DADT and the President’s Faith
I recently sent a personal letter to President Barack Obama urging him to consider the tenets of his faith and to reconsider his stance on the repeal of the military’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy. I thought it would be of value to share that letter with you.
As messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention expressed in 2009, we commend you for the fatherly example you clearly display to your family and are eager to work with you “to advance causes of justice insofar as those efforts are consistent with biblical principles.” However, we regret we find ourselves greatly troubled by your efforts to repeal the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy as homosexual behavior conflicts with the teachings of our shared Holy Scripture.
Since you join us in confessing the Christian faith, we request your attention to the Scripture, which is “…God-breathed…useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
We emphasize the hope and salvation God provides for all humans, including those who struggle with homosexual attraction: “such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11, emphasis added).
This is an encouraging passage, written to Christians among whom were people who struggled with the same forms of sin and temptation we face today. They broke free from sinful bondage expressly because of the Gospel. Thus, we applaud church efforts to lovingly and redemptively minister to homosexuals so they may find spiritual, sexual, and emotional wholeness in Christ.
It remains clear, however, that homosexual behavior cannot be normalized without rejecting God’s moral standards (Lev. 18:22; 20:13; 1 Cor. 6:9-10). The Southern Baptist Convention’s 2009 resolution recognizes that the Bible describes homosexual behavior as both a contributing cause (Gen. 18:20-21; Lev. 18:24-28; Jude 7) and a consequence of God’s judgment (Rom. 1:18-32). We believe it to be contrary to Scripture to commend open homosexual relationships in general, including within the military ranks. Our nation has moved from God in so many ways and we are deeply concerned that an increasingly affirming policy toward homosexual behavior will provide further impetus for God’s judgment on our nation.
Our all-volunteer military is among the most respected institutions in American life. We are saddened that this institution in which membership is a privilege not a right would break from a tradition of high moral conduct, and we urge you to reconsider your stated intent on this issue.