“Know that the LORD Himself is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves...” -Psalm 100:3
This post contains the complete 14 articles of the Nashville Statement and a complete explanation of these articles.
Evangelical Christians at the dawn of the twenty-first century find themselves living in a period of historic transition. As Western culture has become increasingly post-Christian, it has embarked upon a massive revision of what it means to be a human being. By and large the spirit of our age no longer discerns or delights in the beauty of God’s design for human life. Many deny that God created human beings for his glory, and that his good purposes for us include our personal and physical design as male and female. It is common to think that human identity as male and female is not part of God’s beautiful plan, but is, rather, an expression of an individual’s autonomous preferences. The pathway to full and lasting joy through God’s good design for his creatures is thus replaced by the path of shortsighted alternatives that, sooner or later, ruin human life and dishonor God
This secular spirit of our age presents a great challenge to the Christian church. Will the church of the Lord Jesus Christ lose her biblical conviction, clarity, and courage, and blend into the spirit of the age? Or will she hold fast to the word of life, draw courage from Jesus, and unashamedly proclaim his way as the way of life? Will she maintain her clear, counter-cultural witness to a world that seems bent on ruin?
We are persuaded that faithfulness in our generation means declaring once again the true story of the world and of our place in it—particularly as male and female. Christian Scripture teaches that there is but one God who alone is Creator and Lord of all. To him alone, every person owes glad- hearted thanksgiving, heart-felt praise, and total allegiance. This is the path not only of glorifying God, but of knowing ourselves. To forget our Creator is to forget who we are, for he made us for himself. And we cannot know ourselves truly without truly knowing him who made us. We did not make ourselves. We are not our own. 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.
We believe that God’s design for his creation and his way of salvation serve to bring him the greatest glory and bring us the greatest good. God’s good plan provides us with the greatest freedom. Jesus said he came that we might have life and have it in overflowing measure. He is for us and not against us. Therefore, in the hope of serving Christ’s church and witnessing publicly to the good purposes of God for human sexuality revealed in Christian Scripture, we offer the following affirmations and denials.
WE AFFIRM that God has designed marriage to be a covenantal, sexual, procreative, lifelong union of one man and one woman, as husband and wife, and is meant to signify the covenant love between Christ and his bride the church.
WE DENY that God has designed marriage to be a homosexual, polygamous, or polyamorous relationship. We also deny that marriage is a mere human contract rather than a covenant made before God.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: The definition for marriage came from God originally. He created it for the purpose of providing a stable, committed relationship in which a man and a woman could live together for life. Within the boundaries of marriage, God permits sex without limits. He designed sex for married couples to cause two persons to become one in the realm of the spirit. This is later illustrated in Ephesians 5 in the New Testament where Paul describes the intimacy of becoming one by a man and woman, as an illustration of Jesus becoming one with His church. For this reason, any relationship between two men or two women, does not allow these unions to enjoy a spiritual oneness, nor does it illustrate the unity of Jesus with His church. In fact, a union of two men or two women, in the context of what God has said concerning marriage is that these same-sex unions act as a perversion of what God created.
Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.” Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. —Genesis 2:15-24
WE AFFIRM that God’s revealed will for all people is chastity outside of marriage and fidelity within marriage.
WE DENY that any affections, desires, or commitments ever justify sexual intercourse before or outside marriage; nor do they justify any form of sexual immorality.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: All sex outside of marriage is a misuse of God’s intent for sex. As such, it is classified as sin, just as any other sin. Since all sin must be repented of and Jesus must be received as Savior in order for salvation to occur, sexual sin in any form outside marriage is wrong and can result in the loss of eternal life if it is continued.
Sex with your mother: Leviticus 18:7
Sex with your fathers’s wife (stepmother): Leviticus 18:8
Sex with your sister: Leviticus 18:9
Sex with your granddaughter: Leviticus 18:10
Sex with your half-sister: Leviticus 18:11
Sex with your biological aunt: Leviticus 18:12-13
Sex with your uncle’s wife: Leviticus 18:14
Sex with your daughter-in-law: Leviticus 18:15
Sex with your sister-in-law: Leviticus 18:16
Sex with a woman and her daughter or granddaughter: Leviticus 18:17
Sex with your wife’s sister: Leviticus 18:18
Sex with your neighbor’s wife: Leviticus 18:20
Sex between two men: Leviticus 18:22
Sex with an animal: Leviticus 18:23
How do we know that this is true? We read in the text of the New Testament that when the Apostles met in the early Christian church, they determined that believers in Jesus only had to keep the law related to meat offered to idols, sexual immorality (Old Testament Law), and animals not properly bled-out before eating their meat.
Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the Gentiles who are turning to God, but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood. —Acts 15:18-20
Why are the laws regarding sexual relationships still in affect, while the others are excluded? When a person comes into a new relationship with Jesus, He comes to live inside that person. Paul wrote that our bodies are now the “Temple of the Holy Spirit.”
Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. —1 Corinthians 6:18-20
This means that it is extremely important that we use our bodies only in ways that bring glory to God. Using our body for sexual sin, or where two men or two women engage in sex together, defiles the temple of our body. God made a man and woman for each other, not men for men and women for women. This is obvious by their biological functions and the fact that men are clearly not made for sex with another men, nor are women, for women. Sex between persons who are not united in marriage is in conflict with God’s purpose for marriage since God created marriage as between a man and a woman as the only acceptable union that permits sex to occur.
The reason: Commitment. Without the commitment of marriage we see what sex has become today. Men father a child and leave to father other children by other women. We live in a day when many children have no father in the home because the commitment of marriage was not made before a sexual relationship began. Certainly marriage does not guarantee that the union will last, but it should. If we would do what we promise and preserve our marriages the entire world would be a much better place. Again, God’s idea about sex and marriage is still the best plan.
In Ephesians 5, God describes the mystery of unity that takes place in the union of marriage where a man and woman become one by their sexual relationship. In this union God is illustrating the oneness that takes place between Jesus and His Bride, the church. For this reason, only a man and woman who are united in a sexual relationship by marriage can become One. There is no oneness of the spirit that occurs when two men or two women have sex. For this reason, these relationships can never achieve what God intended.
We see that from the beginning God only intended that a man and a woman would be married. Jesus later confirms this in the New Testament.
Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. —Genesis 2:24
And Jesus answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” —Matthew 19:4-6
WE AFFIRM that God created Adam and Eve, the first human beings, in his own image, equal before God as persons, and distinct as male and female.
WE DENY that the divinely ordained differences between male and female render them unequal in dignity or worth.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Because God clearly determined that there would only be two sexes, male and female and also defined what each of these two genders would be defined as individually, there is no possibility that this definition could ever be update, changed, or redefined. The fact that people now think that society has changed and special allowances should be made to permit persons to choose their own gender identity, it wrong. God never made such provisions for man to every impeach what God has said, nor to make rules for himself. Society or personal feelings do not determine what is right or wrong. God alone has this special right and only He can determined what behavior is correct concerning human behavior.
Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. —Genesis 2:24
We notice that God only made provision for a man and a woman to be joined as one and be one flesh. There is no statement anywhere in the Bible where God said that two men can become one, nor two women.
WE AFFIRM that divinely ordained differences between male and female reflect God’s original creation design and are meant for human good and human flourishing.
WE DENY that such differences are a result of the Fall or are a tragedy to be overcome.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Because we can observe the clear difference between a male and female by their sexual capacity, it is clear that male and female are made for each other. God designed the bodies of male and female differently and this difference clearly defines what His intention was in making only two sexes. There was no change in the original intent of the male and female body to be used exclusively for each other, after the fall of man in the garden or Eden.
WE AFFIRM that the differences between male and female reproductive structures are integral to God’s design for self-conception as male or female.
WE DENY that physical anomalies or psychological conditions nullify the God-appointed link between biological sex and self-conception as male or female.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: The clear distinction between the male organs and the female organs demand a conclusion that they are made only for each other. The biological function of a male does not exhibit the capacity of sex as with a female. The practice of sodomy is a misuse of the human body and self-evident to all human beings. God defines this behavior as an abomination of the purpose for which he created man.
