Has the Salt Lost It’s Flavor? A Look at the Church’s Yawning Response to the Redefinition of Marriage – Part 5

Having seen the hesitation in pastor-leaders to respond to the political redefinition of marriage in New York, offered some thoughts as to why that was the case, and explored the urgency of viewing this issue by, and for the sake of, the Gospel.  I turn now to some suggested steps forward.

At the outset, I must say that these are exactly as advertised: suggestions.  A pastor knows what he must do within his own context.  If a pastor is convicted in one way, I ask only that he consider my counsel in the spirit in which it is given.

We, at the Family Policy Council of West Virginia, ask only two things of the pastors who partner with us – whom we hold in the highest regard: (1) continue to preach the Gospel in its entirety and (2) let us know how we may serve you.  Theirs is such a high calling.  We simply wish to come along beside them in service.

That said, if counsel would be helpful to you as a pastor, or just as a church member, here are some suggestions:

1.  Preach the Gospel.

It may seem obvious, even redundant, but it has to be said.  Many of the culture-changing, socio-political issues facing us today are here because the church has forgotten (or rejected) the Gospel.  Preach it!  If you think you’ve said it enough, you haven’t.  Teach your followers the Gospel and make sure they know how to apply and articulate it to the world around them.  Use current events to apply the Gospel.

Using the issue of marriage as an example, explain how they can see the Gospel.  Teach them how this relationship mirrors the relationship between God and his church, his people.  Teach what Scripture teaches about the positive, appropriate design for sex, gender, and how each reflects the Creator and our abuse of it merits the wrath of God, exposing our great need for a Redeemer.  Preach the Gospel.

2.  Get in the public square.

How you do this, I do not know specifically for you, but somehow we need pastor-leaders to take the lead in explaining the Gospel response to the political redefinition of marriage beyond the four-walls of your church.

Why?  If our pastor-leaders will not at the least point their flock in the right direction, those in the pews will be much less inclined to obey the Biblical mandate to steward the government entrusted to their care.

Many pastors can make use of social media, blogs, and podcasts.  That’s a good start.  But, declare what is your territory and look for ways to speak the Gospel within it.  Some can speak in public places.  Others can speak just to a brother.  Perhaps some can write to the newspaper, while others might pick up the phone and call a lawmaker.  Whatever it is, pastors, please do so.

Pastors, there is – for the moment – no legal obstacle in place preventing you from speaking directly to politicians, privately, publicly, or in the pulpit or, more importantly, from addressing your parishioners on political issues.

Proclaiming the Gospel throughout society is the very essence of your calling as a pastor.  We can easily see how the pastor-leaders who responded to Rob Bell managed to elevate that discussion such that it pervaded the public conscience.  Why not do the same with another core Biblical issue?

3.  Encourage your followers to submit to government.

I have read a lot of books and heard a lot of sermons of Christians and Politics.  All of them demand Christians obey Paul and Peter’s instructions to submit to government.  Very, very few explain what it means to “submit.”  It does not mean to sit idly and quietly by while the government does what it will do.  How many times have I heard that “submit” means that if Paul required the Roman Christians to submit to Nero, then we ought to submit (I.e., acquiesce) to this government.

This is not Nero’s Rome.  In this country, we the people are the government.  Our elected officials serve us, we do not serve them.  To submit to our government means that we actively steward our government.  That means we ought to be actively involved in voting for our leaders, encouraging them to vote rightly while in office, and holding them accountable at election season if they do not.

Ask yourself these questions, pastors: Does your flock know what it means to submit to a government of the people, by the people, and for the people?  Is your flock truly grateful to God for the liberty of maintaining a free society in which we enjoy the freedom to preach the Gospel?

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About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

WARNING: The Photo Contained Here is Shocking!

by Nathan A. Cherry, 07/29/2011

Martinsburg, WV – There is a photo at the bottom of this page that is shocking. I do not recommend that small children see it and I caution everyone that views it, it is graphic and troubling.

