Freedom for All

Last week Friday was Religious Freedom Day. So it was notable that on the same day the Supreme Court decided to hear cases that will determine whether same-sex marriage will be constitutional nationwide.[1] Predictably, there has been some handwringing from some conservative Evangelicals, cautiously optimistic about having a Supreme Court ruling, but also adamant about their beliefs in “traditional” marriage and some even vowing some form of disengagement from the larger society if the Court should rule against their wishes. LGBT advocates are much more hopeful, mostly based on a ruling in their favor in the Windsor case that went before the Court last year.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Freedom is a concept that for many people is like a hot potato in their hands, they just don’t know what to do with it. They often forget that their own freedom ends at that line in the sand where the rights of others start.

Thanks for the good article. I bet it will generate a good conversation here, since there are certainly polarized opinions about freedom among the Spectrumites.


very well stated, thank you.,Tom Z


If Caesar’s government wants to slide deeper into the pit of immorality and decadence, they have the right to do so. What they don’t have the right to do is force churches to do things which are contrary to their beliefs.

Although there are exemptions for churches on some of these homosexual issues, one wonders how long that will last. The militant activists in the homosexual movement would like to see all exemptions removed.


Why, when one chooses to curtail the life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness of others, is it impossible for them to see that they are fighting against the very principles that established this nation? Please note that the way of God/Jesus is not of force and/or coercion (Babylon in The Revelations), but of tolerance and supplication. Come to me all who are labor and are overburdened, and I will give you rest.

Trust God.



why the gratuitous comment? The court is only considering the civil aspects, the most important of which is property rights. they have left Religious Liberty intact. This is one of the most conservative courts in history of this nation. Why do you always insist on the negative of others? The issue needs resolution. Why don’t you start a campaign to remove “underGod” form the pledge. Tom Z


Any evidence that “Caesar’s government” will force Churches to do those " things which are contrary to their beliefs?"
Or are you just dealing with a straw-man?


I think the persistent “negative attitude” we see in some Adventists is the product of some brainwashing process. May be it’s the silent result of reading and re-reading countless times the threats found in the boox. It certainly is a kind of paranoia, a constant feeling that there are “those people out there” conspiring against “us;” the view that the SDAs are the ultimate target of persecution by all other Christians and religions in general.

Man, we need the GC to move out from that building as well. We ( @elmer_cupino and associates) will be so busy that we will need the whole building!!!

I commend TW for his support to move the GC to Brazil (breaking news!):


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you will note gay and lesbian students are now enrolled in SDA universities and schools. the issue arises if the instruction receives Federal support, even student loans. Tom Z


Can you tell us in a brief sentence what was it about?

Or anyone else who will have the time to read all that long paper?

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if you refer to the federal document. In simple language, The Federal government is telling private institutions they can’t discriminate. the issue was race, the implication is it will apply to same sex marriages if the Supreme Court acts favorably on same sex marriages. The issue is even private institutions receive all sources of support and aid from the federal government. So they fall within the affirmative Action/Equal Rights law. remember the Marikay Silver case? Tom Z


Section 501©(3) provides that “[c]orporations . . . organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable . . . or educational purposes” are entitled to tax exemption. Bob Jones vs. US held that this exception does not apply to organizations that discriminate. Since churches and schools both fit that description, the ruling applies to churches as well as schools. Furthermore it held that “The Government’s fundamental, overriding interest in eradicating racial discrimination in education substantially outweighs whatever burden denial of tax benefits places on petitioners’ exercise of their religious beliefs.”


So simple: those who don’t want the interference of the Government in their business should just ask the Government not to “interfere” with any funds to their projects.

But I guess they want the money anyways… Like little children who want some money from their parents but don’t want to tell what they are going to buy with it… Sure!..


Can anyone in their sane state of mind dispute that resolution?

I pay my taxes, and think that I have no right to discriminate against anyone/anything.
Churches don’t pay taxes, and do they think that they can discriminate at will? This is a crazy rationale.What kind of sense of entitlement is that?

Besides, it is not in any way an evidence that “Caesar’s government wants to slide deeper” (per @blc) into anything.


If a church refuses to hire a pastor that does not believe in God, that is discrimination. Should churches no longer have this right?

Of course not. Rather, it is the evidence you requested:

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It will be interesting to see if the polygamous families will pursue legalizing plural marriages at some point.

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Only if Mitt becomes president. Tom Z


I am fully aware that not everyone will share my personal opinions about certain issues. And it’s fine with me!

Probably based on their belief in the OT stories about men who were God’s chosen people?