|Hillsong leader Brian Houston|
First some background. Hillsong Church in Australia, a promoter of the prosperity gospel, is a massive operation with churches around the world including mega-churches in Los Angeles and New York. Australia has unique tax laws. The custom for church leaders is to take 75% of their remuneration as tax-exempt expense accounts. One can only wonder at the abuses in the United States.
Prosperity has certainly been visited upon the Houstons. It has been reported that church leader, Brian Houston’s expense account is US $1 million per year. He takes other liberties as well through a church-affiliated non-profit foundation that he controls. Houston reportedly sold a beach-front estate to the foundation for an enormous profit while he and his wife remain the tenants.
Brian Houston is despicable in other ways. Houston accused an alleged child abuse victim of “tempting” Houston’s father into molesting him. Yeah, Houston’s father is apparently a scumbag.
Now about that statement. I will quote only a few passages:
I urge all Christians to be a part of the upcoming postal plebiscite on same sex marriage. Whatever your view on this issue, it is undeniably one that is important to the fabric of our social structure. Changing the definition of marriage has wide-reaching ramifications and should not be taken lightly by any society. All Australians should be a part of this process, not just a select few.
In other words Houston wants to impose his religious beliefs on Australia’s public policy. “Redefining marrage” was the losing argument in the United States. It is intellectually dishonest. The definition remains the same while allowing additional others to participate. Exactly what those “ramifications” are is unknown. Same-sex marriage has been legal in the Netherlands, for example, since 2001. Specifically, what would Houston say are the consequences? Have country’s famed dykes fallen to ruin?
For Christians, the issue is also a matter of faith and biblical teaching, something that should never be mocked or downplayed by those with opposing views. I believe God’s word is clear that marriage is between a man and a woman. The writings of the apostle Paul in Scripture on the subject of homosexuality are also clear, as I have mentioned in previous public statements.
Houston should thus teach adherents not to enter into same-sex marriages. Problem solved.
Throughout this entire debate, some on both sides of the argument have failed to understand and respect the views of others. Some of those advocating for change to the definition of marriage have confused faith convictions with bigotry however they must understand that Christian – and other religious – beliefs are extremely important to those who hold them and in fact are vital to a tolerant and free society.
Allow me to clarify for Mr. Houston. Instructing his congregants not to marry someone of the same sex is an article of faith. Attempting to impose those beliefs on the entire country by force of law says that his religious beliefs are superior to the beliefs of everyone else. That is bigotry. If Mr. Houston does not like to be called a bigot then he should stop behaving as a bigot.
Houston is also a moronic hypocrite. He wants to claim to be a friend to gays while attempting to deprive them of the right to marry:
Sadly some also use Christianity to alienate and even condemn those who are gay and dismiss their desire to pursue happiness. As a Christian pastor, I will always teach and preach according to Scripture and my personal convictions, but I cannot make other people’s choices for them. God created humanity with a free will, and I care about all people including those who believe differently to me.
Sure. He just wants it to be illegal to pursue that free will. Schmuck du jour!