What for ages was condemned as immoral, now has moved to the center of America's national life, and it's influence is growing.
It was just part of the "celebration" of the one-year anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's imposition of "gay marriage" on the country.
Major corporations such as American Express are joining the tribute by launching well-funded "pride" advertising campaigns that will run in cities nationwide.
Polls also suggest support for same-sex marriage is increasing one year after the 5-4 Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges.
Yet many Christian leaders and experts on the topic see the anniversary as a reason to mourn rather than celebrate.
Messianic rabbi Jonathan Cahn, whose powerful warning to the Supreme Court against legalizing same-sex marriage went viral last year, suggested America is tempting destruction by openly defying God's laws.
‘Ground shifting event'
"The striking down of the biblical and historic definition of marriage was a ground shifting event, the repercussions of which cannot be overstated," Rabbi Cahn told WND. "It happened in the midst of the year of Shemitah. Shemitah means ‘the fall.' It was in another year of Shemitah, 1973, when another major fall took place, the legalizing of abortion. The Shemitah of 2015 saw a fall no less momentous."
Cahn is best known as the author of the bestselling "The Harbinger," which describes a pattern nations follow when they fall away from God. Cahn said America is now following the pattern.
"Since before 9/11, I had expected this to happen,' he said. "So it wasn't surprising that it happened, but no less shocking. Unfortunately, America is following the template of ‘The Harbinger,' the progression of a nation that once knew God, [moved] away from God, and to judgment – the template of a nation [that] rejected the warnings of God and the call to repentance, and growing instead increasingly defiant and apostate. The ruling, in many ways, was a sealing of America's defiance of God and His ways.
"In ‘The Harbinger,' I note the warning given to America on its first day as a constituted nation, the warning given by its first president, George Washington: ‘The propitious smiles of heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which heaven itself hath ordained.' If any act constituted America's disregarding of the eternal rules of order and right which heaven has ordained – it was the act of striking down the order of God in the institution of marriage."
He warned Christians the imposition of same-sex marriage is a "desecration" tempting judgment.
"There is a pattern in the Bible," he said. "The act of desecration often precedes the coming of judgment. The vessel of marriage is sacred. To take that vessel and use it for purposes other than those for which God created and sanctified it, to use it against the purposes of God, is, by definition, an act of desecration. We must thus realize the critical moment in which we live."
WND Managing Editor David Kupelian, author of "The Marketing of Evil" and the more recent "The Snapping of the American Mind," said "gay marriage" is a critical milestone because it shows the ability of the radical left to utterly redefine morality.
"Same-sex marriage seems so familiar to us all now, so warmly accepted and celebrated – and of course, since the Supreme Court's decision, it's considered ‘the law of the land,'" he explained. "But consider that just a few short years ago, the idea of two men, or two women, marrying each other was regarded universally as not merely bizarre, but insane. Every culture, every nation, every religion in the world, and throughout every era of history, understood that two men marrying each other was off-the-charts weird – and wrong.
‘Politically motivated and equally horrendous'
"The U.S. Supreme Court – which more than four decades ago imposed unfettered abortion-on-demand on America, based on a fraudulent lawsuit, and which has given us over 50 million dead babies – made another grievous, politically motivated and equally horrendous decision in imposing same-sex marriage on a once-Christian nation."
Kupelian warned Christians not to assume homosexual activists will be satisfied now that "gay marriage" has been imposed on the country. Indeed, he suggested the radical left will go even farther.
"Many thought same-sex marriage would be the crowning achievement of the LGBT movement and that the juggernaut would finally wind down," he said sadly. "But then, no sooner did the Supreme Court bless homosexual marriages, than the focus shifted to ‘transgender rights.' Time magazine dubbed transgender rights ‘America's next civil rights frontier,' and Vice President Joe Biden likewise proclaimed transgender discrimination ‘the civil rights issue of our time.'
"The secret of this never-ending, always-expanding revolutionary movement is that it has the full support of the far left. Not because the left loves homosexuals, bisexuals and transsexuals for themselves, but because finally the left has found its spear tip, with which – as it has dreamed of doing for decades – it can effectively attack, wound, marginalize, demonize, and criminalize its greatest enemy: the Christian religion."
Paul Kengor, a professor who chronicled the long history of how the left sabotaged the traditional family in his book "Takedown," agreed with Kupelian that the left is just getting started when it comes to redefining the family and standards of morality.
"The decision to impose same-sex marriage has not only confirmed our worst fears of the nature-redefining left but accelerated them," he told WND. "The angry, unhinged, hateful, emotional, nature-redefining left has responded to the Obergefell decision with an emboldened militancy to redefine everything and anything that stands in the way of their fundamental transformation. Secular ‘progressives,' liberals, socialists, communists, and the wider leftist front leapt straight from redefining marriage to further redefining sexuality and gender in their own image."
How did we get here? The horrifying history of how the Left waged war on the family and imposed "gay marriage" on the nation. "Takedown" by Paul Kengor Available now at the WND Superstore.
Kengor said that far from being satisfied, activists will grow even more bizarre in their claims about newly invented identities.
