In Alabama: We Dare Defend our Rights

I have just returned from a week in Israel where I visited many holy sites from both the Old and New Testament. I walked where Jesus walked in Galilee, Nazareth, Jerusalem and other sites. I stood where Abraham stood at the gate at the City of Dan, the northern most city of the kingdom of Israel, where he rescued his nephew Lot.

Scripture comes alive more than ever as you come to realize much of what you see of God’s chosen land is what was seen by Jesus and those who lived in Biblical times, like Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. It also solidifies the permanency of the teachings of the Scriptures. God’s word never changes. What He proclaimed thousands of years ago as truth is still truth in the eyes of true believers.

One of the basic truths that was revealed in the oldest of Scriptures is found in Genesis 1:27 where God created a man – Adam – and a woman – Eve. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them”. Scripture then teaches that “a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). This is God’s word. This is God’s truth.Justice Thomas Quote

So, how is it that God’s truth can be turned on its head as the debate now rages in Alabama regarding the meaning of marriage? The answer is that we, as a society, have become our own god. We have made God in our image. But, God will not be mocked. The State of Alabama and the United States of America will reap God’s wrath if we embrace and condone things that are abhorrent to God, such as redefining marriage as anything other than a union between one man and one woman.

>>>When I served in the State Senate (1994-2002) I was concerned that the debate over same-sex marriage would eventually come to Alabama. Therefore, in 1998, I sponsored a new law known as the “Alabama Marriage Protection Act” that defined marriage as “a sacred covenant, solemnized between a man and a woman.” It also states that “no marriage license shall be issued in the State of Alabama to parties of the same-sex.”  This act became law in 1998 and, in 2006, this definition of marriage was inserted in Alabama’s constitution after voters went to the polls and approved it by a margin of 81 percent.

We now find ourselves embroiled in a legal battle here in Alabama concerning the definition of marriage because one appointed federal judge has ordered that a marriage certificate be given to two women who want to be married. The state has appealed the ruling all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court seeking a stay in the case so that more clarity can be given to officials in the state regarding the issuing of marriage certificates.

Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore

Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore

Unfortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to issue a stay in the case. However, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas filed a dissenting opinion after the Supreme Court’s vote. He criticized his fellow justices for looking “the other way as yet another federal district judge casts aside state laws.” “This is not the proper way” for the Court to carry out its role under the Constitution, “and it is indecorous for this Court to pretend that it is,” Thomas wrote in an opinion that was joined by Justice Antonin Scalia.

Thomas stated, “Today’s decision represents yet another example of this Court’s increasingly cavalier attitude toward the States. I would have shown the people of Alabama the respect they deserve and preserved the status quo while the Court resolves this important constitutional question.”

Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, a staunch defender of Alabama’s Constitution, has directed the state’s Probate Judges to abide by our Constitution which prohibits the issuance of marriage license to same-sex couples. Moore also has also released a letter to Governor Bentley saying he intends to continue to recognize the state’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and urges the governor to do the same.

Alabama Senators Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions

Alabama Senators Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions

Both Chief Justice Moore and Gov. Bentley have voiced strong opposition against same-sex marriage, but their response to the events in Alabama could not be more different. Moore believes that the state constitution prevails in this fight and that our ban on same-sex marriage stands. And while Moore has directed the Probate Judges to deny marriage license to same-sex couples, Bentley has stated that Probate Judges should let their conscience be their guide in issuing marriage license.

Bentley’s statements indicate he is more concerned with how the state might be perceived if we defend our constitution. Bentley said, “I think it’s important for the people across the country to realize that the governor of Alabama today is not the governor of Alabama fifty years ago.”

Thankfully, both Senators Shelby and Sessions have joined Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) to co-sponsor and reintroduce the State Marriage Defense Act. If passed, states will be allowed to adopt their own definitions of marriage without worry of intrusion by the federal government.

God’s word never changes, and neither should our defense of His truths. Though we are being tested, we will stand true to our principles and fight for the rights of the states. I thank those elected officials who are standing with us to defend those truths we hold on high.

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.