little bit and discuss
06:03 what ramifications
06:05 that has on the Christian Church.
06:08 Well, we are actually following in the footsteps
06:12 of some other countries like Canada
06:14 and other countries in Europe.
06:16 And so potentially in the United States
06:19 as we're seeing in some of the other countries,
06:24 license must respect license and we're seeing this,
06:28 I think Denmark is one of these countries.
06:31 So in other words,
06:32 if a gay couple is granted a license to marry,
06:36 and a pastor has a license
06:38 from the government to practice ministry,
06:41 and the church is licensed,
06:44 then license must respect license.
06:46 So if a gay couple comes requesting
06:51 with a license to be married,
06:53 a licensed minister must respect that license.
06:57 He cannot say no and he must allow his church
07:01 to be used as well.
07:02 So what we have here developing
07:06 is a showdown between church and state.
07:09 And really a test of religion, a religious freedom is brewing.
07:14 And we know in the closing scenes
07:15 of this earth's history,
07:17 religious freedom is going to be annulled.
07:20 Every principle of the US Constitution
07:23 will be repudiated by the time it's all over.
07:26 And this to me is a head start. Right.
07:29 It's interesting to note that a lot of Christian churches
07:32 are accepting homosexual membership
07:35 and leadership in their churches.
07:37 And so, for a pastor, for a licensed pastor,
07:41 should they be respecting this license of gays to marry
07:45 and should they agree to perform gay weddings?
07:47 Well, this really is also a potential,
07:50 has the potential of being a real test for Christians
07:54 as to their loyalty to the Creator
07:56 who, you know, created marriage in the first place
08:00 as a loyalty to His perfect law.
08:02 You know, as Christians we should respect marriage
08:05 as a sacred institution, as one of two institutions
08:09 that come to us out of the Garden of Eden.
08:11 Twin institutions, both of them are sacred.
08:15 So there are various criteria governing
08:21 how pastors can conduct weddings,
08:23 at least in our denomination.
08:24 For example, the Bible says
08:26 we're not to be unequally yoked together with unbelievers.
08:31 It is our practice in our denomination,
08:34 and I am a pastor and as a pastor we don't,
08:37 we don't marry people of two different faiths.
08:40 I mean, of our denomination and another denomination.
08:43 We believe they should be equally yoked.
08:46 And also, we believe
08:48 that that marriage should be in harmony
08:52 with our biblical understanding of marriage.
08:55 And if we are performing a wedding,
08:58 the members of this marriage need to be in harmony
09:01 with the tenets of our faith with, as we understand,
09:05 you know, from our understanding
09:07 of the Bible.
09:08 Sure. Okay.
09:09 So basically what you're saying
09:11 is making the Bible the standard of our practices
09:15 in the church in regards to gay weddings.
09:17 Here again we have a showdown coming.
09:20 Our minister is going to give in to political correctness,
09:23 conventional thinking and even legislation.
09:27 And in doing so go against their own convictions,
09:31 their beliefs, their Bible understanding
09:33 and their religion.
09:35 Wow. Okay.
09:36 So should the church facility be accommodating
09:39 to gay weddings?
09:40 And if not, how can the church get around it?
09:43 Well, again, you know, as Christians we believe
09:47 that God's law trumps man's law.
09:50 And the higher law always trumps the lower law.
09:54 And throughout our own society,
09:56 in our country we see laws that are conflicting
10:00 with the higher law which is our US Constitution.
10:03 And when you have
10:05 this conflict between a lower law and a higher law,
10:09 the safest path is to always follow
10:12 the higher law.
10:13 And so when we understand that God's law is higher
10:16 than even the US Constitution then...
10:21 And so far I don't see,
10:23 I'm not a constitutional professor or an expert,
10:26 but I don't see
10:27 that our constitution in any way violates God's law.
10:31 But should it violate God's law,
10:34 then we as Christians are duty bound out of loyalty
10:39 to God to follow His law.
