Scotland’s Proposed Ban on ‘Conversion Therapy’

Apr 3, 2024 by

By Rollin Grams, Bible and Mission.

According to a report from Christian Today (30 March, 2024), Scotland’s government is seeking to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’:

The Scottish government says it wants to protect people “from the harm of conversion practices”. Under current proposals, a crime will have been committed if so-called conversion practices have been “committed with the intent that the victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity would be changed or suppressed”. The recommended penalty is up to seven years in prison, a fine of up to £10,000, or both.

The report also notes that, while the Church of Scotland is in general agreement with the proposed ban, the Roman Catholic and ‘other’ churches are not because of religious freedom and the rights of parents. Indeed, opposition to ‘conversion’ itself seems to be at issue.  The Good News of the Gospel is good news because God’s salvation has come to us, making it possible for us to convert.  It has come to us in proclamation by ministers of the Gospel, to be sure, but the Gospel itself is the news that God has sent Jesus Christ to deliver us from our sins and the power of sin over our lives.  The Good News is that we are being converted.

Paul’s explanation of conversion involves the necessity that some are sent to those who do not know the Good News, that they preach the Good News, and that those who hear come to believe the Good News:

How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” (Romans 10.14-15, ESV).

The very basis of Christian teaching is faith, not coercion, but coming to faith is conversion nonetheless, and the preaching of faith has the intent of people converting.  Indeed, Christians would urge ministers of the government to convert to the Christian faith themselves.

Read here.

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