Indiana and baking cakes or pizza for gay weddings

Figured I would comment on such things.

The main issue that I see is that Christians don’t want to “be associated with something they think goes against God” or that they don’t want to “be condoning of something that goes against God’s law.”

Two distinctions need to be made.

First, we hold those inside the church to a higher standard. Those inside the church call themselves Christian, and thus we need to hold them to standard of obedience to Jesus’ commands.

Secondly, to those outside of the church we are to hold them to a different standard. That of God’s unconditional love for us.

Obviously, the case with say baking cakes for gay weddings is a scenario that falls under the second. Therefore, the goal to those who do not know God’s love is to be able to show them unconditional love. Jesus in the sermon on the mount in Matthew 5 makes this clear.

Matthew 5:38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. 40 If anyone wants to sue you and take your [am]shirt, let him have your [an]coat also. 41 Whoever [ao]forces you to go one mile, go with him two. 42 Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you.

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may [ap]be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 Therefore [aq]you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

The vast majority of “Christians” have this backward mentality with non-Christians. The Christians think they need to be moral arbiters here on the earth of what is right and wrong. No. That’s God’s job.

As it says in the Scriptures there are those who are going to do evil to you. They want to slap you. They will want to sue you. They want to force you to do things you don’t want them to do. Does He tell us to resist that? Nope, rather Jesus says do more than they ask even if if they have wronged you.

What Christians who refuse baking the cake for the gay weddings is the same as “loving your neighbor and hating your enemy.” Wow, it’s really easy to love other Christians who are following the Word, but what about people who aren’t? Are you going to be mean and nasty to them because they don’t believe the same things you do? Or are you going to love and bless them and be kind to them so that they know God has changed you.

But to truly understand what you’re doing in this scenario you have to know first what God did for you:

Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

In our SIN, He died for us. He died for the Pharisees who hated Him. He died for the robber on the cross that scorned Him. He died for the Romans that scourged Him, divided up His clothes, placed a crown of thorns on His head, and nailed Him to the cross. He died for those who tortured and murdered Him when He was innocent.

Yet Christians want to deny a cake or pizza for a gay wedding? Please. God did not deny us Christ’s sacrifice when we were in our sin.

You’re not condoning a gay wedding when you provide services for them. You’re showing them God’s love reflected in your actions. Do you want to show them how great the Father’s love is or do you want to be selfish with God’s love saying they don’t deserve it? Because that’s all they see when Christians refuse. You’re being a Pharisee to them when they’re a tax collector or sinner in Luke 15 when Jesus talks about the parable of the lost sheep, lost coin, and Prodigal Son.

Bake a cake for a gay wedding? I’d bake them two and refuse their money, and pray that God softens their hearts to accept His grace and mercy.

edit addendum:

Moose Norseman made a good argument in the comments that I find particularly convincing based from Matthew 10 on discipleship and service. As such I am changing my opinion on this matter. The alternative he suggested was good too:

If you have a set policy of anytime we have to decline a custom cake, the customer receives a coupon good for one of our standard cakes free, I have no problem with it.

I would also suggest that it’s a good idea to:

  • decline “politically controversial topics” for services to everyone, and
  • Not mix business with religion of any sort

That is how I would handle things. If you are persecuted from there then so be it.

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43 Responses to Indiana and baking cakes or pizza for gay weddings

  1. GeoffSmith says:

    Doug Wilson seems to have the opposite perspective. What are your thoughts?
    http://dougwils.com/s7-engaging-the-culture/deny-him-seventy-times-seven.html

    I tend toward your point of view, but realize that refusal to participate in such things may be necessary under certain circumstances.

  2. Jenny says:

    Gay marriage allows for gay adoption. Gay adoption leads to pedophilia. There is a hidden gay agenda to recruit more members (gay people) through pedophilia.

  3. @ GeoffSmith

    There’s a several:

    1. I’m reminded of Cane’s post a while back about servants in the Scripture not being able to obey their master:

    “I can’t comply with that order, but if there’s anything else I can do instead I will do it”

    Or in the case here, if your convictions are set to say something along the lines of “Hey, this goes against my convictions, but I will bake you other cakes for free for other occasions.”

    2. Here’s the thing though. If you do refuse they will almost inevitably sue you. Jesus answer also fits that from Matthew 5:40 If anyone wants to sue you and take your [am]shirt, let him have your [an]coat also.

    So what are you going to do? Refuse and then give them more money or cakes in the lawsuit?

    That’s the funny thing about Scripture. It’s remarkably consistent.

    3. Providing services for something that is evil is not condoning evil. The logic does not follow:

    ~ Christians are required to pay taxes to the government.
    ~ The government uses some of those taxes for things we consider evil: abortion, promoting LGBT, gay marriage, etc..
    ~ Therefore, Christians shouldn’t pay taxes.