The picture is of a little girl given the name Esther. She was aborted in a late term abortion. Her remains were obtained by the pro-life group Operation Save America and she was given a proper funeral service led by Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life.

Fr. Frank told the crowd that gathered at the funeral service why they were there:

“We are here because this baby was killed in the darkness, and we come to honor her in the bright light of day. The abortion industry wants to hide the violence done to these children, but we must be committed to expose it. Therefore we need to hold many more of these services, with tens of thousands of people looking at these children and recommitting themselves to end abortion.”

Some might wonder why we would show such a photo. It’s simple really. Abortion advocates are constantly trying to tell us that abortions don’t hurt women or children, that it’s not a child but a “blob” just a “mass of tissue.” They want us to believe that late term abortions don’t really kill a child and should be legalized.

Let me ask you a question, since you have come this far I am assuming you have looked at the photo, does that look like a “blob,” or a “mass of tissue” to you? Though the photo is not up close I can clearly depict a head, an arm, two legs, and faintly I can see hands and feet, not to mention an ear and eye socket. What part of this child is just a blob?

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About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Has the Salt Lost It’s Flavor? A Look at the Church’s Yawning Response to the Redefinition of Marriage – Part 4

This is the 4th installment of 5 posts on this topic.  You may read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 by following the links.

When New York acted to redefine the definition of marriage for their state, it was the latest in a long line of skirmishes over the institution of marriage.  One could trace the war back several decades to the sexual revolution of the 1960’s or one could even make the case that this is a war brewing since Genesis 3.  Wherever you begin to trace the battles, it is undeniable that in the past half decade, the fighting has become all the more fierce.

Still, even if you agree that these are important issues, you may disagree that pastor-leaders need to be more active or, positively stated, you may think that pastor-leaders have done just enough.

Today, I want to answer two questions that may be nagging you.  First, what’s the urgency?  And, second, does winning the battle matter?

What’s the urgency?

It might be beneficial for me to state that I believe the battle over the definition of marriage is less of a battle over the institution of marriage (though it is) and more of a battle over religious liberty.  In fact, one could go further and argue that it is yet one more battle between conflicting worldviews, the Judeo-Christian and the secular humanist.

Thus, the urgency is less about the institution of marriage (though that is certainly important and in urgent need of support, not redefinition) and more about the Gospel.  More specifically, this is a battle over whether we will be allowed to speak the Gospel.

Consider Al Mohler’s recent article in which one Muslim woman is attempting to compel the United States government to force her religion to alter its religious doctrine.  If this is a legitimate use of the State, then what could stop the State from forcing churches to marry individuals whose lifestyles do not comport with Orthodox Christianity?

Beyond that, is it too much of a stretch to believe that the State could tell a pastor what they may or may not say in the pulpit?  What about in the street?

Think also of the recent experience of one Ake Green, a Swedish pastor who had the audacity to preach the Gospel out of Romans 1, urging his congregation to believe what it said.  For such adherence to orthodoxy, Ake Green was sent to jail.

Ask our pastor neighbors to the north if the ability to share the Gospel in Canada is easier or more difficult since the political definition of marriage changed.

A recent report in the New York Times indicates that Utah may be the next battleground.  It appears that, using many of the same arguments that were used by same-sex activists, there is an effort underway to legalize polygamy.  And, of course, there are the myriad of cases of how so-called, “anti-discrimination” laws are being used to suppress religious expression and promote homosexual behavior.

Moreover, because the law has a teaching function, many assume that what is legal is also moral.  And that is one of the main points, isn’t it?  Not only is there an active effort to redefine marriage and silence all of its critics, but with it comes the drowning out of any counter message.

Consider the recent messages coming out of the same-sex movement.  If you have the radical inclination to support marriage as between one man and one woman, then you are a bigoted homophobe.  If you’ve picked up on the not so subtle attempt to link the quest to politically redefine marriage with the civil rights movement and slavery, then your stand for Biblical marriage is likewise racist.

