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What Does the SCOTUS Decision Mean?

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In a surprising move announced this morning, the United States Supreme Court refused to hear the appeal of five separate decisions in which judges ruled that Constitutional Amendments defining marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman are unconstitutional.

The Supreme Court did not affirm the lower court decisions, but by virtue of not hearing the appeal, the decisions from Virginia, Oklahoma, Utah, Wisconsin and Indiana will stand.

This decision, however, has implications beyond those five states.

The federal court system is broken up into 11 circuits. A decision from one state will apply to all states in that circuit. Therefore, by allowing the decisions from these states to stand the Supreme Court has effectively struck down marriage laws in North Carolina, West Virginia, South Carolina, Wyoming, Kansas and Colorado as well.

As a result, the number of states now recognizing same-sex “marriage” could be as high as thirty.

While proponents of natural marriage are disappointed because it redefines marriage in other states, proponents of redefining marriage had hoped the Supreme Court would take up the issue and rule in their favor.

No one is entirely pleased.

Still, the decision is surprising because the Supreme Court had previously granted a stay (delay in implementation of the ruling) of the lower court decision pending a final outcome.

It is unusual for the Supreme Court to grant a stay but then refuse to hear the appeal.

Regardless, by refusing to hear the appeal, the stay will expire and marriage to be redefined by default.

The decision is troubling because it furthers a trend of unelected bodies overturning the will of the people.

However, this is certainly not the final word on this subject either in the courts or in the culture.

In the courts, there are several other cases working their way up through the system. The Supreme Court could be waiting for one of those cases to delay their final decision a couple of years.

Culturally, the conversation over this issue is just getting started. In one sense, proponents of redefining marriage are just finishing their opening argument. Time will afford the chance for a rebuttal.

While it is critical that we respond to the confusion over marriage, gender, and the family right now, time is our greatest ally.

Proponents of same-sex “marriage” insist that as people get to know same-sex couples, we will all come to see that same-sex relationships are no different. In reality, those closest to same-sex relationships will be the greatest advocates for natural marriage a generation from now.

In thirty years, it is the children of same-sex relationships who will be arguing most forcefully on our behalf. That is not because those children will hate the same-sex couples who raised them but because they will be immune to the argument that the only possible reason to support natural marriage is because you hate gay people. They will also have a perspective that those who deal only in theory and never in practice will have no response for.

A mother or father cannot be removed from the eco-system of the family without harming it. I cannot make decisions based on my belief that my own personal happiness is the greatest good without hurting myself and others.

We may find reality inconvenient but reality did not ask for our opinion.

As Cicero once wrote, “Time obliterates the fictions of opinion and confirms the decisions of nature.”

The Supreme Court’s decision is unfortunate, but this is all far from over.

The best response is vigilance.

Of course with the redefinition of marriage comes lawsuits and other forms of harassment directed at people who believe in natural marriage.

But if you we want to protect our freedoms from those who would take them in the name of tolerance and diversity, we have to know which candidates share our perspective. And we have to actually go to the trouble of supporting those who share our perspective with our vote.

And then make sure you get your friends and family to do the same. Remember, with our new Vote Finder tool, you can know if your friends and family have voted before the election is over. So use the tool to find 10 friends and family members who share your perspective and make sure they turn in their ballot.

A few more votes in the right places from the right people will be the difference between grandmas being sued because of their beliefs about marriage and people being free.

Yes, it’s easy to be frustrated about some of these developments. But doing something about it is far more fulfilling.

10 replies
  1. Greg Logan
    Greg Logan says:

    Joseph

    I am lost – why is the church focusing on judging the world? God specifically stated that this was His domain (ICor5:12, 13). Who was it that tried to usurp God’s domain?? Is that really who you want to emulate?

    Why are you focusing on a state sanctioned legal entities? What does that have to do with Christ? with the Kingdom of God?

    Your focus is very distinct from the focus we are called to as disciples of Jesus Christ. Scripture NEVER provides examples of the kind of behavior that you are engaged in – but directs

    By calling people in the name of Christ to follow you – even as implicit as it may be, you are leading people in a manner contrary to the calling of Christ.

    Sincerely,

    Greg

    Reply
    • Joseph Backholm
      Joseph Backholm says:

      I’m not sure what you mean by judging. If you mean you think critical thought is now scriptural, I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree.

      As to God’s kingdom, if we are to pray, as Jesus instructs us to, that God’s kingdom will come to earth as it is in heaven, His kingdom can’t come to earth if we are ordering ourselves in ways that are inconsistent with His truth. The idea that marriage is a relationship between two men is not consistent with His truth. So…I guess that’s one thing it has to do with His kingdom.

      As to scripture not giving examples of people doing what I am engaged in, I guess I’d have to figure out what you think I am engaged in to know whether I agree or disagree.

      But what I think I am engaged in is trying to encourage public policy that is consistent with what is true. Moses, Daniel, John the Baptist, and Paul all did that. So did MLK, William Wilberforce, Hariet Tubman, and many, many, many more. Folks doing similarly ended slavery, child sacrifice, the practice of burning women on the funeral pyres of their husbands.

      Reply
  2. Kevin S
    Kevin S says:

    Why is striking down a ban seen as requiring recognition? Isn’t it only the ban that is removed? Why should a state with a stricken ban have any higher a mandate than one that never had a ban?

    Reply
  3. Bob Struble
    Bob Struble says:

    Very optimistic take on a body blow to our Judeo-Christian heritage. Vigilance? That’s your response? How about resistance?

    Reply
  4. TXKeith
    TXKeith says:

    Chief Justice Roberts has been bought and paid for, that is overwhelmingly evident. More than the eventual realization of the mistake made by redefining nature, we will ultimately learn of the collusion between supposedly separate and independent branches of government which should be acting as a check against this abuse of federal power.

    Reply
    • KECrider
      KECrider says:

      God loves everyone. Those who have chosen to be his children and those who don’t want anything to do with God. He has given those who choose fo follow him authority over the earth,the flesh and the devil. The earth belongs to GOD and, those who belong to him. God Almighty is about to bring closer to all this mess thats going on in the earth. We who have chosen to follow God through His Son Jesus the Christ by the leadership of the Holy Spirit will be held responsible For putting the devil under our feet and take authority over the earth. All of those who have chosen to reject God and His Authority will go down with the devil and all of his filth. No matter what we think we know! Almighty God Will have the Last Word. I say I will be responsible and ready. Ready or not The KING JESUS IS COMEING VERY SOON. BE READY. EXCEPT JESUS AS YOUR LORD AND SAVIOR AND FOLLOW WHATEVER HE TELLS YOU TO DO. AMEN

      Reply

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