    One may argue that the government isn’t fully “corrupt” as a would be a “gay wedding” but that’s a slippery slope.

    4. I think by far the strongest argument is the one of showing love through what we do as Christians. This the same analogy of:

    ~ God -> sinners
    ~ Christians -> sinners.

    The fact that God shows His love to sinners and offers grace and mercy does not mean He condones sin. Rather, this is why I would give the cakes for free: it’s my gift to them to show them God’s love just as God showed it to me.

    Contractually you can argue that if you bake the cakes you’re condoning what they do. However, if you give the cakes freely then it’s a gift much like God’s gift to us is free. If they use such cakes for evil then it’s not on your conscience. For, as it says in Romans that we should not sin more that grace my abound — or in other words the free gift of grace is not given to us that we should go sin more with it.

  4. @ Jenny

    That’s non-sequitur.

  5. Regular Guy says:

    @ Deep Strength

    “Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

    In our SIN, He died for us. He died for the Pharisees who hated Him. He died for the robber on the cross that scorned Him.”

    If Jesus died for the sins of everyone and his cleansing blood is all that is sufficient for salvation, then why do people go to hell? The obvious answer is that didn’t die for the salvation of all mankind. Actually, he died for those… John 3:16 “…whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” He DID NOT die for those who would not have him as Lord. John 10:11,15 “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep . . . 15 even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.” Jesus died for the sheep (not the goats, per Matt. 25:32-33).

    Also, in Matthew 5:38-48, the examples given were of unbelievers being mistreated, but were not demanded to do something that would profane an institution or a command God ordained for us. An appropriate response by the business owner would be to politely refuse the request, but then offer something in recompense like a gift certificate for a birthday cake or some such.

    Being persecuted as a Christian comes with the territory but we are under no obligation (lawfully or biblically) to participate to the satanic offenses to God’s authority from this degenerate culture. I just wish this hypocritical American Church was as energized about confronting the sin nature of women as it is about infanticide and “gay marriage”.

    FYI: I’m sorry about my first post on your blog being confrontational instead of something more encouraging. FWIW, I’ve started reading your blog and I appreciate it and the comments you post on other’s blogs. Your writing is insightful and intelligent. Keep up the good work.

  6. @ Regular Guy

    If Jesus died for the sins of everyone and his cleansing blood is all that is sufficient for salvation, then why do people go to hell? The obvious answer is that didn’t die for the salvation of all mankind. Actually, he died for those… John 3:16 “…whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” He DID NOT die for those who would not have him as Lord. John 10:11,15 “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep . . . 15 even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.” Jesus died for the sheep (not the goats, per Matt. 25:32-33).

    You’re confusing two concepts here.

    1. Christ died for all, and out of that the desire that all men may come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
    2. Only those who accept the free gift of grace provided by Christ’s death and are obedient to His commandments will be saved

    Christ died for all:

    1 Timothy 2:First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, 2 for kings and all who are in [a]authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and [b]dignity. 3 This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the [c]knowledge of the truth.

    2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

    Also, in Matthew 5:38-48, the examples given were of unbelievers being mistreated, but were not demanded to do something that would profane an institution or a command God ordained for us. An appropriate response by the business owner would be to politely refuse the request, but then offer something in recompense like a gift certificate for a birthday cake or some such.

    I can agree with that. I mentioned it already in the comments to Geoff.

    Additionally, instead of contractually providing the service (and thus “condoning the wedding” for those who have moral objections) I think a free gift would be acceptable as well. People can do whatever they want with a free gift just as they do with God’s free gift of Jesus: good or evil. If they do evil it’s not on you.

    FYI: I’m sorry about my first post on your blog being confrontational instead of something more encouraging. FWIW, I’ve started reading your blog and I appreciate it and the comments you post on other’s blogs. Your writing is insightful and intelligent. Keep up the good work.

    Proverbs 27:17 As Iron sharpens Iron, so one man sharpens another.

  7. Don Quixote says:

    DS said:

    “Bake a cake for a gay wedding? I’d bake them two and refuse their money, and pray that God softens their hearts to accept His grace and mercy.”

    This approach is very charitable but it does create a problem for people running a business. If you treat all your customers with this same attitude your business quickly becomes a charity, you will go broke. Many have pursued this into full time service for the Lord, but not all christians can/will go down this path.
    Running a christian business often means having to deal with people you would not normally associate with, assuming christians and gays move in separate circles. Christians in this position like to show their faith by discriminating against those they see as opposed to the things of God. The example that comes to mind is a christian school. There was a controversy recently about a new law that could force christian schools to employ gay teachers if they applied. This has blown over for now, but I fully support the principle that christians must discriminate in such circumstances.
    And for the sake of consistency I would encourage the cake shop owners to continue to stand up for what they believe is right, even if it is debatable.

