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PCA [Presbyterian Church in America] Statements on Homosexuality
PCANews.com ^ | PCA General Assembly

Posted on 11/07/2011 4:00:48 PM PST by Alex Murphy

Editor’s note: In light of recent decisions by other denominations to approve openly homosexual individuals for ministry, to sanction the blessing of same-sex unions, and because of the public debate on legalizing same-sex marriages, it is appropriate to publish the position of the Presbyterian Church in America on these issues. Here is a brief overview of actions of past General Assemblies and summaries of these actions:

In 1977 the following was adopted:

That the Fifth General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America affirms the biblical position for our denomination which states that:

1. The act of homosexuality is a sin according to God's Word;
2. Churches should actively seek to lead the homosexual person to confession and repentance that he might find justification and sanctification in Jesus Christ, according to I Corinthians 6:11; and
3. In light of the biblical view of its sinfulness, a practicing homosexual continuing in this sin would not be a fit candidate for ordination or membership in the Presbyterian Church in America.

The 21st General Assembly (1993) adopted a Declaration of Conscience that was sent to the President of the United States of America (with copies to the leadership of the United States House of Representatives and Senate and to the governors of the several states and any other interested parties), and read in part:

Mr. President, in this Declaration the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America humbly declares its conscience concerning the moral legitimacy of homosexuality. God has spoken without equivocation through his Word declaring homosexuality to be a perversion of his created order, his moral law, and the foundations of society...

Please note: in condemning homosexual practice we claim no self-righteousness. The Bible we cite also teaches that all particular sins flow from one rebellious disposition of heart….The Apostle reminds the Corinthian believers, "And such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God." (To read the entire letter go to http://www.pcanet.org/history/pca/2-399.html )

In an action titled: "In Opposition to Disney's Promotion of Homosexual Lifestyle," the 1996 General Assembly said, "We abhor what Disney and other corporations do to promote the homosexual lifestyle." In 1997 the PCA General Assembly took the following action with regard to the boycott of Disney:

In response to the boycott of Disney enterprises by Christian groups including the Southern Baptist Convention, the Presbyterian Church in America reiterated its position on homosexual issues adopted in 1996.

We affirm the Bible's teaching that promotion of homosexual conduct and relationships by any society, including action by the governments to sanction and legitimize homosexual relationships by the legalization of homosexual marriages, is an abominable sin calling for God's judgment upon any such society (Leviticus 18:22 and Romans 1:18-32).

We also affirm our belief in the transforming power of God's grace and our commitment to "speaking the truth in love" to those in the homosexual community.

The 1999 General Assembly declared that homosexual activity is sin and not an acceptable alternative lifestyle. Moreover, PCA churches were warned about the aggressive homosexual agenda.

The following is found in a PCA publication "Twenty Questions and Answers about the Presbyterian Church in America:"

Position on Homosexuality?
It is sin. But just as with any other sin, the PCA deals with these people in a pastoral way, seeking to transform their lifestyle through the power of the gospel as applied by the Holy Spirit.

The Westminster Larger Catechism states the following:

Q. 139. What are the sins forbidden in the seventh commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the seventh commandment, besides the neglect of the duties required, are adultery, fornication, rape, incest, sodomy, and all unnatural lusts; all unclean imaginations, thoughts, purposes, and affections, all corrupt or filthy communications, or listening thereunto; wanton looks, impudent or light behavior, immodest apparel; prohibiting of lawful, and dispensing with unlawful marriages; allowing, tolerating, keeping of stews (old English word meaning houses of prostitution), and resorting to them; entangling vows of single life, undue delay of marriage, having more wives or husbands than one at the same time; unjust divorce, or desertion; idleness, gluttony, drunkenness, unchaste company; lascivious songs, books, pictures, dancings, stage plays; and all other provocations to, or acts of uncleanness, either in ourselves or others.

In 1980, the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod (RPCES), which joined the PCA in 1982, adopted a “Report of the Study Committee on Homosexuality.” To read this report go to: http://www.pcanet.org/history/findingaids/rpces/docsynod/301.html

Here are summaries of the various statements taken by past General Assemblies of the PCA that are sent to the media when requesting the PCA position on homosexuality:

Homosexual practice is sin. The Bible teaches that all particular sins flow from our rebellious disposition of heart. Just as with any other sin, the PCA deals with people in a pastoral way, seeking to transform their lifestyle through the power of the gospel as applied by the Holy Spirit. Hence, in condemning homosexual practice we claim no self-righteousness, but recognize that any and all sin is equally heinous in the sight of a holy God.

