PA Pastors Network Conference Call with Jeff Mateer 6-2-15

Attorney Jeff Mateer with Liberty Institute, is the guest on this PA Pastors Network conference call discussing the upcoming Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage.  He answers the following questions:

  • What are the possible and probable rulings coming from the Court?
  • What are the implications for pastors and churches from a ruling imposing a redefinition of marriage?
  • What can pastors and churches be doing today to prepare for an adverse ruling?

Judges, Hubris, and Same-Sex Marriage

By Dennis Prager

In 2006, 57 percent of Virginia’s voters voted to amend their state’s constitution to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Last week, U.S. District Judge Arenda Wright Allen ruled the amendment unconstitutional.

In 2004, 76 percent of Oklahoma’s voters voted to amend their state’s constitution to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. On Jan. 14, 2014, U.S. District Judge Terence Kern ruled the amendment unconstitutional.

In 2004, 66 percent of Utah’s electorate voted to amend their state’s constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman. On Dec. 20, 2013, U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby ruled the amendment unconstitutional.

In 2004, 75 percent of Kentucky’s voters amended their state’s constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman. On Feb. 12, 2014, U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II “struck down part of the state ban that he wrote treated ‘gay and lesbian persons differently in a way that demeans them'” (Washington Post).

In 2008, 52 percent of California’s voters amended their state’s constitution to define marriage as between a man and woman. On August 4, 2010, U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker ruled that vote unconstitutional.

There is no doubt that federal judges will continue to do this throughout the country. Even the vote of 81 percent of Alabama voters will count for nothing to some federal judge.

Society may no longer define marriage in the only way marriage has ever been defined in the annals of recorded history. Many societies allowed polygamy, many allowed child marriages, some allowed marriage within families; but none in thousands of years defined marriage as the union of people of the same sex.

None of this matters to these judges or to all those who seek to re-define marriage and can’t convince a majority of their fellow citizens to agree.

For them, it is identical to ruling that laws that banned interracial marriages were unconstitutional. But that argument is utterly flawed. First, the analogy is false because there is no difference between black people and white people, while there are enormous differences between males and females. Second, no great moral tradition or thinking ever forbade interracial marriages (inter-religious marriages were sometimes forbidden). Moses, for example, married a black woman, and neither the Bible nor God hinted that it was wrong.

Some conclusions:

Proponents of same-sex marriage regularly label opponents “radical” and “extremist.” However, given that no society in thousands of years has allowed same-sex marriage, it is, by definition, the proponents of same-sex marriage whose position is radical and extreme. You cannot re-define marriage in a more radical way than allowing members of the same sex to marry. You can argue that is the moral thing to do. But you cannot argue that is it not radical.

All these judges have a hubris that is simply breathtaking. They not only know that they read the Constitution more accurately than the vast majority of the residents of many of America’s states, but they are also entirely comfortable with forcing great majorities of Americans to accept this new definition of marriage.

That it is conceit rather than legal reasoning is easily shown when one peruses the opinions of these judges.

I will cite only Judge Vaughn Walker as an example:

Walker: “Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license.”

“No rational basis”? This is hubris. What he is stating is that for all of Western history — and contemporaneous non-Western history — there has not been a rational basis for defining marriage as the union of a man a woman. Vaughn Walker is convinced that he thinks more rationally than every moral leader and thinker in history, not one of whom advocated same-sex marriage. Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, the Enlightenment — all were irrational regarding same-sex marriage, according to Judge Walker.

In Judge Walker’s mind, it is irrational, just to cite one example, to prefer that men and women form families in order to provide children with a mother and a father.

Walker: “Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite sex couples are superior to same-sex couples.”

Yes, without in any way reducing the worth or the decency of any gay human being or dismissing the depth of same-sex love, California, like the rest of the world, has indeed believed in the superiority of man-woman unions. Not in the superiority of straight men and women as people: The gay human being is created in God’s image every bit as much as the straight human being, and there are gays who have led vastly more moral lives than many straights. But regarding how the family — the building block of society — should be constituted, the civilized world has always believed that it should be based on a married mother and father.