  8. Jenny says:

    Yeah, I think they should bake the cake (s).

  9. @ Don Quixote

    This approach is very charitable but it does create a problem for people running a business. If you treat all your customers with this same attitude your business quickly becomes a charity, you will go broke. Many have pursued this into full time service for the Lord, but not all christians can/will go down this path.

    Good points. That’s what I would personally do. It may be more difficult if there are those who are having difficulty with finances in the same situation.

    The example that comes to mind is a christian school. There was a controversy recently about a new law that could force christian schools to employ gay teachers if they applied. This has blown over for now, but I fully support the principle that christians must discriminate in such circumstances.

    And for the sake of consistency I would encourage the cake shop owners to continue to stand up for what they believe is right, even if it is debatable.

    I see these as different. The bakery/pizza/photography scenario is different than a leadership/teaching position is tasked with teaching Biblical principles.

    The other example is the college universities where many Christian clubs are being booted because they “only allow Christians” into leadership positions.

  10. A Regular Guy says:

    I’m not confusing 2 concepts. As a Reformed Baptist, I believe in limited atonement.

  11. okrahead says:

    DS,
    You make the mistake of equating loving the sinner with participating in the sin. We are commanded to “Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.” What is at question here is not the love Christians have towards sinners, and I sense some evil surmisings in the aspersions you cast against a vendor who declines to participate in a celebration of sodomy.
    Let us suppose that you own a restaurant in the state of Nevada. If a brothel were to request your services to cater an orgy, would you comply? If not, why not? Do you hate harlots? Or would you rather insist that you cannot engage in such activity because it violates your beliefs?
    Let us suppose that an abortion provider solicited you to cater their “spa-style” abortion clinic (such things now exist, apparently). Would you do so? If not, why not? Do you hate abortionists?
    Let us suppose that a portion of the gay community achieves one of their goals and manages to have the courts declare pederasty a constitutional right. One of these activists then solicits you to cater his “wedding” to the 10 year old boy he is going to “marry”. Would you do so? If not, why not? Do you hate pedophiles?
    To the best of my knowledge you have not faced the trials that the Oregon bakers or Indiana pizzeria owners now face. They are suffering specifically because of their professions of Christianity. They have been targeted by the gay mafia specifically because they have reproved the works of darkness rather than fellowship them. In this column you have attacked Christians suffering persecution, claiming to somehow know that they hate the sinners. Christ tells us that as we do the least of those who believe on Him, so we do to Him. You owe these brethren an apology, and an act of contrition by contributing to their defense would be a good idea as well. You also owe your Lord a prayer asking for forgiveness for slandering His servants.

  12. acmartin1960 says:

    You can’t expect the world to act like the church. 1 Cor 5:12-13
    12 For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? 13 But those who are outside God judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.”*

    God’s word will judge the world. Our job is to teach truth and show God’s love through our life.

  13. Feminine But Not Feminist says:

    My mind had been made up on this, and I was on the side of “they shouldn’t be legally forced to make the cakes if it violates their beliefs.” I still don’t think they should be forced to, but it never occurred to me to consider whether making the cakes would be something that the cake-makers should do as an act of love or not.

    I guess what needs to be figured out is whether making a cake (or providing any service) for a gay “wedding” is in fact the loving thing to do or not. On the one hand, most of these cake-makers would probably not bother to look into what activities will be taking place at other events that they make their cakes for, and would probably not like what they find if they were to investigate further. So in that sense, why refuse to make one in this case, when they have probably made cakes for other equally non-Christian events in the past without batting an eye? On the other hand, how is participating in something sinful not condoning it? And let’s face it -baking the cake, taking the pictures, etc. is participation. And condoning (or even merely giving the appearance of condoning) sin is not love.

    It’s possible to be loving to a gay person/couple without enabling them in their sin. For instance, I work with an actively/openly gay man. I don’t treat him any different than I do anyone else there; I’m just as friendly with him as I am the rest of them, I offer/agree to switch shifts with him if he needs to be off, I freely help him when he asks for it or I see him getting slammed with things to do all off a sudden, etc. Yet I don’t encourage or help him in living his gay lifestyle, and he knows it. Yet I know from things he’s said about me that he doesn’t think of me as being unloving by any means because of the way I treat him in general. So I think that even if the cake-makers don’t agree to make the cakes, they can still show God’s love in the way they interact with the gay couple.

