The orthodox Christian theology of Hadley Robinson

"From the Beginning": God's Design for Marriage

A Statement from the Anglican Church in North America

Introduction by Hadley Robinson

We all must thank and applaud the ACNA for its strong stance (posted below) that rejects this outrageous perversion from the Supreme Court.  Most churches, like those under the German Third Reich, have joined the stampede into wickedness – but not the ACNA.  We can only hope that they, including other orthodox churches here, will have the stomach for what is coming and will remain steadfast in opposing the Prince of this Age.

The ACNA statement that God created marriage for, among other things, the procreation of children is a refreshing reminder of the historical teaching of the Church and elementary biology.  The bedrock essentials of human origin and purpose given in chapter two of Genesis are referenced, defying the carnal delusion that sex is some mechanism by which selfish and lustful human beings can exploit one another.

The Supreme Court has made an unlawful ruling, as one of the Justices noted,  It is another coup d’état of our Constitution which grants the legislative power to an elected assembly of citizens, not to some unelected Court.

Those who rejoice in this lawlessness because it suits their agenda will themselves be subjected to lawlessness – the very thing they welcome at this time will be their own cruel and merciless judge at some later time.

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In any case, there is the fourth paragraph in the bishop’s statement: how did this orphan make its way into this otherwise courageous and timeless statement?

The Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is often summarized as, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16).  Because of his love, we love and care for all those who experience same-sex attraction. The Anglican Church in North America continues to welcome everyone to experience the transforming love of Jesus Christ.

How could such a venerable council mingle such bravely expressed truth with the man-oriented, mass-marketing techniques of modern American evangelists?

Flattering unrepentant sinners, including homosexuals, will not result in their being converted and saved.  Neither Jesus, Paul, nor Scripture itself flatters the unrepentant man.  Rather, lost men must repent and believe in Jesus Christ, the One whom God has raised from the dead.  This is the Biblical Gospel.

Furthermore, the bishops’ statement about God’s love and its objects based on John 3:16 is thinly stretched exegesis.  There are at least (7) distinct meanings of the Greek word rendered “world” in our English Bibles.  The particular meaning required by the context in John 3 is “some men of Israel, but not all”, rather than “all men of every tribe and every nation of all time”.  The latter reduces the love of God to an ineffectual emotion – the winsome Jesus begging men to come to Him.  It is a carnal appeal.

To solicit sinners to experience God’s love without first commanding them to repent and believe removes the offense of the Gospel.  Such a solicitation does not allow God’s work in the heart of the sinner who hears it.  A man does not repent and believe because someone tells him God loves him but because he has been born again by the Holy Spirit, as Jesus explained to Nicodemus.

It’s too late to make a change in the statement at this time.  But there will be plenty of opportunities in the future for the Church and her shepherds to confront the world with its sin (John 7:7) and only hope.  The bishops were brave to respond in the way they did.  Meanwhile, the heathen will continue to store up wrath against themselves for the Day of Judgment – we can be sure of that.

A Statement from the Anglican Church in North America

June 26, 2015

The Archbishop and Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America have received the recent ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States of America and are deeply grieved by the stark departure from God's revealed order. We are concerned for the inevitable results from this action to change the legal understanding of marriage and family life.

While this decision grieves us, God's truth and the goodness of the order established in creation have not been changed. The kingdom of God cannot be shaken. We pray with confidence that God will reveal his glory, love, goodness, and hope to the world through his Church as we seek to follow him in faith and obedience.

Jesus Christ teaches that God is the author of marriage from the beginning of time (Matthew 19:4-6). God's design for marriage has always involved a man and a woman: "a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh" (Genesis 2:24). These truths have ordered civilization for thousands of years. Where God's designs are followed in any society, including his designs for marriage and families, the result is the greatest possible blessing and abundance of life.

The Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is often summarized as, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16).  Because of his love, we love and care for all those who experience same-sex attraction. The Anglican Church in North America continues to welcome everyone to experience the transforming love of Jesus Christ.

Marriage is established by God for the procreation and raising of children and for the good of society. For this reason, governments have an interest in marriage and have delegated authority from God to protect and regulate it. But no court, no legislature and no local magistrate has the authority to redefine marriage and to impose this definition on their citizens.

The United States of America, so its founders believed and taught, is a nation under God whose citizens' fundamental rights are derived from the Creator. There is no right to a relationship which is contrary to the Creator's express design. We cannot accept the Supreme Court's decision purporting to find a fundamental right to same-sex "marriage" any more than we can accept its claim to have found a right to destroy human life in the womb. We will work with others to overturn this decision, and we pray that others will join with us in this effort.

Meeting this week in Vancouver, British Columbia, we are reminded that our Canadian members have been living under a similar legal standard for the last ten years. Their situation includes minimal legal protections for those who in good conscience cannot recognize this redefinition, and it is our prayer that stronger protections will be put into place and honored in the United States.

In the meantime, we shall continue to exercise our religious freedom to perform marriages for those who come for holy matrimony as defined by our Church. The Anglican Church in North America only authorizes and only performs marriages between one man and one woman. We respect the consciences of those clergy who may decline to perform marriages as agents of the state. We ask our churches to respect such decisions and help make arrangements to minister to those seeking to be married. We are also well aware that this ruling may create difficulties for our lay members and Christian institutions as they seek to be faithful in upholding God's design for marriage, and we will make every effort to find ways to support and stand with them.

The Church bears witness to the truth of God's Word and God's design of marriage (see attached statement on "Bearing Witness"). When government oversteps its rightful authority, "we must obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29).

Today there is no place for either triumphalism or despair, so we prayerfully and sincerely urge a spirit of charity by all. We speak out of a concern for the consequences that our people and our neighbors will suffer from an unjust and unwise decision by five justices of the Supreme Court. We call those justices to repentance, even as we echo Jesus' words, praying for God the Father to forgive them, for they know not what they have done.

We call our people to a season of prayer for marriage and offer the accompanying Litany and Prayer to guide us.

Unanimously adopted by the College of Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America.

June 26, 2015

For a copy of the full statement in PDF form please click here 

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