The PCA is committed to the sanctity of human sexual relationships.  We believe God’s intent and design in creation was that male and female would be complementary, that the privilege of sexual expression would be between a male and female only, and this expression would be only in the context of marriage.  Therefore, any heterosexual or homosexual behavior or relationship that does not conform to God’s design does violence to the human spirit and distorts God’s intent for men and women.


TOPICS: Mainline Protestant; Moral Issues; Religion & Culture; Theology
KEYWORDS: moralabsolutes; pca; presbyterian
Editor’s note: In light of recent decisions by other denominations to approve openly homosexual individuals for ministry, to sanction the blessing of same-sex unions, and because of the public debate on legalizing same-sex marriages, it is appropriate to publish the position of the Presbyterian Church in America on these issues....

....Homosexual practice is sin. The Bible teaches that all particular sins flow from our rebellious disposition of heart. Just as with any other sin, the PCA deals with people in a pastoral way, seeking to transform their lifestyle through the power of the gospel as applied by the Holy Spirit. Hence, in condemning homosexual practice we claim no self-righteousness, but recognize that any and all sin is equally heinous in the sight of a holy God.

The PCA is committed to the sanctity of human sexual relationships. We believe God’s intent and design in creation was that male and female would be complementary, that the privilege of sexual expression would be between a male and female only, and this expression would be only in the context of marriage. Therefore, any heterosexual or homosexual behavior or relationship that does not conform to God’s design does violence to the human spirit and distorts God’s intent for men and women.

1 posted on 11/07/2011 4:00:51 PM PST by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

“Therefore, any heterosexual or homosexual behavior or relationship that does not conform to God’s design does violence to the human spirit and distorts God’s intent for men and women.”

How close-minded...typical liberal reaction. LOL.

Got for those guys.


2 posted on 11/07/2011 4:04:02 PM PST by BobL ( A vote for Newt is a vote for Romney)
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To: Alex Murphy; Cronos

Hopefully this will settle some of the nonsense.


3 posted on 11/07/2011 4:17:57 PM PST by Lee N. Field ("You fool! Don't you know every Taurus purchased brings us closer to TEOTWAWKI?")
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To: Alex Murphy

Amen...and God bless the Presbyterian Church in America for stating this so forthrightly and succinctly.

This sin, sexual sin outside of marriage, is one of the dominant and most destructive sins and forces at work destroying America today.

Our nation needs to repent and turn from it. It destroys the connection to the Holy Spirit of individuals involved in it, it destroys homes, it destroys mariages, it destroys the basic understranding of sexuality, and it leads to unridled sins involved in the hate and antagonism that goes along with all the jealosies and anger and crime assocaited with it...from murder of spouses and so-called “lovers” in love triangles, to abortion, etc., etc.


4 posted on 11/07/2011 4:18:59 PM PST by Jeff Head (Liberty is not free. Never has been, never will be. (www.dragonsfuryseries.com))
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To: Jeff Head

It shouldn’t escape attention that when the PCA makes any kind of declarations on policy or principle, those statements are loaded with scripture references to justify the position. Even where things like the Westminster Confession is cited, readers should realize that this document is - paragraph by paragraph - also backed up with scripture as its foundation.

Funny, I don’t see much of that whenever the Presbyterian Church/USA makes its announcements.


5 posted on 11/07/2011 4:25:33 PM PST by alancarp (Liberals are all for shared pain... until they're included in the pain group.)
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To: Alex Murphy; Cronos
"The PCA is committed ..."

As you have repeatedly contended on in this forum, official statements don't pass the "So What" test. As long as a single apostate member can be found to practice against the formal teachings of any church the teachings of that church is negated and tacit approval is implied. If it applies to a pederast Catholic priest it equally applies to a gay Presbyterian.

Although I do believe that your contentions are often wrong and that there are decent, faithful, and honest Presbyterians the most recent statement you posted is over 20 years old. In the constantly "evolving" context of the Presbyterian churches in America, that is several lifetimes. Recent headlines suggest changes.

