Article by John Piper
Founder & Teacher,
In recent years, the celebration of attempts to transform oneself from male to female, or female to male, and the normalization of same-sex attraction, including so-called “same-sex marriage,” have reconfigured the global landscape of sexual ethics.
It is timely and hopeful, therefore, that the Nashville Statement has appeared at this time. With a focus on this new ethical landscape, the statement aims to help clarify Christian convictions.
Tragic Darkness, Beautiful Light
Last Friday, August 25, the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (CBMW) and the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) jointly hosted a gathering of Christian leaders in Nashville. The purpose of the meeting was to finalize and approve the Nashville Statement in the hope of providing a biblically faithful standard in our day on these particular issues of human sexuality. I read the statement with a kind of sorrowful joy, which seems inevitable when beautiful light is spoken into tragic darkness. I wrote the following endorsement when I received a copy of the final draft:
The Nashville Statement is a Christian manifesto concerning issues of human sexuality. It speaks with forthright clarity, biblical conviction, gospel compassion, cultural relevance, and practical helpfulness. There is no effort to equivocate for the sake of wider, but muddled, acceptance.
It is built on the persuasion that the Christian Scriptures speak with clarity and authority for the good of humankind. It is permeated by the awareness that we are all sinners in need of divine grace through Jesus Christ. It affirms with joy that no form of sexual sin is beyond forgiveness and healing. It touches the most fundamental and urgent questions of the hour, without presuming to be a blueprint for political action. And it will prove to be, I believe, enormously helpful for thousands of pastors and leaders hoping to give wise, biblical, and gracious guidance to their people.
The difference between the Nashville Statement and the Danvers Statement, produced in the late 1980s by CBMW, is that they deal with different issues. The Danvers Statement unfolded and commended complementarianism over against egalitarianism. The focus was on the meaning of manhood and womanhood as expressed in the marriage relationship and in church leadership. The main point was that God has called men to be the Christlike leaders in their marriages (Ephesians 5:23, 25), and to be those who bear the special responsibility of authoritative teaching and leadership in the church (1 Timothy 2:12–13).
sign the statement yourself.