Days following the tragedy and despair brought onto the Southern United States by Hurricane Harvey, a coalition of more than 150 evangelical Christian “leaders” have signed a statement being referred to as “The Nashville Statement.”
Focused on human sexuality, the manifesto affirms the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood’s beliefs that same-sex marriage is sinful, as is the mere approval of “homosexual immorality.” (And shocking to no one, the statement is also transphobic.)
The Nashville Statement lists 14 beliefs (articles), following its “preamble.”
On the point of the joint statement, Council co-founder John Piper says, “It will prove to be, I believe, enormously helpful for thousands of pastors and leaders hoping to give wise, biblical and gracious guidance to their people.” It was written because these Christians feel we’re currently living in a “post-Christian culture.
Among those who signed are James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, and Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, two hate groups that our parent company, Hornet, initiated a nationwide billboard campaign against earlier this year.
Five of those who signed the statement are members of President Trump’s evangelical advisory board.
Among the things The Nashville Statement condemns: homosexuality, polygamy, polyamory, any non-religious marriage, sex before marriage, “any form of sexual immorality,” any blurring of the lines between male and female, transgender individuals and same-sex attraction.
Here’s the statement’s most transphobic passage: “Our true identity, as male and female persons, is given by God. It is not only foolish, but hopeless, to try to make ourselves what God did not create us to be.”
Many have criticized the statement, for its content but also for its timing. One San Diego-based LGBT pastor tweeted, “When your theology breeds death, your theology is not of God.” Texas-based Christian author Jen Hatmaker called the timing of the statement “callous beyond words.”
Even the mayor of Nashville, Megan Barry, is pissed — that the statement bears her city’s name.