BGCT Executive Board approves resolution on transgender issues

by Leah Reynolds on February 26, 2015 in News

DALLAS—At its Feb 23-24 meeting in Dallas, the Executive Board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas unanimously approved a resolution on transgender issues, declaring gender is determined biologically, not psychologically.

The request to consider the resolution came from several Texas Baptist university presidents stating the need to apply for a Title IX exemption from the United States Department of Education in dealing with accommodations for transgender students. Their application would be strengthened with a statement from the BGCT addressing the issue.

Pronouncing the Bible as the authority for faith and practice for the BGCT and its institutions, the resolution records Genesis 1:27, Matthew 19:4 and Mark 10:6 as affirmation that God created humanity as two genders: male and female.

The Executive Board expresses "great concern with the emergence of the transgender agenda and the notion that one's gender is determined psychologically, not biologically," the resolution states.

It perceives that "some people today are expressing a desire to identify themselves with the gender, which differs from their biological gender…. Some of these persons are seeking to function in the broader society as if they are members of the gender that differs from their biological gender."

Gender identity is determined biologically, the board agreed. The statement affirms "in creation, God made male and female as biological gender assignment."

Furthermore, the resolution notes, "We desire for all people, including those who consider themselves transgender to be treated with love and respect, but that such love and respect not be construed as approval for every behavior…we seek to minister to all persons, including those who consider themselves transgender."

Board member Wesley Shotwell, pastor of Ash Creek Baptist Church in Azle, expressed understanding of the legal reasons, but also concern for how the resolution could be perceived.

"I hope anything we say, any resolution we make, has no opportunity to be construed by a group of people that we are against them, that Jesus is against them," Shotwell said. "I hope we will always project compassion and, while maybe not understanding, at least love and allow the Gospel to work in the lives of these people."

The Executive Board affirmed this statement and felt it necessary to approve the resolution in support of our institutions.

Dr. David Hardage, executive director for the BGCT, expressed affirmation of the Executive Board's decision to approve the resolution.

"As Texas Baptists, we believe in the value and worth of all people," Hardage said. "It is never our intention to demean or harm. We believe we have managed this functional & political matter appropriately on behalf of our great institutions."

Click here to view the resolution.

Texas Baptists is a movement of God’s people to share Christ and show love by strengthening churches and ministers, engaging culture and connecting the nations to Jesus.

The ministry of the convention is made possible by giving through the Texas Baptists Cooperative Program, Mary Hill Davis Offering® for Texas Missions, Texas Baptists Worldwide and Texas Baptist Missions Foundation. Thank you for your faithful and generous support.

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