New Life Live: July 10, 2014


Topics: DatingMarriageParentingIntimacyChristian WalkAddictionsAdult Children
Hosts: Steve Arterburn and Guest Hosts Marilyn Meberg and Shannon Ethridge

Caller Questions:

  1. Should I put off my wedding to someone who is defiant, swears, and thinks differently than I do? 
  2. My disengaged husband always runs home to his mother. 
  3. If the Bible is against an issue, why do Christians debate it? 
  4. Comment: A husband and wife need to teach their kids about issues like homosexuality.
  5. Comment: A couple should spend time before marriage discussing issues and how you would teach them to your kids. 
  6. Does God expect me to keep a relationship with my 25yo son who is involved with drugs? 

Suggested Resources:
Is This The One
How We Love
7 Minute Marriage Solution
Being Christian by Stephen Arterburn   (available from

Subscribe to the NEW LIFE LIVE Podcast via iTunes or streaming audio from Stitcher, the Smart Radio App. 


  1. Steve- you are absolutely right – regarding the issue of homosexual marriage. Thank God – The 2 women on program – really fell short in their comments today – Sorry to hear what they said – they gave a worldly response.

    • I agree. If someone attends a church where the Pastor struggles with the issue of homosexuality perhaps they need to attend another church. Sin is sin.

      • So are you saying…when you get to heaven, you will only find conservatives and republicans there, Everyone else, without exception who believes homosexuality is not a sin will be in hell.

        • Matt, you’re the only one here who is adopting such an extreme position; no one else is talking about sending people to hell. That’s not what they’re saying, and I doubt that’s what you’re hearing. You’re not being disingenuous and trying to pick a fight, are you?

          • No not trying to pick a fight. Its just that when the topic of homosexuality comes up in this show, it always pushes some button inside me.

    • I agree. Girls, I love & admire you, but the issue was not about salvation, but whether the girl is believing God or choosing her own way. God is very clear what He says about sin of homesexuality. The girl doesn’t agree with God .. yeah, defiance. If anyone is going to throw out any part of Scripture, they are putting themselves in a position higher than God … isn’t that pride? The world believes “times have changed” so it should be acceptable now. But God does not change His mind! That’s a basic.

      And what else will this girl throw out of the Bible? Steve, missionary dating isn’t a good basis for marriage. I agree with Arterburn .. you two are in different places. Many people with different beliefs like Shannon’s in-laws make a marriage work, but that’s because there are two committed people. I’d wonder if this girl would stand firm in that .. that takes maturity and agreeing & believing what God says about marriage.

  2. wow, what great debates and way of sharing thoughts, feeling, and information…you guys rock! I stand very firm on what God says as well as the bible about homosexuality, I also stand firm on “to each its own,” however, I feel that people must leave their lives and do what makes them happy regardless of gender. Again, there’s not one sin God will not forgive it’s the consequences thereof. I feel the show could have been a bit stronger in their convictions but the point was well received. Blessings to all!

    • I appreciate your nuanced view on homosexuality. What I feel about it is…who am I to say that two homosexuals cannot have a loving relationship with each other.

      • Hi Matt, we really have no authority on our own. But, God does, and as those indwelled by Him, we do have authority to proclaim the truth because it is through Him. He says that two men or two women relating that way is damaging. So, as Christians, we can lovingly confront sin because we care about the damaging effects of sin, not only to those two individuals but to our sphere of influence as well.

  3. When you are on live radio and someone presents a problem, you have to give an answer on the spot, without having time to prepare. Maybe that’s why Shannon and Marilyn gave answers that concern me. Homosexuality is not just a political “issue”, not like raising taxes or something. A Godly marriage is a reflection of who God is. Homosexuality does not properly reflect God and is out of His created order and causes damage to others, especially the family. Others have said it well that Scripture is very clear on this issue. If this lady refuses to budge once she understands why homosexuality is a sin and why God forbids it, that’s not good and could negatively affect many things in their relationship (future children, etc.) as well as be an indication of a spiritual problem. However, it is possible that, once she understands and hears Scripture, she might change her mind and follow God’s ways. There are many new Christians who don’t know the Word of God very well, and she might not understand. Maybe more conversations would be helpful, perhaps with someone outside their relationship who has knowledge on this subject.