  14. okrahead says:

    DS,
    Part of your problem is your failure to properly identify the love of God. Agape demands that we do what is in another person’s best interest, without regards as to how that person treats us. Aiding and abetting sinners in their sin utterly and completely fails this test. To aid and abet a sinner is the opposite of love; it is, in point of fact you who is espousing hatred by insisting Christians should aid sodomites in their sin. Remember the words of Paul to Timothy, “Do not partake in other men’s sins.”
    I asked a series of questions above which apparently you are not going to touch with a 10 foot pole. I can’t really blame you for that, for if you did so you would have to either admit you are an amoral libertine or that you were wrong in your diatribe against suffering Christians. Nevertheless, just for fun, let’s try a few more:
    1) If a Christian owns a publishing house, and a pornographer solicits him to publish obscene material for him, should the Christian go ahead and publish it free of charge (per your position)? Should the Christian perhaps publish DOUBLE the requested pornography for free? If not, why not? Do you have unconditional love for pornographers?
    2) If a group of Satanists wish to conduct a black mass, and they solicit a priest for consecrated hosts to profane in said mass, should the priest give them what they ask for? If not, why not? Do you have unconditional love for Satanists?
    This is the utterly ridiculous nature of your argument: “Unconditional love” for sinners means participating with them in their sin. Not only is this ridiculous, it is the exact opposite of what the Scriptures teach: True “unconditional love” for sinners is to convict them of their sin from the Word of God and to refuse to have any fellowship with them in their sin.
    You, sir, have called good evil and evil good. You have slandered Christians who at this very hour are undergoing persecution for the Name of Christ. If you are actually a real man you would hide your face in shame until you had begged forgiveness from those you have slandered.

  15. Feminine But Not Feminist says:

    @ okrahead

    I asked a series of questions above which apparently you are not going to touch with a 10 foot pole.

    Knowing DS, he is probably busy and just hasn’t gotten there yet. There was no need for you to be disrespectful just because he didn’t answer you immediately.

  16. I don’t have time to address everything, but you’ve let the emotionally charged aspects of the topic cloud the analysis: it’s a question of acting in Pagan Rituals. That should be a pretty cut & dry topic for most Christians. You don’t.

    Further, “agape” isn’t facilitating someone’s depravity and Sin. If you’re not going to give an alcoholic a 12 pack, you’re not going to bake a cake, do flowers or cater it.

    On the legal side of things, let’s cut through all of the BS: it’s perfectly well protected to refuse on Religious grounds. It’s the horror that they’ve done to Justice in this country that’s the only reason they can get away with the lawsuits. The entire topic is the pure invention of injustice by Judges over the last several decades. And many will pay in death & destitution for the depravity they push.

  17. ChildofRa says:

    You are the first person who on social media has had this perpesctive on this situation. Everyone is is like homosexuals are trying to force their way and stuff like that

  18. @ LG

    I don’t have time to address everything, but you’ve let the emotionally charged aspects of the topic cloud the analysis: it’s a question of acting in Pagan Rituals. That should be a pretty cut & dry topic for most Christians. You don’t.

    Further, “agape” isn’t facilitating someone’s depravity and Sin. If you’re not going to give an alcoholic a 12 pack, you’re not going to bake a cake, do flowers or cater it.

    I’m not emotionally engaged on this topic. If someone can refute the Biblical points I’ve presented I’m more than willing to change my stance on lots of different things.

    I even present both sides of the argument here.

    Also, 1 Corinthians 8 appears to suggest otherwise:

    1 Corinthians 8:4 Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that [b]there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. 5 For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, 6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.

    7 However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled. 8 But food will not [c]commend us to God; we are neither [d]the worse if we do not eat, nor [e]the better if we do eat. 9 But take care that this [f]liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. 10 For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols? 11 For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died. 12 And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. 13 Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble.

    This passage does not exactly relate to say producing food that is used in idol worship, but the context is similar to pagan rituals.

    Christians are not defiled by going into a pagan temple, presumably during a pagan ritual, and eating the food as they know there is no power in the idols. BUT if another Christian sees you and has a weak conscience and is defiled you shouldn’t.

    Now, alternatively, from 1 Corinthians 10 you can make the argument against it:

    1 Corinthians 10:20 No, but I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God; and I do not want you to become sharers in demons. 21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. 22 Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? We are not stronger than He, are we?

    23 All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify. 24 Let no one seek his own good, but that of his [i]neighbor. 25 Eat anything that is sold in the meat market without asking questions for conscience’ sake; 26 for the earth is the Lord’s, and [j]all it contains. 27 If one of the unbelievers invites you and you want to go, eat anything that is set before you without asking questions for conscience’ sake. 28 But if anyone says to you, “This is meat sacrificed to idols,” do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for conscience’ sake; 29 I mean not your own conscience, but the other man’s; for why is my freedom judged by another’s conscience? 30 If I partake with thankfulness, why am I slandered concerning that for which I give thanks?

