Strang Report, by Steve Strang, Founder of Charisma magazine

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Harry Jackson, Stand for Life
At the press conference, Bishop Harry Jackson Jr. (at podium) urged pastors to sign the Stand for Marriage document

One hundred years ago the big issue for Bible-believing Christians was temperance. Of course we Christians lost that debate as we did over gambling, the debate over evolution and many other social issues. We may not approve of pornography, but there's nothing we can do to stem its tide. So we lost that too. It's as if "anything goes."

We were late to the anti-abortion debate allowing the Catholics to fight it alone for many years. Now things have gotten to the point where many in the culture are wanting to approve so-called gay marriage—even the President of the United States. They are trying to say its a civil rights issue, but what they really want is special rights, which would impinge on our religious freedom to teach what the Bible says about morality and sexuality. And they would teach gay orientation in the public schools as if it is right.

This is now the pivotal issue in this election season. The gay rights movement is trying to have President Obama's election be a referendum on this issue. And if Obama is re-elected there's no stopping the extreme social agenda he apparently has.

Thankfully some Christian leaders are speaking up such as Bishop Harry Jackson of Washington D.C., who held a Defense of Marriage Summit Wednesday with about 175 leaders. Then on Thursday he held a press conference behind the Capitol building in Washington in which a "new rainbow" coalition of blacks and Hispanics said they must stand up to the President on this issue not for political reasons but for scriptural reasons.

This is a tough issue for the black community because they usually vote Democratic and because they are happy that a black man was elected president. But while they overwhelmingly voted for Obama in 2008 it was their vote that passed Proposition 8 in California that defined marriage as one man and one woman. The same thing happened in Florida. Blacks voted for Obama and separately for a marriage amendment.

The press coverage was covered by all the major media, a few Christian media and some gay publications.

At the press conference Jackson and other speakers made these points:

  • Marriage between a man and a woman is a unique, timeless and
    universally-defined ideal that benefits society like no other
    relationship is able to do.
  • The societal purpose of marriage is to naturally build healthy
    families for the good of future generations and that children do best
    with both mom and dad.
  • Parents should have the freedom to decide the right way to introduce
    controversial sexual topics to their children—not activists or public
    school officials. Redefining marriage undermines this right as we have
    seen in states that have enacted same-sex marriage laws.
  • The Defense of Marriage Act preserves the right of states to govern
    themselves. Voters in 32 states have upheld marriage as the union of
    one man and one woman.

The group sent a letter to Obama outlining these points which, several of the participants signed.

Later, I'll opine more about what's happening in the culture and some of the interesting things that went on at this summit.

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