Manifesto on Religious Liberty and Human Rights
(Adopted by the Congress Sunday evening, June 27)
I. WE THANK GOD for the greater opportunities given to many men, women, and children for a full, healthy, and free life; for the increasing mastery over the powers of nature and their use for the common good; for new facilities for education, communication and travel; for the decrease of discrimination because of race or creed; and for greater civil and religious liberty in many parts of the world.
II. WE REAFFIRM our faith that the gospel of God’s free salvation in His Son, Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and the Life, is for all men, without distinction, and that today as in previous generations it speaks to man’s every need, convicting, redeeming, transforming, guarding the human spirit and requiring the ending of exploitation and tyranny, and the provision of full opportunities for its free acceptance and for worship, witness, and service.
III. WE SUFFER with our generation in and through the neglect of God and preoccupation with selfish ends; in the misuse of many opportunities and powers; in failure adequately to mobilize human and material resources to meet men’s needs; in acquiescence in policies which deny basic human rights and bring suffering to individuals and communities; in lack of concern for those driven from their homes, imprisoned for conscience sake, and stunted in body, mind, and spirit.
IV. WE APPEAL to our fellow Baptists and our fellow Christians everywhere to show concern in these matters; to study what the teaching of Christ implies for human freedom and dignity; to manifest this in their relations with one another, both individual and corporate, and to interpret to the world the reconciling and liberating message of God’s love. We APPEAL to the governments of all lands, not only to preserve law and order, but also to recognize and guarantee religious and civil liberty and the right of men to maintain or change religious allegiance and freely to worship, witness, teach, and serve.
BWA; Conscience; Discrimination; Equality; Freedom; Human Rights; Hunger; Justice; Peace; Prejudice; Racism; Religious Freedom; Reconciliation; Religious Liberty; War.
Original Source Bibliography: Nordenhaug, Josef, editor. The Truth That Makes Men Free: Official Report of the Eleventh Congress, Miami Beach, Florida, U.S.A., June 25-30, 1965. Nashville: Broadman Press, 1966.
Original Source Footnote/Endnote: Josef Nordenhaug, ed., The Truth That Makes Men Free: Official Report of the Eleventh Congress, Miami Beach, Florida, U.S.A., June 25-30, 1965 (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1966), p. 482.
Online Document Full Citation: 1965 BWA World Congress Manifesto on Religious Liberty and Human Rights; https://www.baptistworld.org/resolutions.
In-text Online Document Citation: (1965 BWA World Congress Manifesto).
For more information about Baptist World Alliance resolutions, visit BaptistWorld.org/resolutions.
Since its formation in 1905, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the global Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.