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Monday, April 6, 2009

United Church of Christ Renewal Leader Apologizes to Citizens, Christians of Iowa -- The Rev. David Runnion-Bareford, executive executive director of Biblical Witness Fellowship, the Confessing Movement in the United Church of Christ, and president of the Association for Church Renewal, strategic alliance of renewal ministries in the mainline denominations of North America, submits the following and is available for comment:

To the citizens, pastors, churches and Christians of Iowa. Today on behalf of many thousands of Christians who belong to congregations of the United Church of Christ and millions of faithful Christians in the 'mainline' churches that helped found our nation, I apologize with a broken heart for our denominational officials and other proponents of faux Christian religion who have publicly advocated and applauded the attempt of your court to redefine marriage. This is an ancient idolatry in new skin. We know that the ordinance of marriage between one man and one woman is imbedded in natural law and the natural moral order by the sovereign word of the creator God.

That has not changed. Marriage for all of us, regardless of belief, is the primary covenant in which all other human covenants, laws, and governments are grounded. When courts, governments, or religious bodies make decrees to change the character and definition of marriage, nothing is changed other than the state of their own legitimacy. To decree some other form of relationship a marriage, does not make it so in the only court before which each of us will ultimately stand. To tell dear folks who yearn to have it so, that it is, is a cruel deception. Natural law, the ordinances of God, and the faith of the church are not subject to change by political action, legal decrees, denominational meetings or cultural consensus especially in our era of sexual and relational confusion, perversion and failure.

For us who are Christians that word is confirmed by our Lord Jesus Christ who said, "at the beginning the Creator made them male and female, and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate." (Matthew 19:4, 5)

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