Last week the current president of the Southern Baptist Convention, along with several former SBC presidents, issued a statement regarding their position on the issue of gay marriage. In doing so they left no doubt as to where they stand on the issue, or as to what they expect of their 16 million members.
“What the Bible says about marriage is clear, definitive and unchanging. We affirm biblical, traditional, natural marriage as the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. The Scriptures’ teaching on marriage is not negotiable. We stake our lives upon the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus.
Consequently, we will not accept, nor adhere to, any legal redefinition of marriage issued by any political or judicial body including the United States Supreme Court. We will not recognize same-sex “marriages”, our churches will not host same-sex ceremonies, and we will not perform such ceremonies.”
This is one of the things that Baptists do quite well. I grew up Baptist. Most of my relatives are Baptists. I know what Baptists are capable of accomplishing when they mean business. They are good at evangelism. They are good at educating. They are very good at organizing and communicating with their membership and the public as they did last week in Ohio.
When I went to the Winter Bible Seminar at Rhema Church in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma back in February Pastor Ken spoke on this same issue. He said that ministers need to be ready to deal with this issue, and stay true to the Word of God. While he was just as clear about his position on gay marriage, Charismatics have never been as organized or as eloquent in such matters.
As was mentioned in their joint press conference, there is more at stake in this issue than the definition of marriage. This is also about freedom of religion. The government has no right to tell churches how to conduct their business, and the SBC is prepared to do battle with the powers that be on the grounds of both the Bible and the U.S. Constitution.
Kudos to these courageous men who took a stand last week, and who have been taking a stand for many years. As you can see from the videos below, they’re not the first religious organization to take such a stand, but they are no doubt the biggest. Let’s all pray for them and the SBC as they go forward.