The gospel is that Jesus is the Messiah/King and Lord of all, and he is so on the basis of faith — not works, not ethnic identity, not sexual identity, and not economic identity. As Paul expresses the impact of the gospel in Galatians 3:28, we are all one in Christ. But this church has denied the gospel by prohibiting interracial marriage and prohibiting such from exercising God-given gifts and church membership. Shame on them.
A small Kentucky church has chosen to ban marriages and even some worship services for interracial couples. The Gulnare Freewill Baptist Church, located in Pike County, made the vote in response to a longtime member who is engaged to a man whose birthplace is in Zimbabwe.
Other pastoral leaders in the area were quick to denounce the church’s vote. “It’s not the spirit of the community in any way, shape or form,” Randy Johnson, president of the Pike County Ministerial Association, told the Lexington Herald-Leader.
A copy of the recommendation, obtained by WYMT, reads in part:
That the Gulnare Freewill Baptist Church does not condone interracial marriage. Parties of such marriages will not be received as members, nor will they be used in worship services and other church functions, with the exception being funerals. All are welcome [whatever that means now] to our public worship services. This recommendation is not intended to judge the salvation of anyone [but it’s getting mighty close], but is intended to promote greater unity [which it is destroying] among the church body [which it is severing] and the community we serve [which will have no prophetic voice about racism at this church].
Members of the church held a vote on Thompson’s proposed language, with nine voting in favor and six voting against. The other members in attendance chose not to vote.