United the Brethren put an end

To whether gays should marry and homosexual behavior is a sin. A two-and-a-half page letter has been sent out to all bishops denouncing the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on gay marriage. Stating again the reason is it’s contrary to the Plan of Heavenly Father.
A small section talks about treating people nice but not succumbing to Satan’s attack on Father’s plan of salvation. Affirming that we will not succumb to wicked governments.

Boy, that’s all you got from that…
Here’s some highlights.
“Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God
has established. God expects us to uphold and keep His commandments regardless of
divergent opinions or trends in society. His law of chastity is clear: sexual relations are
proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as
husband and wife.”

This is consistent with previous teaching on the subject.

They also state:

“The gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us to love and treat all people with kindness
and civility—even when we disagree. We affirm that those who avail themselves of
laws or court rulings authorizing same‐sex marriage should not be treated
disrespectfully. Indeed, the Church has advocated for rights of same‐sex couples in
matters of hospitalization and medical care, fair housing and employment, and probate,
so long as these do not infringe on the integrity of the traditional family or the
constitutional rights of churches.”

This is also consistent with previous statements by the church.

I’m not sure where you get the denouncing of a wicked government.

They simply said that nothing has changed. The policy of the church is the same after the Supreme Court ruling as it was before the Supreme Court ruling.
One of the things I think that many members are overlooking is the fact that we have a responsibility to be respectful towards others. I personally know individuals, some of which are returned missionaries, who personally struggle with same sex attraction. Some of these individuals have strayed across the lines which are established as indicated in this letter. Fortunately, most of those that I personally know have returned to the church and are working to deal with their struggle within the bounds of the churches teachings.
Statements by members which mock and/or denigrate homosexuals and homosexual sin do not assist these good people in their struggles.
I believe that the church’s statement balances the two points. 1. Homosexual sexual relations are sinful. 2. We as members need to treat people respectfully and with dignity.

And you think our government isn’t wicked? Our society has become wicked supporting gay marriage too. Read Romans chapter 1. A sinner is wicked until repented.

I never said that our government is not wicked. Our government is absolutely wicked. I simply said that the statement by the brethren was simply a restatement of previous policy rather than a denouncement of the government. The wickedness of the government extends well beyond the issue of marriage.

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Did you miss that they wrote this after the SCOTUS decision? Of course this was a response to our wicked government.

Gay marriage is another way for Satan to draw people away from focusing on eternal marriage. He’s as happy with a civil marriage, as a gay marriage as a polygamous marriage. Anything but time and eternity. The brethren have said there is one thing that will increase the faith of members right now more than anything else, know what it is? Keeping the Sabbath Day holy. Not even close to gay marriage or anything else the media is covering. Satan is doing a good job at blinding society on what is truly important. Crazy times. Loved the letter by the way. Thought there might be a few fireworks when the letter was read in our ward as directed by everyone just shrugged their shoulders and said “cool”. I love my ward.

Satan would love for people to deny the Holy Ghost. But, he’s happy anytime he can keep anyone from returning to Heavenly Father by steering people to accept terrestrial or telestial glory and not prepare for celestial glory.

I’m sorry, but I have to disagree with you on civil marriage. I know people who started out with a civil marriage because that is where they were in their lives at that time. They worked with good bishops to achieve a future celestial marriage. I would never equate civil marriage between a man and a woman with gay marriage. It’s kind of like the talk by Elder Oaks of good, better, best. If two people are at a point in their relationship where intimacy is likely, it is good for them to get married. However, it is best for them to get married in the temple. For some, civil marriage is the only stepping stone they have towards an eventual celestial marriage.
Since the other marriages you mentioned are not authorized by the church, I agree that those are the tools of the Adversary.

We are in agreement. But I wasn’t commenting on his statement about civil marriage. I was commenting on those who enter into gay marriage, support gay marriage and civil marriages to avoid temple marriages. Civil marriage is the first step for temple marriage in other countries where the Church isn’t allowed to perform marriage or in the case where they would be required to perform gay marriage if we did do marriages. Something that will eventually happen in post free America.

