Orlando, FL–The Church of God General Council, meeting in Orlando for the 74th Church of God General Assembly, passed a number of resolutions, including one reaffirming the denomination’s Biblical stance on marriage and family.
Resolutions were the last item on an agenda of twenty considered by the ordained bishops registered for the Assembly. The business of the Council then moved to motions and concludes tonight with a closing service of commissioning for the new general overseer of the Church of God, Mark Williams, who was conferred by the General Assembly this afternoon.
The resolution in its entirety is as follows:
WHEREAS, the first recorded spoken words of mankind were those of Adam who 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 shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:23, 24); and,
WHEREAS, over 4,000 years later Jesus defined Biblical marriage by saying: “Have you not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder” (Matthew 19:4-6); and,
WHEREAS, God’s creation of man “in His image” specifically referred to the creation of man as male and female, as seen in the words: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Genesis 1:27); and,
WHEREAS, God’s first commission to man was: “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth” (Genesis 1:28); and,
WHEREAS, the fulfillment of this divine charge, to populate and have dominion over the earth, is impossible except by the uniting of a man and a woman in a relationship that the Bible refers to as “one flesh,” in seven distinct places (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:5, 6; Mark 10:8; 1 Corinthians 6:16; and Ephesians 5:31); and,
WHEREAS, the Law clearly recognized the role of both the man and the woman in a family relationship by directing all children: “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12, NIV); and,
WHEREAS, the New Testament church clearly affirmed marriage as being a covenant relationship between a man and a woman, and of the family as being comprised of a father, a mother, and children (Ephesians 5:21-6:4; Colossians 3:18-21);
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT, once again “the Church of God unequivocally affirms that marriage is a covenant relationship between a man and woman and rejects all attempts to redefine marriage in terms of same-sex unions and behavior” (Minutes, 2004, p. 66); and,
THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT, once again, “we encourage our members to help preserve marriage as a sacred union between man and woman by living lives that model commitment to the Word of God, exemplify devotion to moral purity, and celebrate family responsibility” (Minutes, 1996, pp. 64, 65); and,
THEREFORE BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED THAT, the Church of God strongly declares that a Biblical marriage is a threefold covenant relationship between one man, one woman, and one God who eternally exists in three persons as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.