10:40 So where churches are concern and our facilities,
10:45 these are places of worship,
10:46 worshipping the true God in harmony with His will.
10:50 And we know how God feels biblically about homosexuality.
10:56 And so, we need in my estimation
11:00 to not allow this perversion of this sacred institution
11:05 to be taking place in our places of worship.
11:08 It's like bringing in the olden days
11:11 bringing idolatry into the temple.
11:13 God had a real problem with bringing perverted worship
11:18 into His temple
11:19 and any kind of perversion into the temple.
11:22 And as Christians we need to respect God's feelings
11:25 in this way.
11:26 It's interesting, Ron,
11:28 because you know coming out of gay culture
11:29 for both of us that it came with sacrifice.
11:32 There were many things
11:34 that we both had to turn away from to come out of that.
11:39 It's interesting because there's definitely
11:41 a strong promotion of homosexuality
11:43 in the Christian faith now.
11:46 And so, how difficult is that going to be
11:49 now that we have the court system
11:52 actually supporting gay marriage?
11:54 It may turn out to be very difficult,
11:57 but when we read in the Bible in Revelation 13,
12:00 there's going to be a final test for God's people.
12:04 And it has to do with worship,
12:06 it has to do with the law of God.
12:08 And I believe
12:10 that we're privileged actually to have a pretest to see
12:15 if we're ready for the final test.
12:17 I believe that Satan is testing God's people to see
12:21 if they will be loyal on one of the Ten Commandments
12:26 or the law of God all together.
12:28 So the way I see Satan working
12:31 is that if he can successfully redefine marriage
12:36 through legislation on a global basis
12:40 in violation of one of God's commandments,
12:43 then he can successfully redefine
12:46 any one of the Ten Commandments
12:48 through legislation on a global basis.
12:50 And as Seventh-day Adventist
12:52 we are concerned about that Fourth Commandment,
12:55 but it could be any commandment as Satan
12:57 successfully redefines points of God's law,
13:01 then he knows he can go full steam ahead.
13:05 On the other hand,
13:07 I see God testing His people too.
13:10 Are My people ready for this final test?
13:13 So let's see, yes. Hang on, hang on.
13:15 I want you to go back a little bit
13:16 and elaborate a little bit
13:18 more about the twin institutions
13:19 because I don't know
13:21 that you divided them up and made them very clear.
13:24 On the sixth day of creation, God created marriage.
13:27 And within that marriage He laid out the ground rules,
13:31 He defined what it was for
13:34 that man is to leave father and mother
13:38 and join himself, cleaved to his wife.
13:40 They two shall be one flesh.
13:42 That institution is sacred and it was created
13:44 just the day before the Sabbath
13:48 which is now in the heart of God's law
13:50 in the Fourth Commandment.
13:52 And so we see
13:53 that God is testing His people too.
13:56 Will we be willing to stand faithful
13:59 over the Seventh Commandment
14:01 which is not the final test for God's people.
14:04 But according to Luke 17
14:05 we know that as it was in the days of Lot,
14:09 it will be the same way in the day
14:11 that the Son of Man shall appear or be revealed.
14:13 So this is a part of the testing
14:16 before the coming of Jesus.
14:18 And God is testing to see, are we ready,
14:20 are we willing to lose our tax exempt status,
14:23 our government funding, our accreditation,
14:27 are we willing to stand faithful
14:29 for God's law though the heavens fall.
14:32 And if so, then I think God is saying okay, it's time,
14:36 My people are ready for the final test.
14:40 So these twin institutions, it's interesting because,
14:42 you know, we've always heard the story that when one twin
14:45 is affected that the other one feels it, right?
14:48 If one twin gets hurt, the other one feels it.
14:50 And so I think it's important to realize the potential
14:54 of when one is affected, the next one is sure to come.
14:58 And so we know that through Bible prophecy
15:00 and it's amazing to me,
15:02 I'm still amazed that God was so merciful
15:04 even to us to help show us that light,
15:07 to help bring us out because I never thought
15:10 that I would ever be sitting here
15:12 having this discussion with someone else.
