I don’t always dig into political issues, there are plenty of others that seem to really enjoy this. But I believe this one also reflects the way we should be living day to day.
On Monday, June 4, SCOTUS, or the Supreme Court of the United States, delivered a 7-2 decision that the actions by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s violated the Free Exercise Clause of a Christian baker who refused to create a cake for a same-sex wedding.
This has a huge impact in the way governmental state actors and representatives deal with religious freedom in the US. The Baptist ERLC, Ethics & Religious Liberties Commission, said it is the biggest religious freedom decision of the year. And many other leaders have stated this decision is why the influence of the Presidential office – the appointment of the federal and Supreme Court justices – is so important – emphasizing that having a President who will appoint conservative justices is important.
Now – this SCOTUS decision needs a little clarification. It was not a narrow vote numerically – I mean, a 7-2 vote is a pretty clear spread. It is narrow in that the scope of the decision impacts a very limited issue – in this case, the way the baker was treated by the Colorado commission. It does not settle the issue about artist and businesses that would prefer they nor their wares to not be involved in same sex weddings. It is clear in their wording of this decision that there will need to be another case to decide this.
It is narrow in that the scope of the decision impacts a very limited issue – in this case, the way the baker was treated by the Colorado commission. SCOTUS lists several specific instances that show the commission was biased, did not show tolerance, and disrespected the baker’s religious beliefs.
So, what is significant about the case, though, is that the Court reiterated, as Justice Kagan says, that “state actors cannot show hostility to religious views; rather, they must give those views “neutral and respectful consideration.”
“state actors cannot show hostility to religious views; rather, they must give those views “neutral and respectful consideration.”
Now – as stated above and should be clear in days to come, there are obvious impactions for religious liberty in the USA. But it should also challenge each on of us on how we treat people of different belief and different ways of life. It should be done with respect, with kindness, and allowing for their individual liberties too. We don’t need SCOTUS to tell us that – Listen to what God said …
Col 4:5-6 5 Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. 6 Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
May our attitudes towards others be seasoned with concern. May they see we care for them, even if we disagree. May our actions kind, our words be edifying, and our actions be seasoned with grace.
May the SCOTUS decision remind us of the way we should
be living everyday.
May others see Jesus in us!