Christian organizations across the country are expressing their disappointment following today’s ruling by the United States Supreme Court, which struck down key components of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) as unconstitutional.
As previously reported, the decision comes largely due to Justice Anthony Kennedy’s agreement with his liberal colleagues — Justices Ginsberg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan — forming a 5-4 majority opinion. Justices Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Alito dissented.
“The avowed purpose and practical effect of the law here in question are to impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma upon all who enter into same-sex marriages made lawful by the unquestioned authority of the States,” Kennedy wrote. “The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the state, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity.”
“DOMA’s principal effect is to identify and make unequal a subset of state-sanctioned marriages. It contrives to deprive some couples married under the laws of their State, but not others, of both rights and responsibilities, creating two contradictory marriage regimes within the same State,” he continued. “It also forces same-sex couples to live as married for the purpose of state law but unmarried for the purpose of federal law, thus diminishing the stability and predictability of basic personal relations the State has found it proper to acknowledge and protect.”
The ruling means that homosexuals in the nation will be entitled to federal benefits that had previously been denied, such as pension benefits and the ability to file joint tax returns as a couple. It does not, however, force states that currently ban homosexual “marriage” to recognize same-sex relationships.
While homosexual advocates cheered the court’s decision, Christians across the country stated that the ruling marked a sad day for America. Liberty Counsel of Lynchburg,Virginia said that the ruling is the Roe v. Wade of marriage.
“While today’s decision on DOMA did not redefine marriage, it has provided the foundation on which to do so,” it said. “Today’s decision is the equivalent of the 1972 contraception decision involving unmarried couples and the so-called right to privacy on which the 1973 abortion decision in Roe v. Wade was constructed. Today, the Supreme Court has damaged its image, lost legitimacy, and set in motion considerable harm to society and to the State of the Union.”
“Marriage predates government and civil authorities. No civil authority, including the Supreme Court, has the authority to redefine marriage. Marriage was not created by religion or government and is ontologically a union of one man and one woman,” the Christian legal organization continued. “For any court or civil authority to think it has the authority to redefine marriage is the height of hubris. Deconstructing marriage will hurt children and society.”
“The Supreme Court got it wrong in saying that a state that has redefined marriage can force that definition on the federal government,” said Austin Nimocks of the national legal organization Alliance Defending Freedom, which had submitted amicus briefs in the case. “The federal government should be able to define what marriage is for federal law just as states need to be able to define what marriage is for state law. Americans should be able to continue advancing the truth about marriage between a man and a woman and why it matters for children, civil society and limited government.”
Michael Marcavage of the Philadelphia-based evangelistic ministry Repent America called the ruling “an act of high treason against the holy, Most High God.”
“The reason why Christians fought to oppose attempts to redefine the Biblical institution of marriage is because we love God and our neighbor,” he said. “We love children and don’t want them to be raised in a nation that teaches them that it is permissible to live however one pleases. If God is not the standard of absolute truth, then who is?”
“Romans 13 declares that those in civil government are to be ministers of God for good, not evil,” Marcavage continued. “Despite the court’s ruling, it is not — and never will be — a marriage before God, but only a mirage.”
Rusty Thomas of Elijah Ministries in Waco, Texas likewise condemned the decision as being an offense against God.
“Our nation’s rulers keep poking their fingers in the eye of our holy God and they are going to find out the hard way that the Supreme Court is not supreme. There is a court above them, where every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,” he said. “This ruling is yet another nail pounded into the American coffin. All those who hate God love death (Proverbs 8:36).”
The New York Faith and Freedom Coalition in Newburgh, New York stated that while it was “disappointed” by the ruling, it is not giving up its fight for the protection of Biblical marriage.
“Our founders taught us that our Constitution is effective only for a moral society, ‘it is wholly inadequate for the governing of any other,'” said Executive Director Pastor Bill Banuchi. “We see this as a call to double our efforts to teach about the sanctity of authentic marriage, and the need to make God’s design for marriage and family, once again, the primary order for a peaceful and prosperous society. The next generation of Americans is depending on us.”
“The Supreme Court got it wrong on Roe v. Wade, and as restoration of truth has turned the hearts and minds of Americans to the pro-life position, so will it be with authentic marriage,” he added. “We are committed to the process.”
Joe Glover of Family Policy Network in Forest, Virginia agreed.
“[S]ome Christians may be tempted to despair over the increasingly difficult battle to uphold God’s truth in the culture,” he wrote in a statement. “There is already a real sense of anxiety over the potential consequences of the court’s rulings, with some Christians predicting the increased persecution of those who would speak the Word to a culture that hates God.”
“Even though our political leaders may reject Him and defy Him, God is the ultimate sovereign wherefrom all authority is derived,” Glover continued. “Even in the wake of such an offensive and immoral Supreme Court decision, the Christian’s primary duty has not changed. … [We] will continue to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost and unbelieving nation. We will do so on every battle front, including that of homosexuality.”