The United States Supreme Court has announced that it will make a decision on whether or not there is a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.
Individual states have been free to decide the issue for themselves but pressure on the courts from gay activists has resulted in many pro-marriage votes being overruled.
The Supreme Court will review a lower court ruling which upheld traditional marriage in a move welcomed by US campaign group the National Organization for Marriage (NOM).
Brian Brown, President of NOM, said: “We are very pleased that the Supreme Court has chosen to review the 6th Circuit’s ruling that found in favour of voters’ right to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.”
Brown anticipates an “eventual victory for the democratic process, religious liberty, and the cherished institution of marriage which forms the very bedrock of our society”.
Same-sex marriage is not allowed in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee following a ruling by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Marriage is still upheld in 14 states but in 36 states marriage licences can be issued to same-sex couples.
Russell Moore, President of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, described the gravity of the upcoming Supreme Court decision last week.
He said that: “This case could potentially transform the cultural landscape of America.”
Christian vision of marriage
Moore urged Christians to pray that the Court will “not seek to redefine marriage”.
“Marriage”, he continued, “was not created by government action, and shouldn’t be re-created by government action.”
He also encouraged Christians to pray for churches who will “know how to articulate and embody a Christian vision of marriage as the one flesh union of a man and a woman in the tumultuous years to come”.
Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a religious liberty group, also expressed optimism that the constitution will protect the conventional definition of marriage.
A statement on the ADF website reads, “the Constitution does not demand that a new view of marriage be judicially imposed on everyone”.
It continues: “We are hopeful the Supreme Court will uphold the freedom of the people to affirm marriage.”