Pastors, then, face a predicament in teaching on marriage in the church.  And, though I doubt many pastors will shrink from proclaiming Biblical truth in the pulpit, what about Joe Q. Pewsitter?  Will his right to express his deeply held religious conviction while sharing the Gospel with his neighbor be upheld?

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About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

The Numbers are In. They Don’t Lie But Planned Parenthood Does.

by Nathan A. Cherry, 07/28/2011

Politifact truth o meterMartinsburg, WV – Planned Parenthood. An organization that is worthy to be loathed entirely. This criminal organization has done nothing to help women, doesn’t offer mammograms, does very little prenatal or adoption referral work, help sex traffickers cover up their crimes, breaks state and federal laws, sucks millions of dollars from tax payers that could be going to legitimate health services organizations; all so they can sell as many abortions as possible in order to make billions of dollars at the expense of our children and women’s health.

Planned Parenthood.  To be honest, I have a hard time not speaking of this organization without disgust and disdain creeping into my voice. But I’ll refrain from sharing my personal opinion, and simply give you the facts. Maybe you will see something worthwhile in the existence of Planned Parenthood; I doubt it, but maybe.

I am sure you are well aware of the media’s fact checking website Politifact. This website fact-checks everything said by politicians and reports on the accuracy or falsity of the statement. (Insert sarcastic remark about how busy they must be here.)

No matter how anyone tries to spin the facts and distort the numbers, the staggering lopsided business of Planned Parenthood is well documented and impossible to deny. This is an abortion business that concentrates on offering, pushing and providing abortions. This is a business that cares far more about its bottom line than anything else; and the facts bear this out.

Consider these statistics:

“Planned Parenthood provided prenatal services to merely 7,021 women and referred only 977 women for adoption services. These numbers were a 25 percent drop in prenatal care clients and a whopping 59 percent decline in adoption referrals from the 2,405 adoption referrals in 2008. The abortion business helped only 9,433 prenatal clients in 2008, down substantially from the 11,000 women it provided prenatal care to in 2007 — showing health care given to pregnant woman has fallen substantially over the years.”

[Read more...]

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Has the Salt Lost It’s Flavor? A Look at the Church’s Yawning Response to the Redefinition of Marriage – Part 3

This series began Monday and it will be helpful, if you haven’t, to go back and read the initial post in this series.  You should also read yesterday’s post where I offered the first three reasons why pastor-leaders may be hesitant to apply the Gospel to the political redefinition of marriage.

Here are the last three:

4.  Loss of an opportunity for ministry.

A little while after our first Day2Pray (a day we organize annually asking churches to take time to pray – by name – for their lawmakers ahead of the legislative session) I had a lengthy conversation with a pastor who hesitated and then decided not to ask his church to participate in the Day2Pray.  His reason?

“If we were to pray – by name – for our leaders,” he told me with astonishing conviction, “we would lose the chance to minister to many.”

Was his point that the Gospel is offensive and, if not carefully spoken, will drive people away and they will perhaps never again get the chance to hear the Gospel, repent, and believe?  What part of the Gospel are we to omit to avoid that?  Better yet, what part do we keep?

He was right to say that the Gospel is an offense, but it’s only offensive to those who do not believe.  Paul goes further, calling it, “foolishness to those who are perishing.” Still, we are called to preach and teach it in its entirety.  If there is a constant message in Scripture, it is how little I bring to salvation and how much God does to call and ultimately save sinners.  Why, then, do we censor our message?

It’s unlikely that many of the pastor-leaders who did not speak out on the issue of redefining marriage did so for the same fear that that pastor expressed to me, but perhaps it’s worthwhile to reflect on this point: is all Scripture breathed out by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness?

There is either arrogance or timidity there that needs to be checked, but, even if that is persuasive to you, I submit that there is a vast audience to be gained by boldly applying the Gospel to this dispute over the political definition of marriage.

5.  Co-belligerency dilutes the Gospel.

When the Manhattan Declaration was released, many pastor-leaders hesitated to sign it, even though others did not.  I appreciate their concern.  There are sincere theological divisions between Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox Christians.  I am thankful at the measured tone with which men like R.C. Sproul, John MacArthur, and others expressed their reluctance in signing the pledge.

