What Do Presbyterians Say About Marriage?

The 221st General Assembly (2014) proposed an amendment to section W-4.9000 in the Directory for Worship, replacing the current text with language that will better serve the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) today.

faq coverAs Amendment 14-F is considered by the presbyteries in the coming months, the Covenant Network will continue to offer resources to inform the churchwide
conversation.  You will find a growing collection here.

The Covenant Network’s 2006 publication, Frequently Asked Questions about Sexuality, the Bible & the Church: Plain Talk About Tough Issues, contains 26 essays exploring biblical and theological perspectives on same-gender relationships and marriage. Featured today:  David Jensen, “What Do Presbyterians Say About Marriage?”  An excerpt:

The biblical authors and Reformed heritage both assume that a marriage covenant is between a man and a woman. The question of same-sex marriage simply does not enter their interpretive world. Since the church must continually re-interpret its heritage in light of new questions in the attempt to be faithful to the Good News of Jesus Christ, Presbyterians are warranted in asking whether or not the distinctive strands of our tradition would allow for or prohibit same-sex unions or marriages. The burden for either side, in my opinion, lies in whether proposals for same-sex unions meet the theological criteria for marriages outlined in our tradition: May such unions, as Westminster stresses, serve the common good? Are they dim reflections of God’s covenant with humanity, as the Old Testament suggests? Do they direct human persons to one another and to the ultimacy of God’s Reign as the New Testament upholds? Do they, as Calvin urged, model restraint from sin and joy in companionship? Do they, however imperfectly, anticipate God’s communion with all creation in Christ, as our liturgy celebrates?


  1. http://Ginny%20Browne says

    Simply, yes!

  2. Contrary to popular opinion, marriages are not made in heaven. They take work. Lots of work. Successful marriages are created not just “divined.”

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