You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. —Leviticus 18:22-23
WE AFFIRM that those born with a physical disorder of sex development are created in the image of God and have dignity and worth equal to all other image-bearers. They are acknowledged by our Lord Jesus in his words about “eunuchs who were born that way from their mother’s womb.” With all others they are welcome as faithful followers of Jesus Christ and should embrace their biological sex insofar as it may be known.
WE DENY that ambiguities related to a person’s biological sex render one incapable of living a fruitful life in joyful obedience to Christ.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Only is cases where a person is born with the ability to refrain from a sexual relationship and able to control themselves, for the purpose of serving God more fully, can someone determine that they are a “Eunuch.” This does not however, change their biological sexual identity. There are no provisions anywhere in the Bible where a person may change their sexual orientation from a man to a woman, or a woman to a man.
For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake —Matthew 19:12
WE AFFIRM that self-conception as male or female should be defined by God’s holy purposes in creation and redemption as revealed in Scripture.
WE DENY that adopting a homosexual or transgender self-conception is consistent with God’s holy purposes in creation and redemption.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH; By their inherent design, man and woman show us what the functions of their bodies should be. The natural process of procreation between a man and woman provides the world with children. The process whereby man uses science to change what God has ordained for human reproduction, does not change God’s intent, nor does it amend what He permits.
WE AFFIRM that people who experience sexual attraction for the same sex may live a rich and fruitful life pleasing to God through faith in Jesus Christ, as they, like all Christians, walk in purity of life.
WE DENY that sexual attraction for the same sex is part of the natural goodness of God’s original creation, or that it puts a person outside the hope of the gospel.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Men who struggle wth sexual temptation towards other men or women with women, are no different from sexual temptation between men towards women or women towards men. For thousands of years people have been fighting sexual temptation. There is no exclusivity for same-sex persons in their sexual temptation. They must fight their temptations just as heterosexual persons must. All people, if they will come under the sacrifice of Jesus’ death for their sins, must cease sin if they truly want to be forgiven and be reconciled to God.
Anyone who claims that Christians today are not under the laws for sexual sin that were given in the Old Testament, are wrong and not telling the truth. We see from the Bible that God expects all personS who will believe in Jesus for their salvation to not conduct themselves in a sexual relationships, except in marriage, and only a man and a woman together.
Those who continue in a sexual relationship outside marriage or as a same sex-couple will not inherit the kingdom of heaven.
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. 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 and by the Spirit of our God. —1 Corinthians 6:9-11
Christians in the Corinthian church, 2,000 years ago, asked these same questions then that are being asked today. Sexual sin is not under any special classification of evil from any other sin. All sin will keep a person from obtaining salvation in Jesus Christ, if is is not repented of. Any person who has sinned, can be forgiven and receive heaven as their eternal home. Paul finishes the above paragraph to the Corinthian church by reminded them that “such were some of you…” There were Homosexuals, Lesbians, Fornicators, and Adulterers in this church, but they turned from their sins and obtained salvation in Jesus Christ.
WE AFFIRM that sin distorts sexual desires by directing them away from the marriage covenant and toward sexual immorality— a distortion that includes both heterosexual and homosexual immorality.
WE DENY that an enduring pattern of desire for sexual immorality justifies sexually immoral behavior.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Any attempt at changing the original intent of God’s purpose for man and woman in the use of their bodies, is a distortion and grave error. Sex between two men or two women will bring the wrath of God in judgement and the loss of eternal life.
WE AFFIRM that it is sinful to approve of homosexual immorality or transgenderism and that such approval constitutes an essential departure from Christian faithfulness and witness.
WE DENY that the approval of homosexual immorality or transgenderism is a matter of moral indifference about which otherwise faithful Christians should agree to disagree.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: No person who professes a sincere faith in Jesus Christ has the right to disagree with anything that God has said concerning sin. It is the duty of the man or woman who has accepted Jesus’ death for their sins, to withhold their opinions concerning what God has already said. To make Jesus “Lord,” means that He is the boss of the life of one who has asked Him to be Lord. Our only opinion as the followers of Jesus Christ is to agree with all that God has already said, accept these words, and live our lives in obedience to them.
But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? —Luke 6:46
Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ —Matthew 7:21-23
WE AFFIRM our duty to speak the truth in love at all times, including when we speak to or about one another as male or female.
