Human governments have no right to censor God. When they do that, they overstep the bounds of their legitimate, God-given authority, and their unlawful mandate (at that point) must not be obeyed. It appears that England is now repeating its prior history of religious intolerance by the state toward Christian preachers. May God raise up more John Bunyans in our day, who like that noteworthy Christian, are willing to go to jail for preaching without compromise the unvarnished Word of God.
The judges should refuse to comply with this accursed ruling, and at the same time, they should refuse to resign their post as judges. Then when they are removed from the bench for non-compliance with an unlawful order, they should challenge the violation of their first amendment rights all the way to the Supreme Court. It is part of our God-given stewardship to fulfill our civic duty by challenging unlawful laws, decrees, rulings, and refusing to comply with them. That is at least part of what it means to be "salt" and "light" in our benighted and corrupt culture.
This is really not surprising at all. Once people reject biblical authority and start declaring that the opposite-sex gender requirement for marriage so clearly laid down in Scripture is "bigoted"-- in other words, once people have gotten themselves into the habit of exalting themselves above God by calling His judgments unjust-- then it is simply a matter of time before they throw out other features of the biblical definition of marriage. If the gender restriction on who may marry whom is deemed irrelevant and outmoded, why not the number restriction, as well? If consent is the only thing that matters in sexual relationships, and if the principle is established that each individual has a "right" to define the shape marriage takes to accommodate his/her sexual preference-- for to deny individuals that "right" is hateful-- then of course, you must grant that polyamorous as well as same-sex marriages are demanded by the 14th amendment (legally) and by the principle of "social justice" (ethically). This is all very disgusting, of course, but once you arrogantly exalt yourself above God in the manner of the "man of sin" described in 2 Thessalonians, then it becomes par for the course to live and operate in the realm of the "disgusting."
The mentality of the intolerant leftist young people at GWU is virtually identical to that of the Nazi youth in 1930's Germany. It is a frighteningly fanatical, close-minded, fascist attitude that truly does not allow for any critical thinking or diversity of judgment, but elevates anti-Christian prejudices and an atheistic, empiricist view of knowledge a to the level of dogma, calling for all 'heretics' to be silenced by force. If this is the type of mindless homofascist clone our universities are cranking out, our nation is a sitting duck for any tyrannical monster to subjugate our nation far beyond the wildest dreams of our present dictatorial leader.
Kudos to these Irish brethren for believing in and practicing their God-given freedom NOT to receive the "mark of the beast" on their forehead (their way of thinking)or their right hand (their way of working), just so they can buy and sell and do business. Brethren, the day has come to reject the mark of the beast which the dragon (Satan), the beast from the sea (the godless state) and the beast from the earth (false religion in the service of the state) would stamp upon us. We are free in Christ to wear the law of God as a frontlet between our eyes and as a sign on our hand, even if the cost of bearing God's mark be the loss of jobs, worldly goods, or even our life's blood. "Let goods and kindreds go, this mortal life also, the body they may kill, God's truth abideth still, His kingdom is forever." Let us honor God in ALL our labor and ALL our thoughts and let the consequences of our obedience rest with the sovereign Lord who rules over us and all the world. Our lives are in His hand; let the world fume and rage. He who sits in heaven laughs-- and so should we. The ultimate victory belongs to God's Lamb, whose throne has been established on Mt. Zion.
I commend these publishers for pulling this young man's book. It is completely disingenuous for him to act surprised over this. Why should someone who is determined not to live in accordance with Christ's clear and unequivocal teaching on God's design for human sexuality (see Matthew 19) expect the whole world to accept him as a Christian?
Must churches follow this transgender ordinance? If so, at what point do Christians begin to practice civil disobedience to these godless homofascist ordinances which the state has no right to impose on us? What is the difference between the government forcing business owners and churches to put women and children at risk from sexual predators by legally permitting males into ladies bathrooms, and that government forcing Christian schools, for example, to let representatives of non-Christian religions present their beliefs in a classroom and to lead the children in non-Christian religious rituals (which is what the government of the government of the UK is now demanding of Christian schools to force "British values" of tolerance for religious diversity on all British youth.) There comes a point where the people have to say, "These demands are unreasonable and unrighteous; they violate religious liberty and moral propriety, and we simply will not comply with them. Put us in jail if you must, but enough is enough!" That day has come to America, I believe; the people must begin to stand up and say "no" to laws that would compel us to do what is wrong in itself. The government has no right to expect us to comply with such laws, does it? What do you say, brethren?
Jim, I am glad William Wilberforce did not see an irreconcilable conflict between gospel preaching and social and political activism, nor William Carey in India, nor C. H. Spurgeon in Victorian London-- and I am sure that lots of freed slaves and rescued widows and destitute orphans taken off the streets would agree with me on that. Social concern often involves political reform-- such as the changing of unjust laws. Spurgeon was a great preacher, but he was also a social reformer. Someone has written, "As a humanitarian, Spurgeon hurled himself at the great social ills of his day. He founded two orphanages, a ministry for ‚Äúfallen women,‚ÄĚ was an ardent abolitionist, started a pastors‚Äô college, and began a book distribution ministry for undersupplied pastors. He launched clothes closets and soup kitchens, all for members and nonmembers of the Metropolitan Tabernacle alike. By the age of 50 he had started no less than 66 social ministries, all of which were designed to meet both physical and spiritual needs." Spurgeon saw no conflict between evangelistic ministry and social reform efforts-- neither did Wilberforce nor Carey. And neither should we.
