Conservative Christians make the case that the Bible forbids gay marriage, so why have so many middle-of-the-road churchgoers changed their minds to support the idea? Because a familiar pattern on church matters is repeating itself, writes CS Pearce in the Los Angeles Times. It starts when more conservative members cite Bible passages to justify their cause—as they did for the Inquisition, the Crusades, slavery, women's suffrage, and now gay marriage. Over time, however, most Christians reject the literal interpretation for one more in keeping with the Bible's "core values of compassion, justice and peace."
Pearce says most scholars agree that only three New Testament passages address homosexuality, though not "as we define it today but rather with temple prostitution and other abuses." And yes, the Old Testament says it merits execution, but the same applies to unruly sons and those who work on Sundays. "It will only be a matter of time before the majority of Christians of all stripes become allies rather than antagonists for justice and equal rights for gay people," writes Pearce. "Then we will come out on the right side of history once again." Read the full column here. (The Supreme Court may decide to take up the issue as early as Monday, reports SCOTUSblog.)