“Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.” (Ephesians 4:3 NLT)
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence.” (II Peter 1:3 ESV)
“Show proper respect for everyone; Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the King.” (I Peter 2:17 NIV)
“Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.” (Colossians 3:14 NLT)
“He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity.” (Proverbs 2:7 ESV)
“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts.” (Psalms 139:23 KJV)
PBA is committed to loving and respecting all people, as well as celebrating the divine tapestry of our diverse ethnic, racial, cultural, socio‐economic, and national backgrounds, because Christ‐exalting diversity celebrates the fact that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made in His image (Psalm 139:14; Acts 17:26). We strive to emulate the model of God’s throne room in which human beings from every ethnicity, language, and nation gather before their Creator (Matthew 28:19‐20; Revelation 7:9‐10). Therefore, no form of racism, racial supremacy, ableism, or ethnic bigotry will be tolerated at Palm Beach Atlantic University. We strive to create a Christian climate on campus in which all are respected, all are equal, and all are valued as we love God and others (James 2:1‐5; Matthew 22: 37-40; Romans 15:5-7). We are committed to eliminating barriers so that people of different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives flourish.
Any PBA community member who becomes aware of activities, comments, or behavior inconsistent with this Diversity Statement, is encouraged to report the incident immediately to the appropriate office (for students: Student Accountability, Residence Life or Campus Safety; for faculty/staff: respective Dean of School or Human Resources) for investigation. The University also desires to provide support to anyone who may have experienced such a violation. Such individuals are encouraged to seek out opportunities for confidential discussion and help through the Office of Health and Wellness/University Counseling Center or the Campus Pastor.
Statement adopted by the PBA Board of Trustees, April 2021
Kingdom Approach to Culture, Sexuality, Sanctity of Life, and Compassion
Worship, Workship, and Wordship—A Christ-First Culture
At Palm Beach Atlantic University (PBA), we believe that all people are made in the imago Dei— the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27). This reality gives every human being intrinsic value and also compels us to treat each person with dignity, respect, kindness, understanding, love, and an eagerness to see them know God and fulfill their God‐given purposes. Our motto is “enlightening minds, enriching souls, and extending hands”. This is beautifully lived out through the combined practices of Worship—the practice of honoring God with who we are and everything that we do, Workship—a distinctive community service program that responds to human needs with Christ‐like action in the community and the world, and Wordship—cultivating the practice of using our words wisely to edify others, including those with whom we may disagree, as a form of worship. The imago Dei also undergirds our view of ethics and morality. That we are made in the image of God makes us eager to obey God and to live our lives according to His commands.
Our View of Human Sexuality
Palm Beach Atlantic University affirms the biblical understanding of personhood, sexuality, gender, and Christian marriage. We believe that Christian marriage is between a man and a woman. Sex is a wonderful, God‐given gift explicitly intended for the marital relationship between a biological male and female (1 Corinthians 7:2-5) and gender follows biology. The physical and emotional intimacy of sex is designed beautifully and specifically to unite a couple living in a loving marital, lifelong commitment to each other (Genesis 2:24‐25; Matthew 19:5‐6). In Scripture, we learn God’s creational design and intent for marriage involves three chief goods: (1) a permanent bond and covenant learned by a lifelong commitment (Genesis 2:24-35; Matthew 19:5-6), (2) procreation and the gift of children (Genesis 1:28; Psalm 127:3), (3) and marriage as a living sign of the gospel – Christ’s love for his bride, the Church (Ephesians 5:22-33; Revelation 19:7-9). The covenant of marriage between a man and woman is a blessing from God and uniquely expresses these gifts. Sexual relations outside of marriage are strictly forbidden (Exodus 20:14; Matthew 5:27‐28; 1 Corinthians 7:6-11, 25-35).
Likewise, the vocation of celibacy is a gift which truly expresses male and female identities in a unique and complementary way. Celibacy is not mere inactivity, rather it is active faithfulness to God (1 Corinthians 7:6-35). Marriage and celibacy are both in God’s design.
Sexual immorality, including fornication, adultery, and homosexual behavior, is prohibited in Scripture (Romans 1:26‐28; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8; Matthew 5:28) because our bodies are “a temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Corinthians 6:13‐20). In addition, all use or involvement with pornographic materials is sinful and forbidden at PBA, as are all forms of sexual abuse, exploitation, and harassment (1 Corinthians 6:9‐10; 1 Thessalonians 4:6; 1 Timothy 1:9‐10). PBA expects that their students, faculty, and staff will neither engage in nor promote views of sexuality or gender expression that contradicts biblical standards (Romans 1:21‐27; 1 Corinthians 6:9‐10; Genesis 2:24; Ephesians 5:31). PBA also expects that our students, faculty, and staff will extend compassion and sensitivity to all since all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). We know that redemption and forgiveness are available for all sins (Ephesians 1:7). We are committed to supporting and learning from one another in grace and truth, respecting each other while also honoring God’s design for sexuality and marriage. (1 Timothy 1:9).
Our View of the Sanctity of Life
PBA’s devotion to the sanctity of human life is informed by the same distinctives that shape all of its other commitments: love for God, love for each other, the example of Jesus, and love of biblical truth. This leads us to the understanding that life begins at conception and is precious to God from the moment of conception (Psalm 71:6; 139:13‐15; Luke 1:15) to our last breath on earth. All human beings are fearfully and wonderfully made in God’s image (Psalm 139:14). Unborn children, like others of the most vulnerable of our society, deserve our best efforts to protect them from conception to birth. We support those who sacrifice much to carry their unborn baby to term and seek to be an encouragement to them.
Statement adopted by the PBA Board of Trustees, April 2021