I believe that this is an unfortunate reality that we will eventually face. Because of our faith, there will be burdens that will be placed on us individually and on the church as a whole. Fortunately, we follow a savior who has promised that, by following him, our burdens will be light. There is nothing that men or the governments of men can do to change the plan of our Father in Heaven. However, we can increase and/or accelerate the impact of the burdens. For this reason, the Brethren are reminding us of our responsibility to be kind and loving towards others. We may influence some to change their positions; however, more likely, we will deflect some of the anger and frustration that comes with living a lifestyle that is contrary to God’s will.

In our testimony meeting on Sunday, a brother got up to speak about the recent SCOTUS decision. It was fairly awkward as he said, “Statistically speaking, there are probably gay people in our ward and some of you are probably here right now. I want you to know I love you and am glad you are here with us.” He went on a little bit more with his sentiments about gays. The guy is a known liberal…happily married to a woman with 3 young kids.

When he started speaking about gays, I wondered, “After 45 years of church attendance, will I finally get to see a Bishop gently remove someone from the podium?” Have any of you ever witnessed that?

You said it yourself that civil marriage was a stepping stone, not the end result. Satan is more than happy to keep us at the stepping stone instead of reaching the goal. I was married civily first before my wife and I got sealed so I hope this isn’t taken in a “holier than thou” kind of way. Civil marriage is legal but it doesn’t get you to the Celestial Kingdom so that is why I considered it in the same category as gay marriage.

The difference here is that civil marriage is a stepping stone up. Gay marriage is not a stepping stone up. Gay marriage is a lateral move. In this way, civil marriage is not equal to gay marriage. When an intimate heterosexual couple marries, they stop sinning in that way. When an intimate gay couple marries, they are still living outside the law. A couple who has already been intimate cannot progress from that point directly to celestial marriage without the interim step of civil marriage. This step represents progress towards eternal life. Whereas, gay marriage does not represent progress towards eternal life.

Were talking about this from two different angles and I understand what you are saying and agree with you. A civil marriage was a stepping stone for my wife and I to celestial marriage. All I am saying is civil marriage is not enough on it’s own, it’s only value is as a step to something bigger. By itself civil marriage is not enough.

Since we teach marriage is ordained of God, you might want to re-think your method of categorizing civil and gay marriage. Doing what you are is making civil marriage sound evil. It isn’t. Neither is the eventual outcome since both are not on the same path. Like you, civil marriage is on the right path. Gay marriage is not. Sort of an alternate universe created by Satan. A “reprobate mind.”

I categorized it with gay marriage because neither one gets you to the celestial kingdom.

There are 3 kingdoms of glory. None are perdition. Your thinking is not in line with the Gospel of Christ. You simply can’t logically reason the way you are. People who have non-temple marriages or sealings aren’t choosing evil. Gay marriage is a chosen evil.

I didn’t say anything about perdition, I said you could not get to the celestial kingdom through a civil marriage, do you disagree with that?

But, it’s not going to lead you to Perdition. Is it? You are condemning people who have not the knowledge you currently do. Even without our knowledge they are accepting truth (marriage only between a man and a woman) through the light of Christ. Gay marriage is rejecting the light of Christ.
May God teach you patience and more understanding rather than knee jerk reactions. When I was first baptized I did the same kind of stuff too.

Hypothetical situation for you, two couples, neither is married. Neither couple is aware of the gospel. Both are living together. The missionaries knock on both doors. Both couples accept the gospel and are preparing for baptism. Couple #1 marries and is actively attending church prior to baptism. Couple #2 is not sure about marriage, however, they are still meeting with the missionaries and working in other ways to prepare for baptism. A tragic train accident kills both couples on the day before couple #1’s baptism. All temple work is done for both couples, however, since couple #2 never married in this life, they were unable to be sealed in the temple.
Would you not agree that couple #1, as a result of their civil marriage, progressed towards the celestial kingdom, while couple #2 failed to make that progress as a result of their reluctance to embrace the principle of marriage?
As such, your statement,

is not a valid statement. I agree that sealing in the temple is necessary for us to progress to the celestial kingdom. However, civil marriage is not equal to gay marriage in any way, shape or form. Your statement indicates that an individual is sinning (making the devil happy) by entering into a civil marriage. This is not the case. This is never the case. This will never be the case. Even if someone were to choose to be married civilly rather than be married in the temple, they are not sinning by getting married. Any sin that occurred, occurred prior to the marriage. They may have sins that need to be repented, they certainly need to work to progress towards celestial marriage. However, when a man and a woman get married it never makes the adversary happy.