    I find the fact that 1 Corinthians 10 presents the fact that if someone says this is for a particular purpose convincing on the level with the similar analogy:

    If say a baker did not know they were baking for a gay wedding then then it’s fine. However, if they were informed that it is for a gay marriage then they should refuse for the sake of the other’s conscience.

    I’ll have to think about this some more.

    Additionally, “pagan rituals” have been absorbed by Christianity all over the place. Celebration of Christ’s birthday on December 25th is one. Is the fact that it was formerly a day for pagan rituals absorbed by Christianity a reason to get rid of it?

    Okra, I will get to yours in a bit either tonight or tomorrow morning. Been busy and need to eat and sleep.

  19. He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.

    He who receives a sodomite in the name of a sodomite shall receive a sodomite’s reward.

    Your job is to call the sinner to repentance, not to succor him in his sin.

  20. @ Okrahead

    I’m combining the two posts into one response since they overlap.

    You make the mistake of equating loving the sinner with participating in the sin.

    I disagree. How else can you interpret Jesus’ words in Matthew 5 when people are specifically doing evil to you to bless them by doing more? Remember, these are people that are described as evil doing evil to you.

    Part of your problem is your failure to properly identify the love of God. Agape demands that we do what is in another person’s best interest, without regards as to how that person treats us. Aiding and abetting sinners in their sin utterly and completely fails this test. To aid and abet a sinner is the opposite of love; it is, in point of fact you who is espousing hatred by insisting Christians should aid sodomites in their sin.

    I can see both sides of this. On the one hand, how is baking cakes aiding and abetting? They’re going to get married regardless. I think LG words this better in his explanation that it’s participating in pagan rituals. See my comment to him there.

    We are commanded to “Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

    The Ephesians 5 verse is Paul talking to Christians about how to “police” other Christians in the Church at Ephesus. As I already pointed out, the standards between Christians policing other Christians and Christians loving the world are different.

    Remember the words of Paul to Timothy, “Do not partake in other men’s sins.”

    The specific verse is about appointing church leaders from 1 Timothy 5:22 Do not lay hands upon anyone too hastily and thereby share responsibility for the sins of others; keep yourself free from sin. In other words, those that Timothy appointed because of his authority he would also share in their sin if they sinned. Hence, be prudent.

    Let us suppose that you own a restaurant in the state of Nevada. If a brothel were to request your services to cater an orgy, would you comply? If not, why not? Do you hate harlots? Or would you rather insist that you cannot engage in such activity because it violates your beliefs?

    Let us suppose that an abortion provider solicited you to cater their “spa-style” abortion clinic (such things now exist, apparently). Would you do so? If not, why not? Do you hate abortionists?

    Let us suppose that a portion of the gay community achieves one of their goals and manages to have the courts declare pederasty a constitutional right. One of these activists then solicits you to cater his “wedding” to the 10 year old boy he is going to “marry”. Would you do so? If not, why not? Do you hate pedophiles?

    The slippery slope operates in both directions. Where do you draw the line?

    Christians are required to pay taxes to the government under compulsion of the law. The government uses “some” of those taxes for things we consider evil: Obamacare, contraception, sex education, abortion, promoting LGBT, gay marriage, etc. Therefore, should Christians pay taxes?

    Outlandish examples do serve to prove a rhetorical point although they are in some sense straw men of the particular issue. The main problem is the slippery slope. Where does it end and where does it begin?

    Now, the second scenarios are better but different:

    If a Christian owns a publishing house, and a pornographer solicits him to publish obscene material for him, should the Christian go ahead and publish it free of charge (per your position)? Should the Christian perhaps publish DOUBLE the requested pornography for free? If not, why not? Do you have unconditional love for pornographers?

    If a group of Satanists wish to conduct a black mass, and they solicit a priest for consecrated hosts to profane in said mass, should the priest give them what they ask for? If not, why not? Do you have unconditional love for Satanists?

    This is the utterly ridiculous nature of your argument: “Unconditional love” for sinners means participating with them in their sin. Not only is this ridiculous, it is the exact opposite of what the Scriptures teach: True “unconditional love” for sinners is to convict them of their sin from the Word of God and to refuse to have any fellowship with them in their sin.

    These are obviously ones where you would deny. There’s a difference between:

    1. enabling evil (production of pornographic material)
    2. condoning (promoting a gay wedding)
    3. Production (production of a product that may or may not be used for evil)

    Now, on some level you can argue that you’re enabling evil by producing a cake for a gay wedding. But they would be married regardless if you produced the cake. Thus, unlike the production of pornography or participation in a pagan ritual you’re not enabling.

    Likewise, on some level you can argue that you’re condoning gay marriage by producing the cake for a gay wedding. The main problem with this is does your product represent an acceptance of something that you don’t approve. It can go either way.