Society has also believed in the superiority of mother-father families to single-parent families. And that, too, never meant that every married person is inherently superior to every single person.

Walker: “Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis.”

This is another example of the lack of serious thought — as opposed to serious passion — that underlies the movement to redefine marriage. If American society has a “constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis,” then there is no plausible argument for denying polygamous relationships, or brothers and sisters, or parents and adult children, the right to marry.

On the matter of same-sex marriage, mass passions and coercive judges are winning. Above all, hubris is winning. That is why proponents always assert that they are “on the right side of history.”

But history is very long. Our grandchildren, or their grandchildren, will judge whether this is true. The Left since Marx has asserted that every one of their radical positions — such as the demise of capitalism — is on the right side of history. Virtually none turned out to be.

The State of Parental Rights in America

Parental rights are under assault like never before in the history of this country.

In light of the assault of parental rights by the state of Texas in taking 465 children in El Dorado, Texas in the Summer of 2008 (The largest seizure of children in American history) or the serious possibility of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child being ratified by the current administration.

What does the Bible say about the jurisdiction of the parent vis-a-vis the state?

In this lecture, attorney Don Hart addresses the biblical and Constitutional issues every parent needs to understand in light of the perilous state of parental rights in our time.

Vision Forum Films

Running Time 80 Minutes

The Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview

Through the proclamation of truth, leadership training and collaboration with like-minded organizations, The Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview seeks to build and resource a movement of Christians committed to living and defending the Christian worldview. Founded by Chuck Colson.

We work with Christians and Christian organization across the denominational spectrum to advance the Kingdom of God, focusing on the critical issues of our day, such as the sanctity of human life, the defense of marriage, the protection of religious liberty, and the restoration of virtue and ethics to public life.

 

Pennsylvania Family Institute

Their mission is to strengthen families by preserving the traditional, foundational principles and values essential for the well-being of society.

They are a research and education organization devoted to restoring these values to our state and nation.

They produce policy reports, promote responsible citizenship and work to promote unity among pro-family groups.

 

Liberty Counsel

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit litigation, education, and policy organizations dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the rights of the family.

Liberty Counsel has hundreds of advocates around the world.

Patriot Christians should unite as individuals and as a church as partners in the fight to preserve our God-given rights and freedoms.

 

Family Research Council

Since 1983, Family Research Council (FRC) has advanced faith, family and freedom in public policy and the culture from a Christian worldview.

FRC’s team of seasoned experts promotes these core values through policy research, public education on Capitol Hill and in the media, and grassroots mobilization.

We review legislation, meet with policymakers, publish books and pamphlets, build coalitions, testify before Congress, and maintain a powerful presence online and in the print and broadcast media.

Through our outreach to pastors, we equip churches to transform the culture.

Marriage: Forgiving and Forbearing

Watch entire message here.

Presented by John Piper.

The Nicene Council

Running Time 54 Minutes

Lifting the Veil of Polygamy

Watch entire documentary here.

What does polygamy have to do with Mormonism?
Who is living true Mormonism, Gordon Hinckley or Warren Jeffs?

A  feature-length documentary on Mormon polygamy.

Living Hope Ministries
The Nicene Council

Running Time 83 Minutes

Leading as a Husband & Father

Watch entire sermon here.

The church is suffering from a lack of leadership. Not leadership as the world defines it—there are plenty of titles to go around. What the church is missing, what it most desperately needs, is genuine, biblical leadership.

The hot button questions among believers today center on biblical leadership. What does it look like? More importantly, how can we cultivate it in ourselves and then apply it to our churches, our jobs, and our families?

By Voddie Baucham

The Master’s College Truth & Life Conf. 2011
The Nicene Council

Running Time 55 Minutes