By Reverend David Whitney
March 20, 2016
There was good news this week from our friends on the Alabama Supreme Court. Chief Justice Roy Moore wrote the following unanimous opinion.
“Today this Court by order dismisses all pending motions and petitions and issues the certificate of judgment in this case. That action does not disturb the existing March orders in this case or the Court's holding therein that the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment, art. I, § 36.03, Ala. Const. 1901, and the Alabama Marriage Protection Act, § 30-1-9, Ala. Code 1975, are constitutional. Therefore, and for the reasons stated below, I concur with the order.”
Video of the sermon
• I agree with the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, John Roberts, and with Associate Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito, that the majority opinion in Obergefell has no basis in the law, history, or tradition of this country. Obergefell is an unconstitutional exercise of judicial authority that usurps the legislative prerogative of the states to regulate their own domestic policy. Additionally, Obergefell seriously jeopardizes the religious liberty guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.
• Based upon arguments of “love,” “commitment,” and “equal dignity” for same-sex couples, five lawyers, as Chief Justice Roberts so aptly describes the Obergefell majority, have declared a new social policy for the entire country. As the Chief Justice and Associate Justices Scalia, Thomas, and Alito eloquently and accurately demonstrate in their dissents, the majority opinion in Obergefell is an act of raw power with no ascertainable foundation in the Constitution itself. The majority presumed to legislate for the entire country under the guise of interpreting the Constitution.”
So the highest court in the state has ruled that Alabama’s laws hold on the grounds that the Supreme Court’s ruling only applies to the parties of the case. Praise be to God, they have taken the proper stand against the evil of homosexual marriage. I pray that their example would inspire other State Supreme Courts and even State Legislatures and Executives to resolutely stand against this evil in our land.
That reminds me of that time in our land when States stood up against tyrannical opinions issued by the Federal Supreme Court. For example in the 1850’s, “Wisconsin Legislature passed a series of resolutions denouncing the actions of the U.S. Supreme Court as “an arbitrary act of power ... without authority, void and of no force,” and urging “positive defiance” by the states as the ‘rightful remedy.’”
In the midst of many reasons for us to bemoan the state of our country, there are still reasons to give thanks to God. And when we thank God, it changes our whole demeanor, our attitude shifts in a new direction. Now that is not to say we forget all the problems in our land, or that we no longer speak about them, nor does it mean we cease to actively work to seek to change these things so that evil may be put down and righteousness exalted. What it means is that we do all these things within the over all Attitude of Gratitude - Grateful to Almighty God for all of His good and perfect gifts, for His abundant mercy and grace and the speed at which He will pardon and forgive. We must fight the good fight of faith Christ has called us to enveloped with this Attitude of Gratitude. So the question is ‘How are we to cultivate a grateful heart?’
The Word of God instructs us in this vital task. Cultivate a grateful heart was so important that God set time aside in the annual calendar of His people to focus on developing a grateful heart. The second of the three annual feasts was designed to develop a grateful heart. Though we in the New Covenant will not take all the specific actions called for in this feast, nonetheless it is very instructive for us who desire to develop a grateful heart.
We need to take the time to pause and reflect, to count the many blessings we have - physical provision, food clothing, shelter, family and friends. To thank Him for the great salvation He purchased with His own precious blood, and to thank Him for the joy of wonderful fellowship that we now have with Him -- fellowship beyond that which anyone ever knew until the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost. For it was on that Pentecost, the 6th day of the 3rd month Sivan in the year 30 A.D. that the Holy Spirit came to earth to permanently indwell believers for the first time in the history of the universe. We will examine that event next week, which is actually the day of Pentecost. If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ, then you have God’s Holy Spirit resident within you.