    Now, if you produce chairs, and they are used for a gay wedding, or in a satanic ritual, or in an office that produce pornography does that make you condone it? If you produce cups, and they are used for a gay wedding, or in a satanic ritual, or in an office that produce pornography does that mean you condone it?

    You, sir, have called good evil and evil good. You have slandered Christians who at this very hour are undergoing persecution for the Name of Christ. If you are actually a real man you would hide your face in shame until you had begged forgiveness from those you have slandered.

    […]

    To the best of my knowledge you have not faced the trials that the Oregon bakers or Indiana pizzeria owners now face. They are suffering specifically because of their professions of Christianity. They have been targeted by the gay mafia specifically because they have reproved the works of darkness rather than fellowship them. In this column you have attacked Christians suffering persecution, claiming to somehow know that they hate the sinners. Christ tells us that as we do the least of those who believe on Him, so we do to Him. You owe these brethren an apology, and an act of contrition by contributing to their defense would be a good idea as well. You also owe your Lord a prayer asking for forgiveness for slandering His servants.

    There is some merit here if I’m wrong that I will do. As I said to LG, I’m not at all particularly invested in the points I make on more controversial topics. I’m happy to be proven wrong, and I’m still considering evidence from both sides.

    While I’m writing this up Moose has made a particularly compelling analogy. I’ll get to that in a bit.

    Additionally, I’m curious. To what would you say to this type of response that I posited in the comments:

    If your convictions are set to say something along the lines of “Hey, this goes against my convictions, but I will bake you other cakes [potentially for free] for other occasions such as birthdays.”

  21. @ Moose Norseman

    He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.

    He who receives a sodomite in the name of a sodomite shall receive a sodomite’s reward.

    Your job is to call the sinner to repentance, not to succor him in his sin.

    Good analogy from Matthew 10. That is particularly compelling since Jesus is talking about the reward of discipleship/service.

    I’ll mull over this a bit more, but I think you have convinced me.

    Additionally, I’m curious. To what would you say to this type of response that I posited in the comments:

    If your convictions are set to say something along the lines of “Hey, this goes against my convictions, but I will bake you other cakes [potentially for free] for other occasions such as birthdays.”

    Pure refusal seems like a poor option when you can be kind with your services to them outside of potentially being “involved in pagan rituals.”

  22. Additionally, I’m curious. To what would you say to this type of response that I posited in the comments:

    If your convictions are set to say something along the lines of “Hey, this goes against my convictions, but I will bake you other cakes for free for other occasions such as birthdays.”

    Pure refusal seems like a poor option when you can be kind with your services to them outside of potentially being “involved in pagan rituals.”

    If you turn down a request to bake a custom cake because it is too large for your oven, do you make the same offer? What about if you have to turn down a custom order because you are just too busy?

    If you have a set policy of anytime we have to decline a custom cake, the customer receives a coupon good for one of our standard cakes free, I have no problem with it.

  23. Jenny says:

    “Truth without love is harshness; it may be right but you ignore it because of it’s bite. Truth and love together transforms.” ~Tim Keller

  24. “If you have a set policy of anytime we have to decline a custom cake, the customer receives a coupon good for one of our standard cakes free, I have no problem with it.”

    That’s a neat idea. Seems like a good way to maintain goodwill without doing something you believe to be wrong.

  25. @ Moose

    If you turn down a request to bake a custom cake because it is too large for your oven, do you make the same offer? What about if you have to turn down a custom order because you are just too busy?

    If you have a set policy of anytime we have to decline a custom cake, the customer receives a coupon good for one of our standard cakes free, I have no problem with it.

    Ah, interesting concept.

    I think to further a concept like this it would be best to couple this policy to decline “politically controversial topics” as being opposed to making it about religion.

  26. donalgraeme says:

    I think to further a concept like this it would be best to couple this policy to decline “politically controversial topics” as being opposed to making it about religion.

    Isn’t Christianity itself inherently “politically controversial?” Would such a policy reject a cake request which included a Christian statement affirming what God intended by marriage?

  27. @ Donal

    It could.

    I think the other issue that this brings up is that some people have the inclination that they want their “business” to be their “witness” as well. I’m on the side that it is unwise to involve business and religion in the first place.

