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The Cape Town Commitment

“We should reject the idolatry of disordered sexuality”

Michael Oh, CEO of the Lausanne Movement reminded Christians “the need for faithful biblical teaching and faithful biblical living.”

SOURCES Lausanne Movement AUTHOR Evangelical Focus CAPE TOWN 09 JULY 2015 19:45 h GMT+1
lausanne movement The Lausanne Movement unites evangelicals from across the world in their understanding of God's mission.

In the past few weeks, Ireland and the United States have legalised same-sex marriage, and some churches and denominations, including the United Protestant Church of Belgium and the Reformed and Lutheran Protestant Church in France have supported this, ordaining gay pastors and officiating same sex marriages.

Evangelicals, both in Europe and in United States, have raised their voices against these policies and decisions, defending a biblical perspective of marriage.



In the midst of this debate, the Lausanne Movement has also warned about what its Cape Town Commitment describes as ‘disordered sexuality’, stating that these policies and decisions “have reminded us of the need for faithful biblical teaching and faithful biblical living.”

The Cape Town Commitment was published as a conclusion of the Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelisation in 2010, and aimed to be “a statement of our conviction and call to action in global mission in the years ahead.”

The CEO of the Lausanne Movement, Michael Oh, has shared a relevant excerpt of that document, which represents the “best biblical thought and practical Christian response” to the hot topic of homosexuality and same-sex marriage.


Michael Oh, CEO of the Lausanne Movement. / Vladimir Raichinov

This part of the commitment, is especially addressed to pastors and members of local churches.



The document emphasised the sacred nature of marriage as a reflection of “both Christ’s relationship with the Church, and also the unity of Jew and Gentile in the new humanity.”

It also warns against “the abuse and idolatry that surrounds disordered sexuality”, because it “contributes to wider social decline, including the breakdown of marriages and families and produces incalculable suffering of loneliness and exploitation”, it adds.

The Lausanne Movement document admits that this is “a serious issue within the Church itself”, and as Christians is important to live “according to the standards to which the Bible calls us”, so that we will be able to “challenge our surrounding cultures.”


The White House supported the Supreme Court decision on gay marriage. / CNN


The statement encouraged pastors to:

  • Facilitate more open conversation about sexuality in our churches, declaring positively the good news of God’s plan for healthy relationships and family

  • Teach God’s standards clearly, but to do so with Christ’s pastoral compassion, recognising how vulnerable we all are to sexual temptation and sin.

  • Strive to set a positive example in living by biblical standards of sexual faithfulness.

But not only pastors can do something, the local church can also have a great impact, according to Lausanne Movement, if Christians commit themselves to:

  • Do all we can in the Church and in society, to strengthen faithful marriages and healthy family life.

  • Recognize the presence and contribution of those who are single, widowed, or childless, to ensure the church is a welcoming and sustaining family in Christ, and to enable them to exercise their gifts in the full range of the church’s ministries.

  • Resist the multiple forms of disordered sexuality in our surrounding cultures, including pornography, adultery and promiscuity.

  • Seek to understand and address the deep heart issues of identity and experience which draw some people into homosexual practice; to reach out with the love, compassion and justice of Christ, and to reject and condemn all forms of hatred, verbal or physical abuse, and victimization of homosexual people.

  • Remember that by God’s redemptive grace no person or situation is beyond the possibility of change and restoration.

You can read the whole Cape Town Commitment here.




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EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.