How far should the church look to the standards of society to guide its own moral stance? Recently Paul Bayes, Bishop of Liverpool, did just that on marriage and sexuality saying that the church should let the world set the agenda. This is music to the ears of progressive Christians and discord to the so-called conservative. Here Bayes lays out his views in his address to the MoSAIC group . He says “want to see a gender-neutral marriage canon,” in Canon Law, which would make it difficult for any priest to oppose same-sex marriage. Perhaps those who do, would have to quit.
It is a dangerous thing to let the world set the agenda and the early church did not do that on matters of sex as Ian states. As the unknown author of The Letter to Diognetus memorably wrote;
They share their food, but not their wives Diognetus 5 vs7
This has been a rallying cry for decades but ultimately dissolves any Christian claims into the contemporary zeitgeist. At least Barth and Bonhoffer did not do it in 1934 Germany.
Read his blog as it is one of his best and I suppose anyone who agrees with Ian must be one of the many varieties of -phobe, if not all.
His pessimism at the end is well-founded