We the Common Ground Christian Network affirm the dignity and value of every human being and we oppose President Obama’s July 21, 2014 executive order which seeks to limit the free exercise of religion by organizations doing business with the federal government. The order compels all federal contractors, including religious organizations, to practice “nondiscrimination” based on “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” While designed to proscribe discrimination, the order actually sanctions it by punishing those whose faith-driven convictions the government does not approve.
The First Amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees the free exercise of religion, includes religion-based ethics in the workplace. The President’s executive order would force Christian charities and other religious groups, whose services are always extended without discrimination, to hire people whose lifestyles do not conform to the religious beliefs of the organization. This includes the historic biblical Christian teaching that sex is for marriage between husband and wife. It also violates the First Amendment’s disestablishment clause by endorsing “transgender” ideology, the assertion that individuals can reinvent their own self-perceived “gender identity,” irrespective of physical reality. Christians whose faith aligns with historic, biblical Christianity consider this ideology to be Gnostic in its elevation of mind and feelings over biology.