At the same time, I am grateful that men like Al Mohler and Wayne Grudem felt free to lend their name.  Why the distinction?  What gave Mohler and Grudem the freedom that Sproul and MacArthur did not have?

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About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

Has the Salt Lost It’s Flavor? A Look at the Church’s Yawning Response to the Redefinition of Marriage – Part 2

Yesterday, I compared the popular response of church leaders to the release of Rob Bell’s book to their response when marriage was redefined in New York.  I ended by asking the question I want to answer today: why have pastors hesitated to speak boldly on the matter of the political redefinition of marriage?

Before diving into an answer to that question, I would be remiss if I failed to point out that many pastors have been doing yeoman’s labor on this issue for years – decades even!  In California, pastors were key to encouraging their people to defend the institution from political redefinition, just as they were in Arizona, Florida, and several states before them.  One pastor even became a New York State Senator in an all-out effort to protect marriage (for which he has paid dearly).

And, even prominent church leaders have been out front on this issue.  Al Mohler sticks out in my mind as one who has repeatedly, patiently, and intentionally addressed this issue from a Biblical perspective on his blog, radio show, podcasts, and, I would imagine, from the pulpit.

Still, the response has been piecemeal.  Some have told their followers to avoid politics entirely.  Others have jumped in with both feet.  Still others have joined only when pressed by their congregation or groups like the Family Policy Council of West Virginia.

For those that have hesitated, it should be asked, why the hesitation?  I submit there are at least six possible reasons.  Here are the first three:

1.  Intimidation and/or ignorance.

For the greater part of the last half-century, the ACLU has been beating the slow, steady drum that knows only one note: “Separation of Church and State.”  This paper tiger has shut more mouths that would speak Gospel truth then perhaps any other five word phrase, with the possible exception of the shorter, “Off with his head!”

Add to that, the spate of threats, acts of vandalism, and hijacking of worship services by same-sex activists and I can understand why pastors (and Christians) may prove reluctant to speak boldly on this issue.  After all, who wants to be known as a bigot?  In a day and age that is dominated by a “seeker-sensitive” mentality, it’s bad business for a pastor to be seen speaking on issues that might offend potential churchgoers.  Then again, teaching on hell isn’t on the list of how to win friends and influence people, is it?

And then there is the issue of ignorance.  It’s difficult for me to know how, but it is indeed possible that many pastors simply are unaware of the advance of the same-sex movement.  If aware, then they may be quiet simply to downplay its significance.

Again, my focus is not so much on the local pastor (though it may apply there too) my question is why is it that many of the prominent pastor-leaders spilled much ink to rebut Rob Bell, but not the societal disapproval of the institution of marriage?

For those willing to boldly take on the doctrine of hell, why would they shrink from just as boldly, publicly, and stridently holding the line against the relentless attacks on marriage?

The presence or absence of pastor-leaders speaking boldly on these issues will have a trickle-down effect.  Consider how John Piper’s 3-word tweet rushed #robbell to the top of trending topics on Twitter within hours of his tweeting it.  Justin Taylor, who was among the first to point out Bell’s universalism, received over 20,000 comments on his blog the day he posted it.

The point, of course, is that when our pastor-leaders speak, those being led listen.  As a result, conversations begin and the cycle is repeated over and over.  People examine the issue, not just in passing, but with a renewed, passionate interest.  That happened with Love Wins, but it did not with New York’s redefinition of marriage.

2.  Being grouped as, “one of them.”

Let’s face it; some on our side of the issue have spoken poorly, unkindly, and without grace when it comes to homosexuality.  And, I’m not even talking about the obvious examples like Fred Phelps and the baloney that pours out of that ‘church.’

