Statement on Same Sex Marriage

In light of articles published in the media by other individuals from within the Baptist Movement, we deem it necessary to make a statement in relation to the issue of Same Sex Marriage.

We wish to reaffirm our public support for the traditional definition as understood in the Bible and contained within our governing documents and posted on our website.

Definition of Marriage

“Marriage is the union of one man and one woman for life.”

In Genesis chapter 2 of the Bible, God declares it is not good for Adam (the first man) to live alone. All the animals are there, but none of them are a suitable partner for Adam. God, therefore, in a special act of creation, makes a woman. Just a few verses later, the woman is called “his wife” (Genesis 2:25). Eden was the scene of the first marriage, ordained by God Himself. The author of Genesis then records the standard by which all future marriages are defined: “A man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

Since God ordained sex to only take place between a married couple, it follows that God’s design is for the family unit to be formed when a man and woman come together in a sexual relationship and have children. There is no passage in the Bible that mentions a marriage involving anything other than a man and a woman. To affirm same sex marriage would mean affirming conduct that is contrary to God’s standard for marriage and approval of a lifestyle that the Bible defines as sinful (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

We further note, concerns that have been raised in the broader debate by legal experts and within Senate Committees, regarding far reaching implications for religious freedoms, freedoms of conscience and issues relating to discrimination and other legal restrictions. This is of grave concern to us and deserves greater consideration and reflection before any changes to Australian Laws occurs, including the Marriage Act. We should also consider the experience of other countries like Canada, before making any changes.

We also want to reassure those within the LGBTIQ community that our church does not hate you. While we may disagree with you on the merits of Same Sex Marriage we love you and want the highest good for you. We want you to have true fulfillment which can only be found in the person and work of Jesus Christ.

While we, as a church, acknowledge the Baptist distinctives of freedom of interpretation, freedom of conscience and autonomy of the local church, we would encourage all Christians to participate in the forthcoming Postal Plebiscite and in unity vote NO to any changes to the Marriage Act. This plebiscite provides us all with an equal voice and we should not waste this opportunity.

The Bible Says: “But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.” (Matthew 5:37, NKJV).


Pastor Shane Hanley

On behalf of Raymond Terrace Baptist Church

Leave a Reply