Democrat presidential hopeful and South Bend, Ind., MayorPete Buttigieg recently deigned to lecture Vice President Mike Pence about Christianity. In a video that’s been viewed far and wide and commented on almost as many times as it has been viewed, Buttigieg boasted, “My marriage to Chasten has made me a better man. And yes, Mr. Vice President, it has moved me closer to God.”
Well, Mr. Buttigieg may want to tone down his boasting, because while I don’t doubt that his same-sex marriage has moved him closer to something, it definitely hasn’t moved him closer to God. Unless, of course, he means that it’s moved him closer to God’s wrath and coming judgment. Of course, I know Mayor Buttigieg didn’t mean that and you know he didn’t mean that. He actually believes that God smiles with favor on his marriage. And he believes this because Mayor Pete doesn’t know who God is.
By attempting to claim that God sanctions his same-sex “marriage,” Buttigieg is lying about God — either intentionally or unintentionally. Either way, he’s lying. God is very clear in His Word about His sexual ethics. Homosexuality is called a sin in both the Old and New Testaments. Just because his same-sex marriage brings him joy and contentment and even though he and Chasten may truly love each other, God’s truth doesn’t change. Living one’s truth is great, as far as that goes. However, Buttigieg needs to make sure that his truth matches God’s truth (that goes for all of us). Knowing God’s truth requires knowledge of God, something that is in short supply in our society.
In his short book Bitesize Theology: An ABC of the Christian Faith, Peter Jeffrey writes, “If our thinking about God is not correct then every other doctrine we apply our minds to will also be incorrect.”
Sadly, Mayor Buttigieg is guilty of doing what many people are also guilty of doing — creating a god that conforms to their own feelings and desires. Statements beginning with “I feel that God” are strewn across social media and blogs: “I feel that God is love.” “I feel that God accepts everyone just the way they are.” “I feel that God wants everyone to be happy.” “I feel that God just wants people to love each other.”
It’s bizarre that this has to be said, but feelings are not the arbiter of truth. Not even close. It doesn’t matter what we feel. In fact, allowing our feelings to determine what we believe about God is dangerous.
Referencing the quote from Bitesize Theology above, if we don’t understand who God is as He reveals and defines Himself in His Word, we are bound to have many other false views about theology. So, when Mayor Buttigieg asserts that his same-sex marriage has moved him “closer to God,” he’s demonstrating not only an incorrect understanding of God’s sexual ethics but also a complete lack of knowledge about what God’s holiness means.
In short, and quoting Wayne Grudem, “God’s holiness means that he is separated from sin and devoted to seeking his own honor.” Furthermore, Dr. Grudem provides the application, “God’s holiness provides a pattern for his people to imitate. He commands them, ‘You shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy'” (Lev. 19:2 … 1 Peter 1:16).
Since Buttigieg doesn’t understand God’s holiness, the South Bend mayor doesn’t understand that his same-sex marriage places him under God’s wrath. What’s more, if he really wanted to draw close to God, he would dedicate himself to learning about who God is, including learning what God calls sin. Then Buttigieg would repent and place his faith in Jesus. With salvation, comes sanctification, the process by which God’s people are made like Jesus. Through the work of the spirit, if Buttigieg were repenting and believing on Jesus, he would be pursuing a life of holiness. The fact that he believes that his same-sex marriage is not only sanctioned by God but draws him closer to God is evidence that Pete Buttigieg doesn’t know who God is.