6 posted on 11/07/2011 4:29:48 PM PST by Natural Law (Transubstantiation - Change we can believe in.)
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To: Lee N. Field; Natural Law
As you have repeatedly contended on in this forum, official statements don't pass the "So What" test. As long as a single apostate member can be found to practice against the formal teachings of any church the teachings of that church is negated and tacit approval is implied. If it applies to a pederast Catholic priest it equally applies to a gay Presbyterian.

Although I do believe that your contentions are often wrong and that there are decent, faithful, and honest Presbyterians the most recent statement you posted is over 20 years old. In the constantly "evolving" context of the Presbyterian churches in America, that is several lifetimes. Recent headlines suggest changes.

You were saying?

7 posted on 11/07/2011 4:50:13 PM PST by Alex Murphy (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2703506/posts?page=518#518)
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To: Lee N. Field; Alex Murphy; Cronos

congratulations to the PCA for holding to the Scriptual standard.


8 posted on 11/07/2011 4:56:14 PM PST by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: Alex Murphy

One of the reasons when I was looking for a church that I would consider only a PCA and NOT a PCUSA church, even though there are two somewhat conservative PCUSA churches in my area.

Glad to see them reiterate their quite Biblical position, with no changes or dilutions.


9 posted on 11/07/2011 5:09:02 PM PST by amzgirl
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To: Lee N. Field; BobL; Jeff Head; alancarp; one Lord one faith one baptism; amzgirl; Natural Law
"One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn't belong,
Can you tell which thing is not like the others
By the time I finish my song?"

10 posted on 11/07/2011 5:15:48 PM PST by Alex Murphy (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2703506/posts?page=518#518)
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To: Alex Murphy; Natural Law; Lee N. Field

i can’t prove this, but my own opinion is the one proof satan has been loosed here at the end of the world is the falling away we are winessing coming at lightning speed, whether it’s JP II hosting the world’s religions at Assisi ( in effect making Christianity on par with Islam or Hinduism ), the scandal of homosexuality in the clergy, or the Christians feel to openly proclaim Jesus Christ as the only way to the Father.
so when i see a group not afraid to hold to the Scriptural teaching on sexuality, i applaud them as i think we all should.
we can go back to doctrinal disputes tomorrow!


11 posted on 11/07/2011 5:32:50 PM PST by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: Alex Murphy; Natural Law; Lee N. Field

oops, prior post should have the word “shame” before Christian.

the shame Christians....


12 posted on 11/07/2011 5:35:14 PM PST by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: Alex Murphy

Glad to hear it. The never changing word of God against the fallible will of man.


13 posted on 11/07/2011 5:38:41 PM PST by stevio (God, guns, guts.)
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To: Alex Murphy
What is the difference between the PCA and these guys, who embrace gay-ism and out-of-wedlock 'activity'?

http://www.pcusa.org/news/2011/5/11/pcusa-relaxes-constitutional-prohibition-gay-and-l/

I'm not up on Presbyterianism, so I apologize.

14 posted on 11/07/2011 7:37:13 PM PST by NakedRampage (Puttin' the "stud" in Bible study)
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To: Natural Law
Recent headlines suggest changes.

You are confusing the PCA denomination with the USA denomination.

15 posted on 11/07/2011 7:39:35 PM PST by aimhigh
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To: Alex Murphy
Why does the PCA have a President? It does not say anything about Presidents in the Bible.

There is no voting in the Bible on matters of theology and beliefs. Why does the PCA vote on matters of theology and belief?

This resolution is from 1977. Where is the PCA today? It is 2011, if you haven't been looking. A whole truckload of Protestants have consigned themselves on a hellish path during that time, if you haven't noticed. Do you have anything more up to date? Or don't your folks update things that they don't want to be noticed by the general public or Christendom at large?

The sins forbidden in the seventh commandment, besides the neglect of the duties required, are adultery, fornication, rape, incest, sodomy, and all unnatural lusts; all unclean imaginations, thoughts, purposes, and affections, all corrupt or filthy communications, or listening thereunto; wanton looks, impudent or light behavior, immodest apparel; prohibiting of lawful, and dispensing with unlawful marriages; allowing, tolerating, keeping of stews (old English word meaning houses of prostitution), and resorting to them; entangling vows of single life, undue delay of marriage, having more wives or husbands than one at the same time; unjust divorce, or desertion; idleness, gluttony, drunkenness, unchaste company; lascivious songs, books, pictures, dancings, stage plays; and all other provocations to, or acts of uncleanness, either in ourselves or others.