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About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

Jeremiah G. Dys: PCCs should be known for respectful service and compassion

07/26/2011

We stand behind Pregnancy Care Centers and the tireless work they do to support, defend, and promote life. Recently, Family Policy Council president Jeremy Dys responded to an article in the West Virginia Gazette that attempted to cast a neative light on Pregnancy Care Centers. The Gazette published his response. We wanted to make sure you saw this response in order to further let you know that we stand with you and are here to support and defend you. The article follows below.

Jeremiah G. Dys: PCCs should be known for respectful service and compassion

There is an old saying lawyers have that goes, “When your case is strong on the law, pound the law; when it is strong on the facts, pound the facts; when neither, pound the table.”

Heather Hill (“Crisis Pregnancy Centers Are Shams,” June 20) is pounding the table.

With neither fact, nor law on her side, Ms. Hill castigates the underpaid staff and hardworking volunteers of this state’s PCC’s, as “fake clinics, run by extreme anti-choice groups.” She maligns their longsuffering work toward women facing unintended pregnancies in such terms as, “luring them in,” surrounding their clients with, “judgmental and biased anti-abortion propaganda,” and claiming ultrasounds performed at PCC’s are done by techs without, “quality medical training.”

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About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Is Susan G. Komen a Complete Failure?

by Nathan A. Cherry, 07/26/2011

Martinsburg, WV – We like to follow up stories we write in order to let you know how things progress with a particular issue and/or organization. Not too long ago Family Policy

Adult stem cell

Image of an adult stem cell

 Council president Jeremy Dys wrote about the Susan G. Komen foundation’s support for Planned Parenthood; I also wrote about the odd partnership between the two organizations.

Neither Jeremy nor I can figure out why Komen is sending money to a group for services they don’t perform (mammograms). And with the very well documented link between abortion and breast cancer the partnership between Komen and Planned Parenthood seems all the more unlikely and odd.

Komen is coming under attack again. This time for news that it regularly sends funds to organizations that conduct embryonic stem cell research.

Embryonic stem cell research is research conducted on human embryos. This is not an ethical form of research because it destroys a living human embryo in order to conduct its research. On the other hand, adult stem cell research is perfectly ethical simply because it uses a living person’s own mature, adult stem cells for research; thereby not killing any living human beings. But that’s not all.

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About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Has the Salt Lost It’s Flavor? A Look at the Church’s Yawning Response to the Redefinition of Marriage – Part 1

The church has been granted the privilege of announcing the Gospel, the good news.  More clearly, the church is the protector and chief advocate of the good news in response to the bad news, namely: that, from birth, we have rebelled against a holy God who, justly, demands the payment of a penalty for our rebellion.

The good news announced in pulpits everywhere is that Christ has paid that penalty and, through no merit of our own, God has applied his sacrifice to our account, turning away God’s wrath from us and, by claiming Christ by faith alone, we might spend eternity worshipping the merciful God with whom we were once at war.  (For more of this good news, I urge your reading of What is the Gospel? by my friend, Greg Gilbert).

It is because of this Gospel – and the transforming and preserving effect it has upon those who hear it and, consequently, on the culture in which they live – that I wish, in this series of posts, to urge the church, through its leaders, to change its current, silent course and begin speaking the Gospel to one of the chief threats to it today: the redefinition of marriage.

Before I criticize, please know of my great love for the church!  Pastors, elders, and lay leaders labor daily to speak the good news to a hurting world.  I am not unaware of the many martyrs who have laid down (and even now in parts of the world, are laying down) their very lives in the defense of the Gospel, for the sake of the Gospel.  Insofar as they are redeemed heirs of God, these are good people who passionately love the God they worship and the people to whom they are called.  My intent is not to blame, but to encourage through the Gospel, and for it’s sake.

Over the next five days, it is my hope to share some of my personal thoughts related to what I have perceived as the near total lack of public response to the redefinition of a core component of the Gospel.  Here is how I intend to address this issue:

  • First, I wish to do this by contrasting responses to the redefinition of marriage in New York with Rob Bell’s book, Love Wins.  It’s a curious contrast.
  • Tomorrow and Wednesday, I would like to offer several reasons why I believe there has been a hesitation by the pastor-leaders to speak boldly on this issue.
  • On Thursday, my post will outline the urgency of this issue, one that must be addressed by the Gospel.  I’ll also consider the question: what is more important: winning the political battle or declaring the Gospel?
  • I conclude on Friday by offering some suggested next steps the church, and particularly ministers of the Gospel, can overcome any hesitation and why they should.

