“We will not capitulate on marriage because biblical authority requires that we cannot.”
American evangelical leaders will “not capitulate” in the fight over same-sex marriage, and have pledged to work through the democratic process to rebuild the culture of marriage. On 26 June 2015 the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission released a statement endorsed by over 100 leading clergy, scholars, writers and civic leaders denouncing the US Supreme Court ruling mandating the states accept gay marriage.
“Here We Stand: An Evangelical Declaration on Marriage” states: “As evangelical Christians, we dissent from the court’s ruling that redefines marriage. The state did not create the family, and should not try to recreate the family in its own image.”
“We will not capitulate on marriage because biblical authority requires that we cannot. The Supreme Court’s actions pose incalculable risks to an already volatile social fabric by alienating those whose beliefs about marriage are motivated by deep biblical convictions and concern for the common good,” the statement prepared by the ERLC’s president Russell Moore (pictured) said.”
The statement recommends six points of engagement by the church:
• Respect and pray for our governing authorities even as we work through the democratic process to rebuild a culture of marriage (Rom. 13:1-7);
• teach the truth about biblical marriage in a way that brings healing to a sexually broken culture;
• affirm the biblical mandate that all persons, including LGBT persons, are created in the image of God and deserve dignity and respect;
• love our neighbors regardless of whatever disagreements arise as a result of conflicting beliefs about marriage;
• live respectfully and civilly alongside those who may disagree with us for the sake of the common good;
• cultivate a common culture of religious liberty that allows the freedom to live and believe differently to prosper.
The statement pledges to “stand steadfastly, faithfully witnessing to the biblical teaching that marriage is the chief cornerstone of society, designed to unite men, women and children.”
“We promise to proclaim and live this truth at all costs, with convictions that are communicated with kindness and love.”
Among the early signers of the statement with Dr. Moore were Anglicans JI Packer of Regent University and the Rev. Dr. Tory Baucum of Truro Parish; Jim Daly, President, Focus on the Family; David Jeremiah, Senior Pastor, Shadow Mountain Community Church; Nancy Leigh DeMoss, Author, Host of Revive Our Hearts; Ron Sider, Senior Distinguished Professor of Theology, Palmer Seminary at Eastern University; Tony Evans, Senior Pastor, Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship; Samuel Rodriguez, President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference; Karen Swallow Prior, Professor of English, Liberty University; Gabriel Salguero, President, National Latino Evangelical Coalition; Richard Mouw, Professor of Faith and Public Life, Fuller Theological Seminary; Richard Land, President, Southern Evangelical Seminary; and the Rev. John Bradosky, Presiding Bishop, North American Lutheran Church.