15:13 I thought that
15:15 I would totally be on that side,
15:16 I've been in gay pride marches, I have marched on Washington
15:19 when President Clinton was elected.
15:21 These would have been the things
15:23 that I would have celebrated.
15:24 And now, you know having come back to God,
15:27 it's very different for us now.
15:29 And you know, Mike, we as Christians don't need
15:32 to be frustrated and discouraged
15:35 by what we see happening.
15:37 We are to lift up our heads and rejoice,
15:38 the coming of Jesus is near.
15:41 And we are to stand faithful to God
15:44 when we see God's law being challenged
15:46 and being violated,
15:48 but we don't need to get down and out and discouraged
15:51 because these things must take place.
15:54 So as we are standing against
15:56 this whole idea of the perversion
15:58 of this institution of marriage,
16:01 we can also rejoice that Jesus is coming soon.
16:06 So, Ron, what I want to do now
16:07 is I want to reach out to maybe parents
16:10 or siblings that may be watching
16:12 that are, you know, really discouraged
16:16 or even confused about,
16:17 should they attend their gay son's wedding
16:20 or to their brother, sister's wedding.
16:22 And I've been to other gay weddings
16:24 when I was in gay culture and thought,
16:26 you know, to myself, "Well, what's the difference.
16:29 You know if I just want to show them love
16:31 and even though
16:32 I may not support their gay marriage.
16:35 Would my attendance be considered hate
16:39 if I don't go, even though I love my brother,
16:42 my sister or my son or daughter,
16:45 what would you respond to somebody asking
16:47 that question, should they go.
16:49 And this does seem to be quite a conundrum
16:52 even within the Christian leadership.
16:55 And I read statements
16:56 where they are trying to address
16:58 this issue in a godly, compassionate,
17:02 understanding way.
17:04 But I see mistakes being made because it's being suggested
17:09 that this is a...
17:10 Should be a personal matter,
17:12 it's up to everyone to decide for himself.
17:15 And that is true, however having been there,
17:18 you and I had been on the other side of this issue,
17:21 having been there we see things
17:23 a little bit differently sometimes.
17:25 And I think God uses our experience to help us
17:28 really discern
17:29 the significance of such a situation.
17:32 And really as Christians I strongly urge Christians
17:37 to rethink this whole issue.
17:40 This is a sacred institution. It is being terribly perverted.
17:45 And to go to a gay wedding is similar
17:49 to when the three Hebrews were in the plain of Dura,
17:52 they were forced to attend
17:55 that celebration and that worship,
17:57 but had they bowed they could have said,
18:00 "Well, we're praying to our own God."
18:02 But what would have been the appearance,
18:04 no one would have known that.
18:06 And so, if we as Christians attend
18:09 a gay wedding, no one will know that we disapprove.
18:14 Our very presence is adding credibility
18:17 to this ceremony
18:19 which is a perversion of something God calls sacred,
18:22 God calls the gay behavior abomination.
18:28 We should be very, very careful about lending our presence,
18:32 our blessing, our affirmation to something
18:36 that God so clearly has labeled as an affront to Himself.
18:40 So can I stop you for a second
18:42 because I think it merits clarification
18:45 is while the Bible does not condemn
18:47 the homosexual, it condemns the behavior.
18:51 So a gay union would be blessing the behavior.
18:55 Right. Okay. All right.
18:56 And we would be adding credibility
18:58 to that by attending that.
19:01 Right. Yes.
19:02 That's interesting.
19:04 You know, it's kind of neutral basically
19:06 when people would ask me this question and it wasn't
19:08 until you explained the difference
19:12 that it really started to open my eyes
19:14 about attending a gay wedding.
19:16 So let's take an example, you have gay parents,
19:19 I'm sorry, you have parents of a gay person
19:22 and they've now sent you an invitation to their wedding
19:26 and your gay son is going to marry his lover
19:29 and they've invited you to come.
19:31 How can you show the balance of love and compassion
19:35 without compromise, Ron?