WE DENY any obligation to speak in such ways that dishonor God’s design of his image- bearers as male and female.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: When the word of God is maligned or denied concerning sin or a preeminent doctrine of the Bible that concerns eternal salvation, it is the absolute duty of every Christian to defend, rebuke, exhort, and proclaim, what God has said.
Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. —Jude 1:3-4
Again the word of the LORD came to me, saying, “Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and say to them: ‘When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from their territory and make him their watchman, when he sees the sword coming upon the land, if he blows the trumpet and warns the people, then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be on his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet, but did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But he who takes warning will save his life. But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.’ So you, son of man: I have made you a watchman.” —Ezekiel 33:1-7
The watchman is someone who looks for approaching danger so that he can warn those who may suffer if they are not warned. The principle here is simple: If we warn people that they are in danger and they do not heed our warning, then the Lord will hold that person responsible who refused to listen. He will then release us of our obligation, as we have done what He requires. However, if we fail to warn someone whom we know is in danger and he perishes, then the Lord will hold us accountable for his death.
This point is further defined in the New Testament:
Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins. —James 5:19-20
It has been incorrectly taught in the Christian church that we cannot judge sin or confront someone whom we observe in sin. If this was the case, then how would any of us have the opportunity to help each other in our spiritual journey? What we are not permitted to do is to condemn someone in their sin. There is a vast difference between judgment of a wrongful action that will harm a person, and condemning someone who is in active sin. One brings needed help, the other—unneeded distress and suffering. The purpose of exercising judgement in approaching a person to tell him that his current behavior is harmful to himself or others, is out of love. If we truly love people, we must not allow them to continue in anything that will harm them or others who are around them.
WE AFFIRM that the grace of God in Christ gives both merciful pardon and transforming power, and that this pardon and power enable a follower of Jesus to put to death sinful desires and to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.
WE DENY that the grace of God in Christ is insufficient to forgive all sexual sins and to give power for holiness to every believer who feels drawn into sexual sin.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: For anyone who is willing to admit that their behavior is not in alignment with the word of God and ready to repent of these actions, there is forgiveness available from God. For those who will not agree what what God has commanded concerning our behavior, these persons remain under the wrath of God’s judgement. A person who continues in a lifestyle of sexual sin with no repentance, will not inherit heaven, but remain under the wrath of God.
For I, Jesus, have appeared to you for this purpose…, to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ —Acts 26:16-18
In Jesus we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace —Ephesians 1:7
WE AFFIRM that the grace of God in Christ enables sinners to forsake transgender self- conceptions and by divine forbearance to accept the God-ordained link between one’s biological sex and one’s self-conception as male or female.
WE DENY that the grace of God in Christ sanctions self-conceptions that are at odds with God’s revealed will.
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: Because we understand how great Jesus’ suffering on the cross, was for our sins, we do not take the grace of God lightly or without due respect. For what Jesus endured to pay for our sins, we deny ourselves the lusts of our flesh which all person experience in this life and we give our obedience to Jesus. This is our reasonable service to Him for what He has done for us.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. —Romans 12:1-2
Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. —Hebrews 10:29-31
WE AFFIRM that Christ Jesus has come into the world to save sinners and that through Christ’s death and resurrection forgiveness of sins and eternal life are available to every person who repents of sin and trusts in Christ alone as Savior, Lord, and supreme treasure.
WE DENY that the Lord’s arm is too short to save or that any sinner is beyond his reach
IN PLAIN ENGLISH: The entire purpose of Jesus’ arrival on earth, as God, in the form of a man, was to pay the price that each one of us owed to God for our sins. It is inconsistent with sincerity to accept God’s forgiveness for sins and then continue in the very same sins that made Jesus death for us, necessary. Regardless of how far a person has gone from God or how deep the stain of their sins are, Jesus blood is more than sufficient to cleanse anyone from their sins and give them eternal life.
This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. —1 Timothy 1: 15
But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. —1 John 1:7-10
I signed this affirmation of the Biblical text for human sexuality on September 1, 2017. This is the first real, intelligent, and clear stance on what the Bible states concerning human sexuality as declared in the word of God.
Every Christian who sincerely loves Jesus Christ and believes that the Bible is the Word of God, should sign this statement.