Australian Baptists View on Same Sex Marriage
Members of Baptist churches in Australia overwhelmingly support the
current definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, and
reject moves to extend the definition to include same sex relationships,
National President of Australian Baptist Ministries, according to the Reverend Dr
“Australian Baptists strongly urge Prime Minister Julia Gillard, and
politicians across the political spectrum, to oppose moves to change the
current legal definition of marriage by extending it to include same
“There are compelling cultural and heritage reasons for rejecting this
proposed radical social reform, and for Baptists there are also deeply
held theological convictions about the nature and purpose of marriage
which preclude widening the definition of marriage to include same sex
couples,” according to the Reverend Rod Benson, public issues spokesperson for
Australian Baptist Ministries.
“A strong society needs a strong commitment to marriage and family.
Marriage is best understood as the union of a man and a woman, and the
law is best left as it is,” Rev Benson said.
“For more than 400 years Baptists have affirmed the Bible as the supreme
authority in all matters of faith and conduct. The Bible teaches that
the only appropriate context for sexual intercourse is between a woman
and a man who are married to each other. Those who argue otherwise have
drifted away from biblical ethics and an authentic Baptist understanding
of marriage,” he said.
In November 2010 Australian Baptist Ministries (formerly the Baptist
Union of Australia) reaffirmed marriage as the union of one man and one
woman, and has commended the Australian Government for reflecting the
biblical teaching on marriage in the federal Marriage Act. Marriage is
not the appropriate institution for same sex couples.
Australian Baptist Ministries, representing more than 300,000 Baptists
in 950 local churches, supports the rights of all couples to justice
with respect to property and like entitlements and acknowledges that
people, including some in Baptist churches, face difficult issues with
respect to sexuality. Recognition of such rights and difficulties does
not justify major changes to our convictions about marriage or to
The Baptist World Alliance, representing over 47 million baptised
believers and 210 Baptist Unions and Conventions in more than 200
countries, shares the views of Australian Baptist Ministries on
marriage. The Baptist World Alliance views homosexual lifestyle as
incompatible with the teachings of Scripture and no BWA member body
affirms, promotes or approves of same sex marriage.
At the Baptist World Alliance annual gathering in July 1994 in Uppsala,
Sweden, the BWA General Council passed a resolution confirming that the
BWA “proclaims the biblical definition of the family, a permanent,
monogamous, heterosexual union, as the original divine plan for family
life which must continue to serve as the foundation and ideal for an
ordered and effective society.” This resolution was reaffirmed at the
Baptist World Alliance annual gathering at Ede, The Netherlands, in
Media contact Rod Benson 0412 421 678
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