Maybe Rob Bell should write a book about same-sex ‘marriage.’

Earlier this year, a trendy leader of a church in Michigan wrote a book called Love Wins.  Before it even came to publication, church leaders from around the globe were abuzz offering this or that denunciation of the message of universalism (everyone goes to heaven eventually) Bell put seemed to advocate for in his book.

When Love Wins finally shipped to the bookstores, several prominent church leaders took to the Internet, newsletters, radio, podcasts, and virtually any other medium you can think of to denounce what they suggested amounts to a false gospel.  And well they should.  As several have put it – and I paraphrase – there can be no good news of heaven if there is no bad news of hell.

It was an amazing response – and a necessary one.  Getting the penalty of hell correct is essential to understanding a just God.  Still, I was impressed by how many wrote critiques of the book, warned against reading it, added it to conference agendas, and much, much more.

Pastor-leaders like Justin Taylor, John Piper, Kevin DeYoung, Tim Challies, John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul, Mark Driscoll, Al Mohler, Francis Chan, Denny Burk, Joshua Harris, and Danny Akin, just to name a few, had something to say about the matter – each in some way defending a core element of the Gospel.

Pastors throughout the country, no doubt, took to the pulpits to explain the reality of hell and the grace of God that prevents one from experiencing it.  If your church is like mine, small groups gathered to talk about the book and offer their own perspective on what had become the top-of-mind issue for much of the evangelical world.  And beyond.

Now, several months after the release of the book, it still garners attention.  In fact, I have seen at least two books published in response to Rob Bell.  Unless their authors were tipped off as to the specifics of Bell’s book, that means that they wrote, published, and distributed these books in a mere fraction of the normal time it takes for a book to go to print.

Now contrast that appropriate response by several pastor-leaders (and many in the church) to someone advancing a dangerous doctrine to what happened on June 24, 2011 in New York.

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About Jeremy Dys

Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.

Is Same Sex Marriage Doomed at the Supreme Court? Answer Might Surprise You

by Nathan A. Cherry, 07/25/2011

SCOTUSMartinsburg, WV – There is no doubt that same-sex marriage is headed for the U.S. Supreme Court. With constant votes in state legislatures and on ballots, numerous court cases, challenges to voter approved amendments (like Prop 8), and a flurry of attacks from all sides; it’s just a matter of time before SCOTUS takes up the issue in what will be the most heavily anticipated and closely followed case since Roe v. Wade.

What is not so obvious is the outcome of this impending trial. Political punditry abounds in all directions. Some believe the time is right and the court is poised to “make history” by legalizing same-sex marriage, abolishing DOMA once and for all, and encroaching on state’s sovereignty and ability to pass individual laws. Others believe the court could “make history” by shocking homosexual advocates and affirming the definition of one man and one woman; thereby strengthening existing state laws and further affirming DOMA.

But one thing many people may not know is that this case, when taken up by the Supreme Court, rests in the hands of one justice. That’s right, despite a nine justice court the entire case will rest in the hands of moderate “swing vote” justice Anthony Kennedy.

The court has some particular leanings in the other justices. With justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Satomayor, and Kagan leaning decidedly left, and justices Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito leaning decidedly right; only justice Kennedy remains. And while Kennedy leans slightly right, he is a wild card that has been the swing vote in more than one case.

So now we come to the marriage issue. Our friends at Citizenlink pointed out that it was Justice Kennedy that paved the way for the decriminalizing of homosexuality in the Lawrence v. Texas case. And while, it seems, Kennedy did not intend to encroach on marriage with his decision, it nevertheless paved the way for the legalization of same-sex “marriage;” having been cited in every state where the court has legalized it (MA, CT, IA and CA).

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About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.