  4. I have honestly have to say that I found the comments of Marylin and Shannon refreshing. I believe as Christians we are called to LOVE above all. Yes, the Bible does take a stance on homosexuality, but we need to be so careful how we react to this issue, because it involves people, and how they see themselves and their identity. This topic is very complex, and there’s only so much we’ll be able to understand about it in this life. People who practice homosexuality are ALSO made in the image of God, and He also loves them like crazy!
    Frankly, the patronizing attitude of the man in the first call did not sit well with me. Instead of trying to understand where his girlfriend was coming from, he reacted,took offense and labeled her defiant. not cool.

  5. Matt, it is not “who you are to say” – you have to look at what God’s word says. If we are going to segregate the sin of homosexuality then let’s allow the others too. Like you this issue cuts deep for me. For one, I grew up without a father and my heart goes out to the children who will lack one of the parents (the ones that have two mommies or two daddies). The absent of my father impacted decisions I made into my adulthood unbeknownst to me. So there is nothing GAY about being GAY. The Lord is not going to allow someone to live in sin and be happy. No matter how “happy” they look on the outside, I guarantee they are torn up on the inside.

    • Well said MJ. And the same goes for ANY sin we are involved in. Bible describes sin as breaking, or transgression, of God’s law (1 John 3:4). Also defined as disobedience or rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7), as well as independence from God. The original translation means “to miss the mark” of God’s holy standard of righteousness.

      Right .. & no one can do that perfectly .. except Jesus & why He died for us. Personally, I do not struggle in this area, nor drinking/drugs, but we all struggle in some area, and mine happens to be gluttony. I had to ask myself: what am I hungry for really? When Jesus was tempted in his 40 days in wilderness, he said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” quoting Deuteronomy 8:1-3. I exchange my hunger for more & more food with running to the Word .. and I’m not only filled, but fulfilled.

    • MJ…I understand fully well this is a sensitive and divisive topic and my intention is not to bicker about the political aspects of this.

      I have a dear friend, one of his daughter is gay and other is a transgender. I can’t even imagine the angst, teasing and discrimination that these two have already gone thru their life. One of them is 35 year old, and other is in early 20’s. To tell the gay child that she is living in sin would be cruel, even if it is said in a loving caring way. If homosexuality is a sin, then should the 35 year old gay daughter live alone for the rest of her life. There is no way that her mind can be molded to feel attraction for a man, just like you and me will never be attracted to another individual of our own gender. Telling them they are living in sin and their behavior is abhorrent to god is denying their very identity. That would be a very cruel thing to do. I have no problem saying to a murderer, cheater, molester that what they have done is a sin. I cannot say in good conscience say the same to a gay or lesbian kid.

      What about the transgender kid, how are we Christians going to respond to the choices he is going to make. Is he sinning too? Sometimes I feel that the reason we Christians (myself included) take a stand against something like homosexuality is because we do not struggle with it.

  6. It seems to me the first caller needs to get to know her better. What are the reasons for her not believing what the pastor said. If you are thinking of sex, I agree homosexuality is wrong. Some same-sex people want to be married for other reasons, like being on the health insurance. And is her defiance against what was said? or against caller’s (Steve) paternal attitude toward her? This alone is annoying to me, as pointed out by Marilyn. A paternal attitude from a another seems controlling and condescending to me, and would send me running. She is probably more not caring of his attitude, not what God says.

  7. Matt I am sorry for how close to home this hits. I am a former drug addict. I chose drugs as a numbing agent just like some choose gluttony. And I to am a Christian and I have a child who is gay. She accepted Jesus many years ago during a very dark time in her life.
    I knew drugs were illegal, wrong, and yes a sin. I needed to let them go completely. Oneness with God through Jesus became more important to me than the drugs and I was delivered 3 years AFTER salvation. It has now been 18 years. My daughter has chosen a life of celibacy. It was not easy but one decision she made completely on her own. Because her oneness with God through Christ became more important. And her struggle has led to a life of complete contentment these past 5 years.
    Believe me those two young women you talk about are well aware of their sins. And they do not need you to say anything. Just be loving and pray for them.
    Jesus saves and He is LOVE.
    Bless you on your journey of walking in LOVE!

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