Funnily enough, that is also the hashtag celebrating the US Supreme Court's decision to act as the parliaments of various countries, including my own, have acted. (Wait that doesn't sound right: the Supreme Court is not the US legislature ... but that is another issue, internal to the body politic of the States).
Christians in the US are either celebrating (led by President Obama himself) or concerned. The latter include the US Catholic Bishops, a coalition of evangelicals, ACNA, and the Diocese of South Carolina.
It is worth noting, via First Things, that c.100 million US citizens likely disagree with this ruling (i.e. agree with the 4 judges who were outvoted by the other 5). Chief Justice Roberts himself disputes whether this matter had anything to do with the constitution. Arguments about this will run and run. Yet where will it end, since some conservative Christians' minds may be changed?
Obviously 'marriage' in the sense of a permanent contractual relationship between two people is undergoing redefinition in Western culture, supported by legal redefinition. In the majority judgement, Justice Kennedy writes,
"No union is more profound than marriage for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family."That Kennedy is willing to include same gender couples in this otherwise admirable definition of marriage demonstrates that in this redefinition of marriage, gender diversity is immaterial.
There is now no legal sense in several Western countries that 'marriage' means: 'The most profound human union because it embodies the union of male and female bound by the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family.'
Yet it is difficult to see that a majority of Western Christians are going to let go of the concept of a 'something' (which used to be called 'marriage') being a union of a man and a woman. For this majority the US Catholic Bishops speak:
'The unique meaning of marriage as the union of one man and one woman is inscribed in our bodies as male and female. The protection of this meaning is a critical dimension of the “integral ecology” that Pope Francis has called us to promote. Mandating marriage redefinition across the country is a tragic error that harms the common good and most vulnerable among us, especially children. The law has a duty to support every child’s basic right to be raised, where possible, by his or her married mother and father in a stable home.
Jesus Christ, with great love, taught unambiguously that from the beginning marriage is the lifelong union of one man and one woman. As Catholic bishops, we follow our Lord and will continue to teach and to act according to this truth.'
Nor is it possible to see that the ever increasing Muslim population in Western countries is going to let go of the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman.
Might we yet see a new word for what 'marriage' used to mean?
Meanwhile for those Christians not supporting gay marriage, who believe the Gospel = #LoveWins, there is a question of how we connect with those who believe that Gay Marriage = #LoveWins.
What can we affirm about the love which binds two people of the same gender together according to the law of the land on marriage?
If we cannot find affirmation I suggest we are in grave danger of being viewed as those who discriminate against gay and lesbian people in a society which rightly abhors discrimination against people groups.
The gospel does not require gays and lesbians who commit to loving another to be put beyond the pale. While conservative churches rightly claim that they seek to put no one beyond the pale, the difficulty now is that we are being perceived as putting people beyond the pale.
Incidentally, this is also a time for conservatives to continue being, well, conservative.
The Supreme Court ruling does not change the fact that conservatives in Western societies have concerns about the future of the family: we should continue to argue (as the US Catholic bishops do) for the rights of children to be brought up by a mum and a dad, as well as arguing that the word 'mother' or 'father' should not be demeaned by a person of the opposite gender claiming to be what they are not.
We should continue to ask what 'bisexual' means in a context where commitment to monogamous marriage (gay or straight) is being celebrated. We should continue to be wary of future progression towards legal polygamy (given that no rational arguments against legalisation now exist in Western countries which have legalised gay marriage).
Speaking more personally about the state of my own inner thinking, as I read across the internet through these days, finding impressive arguments for and against the Supreme Court decision, I am freshly struck by the way in which what I have personally understood marriage to be all about is undergoing examination. I realise, to give one line of questioning, that within a Western cultural framework, fuelled by childhood books and TV programmes in which the hero and heroine met, fell in love and got married, I have assumed marriage is primarily about love and secondarily about faithful commitment between two people intending to create a family. (Someone I read said that much better but I cannot find the link). From that 'romantic' perspective, Western culture has always been on track - though we knew it not until recently - to affirm gay marriage because the State, in the end, cannot and should not stand in the way of love between two people.
It is from the 'family' perspective on marriage that the greatest objections to gay marriage arise (so it seems from my reading). If marriage is about two people uniting to reproduce, committing to fidelity in order to provide security for their children, then should the law permit marriage between two people whose union does not lead to reproduction? (A secularist could ask that question.) Ditto: ... then should church canons define marriage to include two people whose union does not lead to reproduction? (That is an ecclesiastical question tied to permitted actions of ministers in respect of blessing and (for some churches) sacramental action).
In sum: is God at work through this time to refine our understanding of marriage? Not merely refining us in the sense of 'getting back to the Bible' or 'recommitting to tradition' but also in the sense of challenging specific cultural assumptions that have become enmeshed with our understanding which we have described confidently as 'biblical' or 'traditional'?
To return to the question above concerning the gospel = #LoveWins, in our engagement in so-called culture wars and in church debates over marriage, how might Christian love win?