The High Court has just unanimously struck down the ACT homosexual marriage law! This is exceedingly good news and worthy of great celebration. Let the champagne corks fly if you will, but this is a victory to savour and celebrate big time. As one news report states:
“The High Court has unanimously struck down the ACT’s gay marriage laws. The decision will mean that about two dozen week-old marriages have no legal effect. The ACT Marriage Equality (Same Sex) laws passed the territory’s legislative assembly in October, but only came into effect last month and couples were required to provide four weeks’ notice before conducting wedding ceremonies.
“As of today, about 20 couples have been married to date under the ACT’s laws, with the first ceremonies conducted on Saturday. Had the nation’s top court upheld the ACT’s gay marriage legislation it would have opened the door to similar laws being passed across the country, pressuring the government to make it legal at a national level. The commonwealth government sought an expedited hearing in the High Court arguing the national capital’s laws were inconsistent with federal legislation and unconstitutional.
“Federal government lawyers argued in the High Court that the commonwealth marriage act was intended to ensure that state and territories did not operate as different countries when it came to determining whether a couple was married.
“The High Court determined that the federal parliament has the power under the Australian constitution to legislate on same-sex marriage, and that whether or not same-sex marriages are legalised is a matter for the federal parliament. ‘The Court held that the object of the ACT Act is to provide for marriage equality for same sex couples and not for some form of legally recognised relationship which is relevantly different from the relationship of marriage which federal law provides for and recognises,’ the summary judgment said.
“‘Accordingly, the ACT Act cannot operate concurrently with the federal Act.’ It said because the ACT does not validly provide for the formation of same sex marriages, the whole of the ACT’s Marriage Equality (Same Sex) Act 2013 has no effect.”
While this is great news indeed, this is by no means the end of the matter. This in fact was the tenth pro-homosexual bit of legislation attempted in almost as many years. The homosexual militants will of course not just give up and go home.
They are in for the long haul, and know that a war of attrition tends to eventually succeed. In fact, while many Christians will rightly rejoice in this win, far too many will now wrongly think that they can just relax and go back to business as usual – which for the most part means sleeping through all of this. We must remain as vigilant as ever, and keep fighting the good fight. The other side sure won’t quit, and neither should we.
Christians and the culture wars
Let me add a few words here about the culture wars in general and Christian involvement in particular. Although this was a terrific win, there is also some bad news here. The truth is, most Christians would not even have known that this was going on, and hardly any would have been actively working against it, even if just by means of prayer. Let me try to illustrate this for you:
So where is a good pie chart maker when you need one? Here is my guestimate as to how such a chart might look when it comes to Christians and controversial hot potato issues of the day. And let me use this marriage victory story as an example. If there were 100 Christians in the world, the pie might look something like:
-65 Christians would not have had a clue about any of this, and/or even knew that this battle was raging
-25 Christians would have wanted nothing to do with this because it was too controversial and polarising
-6 Christians would have thought it was a great idea and favoured it
-4 Christians would have known about and worked actively against it
While I am at it, let me offer another example of this. Since it is still on the front burner, let’s take the Mandela deification story as an example. If there were 100 Christians in the world, the pie might look something like:
-55 Christians would not have a clue about any of this, and not care a bit about it
-30 Christians would want nothing to do with this or anything else deemed controversial
-12 Christians would think he was indeed a saint
-3 Christians would know who he really was, and refuse to climb aboard the idol-making bandwagon
My numbers are of course just guesses, but I think it is quite true to say that the overwhelming majority of believers today in the West either don’t give a rip about what is going on around them in the political and social arenas, or just don’t want to get involved for fear of rocking the boat or upsetting someone.
Only a tiny fraction of believers are aware of the issues of the day, and of those, most would be informed only by what the secular left media feeds them. Just a tiny handful would actually seek to think independently, do some serious research, and carefully and rationally determine what the actual truth is.
The truth is, only a very tiny number of Christians in Australia were fully aware of and actively working against the marriage case. Only a small percentage were praying like mad and fasting over this. Only a few were contacting their local MPs and doing all sorts of other lobbying work to prevent this.
The great majority were simply where they almost always are: asleep at the wheel. So while we praise God indeed for this very significant victory, we must realise that the war is far from over, and plenty more battles like this will continue to rage.
And unless far more Christians wake from their slumber and rouse themselves from their apathy and indifference, we will eventually lose this battle as well. That is because sadly the other side seems far more committed to their cause than are most Christians.
We need to repent for our indifference, our laziness and our callousness about these great moral issues of our day. So savour this great win today, but tomorrow it is back to the front lines and the war zones.