In a sad turn of events for those with a historical, Biblical, and eternal view of marriage and society, the U.S. Supreme Court decided on Friday, June 26, 2015 that there is a fundamental right to same-sex marriage. The opinion can be seen here.
I wanted to share Christian Legal Society’s media release (below) with you, where CLS recognizes the majority’s feeble acknowledgement of religious liberty. However, we believe the dissenters are right – a large battle for religious liberty is ahead, including a possible fight over tax exemptions.
As a first step, CLS is holding a “Church-Guidance” webinar, which will help churches think through these issues. The webinar is July 8, 2 pm EDT. Please sign up today and/or feel free to encourage your church leadership to sign up as well. Click here for more information. I will be presenting at this national webinar and have prepared a white paper that will be distributed to the participants.
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CLS MEDIA RELEASE
June 26, 2015
“The Supreme Court majority’s decision today creating a novel constitutional right to marriage between persons of the same sex was expected,” said David Nammo, executive director of the Christian Legal Society.
“CLS acknowledges the majority’s recognition that ‘the First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths.’ We hope that the justices mean what they say and will protect religious liberty for all Americans – especially those whose religious beliefs adhere to a traditional view of marriage.”
The Free Exercise of Religion protects the right of Americans to live lives of integrity and dignity according to their core religious convictions, even when those religious convictions are unfashionable and unpopular with legal and cultural elites. It is precisely the purpose of the First Amendment to protect Americans’ right to live according to those religious beliefs.
Heeding the warnings of Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Thomas and Alito, CLS will continue to respond and protect religious organizations and persons from those who may take this decision as liberty to be intolerant to those whose faith traditions disagree with same-sex marriage.
“As Chief Justice Roberts stated in his dissent, ‘Hard questions arise when people of faith exercise religion in ways that may be seen to conflict with the new right to same-sex marriage,’ and religious groups and organizations should understand that these questions will be hammered out court by court in many cases,” Nammo said.
The proponents of same-sex marriage have largely based their arguments on appeals to Americans’ traditional tolerance and fair-mindedness. Unfortunately, in recent months, the proponents of same-sex marriage have failed to extend tolerance and fair-mindedness to their fellow Americans whose religious beliefs differ from their own.
But today’s decision means it is now the turn of the proponents of same-sex marriage to practice the tolerance and fair-mindedness that they have preached for so long -- by respecting the constitutional right of their fellow Americans to live according to their sincere religious consciences.