  28. okrahead says:

    DS,
    Re: 1 Cor. 8: The analogy here is not that the pizzeria is being asked to eat meat sold in the shambles, they are being ordered, through threats of violence, to offer a sacrifice to the idol.
    Re: Ephesians and Timothy: So, reproving the unfruitful works of darkness only applies to our fellow Christians? Having no part in other men’s sins only applies to our fellow Christians? How wonderful. Now I can participate in any debauchery I desire, so long as I am the only “Christian” involved, and I am under no obligation to bear witness against sin in the world. Kind of makes the latter part of Hebrews 11 and most of Hebrews 12 irrelevant, but so what? At least now all the SJWs out there will praise me.
    My examples were exact analogies, and in that they were ridiculous (which they admittedly are) is because the topic under discussion is itself ridiculous.
    Next up, “how is baking cakes aiding and abetting? They’re going to get married regardless.”
    This is such horribly fuzzy thinking that I hardly know where to begin, but I’ll try:
    1) It’s going to happen no matter what. Jesus said trials and temptations MUST come, hence they are going to happen no matter what. He added, however, that whoa to them by whom those trials come. Abortionists are going to murder infants regardless of my objections; does this mean that it’s acceptable to God for me to go ahead and work at the front desk of an abortion clinic?
    2) “They’re going to get married regardless.” No, they are not. Marriage occurs when God joins a man and a woman. The state, in its infinite foolishness, may choose to issue a license through which it extends its approval to a sodomy celebration; this does not a marriage make. The fact that you missed something this basic suggests you need still more bed rest.

  29. @ Okra

    Re: 1 Cor. 8: The analogy here is not that the pizzeria is being asked to eat meat sold in the shambles, they are being ordered, through threats of violence, to offer a sacrifice to the idol.

    No, the analogy is that you’re making “something.” The fact that the “something” can be used for evil or good is the issue. The fact that someone may use “something” you created for evil purposes does not make your actions evil.

    What if you were called to make a cake, and then were told after it was handed over that it was for a gay wedding? Why is this the same or not the same as making the cake for a gay wedding in the first place.

    Now, you can argue intent fine. Is the fact that intent is obfuscated change the morality of your actions? Why or why not?

    Re: Ephesians and Timothy: So, reproving the unfruitful works of darkness only applies to our fellow Christians? Having no part in other men’s sins only applies to our fellow Christians? How wonderful. Now I can participate in any debauchery I desire, so long as I am the only “Christian” involved, and I am under no obligation to bear witness against sin in the world. Kind of makes the latter part of Hebrews 11 and most of Hebrews 12 irrelevant, but so what? At least now all the SJWs out there will praise me.

    I already explained this in the OP. Christians are to hold each other to the standards of Jesus’ teachings. On the other hand, Christians interacting with non-Christians are to preach the good news to them not condemn them for their behavior.

    Fire and brimstone preaching rarely if ever works. What does work is Christians loving their enemies, or seeing Christians under tough circumstances be joyful, peaceful, generous, kind, etc.

    This is such horribly fuzzy thinking that I hardly know where to begin, but I’ll try:
    1) It’s going to happen no matter what. Jesus said trials and temptations MUST come, hence they are going to happen no matter what. He added, however, that whoa to them by whom those trials come. Abortionists are going to murder infants regardless of my objections; does this mean that it’s acceptable to God for me to go ahead and work at the front desk of an abortion clinic?
    2) “They’re going to get married regardless.” No, they are not. Marriage occurs when God joins a man and a woman. The state, in its infinite foolishness, may choose to issue a license through which it extends its approval to a sodomy celebration; this does not a marriage make. The fact that you missed something this basic suggests you need still more bed rest.

    1. Working at a place that has evil practices is different than producing a product that may be used in a place with evil practices.

    2. This is nitpicking. They’ll still get “married” then as marriage through Scriptures is only between a man in and woman in the sight of God.

    3. Save the digs for somewhere else. To anyone reading they hurt your case more than they help.

    No need to argue anymore anyway. Moose’s point convinced me. The other arguments can go both ways from what I can see which is why I don’t find them particularly convincing.

  30. @ all

    I added an addendum to the OP.

    edit addendum:

    Moose Norseman made a good argument in the comments that I find particularly convincing based from Matthew 10 on discipleship and service. As such I am changing my opinion on this matter. The alternative he suggested was good too:

    “If you have a set policy of anytime we have to decline a custom cake, the customer receives a coupon good for one of our standard cakes free, I have no problem with it.”

    I would also suggest that it’s a good idea to:

    ~ decline “politically controversial topics” for services to everyone, and
    ~ Not mix business with religion of any sort

    That is how I would handle things. If you are persecuted from there then so be it.

  31. DS, you seem to be thinking of this in terms of sins of commission. “Is it wrong to knowingly bake a cake for a gay wedding.” And that is a good question to answer. But might there be sins of omission here as well?

    Proverbs 24: 11-12 “Deliver those who are being taken away to death,
    And those who are staggering to slaughter, Oh hold them back.
    If you say, “See, we did not know this,”
    Does He not consider it who weighs the hearts?
    And does He not know it who keeps your soul?
    And will He not render to man according to his work?”

