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Presbyterian Church (USA) upholds biblical morality against gay politics May 7, 2009

Posted by Daniel Downs in church, gay politics, news, politics.
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Leaders of the Presbyterian Church (USA) rejected a plan to allow the ordination of homosexuals in the denomination, voting instead to retain language calling for “fidelity within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman, or chastity in singleness.”

By April 27, a slight majority (89) of the denomination’s 173 local presbyteries had voted against the deletion of the language in the Book of Order, which sets forth guidelines on who is eligible for ordination. Interpreting this slight defeat as a near victory for gays would be a mistake. While 51% voted against eliminating the standard of sexual behavior, only 40% voted for it. A 9% percent margin is still a significant one.

Alan Wisdom, director of the Institute on Religion and Democracy’s Presbyterian Action committee, said the PCUSA has signaled its intention to remain in the mainstream of global Christianity.

“All traditional Christians can take encouragement that the Presbyterians have held the line on sexual morality,” Wisdom said in a news release. “They have stood against the cultural pressure to legitimize any relationship between ‘people who love one another.’

“They have maintained the Church’s historic teaching: that God’s provision for human sexuality is found in marriage — the ‘one flesh,’ lifelong, life-giving union of the two created sexes,” Wisdom said.

Wisdom noted that the latest vote marked the fourth time in 12 years that PCUSA presbyteries have voted on sexuality standards.

“Each time they have upheld ‘fidelity and chastity.’ If ever there were a case when the church had made up its mind on an issue, this is it,” he said.

Yet, the tragedy is that both a majority in the General Assembly and 40% of the presbyteries are so influenced by the politics of immorality that they seem blind to God’s opposition to it. Scripture is very clear about God hatred of all sexual immorality and its results. Consequently, it’s hard to imagine that so many professing Christians believe the antithetical lies. This is what their votes signal.

Sources: Baptist Press, May 1, 2009 and Institute on Religion and Democracy, April 27, 2009.

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