How about you give me the name of the last person thrown out of the PCA for any of these and the date? You don't let convicted rapists continue membership? Divocees? When was the last time you guys tossed somebody out for reading Playboy?

Are you really trying to tell us that you are not PCA after trying so hard to convince us all these years?

16 posted on 11/07/2011 10:13:42 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel, if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so.)
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To: MarkBsnr
"Why does the PCA have a President? It does not say anything about Presidents in the Bible."

It doesn't say anything about Popes in the Bible.

"There is no voting in the Bible on matters of theology and beliefs. Why does the PCA vote on matters of theology and belief?"

Why did the participants of the Counsel of Nicea vote on matters of theology and belief?

17 posted on 11/08/2011 6:21:23 AM PST by circlecity
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To: MarkBsnr; circlecity
"Why did the participants of the Counsel of Nicea vote on matters of theology and belief?"

The Bishops who met at Nicea were all directly the product of Apostolic Succession and had the responsibility transferred to them by the laying on of the hands in a direct unbroken link through the Apostles to Jesus Himself. The same cannot be said for the PCA, but Circlecity's reasoning does legitimize the Magisterium, doesn't it.

18 posted on 11/08/2011 8:05:59 AM PST by Natural Law (Transubstantiation - Change we can believe in.)
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To: Natural Law
"The Bishops who met at Nicea were all directly the product of Apostolic Succession"

As are all regenerate Pastors.

19 posted on 11/08/2011 8:10:27 AM PST by circlecity
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To: MarkBsnr

Unless I read the letter incorrectly, the president referenced in the article was the US president, as a letter was written to him.

There are three types of structures for churches:
1) Bishop led, a type of pyramid structure with promotions and those leaders making decisions for the congregants(e.g. R Catholic)
2) Congregation led, a typy of upside down triangle, where the congregants make the decisions (e.g. Southern Baptists)
3) Presbytery led, which is elder ruled and the biblical model. Elders are chosen by the congregation and they hold the order of the church. If problems arise within the congregation, a member can meet with an elder or elders. The district would then have elders chosen from among the various church elder.

The advantage of #3 is that the possibility of a power struggle is minimized more so than in #1 and #2. The PCA follows #3.


20 posted on 11/08/2011 8:37:14 AM PST by del4hope (Elections??? Communists do not surrender power, they crush their opposition, or at least try to.)
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To: circlecity
"As are all regenerate Pastors."

What exactly is a "regenerate" Pastor and how is Apostolic succession achieved? Is there a Scriptural or Traditional precedent for it?

21 posted on 11/08/2011 8:39:21 AM PST by Natural Law (Transubstantiation - Change we can believe in.)
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To: Natural Law
"What exactly is a "regenerate" Pastor"

A Pastor indwelt by the Holy Spirit.

"Is there a Scriptural or Traditional precedent for it?"

There is scriptural support which makes tradition totally irrelvant.

22 posted on 11/08/2011 8:45:06 AM PST by circlecity
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To: circlecity
"A Pastor indwelt by the Holy Spirit."

I do not dispute that there are inspired non-Catholic clergy. I have know quite a few. I just don't see how the laying on of the hands is optional for true Apostolic Succession.

23 posted on 11/08/2011 9:26:14 AM PST by Natural Law (If you love the Catholic Church raise your hands, in not raise your standards.)
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To: Natural Law
"I just don't see how the laying on of the hands is optional for true Apostolic Succession."

Although I'm not convinced it is necessary, many Protestant congregations have the elders lay hands on new Pastors they ordain.

24 posted on 11/08/2011 9:33:08 AM PST by circlecity
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To: NakedRampage
What is the difference between the PCA and these guys, who embrace gay-ism and out-of-wedlock 'activity'?

http://www.pcusa.org/news/2011/5/11/pcusa-relaxes-constitutional-prohibition-gay-and-l

I'm not up on Presbyterianism, so I apologize.

Presbyterianism in the United State is complicated, historically. I linked to a big chart a few posts back in my personal timeline.

PCA is a conservative spinoff from the southern mainline church. The current PCUSA is the result of a merger between what the PCA split from, and the northern mainline Presbyterians. See the chart.

25 posted on 11/08/2011 6:37:57 PM PST by Lee N. Field ("You fool! Don't you know every Taurus purchased brings us closer to TEOTWAWKI?")
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