Scotland for marriage: a meeting report
David Masson reports on a recent meeting in Inverness where representatives from national Christian organisations spoke into the current situation and debate on the proposals to introduce same-sex marriage.
a report by
The Christian Institute, Care Scotland and the Evangelical Alliance hosted a meeting in Smithton Free Church in Inverness on the evening of 30th March 2012. Four aspects of the issue were addressed by Nigel Kenny, Gordon MacDonald , Dave Greatorex and Bill Baird.
Nigel Kenny of the Christian Institute looked at the basis for traditional marriage from a Biblical perspective. Many Christian books teach on marriage and the family from an inward perspective but marriage has an outward perspective as a social institution.
- Marriage is foundational and the institution upholds society. Marriage was established by God in Genesis chapter 2 and is not the result of human reasoning. God created the woman to be like the man but opposite to him
- Marriage is universal. Just as murder is universally wrong, marriage is universally good. Luke 17:27. Jesus made the point that before the Flood people were married. There is a false division between Christian or religious marriage and civil marriage. Each is a manifestation of God’s grace to society
- Marriage is beneficial to society. It was designed for mutual support, for the nurture of children and to restrain sin. Religion is the glue, which holds society together. A marriage brings two families together. Poor parenting leads to many problems in society. Paul describes the male and female role model in 1 Cor 7:2-9. Marriage counters fallen man’s tendency to selfishness
- The present debate supporting marriage is based on love and not hatred – love for God and love for our fellow human beings
Gordon MacDonald of Care Scotland looked at certain aspects of the present debate:
- Marriage reveals the character and covenant purpose of God and His concern for order in society.
- Romans chapter 1 illustrates the consequences of idolatry when marriage is rejected. Today we live in an idolatrous society when humanism reigns. Under humanism the state is elevated to be the moral arbiter in society. It is making laws many of which are contrary to the Ten Commandments.
- Lifestyle choices and presented where people are said to be free to make their own choices such as abortion
- The state encourages sexual choices. There is a prevailing ideology undermining heterosexual marriage. There is a claim that those opposing homosexual marriage are homophobic and this is equated to be racist. Many M Ps do not accept that marriage is the best model for a healthy society.
- There may be a Bill presented after the consultation period. So far there have been 70,000 responses and they are 2 to 1 against the proposal. The SNP are aware of the referendum in 2014 and do not want to lose votes in favour of independence from those who are opposed to a change in the definition of marriage.
- This is a non-religious campaign. The Scottish Government has no excuse for not consulting the public. Referenda in other countries have shown a consistent rejection of the proposal to redefine marriage.
Dave Greatorex from the Christian Institute considered some of the consequences of a change in the law.
- Homosexuals already have all the rights of marriage under the Civil Partnership legislation. Only a small percentage of the population are promoting the change in the definition of marriage. Fewer than 0.2% of Scottish households are headed up by a same-sex couple. Various polls indicate that the public mood is opposed to a change. Not even all homosexuals are in favour of a change.
- Evidence suggests that children achieve better results where there is a mother and father. Homosexual marriage denies this.
- A change may introduce claims for polygamy to be recognised a legal and heterosexuals may demand a Civil Partnership in place of marriage. If marriage is redefined it will almost certainly lead to a restriction on freedom of religious liberty and freedom of speech. There are been death threats already. Children will receive teaching, which is contrary to the beliefs of their parents
- Stonewall have prepared a number of books such as King and King, Hello Sailor, Daddy’s Roommate and the Sissy Duckling and a video promoting homosexuality. Children will be invited to act out the stories. Teachers may well be disciplined if they refuse to teach the new material. Already there is evidence that many Christian young people do not believe that sexual relations outside of marriage is wrong. Much of the promotion of homosexual agenda is by the Health Boards concerned about physical health of children
- This whole process is costing the taxpayer a great deal of money. Is this what the Scottish Government should be spending our money on in times of austerity?
Bill Baird from Care Scotland looked at the steps to be taken to influence the Scottish Government in reaching their decision.
- Pray for the Scottish Government and the M S Ps as they reach what will be a critical decision for Scotland. Pray for God’s will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. Write to M S Ps and tell them that you are praying for them.
- Be prepared to speak about the issue. 1 Pet 3:15
- 3. Establish a relationship with your MSP. There is one MSP for your area and another seven List MSPs.
- 4. Sign the petition and encourage others in your Church to do so also.
A clear message came from the meeting that there is a cultural revolution underway with the aim of eliminating Christianity from British society.
David Masson is a retired solicitor who has been a representative in the Highlands for CARE for Scotland. David travels to Uganda to teach large groups of church pastors. He set up the Andrew Discipleship School in Kampala in order to deliver this ministry there.
Some time ago he was commissioned to write a book entitled 'The Seven Spritual Giants'. It has a been translated into Lugandan in Uganda and Swahili in Kenya and printed in various countries in Africa for further transmission to the churches. David has now finished his second book entitled 'Obstacles to Spiritual Growth' and delivers a course on this topic.