If Familiarity Breeds Acceptance, We Must Avoid Familiarity

Last week, Gallup released a poll showing that, not surprisingly, people who know someone how is gay are more inclined to support marriage equality:

While 57% of Americans oppose legalizing gay marriage, Americans who personally know someone who is gay or lesbian are almost evenly divided on the matter, with 49% in favor and 47% opposed. Among those who do not personally know anyone who is gay, 72% oppose legalized gay marriage while just 27% favor it.

Andrew Sullivan saw the poll as evidence that gays “need to accelerate the process of coming out,” but  Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission sees it differently … primarily as evidence that Christians need to disassociate themselves from gays and everyone else who doesn’t share their right-wing values:

The polling discovered that one of the most important factors that control a person’s opinion about homosexual marriage was that of association, it even trumps a person’s political ideology … In fact, former Vice President, Dick Cheney, is a perfect example. Cheney is reliably conservative on virtually every issue except homosexual marriage. This is likely as a result of the fact that he is the father of an open, practicing lesbian.

The natural human tendency is to be deceived in situations when we associate with openly sinful people. Human sentimentality kicks in and biblical thinking is set aside. We rationalize and justify behaviors in people we know more than in people we don’t.

This applies to more than homosexuality; it touches other sins as well. Of course, because there is a powerful deceptive dynamic you will be tempted to say, “Having close relationships with the ungodly will not affect me.” Don’t be deceived!

You are who you associate with … We must find our significant associations with our Lord and His wise people. Associate daily with Christ by spending time in His Word and in prayer. Listen to His voice and cultivate a conscience that is informed by God’s Word.

Find like-minded servants of Christ with which to fellowship and to whom you can be accountable on a regular basis. Sit under the sound biblical teaching of a biblically qualified pastor. These are the ways that God will keep you from the corrupting associations of this world.

Be very careful out there in the world. Remember, “Don’t be deceived; Bad company corrupts good morals.”