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Nicholas Woltersdorff on Same Sex Marriage

November 2, 2016

Speaking at Neland Avenue Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, philosopher Nicholas Woltersdorff recently argued that biblical justice requires permission for and recognition of same-sex marriage.

Woltersdorff is one of the most widely-recognized evangelical philosophers in the world. He taught for years at Calvin College before accepting a post at Yale University.

Here is the Youtube video of his address. Be warned: it’s over an hour long.

Here is a report of the event.

Here is a response from Wesley Hill. Among other things, Hill states,

What is so disappointing about this is its profound shallowness. Hearing Wolterstorff’s quip, one would never guess that great figures from the Christian past like St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas, who affirmed openness to procreation as one of the essential goods of marriage, were well aware of the crude technologies of contraception of their day and the lamentable fact of infertile marriages. One would never guess, listening to Wolterstorff, that these old saints wrestled with whether those facts invalidated their arguments about procreation, nor that they eventually arrived at accordingly nuanced, qualified views. One would never guess, furthermore, from Wolterstorff’s presentation that contemporary advocates of marriage as irreducibly procreative have also thought deeply about the reality of marriage past childbearing age, about infertility and contraception, and offered sophisticated responses that make laugh lines like Wolterstorff’s seem entirely facile.

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