    These are the sorts of verses that move us to action when we stand against abortion. In the case at hand I think the loving thing to do would be to remind the sodomites of 1 Corinthians 6:

    “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”

  32. @ Jeremy

    Yes, I already changed my thoughts on the matter in the OP.

    Though I disagree with this approach:

    These are the sorts of verses that move us to action when we stand against abortion. In the case at hand I think the loving thing to do would be to remind the sodomites of 1 Corinthians 6:
    “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”

    I’ve never seen reminding people of their sins or fire and brimstone theology bring anyone into the kingdom in my limited about of street evangelism and knowing a bunch of people who do it regularly. Not once.

    Rather, in their weakness or difficult situation sharing them about the hope of Jesus. It’s once they accept Jesus and His grace that we tell them “go and sin no more.”

    It’s the difference between them thinking you’re there to judge them versus there to be kind to them in whatever struggles they’re going through.

  33. donalgraeme says:

    That was to be expected FBNF. And it is only the tip of the iceberg.

    One thing to note is that he broke the law doing this, which he should have known better than to do.

  34. @ FBNF

    Not ironic, but how they go about is very poor like Donal said.

    Also, if they’re doing it they should be saying “pro heterosexual marriage” not “anti-gay marriage.”

    They’re not the same concept. Any time you use the “negative” of the other instead of the “positive” you can get nixed for hate speech much like abortion: pro-life versus anti-abortion are two sides of the same thing but they mean different things.

  35. Feminine But Not Feminist says:

    What I meant was ironic was that a bakery can get into trouble for refusing to make a cake for a gay “wedding” but not get into trouble if they refuse to make one for something that goes against leftist agendas, if that makes any sense.

  36. Feminine But Not Feminist says:

    Or maybe a better way to explain it is that, it’s “okay” to refuse to bake a cake that goes against your beliefs, IF your beliefs are politically correct ones. If they’re not politically correct, then it is no longer “okay” to refuse, but is then “wrong” and “discriminatory” etc. That’s what’s ironic.

  37. This is such a fine line. I would for sure not officiate a gay wedding. The cake maker or the photographer are trickier. Or do I go to a gay friends wedding for example.

    For sure, the government should not be able to make me do any of those things, but that is not really the question raised here. What if for example I tell the couple, “I want you to know that I in no way support or believe in what you are doing. I will make you a cake because that is what I do, but understand that I’d prefer not to. There are other cake makers. But if you feel you have to have my cake I will make it. But I want to be clear that I’m against what you are doing.”

    I’m not sure that is right either.

    Really the interesting thing that gets raised in this debate is the role of the government in marriage. To the government it’s a contract – with certain benefits. In my opinion the government should just stay out of the marriage business.

    To us marriage is a sacrament. The church decides who is married and who isn’t, including those who have broken the “contract”

    Also – does the cake maker make cakes for people’s second or third marriages? Do they ask if there was a biblical divorce? So many angles to consider.

    Great thought provoking post

  38. @ justinmcampbell

    That’s a good point about second and third marriages.

    If you won’t bake a cake for a homosexual marriage which is “sin” then you also shouldn’t bake a cake for 2nd and 3rd marriages which are also “sin.”

    The main thing that this questions since heterosexual marriage is still a “norm” is that what if you don’t know it’s a 2nd or 3rd marriage. Indeed, what is the difference between knowing and not knowing.

    That gives me something additional to consider. Hmm.

  39. jeff says:

    I hate mix and match, but you have pastors all over the world marrying couples who have been divorced prior and to my knowledge they are creating adulterers by letting them marry when they had no biblical grounds for frivorcing their first spouse. Being the devil’s advocate why do these same pastors not marry people of same sex. I know that’s obvious, but they will stone one and give to another. You guys have probably beat that subject up before, but I am only 11 months into RP adventure!

  40. It’s not manly, nor godly, to threaten people with violence to bake a cake that they don’t want to bake. It’s called being a bully. And a Christian who attempts to use violence against someone who is acting peacefully is sinning.

  41. Robin Lee says:

    SO…this is why I disagree with you. Please understand that I never ask nor care about the dynamics of a couple when sending invites to birthday parties, soccer parties or offers to pray. However, one of the MOST COMMONLY referred to passages of love in Scripture is 1 Corinthians 13. Verse 6 says Love: “does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.” A wedding is most certainly a time of rejoicing…If you believe that TRUTH says marriage is for a man and a woman, and homosexuality is a sin, then it is understandable that doing daily life together, and moments of pure rejoicing are not the same thing. Have a pizza? Sure. Cater a wedding…not the same.

  42. Pingback: Falling Dominoes: Enforcing Silence | Donal Graeme

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