19:37 And this is such an important question, Mike,
19:39 because parents are in terrible dilemma
19:41 as I talked to a couple recently
19:45 where the father stood his ground
19:48 and did not attend the wedding
19:49 but the mother all caught up in the emotion
19:52 and being the mother,
19:53 she didn't condone the wedding but she felt,
19:56 she just had to be there for her son.
19:59 And then they both called and they were both,
20:02 she was terribly remorseful
20:03 because she felt she had betrayed her Lord
20:06 in standing with her son.
20:09 But I had another family contact me
20:13 and we talked a long time about this issue.
20:16 And here's what they chose to do
20:18 after our conversation,
20:19 and I think it is such a good example
20:22 of how we as Christians can deal
20:24 with this because we are to be loving and compassionate
20:27 but not to compromise on God's principles.
20:31 So their son was getting married
20:33 in California
20:35 and the parents lived where I live.
20:38 And they decided
20:40 that they would fly out to California
20:43 before the wedding
20:44 and they spent a whole week out there
20:46 visiting their son and his partner
20:49 and they loved them, they went to dinner,
20:52 they went, they did all kinds of things together
20:54 on a secular level.
20:56 This is what Jesus did, Mike, He mingled with sinners
21:00 but He never participated in the sin
21:03 or participated in a service that would condone
21:06 or as show acceptance of that sin.
21:10 So they were out there
21:11 on the outside of the sacred ceremony,
21:14 spent a lot of time with their son and his partner,
21:17 they did not go to the wedding, they stayed till afterwards,
21:20 they did not go to the reception
21:22 but they stayed another week and spent more time.
21:25 So they were, they were excited
21:27 when they came home because they said,
21:30 you know, our son was not able to say
21:32 we were too cheap to come to this to see him
21:35 and he could not say we didn't love him enough
21:38 because we spent much more time
21:41 with him outside of the ceremony.
21:44 Loving, and understanding, and being compassionate,
21:47 and having a wonderful time together
21:49 outside of the perversion of a sacred institution.
21:52 And I thought that was a very good example
21:54 of how to handle this.
21:56 We can be loving and compassionate
21:58 without compromising our principles.
22:01 That's great explanation.
22:03 And that really helped me to understand,
22:05 I remember a situation where parents came up to us
22:09 where we were presenting.
22:10 And the father said
22:12 that he refused to have anything to do
22:14 with his daughter until she came to her senses
22:17 and came out of this relationship.
22:18 And what was so heartbreaking to me
22:20 was this father loved his daughter,
22:22 he was tearful
22:23 when he was even explaining his stand on that.
22:26 And he said that his daughter and her partner
22:30 had also adopted three children.
22:33 So now here's three young children,
22:35 you know, in this relationship
22:36 and it certainly wasn't their fault
22:38 and they, you could cite them just as much as a victim,
22:41 you know, in this situation.
22:43 And so here's a man who loves God,
22:45 who wants to serve God
22:47 but he'll have nothing to do with his daughter
22:48 until she comes to her senses.
22:50 So he thought that he was doing the right thing
22:52 and yet I thought to myself in my response to him,
22:56 how does that show the love of Jesus.
22:59 And then I think about those three children,
23:02 you know, that they don't have
23:04 an example of what a Christian man looks like.
23:07 And so I presented to him, I said,
23:09 how is that going against the Word of God to even say,
23:14 listen, let me take the kids for the weekend,
23:16 you know, why is that compromising
23:18 God's Word to make an investment in the lives
23:21 of those three children and show them
23:23 what a godly man looks like.
23:25 And also in an effort to win your daughter's heart,
23:27 you know, the Bible says
23:29 that a little child shall lead them
23:30 and so what if while this father
23:32 had those children with him
23:35 that he was able to share with them
23:36 who Jesus was in the Bible stories.
23:38 And imagine the impact that that could have
23:40 when those children went home again.
