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ethics & religious liberty

We work to awaken, inform, energize, equip and mobilize our churches to influence their communities, state and nation with the Word of God as applied to the current cultural issues.

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88th Texas Legislative Session - 2023

88th Legislative Statement

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This journal comes to you as a first installment from the TERLC: empowering, encouraging, and resourcing pastors and churches in Texas to discern and walk through various kinds of persecution in a biblical manner.

persecution journal

Southern Baptist churches speak for themselves but where they have corporately spoken on timely issues, we represent that voice. Our churches have agreed on:

OUR CONFESSION OF FAITH

The Baptist Faith & Message refers to several timely issues according to our best understanding of biblical truth.

RESOLUTIONS

Our convention’s messengers each year express opinions on the issues of the day. These are not binding on the convention or its ministries but instructive on the consensus of our churches.

THE PLAIN READING OF SCRIPTURE

Much of what the Bible says is very clear on matters of morality, human relationships and even the place of government in the lives of citizens.

Religious Liberty

Religious liberty is a basic human right discerned from Scripture and an essential component of a free society as affirmed by the founders of our nation.

Sanctity of Life and Orphan Care

The SBTC has always advocated in favor of laws that protect the sanctity of human life from conception to natural death. All human life, born and unborn, deserves equal dignity and rights; whether young, old, ill, disabled, or mentally/physically impaired, each life deserves full protection and honor as a human being.

Gender Identity

We encourage government officials and policy makers to support public policies that recognize the unalterable God-given distinctions between male and female and especially protect children under the age of 18 from surgical procedures or pharmaceuticals that are for the purpose of gender transitioning or gender reassignment.

The Family, Education of Children, and Parental Rights

We call upon the legislature to protect parental rights and to reject all attempts that threaten these freedoms, especially in the areas of religious beliefs, education, and medical and/or psychological evaluations and procedures. As parents, we also have the fundamental right to hold accountable schools, institutions, and industries for their moral influence on our children. 

Sex Trafficking, Pornography, and Sexual Abuse

We condemn all forms of sexual violence which includes, but is not limited to, any form of sexual assault, harassment, exploitation, or abuse. These criminal and unjust acts leave lasting physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual harm to survivors and victims. 

Gambling

The devastating impact and social costs of state-sanctioned predatory gambling has already been well documented such as the high costs of crime, bankruptcies, business and unemployment costs, addiction and treatment costs, family costs of divorce, child abuse, neglect and domestic violence, sex-trafficking, regulatory costs related to government oversight, and suicides (multiple studies show problem gamblers have the highest suicide rate of any addiction) (Matthew 12:33). 

Economic Freedom

We call upon the 88th Texas Legislature to exercise fiscal responsibility and to consider as essential the freedom to work and earn an income free from oppressive regulations, high tax rates, and lockdowns (Nehemiah 5:4, Proverbs 22:7).