No protection for churches from same-sex weddings warns European court, according to reports in Christian Concern (UK) and the Telegraph 21 March 2012. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that same-sex marriage is not a human right in a case brought by a lesbian couple who complained that the French courts would not allow them to adopt a child. In France only married couples are able to adopt children. The two women were already in a “civil partnership” and were trying to use anti-discrimination law to claim the right to marriage. The court ruled: “The European Convention on Human Rights does not require member states’ governments to grant same-sex couples access to marriage”. However, they also said: “Where national legislation recognizes registered partnerships between same sex, member states should aim to ensure that their legal status and their rights and obligations are equivalent to those of heterosexual couples in a similar situation”.
According to Neil Addison, a specialist in discrimination law, “Once same-sex marriage has been legalised then the partners to such a marriage are entitled to exactly the same rights as partners in a heterosexual marriage. This means that if same-sex marriage is legalised in the UK it will be illegal for the Government to prevent such marriages happening in religious premises”.
Andrea Minichiello Williams, CEO of Christian Concern, commented: “We welcome this ruling. It confirms what we all knew – that unless we stop this redefinition of marriage now, then further down the line not a single priest, pastor or vicar in this country will be able to avoid a claim for discrimination if they refuse to marry same-sex couples in their church. Any Government assurances to the contrary appear to be worthless. The implications for religious freedom are staggering”.
Editorial Comment: Here is a practical example of where the issue of creation vs evolution really matters to churches and society in general. If evolution is valid then marriage is a human invention that has been imposed on primal animal mating systems, and can be redefined by whichever pressure group currently holds power in human society.
Now think through the Biblical position. God created both man and marriage. The institution of marriage is therefore a designed function built into the human race by our Creator, and any attempts to redefine it are acts of rebellion against our Creator, and will only cause grief and trouble for individuals, churches and human society, as well as long term judgement from God. Human courts and governments do not have a right to redefine marriage because they did not invent it. It was invented by God the Creator, and will only work properly if kept according to His design, which is one man and one woman for life. By re-defining marriage human governments are setting themselves up as false gods and churches will be faced with the choice of which God they will serve. (Ref. politics, law, sociology)
Evidence News 2 May 2012