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Christian Leaders React to the Signing of the Respect for Marriage Act Into Law

“With all due respect Mr. President, today is NOT a good day,” said evangelist Greg Stier in response to a tweet from the president celebrating the new law. “Although Jesus commanded us, as his followers, to love everyone no matter what their choices or lifestyle, he made it clear that God created marriage to be between one man and one woman for one lifetime.”

“Marriage is an institution that cannot be defined by the government. God has intentionally established it as a life-long, covenantal union between one man and one woman for the purpose of human flourishing,” said Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission president Brent Leatherwood. “Unfortunately, now that this act has become law, more people will be led astray and deceived by the false promises of the sexual revolution…We are prepared to meet these challenges and continue our advocacy to ensure that people of faith are able to hold to their most fundamental beliefs about marriage and sexuality in the public square.”

Worship leader Sean Feucht tweeted, “Now that the White House has used the gay marriage bill to promote drag queens and the mutilation of children, what do the ‘Christians’ and ‘conservatives’ and 12 GOP senators who voted for this have to say?”

Notably, just as not all Republicans opposed the bill’s passing, neither did all prominent Christian voices. For example, political commentator David French wrote, “Outside of the most hard-core integralists or dominionists, there is broad and wise consensus that importing divine standards whole cloth into civil law can be a recipe for division, oppression, and ultimate harm to the church itself.”

Emphasizing the distinction between “covenantal marriage,” which is defined in scripture as a lifelong union between one man and one woman, and civil marriage, which is a contractual agreement between two parties that can be broken at will, French also argued, “Millions of Americans have formed families and live their lives in deep reliance on Obergefell being good law. It would be profoundly disruptive and unjust to rip out the legal superstructure around which they’ve ordered their lives…I don’t want my gay friends and neighbors to live in fear that the law might tear their families apart.”

French further stated that he supports the law not “because I’m backing down one inch from Christian orthodoxy, but rather because it represents the best compromise I’ve seen yet that protects the rights and dignity of all Americans.”

French was met with considerable backlash, in the form of myriad tweets and multiple full length articles.

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Deep disagreement notwithstanding, American Christians are coming to grips with the reality that same-sex marriage will continue to be the law of the land, regardless of whether SCOTUS reconsiders Obergefell.