"As I write, the ‘LGBTQ' movement, which was once the ‘LGBT' movement and, prior to that, the ‘gay rights' movement, is now the ‘LGBTQIA' movement, and the New York City council now recognizes 31 different forms of ‘gender' options among city employees," Kengor said, shaking his head. "We've rapidly gone from a boy who wants to be a girl (the Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner model) to people claiming to be everything from ‘androgynous' to ‘two-spirit.' You can define your own gender now, just as you can define your own marriage. The options are literally limitless."
Kengor suggested the driving motivation behind the left is the dream of fundamentally transforming human nature. And he warned Christians not to underestimate their ruthlessness or their desire to purge dissidents.
"Obergefell signaled to the left that its project of the transformation of human nature is at last at hand," he said. "Liberals started back in January 1973 with Roe v. Wade, redefining life in the womb as not a life (if the aborting mother says so), and they're now redefining everything from marriage to sexuality to gender. They likewise now have no hesitation whatsoever about firing, suing, shutting down, imprisoning, picketing, boycotting, debasing, demonizing, dehumanizing, destroying, and generally vilifying any poor soul who opposes their redefining of human nature – especially those vile, cretin Christians. There will be no tolerance and no diversity for those evil people.
‘Like a shot of heroin'
"Obergefell was like a shot of heroin in the leftist vein. Leftists are fueled and fired up. They feel that nothing can stop them now. For people who thought that the left would be happy and satisfied with Obergefell, fat chance," he said.
Michael Brown, an evangelist, talk show host and author who has written a number of books on Christianity and homosexuality including the recent "Outlasting The Gay Revolution," says Christians have been proven right about the dire effects of nationwide homosexual marriage.
"What has happened over the last year is exactly what we were expecting," he said. "There is an increased animosity to those of us who do not recognize the validity of same-sex ‘marriage,' to the point that we are now officially codified as bigots. There is an increased pressure to recognize same-sex ‘marriage,' with the jailing of Kim Davis being a case in point. The Obama administration has pushed the overall agenda even farther, especially in our schools, and the threat to our religious liberties continues to increase.
"Of course, none of us were expecting the sky to fall and America to collapse overnight with the redefining of marriage, but we can already see the beginning of the long-term ripple effect. And not surprisingly, others, like polyamorists and polygamists, are calling for further marital redefinitions."
However, Brown believes there is a hope for a Christian revival which could see the moral collapse of the culture reversed.
"I see that as a very real possibility, but one that could only be sustained on the heels of a gospel-based awakening, leading to a moral and cultural revolution," he said. "Despite our large numbers, Christians are being increasingly marginalized and intimidated, as those who came out of the closet now want to put us in the closet. Now is the time for us to say, ‘We are not going in the closet!' Now is the time to take a stand for what is right and best for our country and our families, while still walking in Christian love to those who identify as LGBT.
"And if we don't see immediate, positive change in the cultural landscape (or if things get worse and worse), we remind ourselves that the world has always been fallen and broken, and our role and witness remains the same," he said.
Carl Gallups, a prominent minister and talk show host, warned of Christian persecution in his latest book, "Be Thou Prepared." Like Brown, he said Christians need to spark a revival if they hope to see a real change.
"The LGBT movement has the complete support of most the media, the entertainment industry, public education officials and many law makers around the nation," he said. It is this power that gives the LGBT the ever-increasing lust for power and control over the rest of us. Less than 2 percent of the population is driving the social agenda for the rest of the nation.
"The fact of the matter is that we are in a great spiritual battle. America is the largest Christian nation the planet has ever known. Yet, we are losing our ‘saltiness,' we are letting our ‘light' grow dim. Jesus said when that happens, God's people would be ‘trampled underfoot,' and darkness would burst forth as the rule of the day. In fact, some of the very latest research indicates that as much as 90 percent of America's conservative pastors don't deal with controversial issues such as ‘gay marriage' or abortion at all – for fear of ‘offending' members and losing favor with the world. We may be on the brink of watching both of those things happen – even in the United States of America. I pray the Lord will allow us time to repent and straighten out the wrongs we have committed."
Cahn suggested the celebrations of "gay marriage" by the federal government and major corporations should help Christians understand they are living in what is essentially occupied territory.
"It is written in Isaiah, ‘Woe to those who call evil good and good evil,'" Cahn said. "The principle is, that as a civilization calls what is evil good, it will likewise call what is good evil. So every move America has made to legitimize sin has been matched by an equal move to delegitimize righteousness and those who hold true to God's word. Every action taken to celebrate evil, has been matched by another to vilify the good. And we are only at the beginning."
However, like Brown, Gallups and others, Cahn suggested this spiritual trial by fire could motivate American Christians to make a deeper commitment to their faith.
"The Supreme Court decision won't be reversed unless America's free fall from God is reversed," Cahn said. "And that will take either a revival or a calamitous event – or both. Barring that, Christians need to realize that they are not only living in a post-Christian civilization, but an increasingly anti-Christian civilization. True Christianity is moving from a cultural faith to a countercultural one – from a status quo faith, to a prophetic one.
"This is not necessarily bad news – as it is this very phenomenon that will purify those who will stand, and restore to the church, to those who stand strong, the dynamics of the Book of Acts. If we sing ‘These are the days of Elijah' then it is time we start becoming the Elijahs of the day."
How did we get here? The horrifying history of how the left waged war on the family and imposed "gay marriage" on the nation. "Takedown" by Paul Kengor Available now at the WND Superstore.