23:42 And again, one of the things that really worked for us, Ron,
23:45 was not somebody,
23:47 you know, shouting at us about how homosexuality
23:51 is against God and all this
23:53 but when somebody was just lifting up Jesus,
23:56 how that impressed us, how that drew us to them.
23:59 And so rather than making the focus about my lifestyle
24:02 or who I'm living with or who I'm married to.
24:04 Imagine the power that this man
24:06 would have if he invested in his daughter's life
24:09 not in a way to condone their behavior
24:12 but in a way to be redemptive not only to his daughter
24:15 but her partner and then also to those children as well.
24:19 And we know that the most powerful witness
24:20 for truth is a loving and lovable Christian.
24:24 And how can you be that
24:26 if you isolate yourself from those that you love?
24:30 We do not have to compromise our principles to be involved
24:34 in the life of these, our family and our friends.
24:38 You know, it's, it is going to be a very difficult time.
24:41 I believe it's already starting,
24:43 how is it that we can still be compassionate
24:46 to this community.
24:48 You know, people say that we're haters.
24:50 How can we hate homosexuals when that's where we came from,
24:53 we have, we have friends,
24:55 we have exes that are still in that lifestyle.
24:58 It breaks my heart to think
25:00 that that they don't have an opportunity
25:03 to know who Jesus is.
25:04 And I know that for me, one of the things
25:06 that was really the most powerful was somebody
25:08 who really lived,
25:10 you know, a Christ like life that didn't compromise,
25:13 but on the same side it ministered to me in a way
25:16 that wasn't,
25:18 that wasn't directed at my sexuality,
25:20 but instead was directed at my spirituality
25:23 and my need of Christ.
25:26 So, Ron, we have just a couple more minutes.
25:28 Do you have anything
25:29 that you'd like to share as we conclude?
25:33 I just like the question,
25:35 what would Jesus do in this type of situation?
25:38 Well, we have an example of what Jesus would do.
25:40 He blessed a wedding with His presence,
25:44 a wedding that was conducted in harmony
25:47 with what He created in the Garden of Eden.
25:50 So He condoned, He blessed with His presence.
25:54 And at the reception they ran out of the wine
25:59 and He performed His first miracle there.
26:01 What a wedding gift to this new bride and groom.
26:07 And so He performed that first miracle,
26:09 we know how He feels about this marriage that He created.
26:13 He even said Himself, He reiterated
26:16 that a man should leave his father and mother
26:19 and cleave unto his wife, they both should become one.
26:22 But it's hard for me to imagine
26:26 that Jesus would attend a gay wedding
26:29 and bless a gay wedding in the same way
26:32 because He doesn't change,
26:34 He's expressed very plainly through His Word
26:37 how He feels about
26:38 this perversion of the beautiful thing
26:40 He created in the Garden of Eden.
26:43 So I don't believe,
26:45 I cannot picture in my mind Jesus doing the same thing
26:49 at a gay wedding and blessing
26:51 that with such a beautiful gift
26:54 as His presence and miracles.
26:57 You know, I had an opportunity at a place
27:00 that I was presenting to, actually meet a gay couple
27:03 that had actually found the Lord
27:06 and decided that on their own,
27:08 through their own Bible study that this was not in agreement
27:10 with God's Word and they separated.
27:12 So even the power of God's Word has a convicting influence
27:17 but also a drawing influence as well.
27:20 I think it's important to note that even at the first,
27:23 the wedding where Jesus attended
27:24 that was where He performed His first miracle
27:27 to bless and sanctify the institution of marriage.
27:30 So thanks, Ron, for helping to unpack this timely issue
27:35 about whether we as Christians
27:37 should be attending the gay wedding or not.
27:40 I think that a lot of people are struggling
27:42 with their position on that
27:44 and how to move forward to still show
27:46 the love of Jesus in that process.
27:48 Right. All right.
27:49 So thank you for joining us here
27:50 on Pure Choices.
27:52 And stay tuned, there be many more programs
27:55 that you're going to enjoy.
27:56 Thanks again, Ron. Yes, thanks.