Jim,in my judgment, MacArthur is simply wrong. We are not to choose between the culture war and evangelism. We are to fight on both fronts at once. Don't you see that when you pray for government leaders as Scripture asks to pray, you are engaging in culture war-- that is, unless you are asking God only to save the souls of those leaders, for their own sake, so they can be in the eternal kingdom. But that would not be to pray as Paul commands, for he says we are to pray for kings "that WE may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence." We pray for them, not just for their sake, but for our own sake(that is, the church's sake) that we may enjoy peace, not in eternity, but in this present age, so as to carry on the work of disciple making and gospel proclamation without government persecution. That is clearly what Paul means. But such prayer shows we are to be concerned about the here and now, and not just about eternity. We fight in prayer to push the darkness back from absorbing the government system under which we live, that we may proclaim the gospel freely and without hindrance. So we fight in prayer for present and future gains, for matters concerning both this present age and the age to come.
Christians need to fight back against the growing homofascist culture in America which tries to "silence" any who give expression to Christian moral values as bigots by threatening them with penalties of various sorts. If we do not fight back by exercising free speech and speaking truth in response to error, we will be complicit in sin. The apostle Paul says, "Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds darkness, but rather expose them" (Ephesians 5:11). Our calling is not merely abstinence from, but exposure of the evil works our society is promoting. If we refuse to shine light into the darkness, by bearing witness with our lives and with our lips against evil actively promoted by the agents of tyranny, we run the risk of being judged "good for nothings" by our Lord. "You are the light of the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its saltiness, it is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled on by men." (Matt. 5:13)
Is it any wonder that God spews out of His mouth lukewarm, apostate churches that deny the authority of Scripture, by causing them to decline in membership? Is it any wonder that as churches decline in membership, society becomes increasingly pagan, the populace more hostile toward true Christians, and governments more tyrannical and willing to persecute people who live openly Christian lives and speak openly as Christians ought to speak in the public square? None of this is at all surprising, nor should we be demoralized by it, for the fact is, great revivals in church history are often preceded by gross irreligion, widespread apostasy and spiritual darkness. God is still on His throne. Let us beseech him to raise up a generation of preachers whose tongues are set ablaze with the fire of heaven, who will call the godless multitudes to repentance and faith in Christ, who will rebuke godless governments for their tyranny, and proclaim the whole counsel of God without fear or compromise, impervious to men's frowns or smiles.
Jim, As I see it, our calling is not so much to "reclaim the culture," but rather, to remind government leaders of the limits of their authority. The apostles did this when they told the Sanhedrin they had no legitimate authority to command them not to preach the gospel. The apostle Paul did this when he reminded government officials in Philippi they had no right to flog him without a trial, and when he appealed to his right as a Roman citizen to appeal his case to Caesar. We are to engage our government leaders in the name of God when they are doing wrong by abusing their authority and legislating things they have no authority to legislate. Taking away the freedom of people to treat differently things that differ is an abuse of government authority. Our government leaders are trying to compel citizens by law to treat a sexualized relationship between two men or two women as a marriage-- something they have no right to do. Neither do they have a right to silence those who declare by their words or by their actions (bakers, florists, photographers), God's view of homosexuality as a perversion of the sexual powers God has given men and an invalid foundation for a marital union. It is right for Christians to remind government leaders that they are not God.
John Yurich USA wrote: "If Jindal trusts in Jesus alone for salvation then he is a Christian regardless if he attends the Catholic Church as long as he does what I do and rejects and repudiates the unscriptural Catholic doctrines, adheres only to the scriptural Catholic doctrines and participates only in the scriptural parts to the Mass."
John, Please don't take this in the wrong way; I have a sincere question to ask you, and I am really curious to know the answer. You talk about staying in the Roman Catholic church despite the "unscriptural Catholic doctrines." If the Catholic mass-- which is the heart of Catholic liturgy-- contains "unscriptural doctrines" that you are compelled to reject on the basis of Scriptures, why would you want to stay in the RCC and not align yourself with a church that is more scriptural? Do you believe the RCC is more scriptural than other churches? I don't see how someone who believes the Bible can participate in practices that are so patently contrary to the gospel, such as praying to Mary, confessing sins to a priest to receive forgiveness from the priest, receiving the Eucharist from a Roman Catholic priest who is making such presumptuous, anti-scriptural claims about his priestly powers. Why don't you leave the RCC?
These liberal politicians think that if they repeat lies long enough, people will swallow them. That may work with the mindless masses, but never with true, born again Christians whose consciences are captive to the Word of God. They cannot and will not ever accept the "new morality" as defined by men like Obama. He is not the Messiah. The true Messiah has spoken once for all on this issue, declaring His agreement with Genesis 2 and stating explicitly that what was true of marriage "from the beginning" remains God's norm for all time-- one man, one woman, for life. Any sexual relationship other than the sexual union of a man and a woman in the covenant of marriage is an abomination in God's sight, an affront to His character, and a direct repudiation of His law. Always has been and always will be. There is nothing "respectable" about the homosexual, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender lifestyle. These represent a gross violation of the moral character and will of God. So-called same-sex marriage will never be anything other than a "mock marriage" a bogus imitation of the real thing. You can have a same-sex mismatch, but you will never have a same-sex marriage. Neither does any government have authority to compel people to think, speak or act otherwise.
This woman was simply not taking the Bible seriously when it says that "we shall not all die, but we shall all be changed, in the twinkling of an eye AT THE LAST TRUMPET." The Bible gives us no reason to believe that loved ones who have died in the Lord will be raised again to life before the second coming of Christ. God does not raise some Christians on one day, other Christians on another day, all leading up to the day of Christ's return. There is no basis whatsoever in the Bible for such a belief. The resurrection of the dead is consistently tied to the last day, the day of Jesus' return, and at that time, all the dead shall be raised. Until then, it is right and proper to bury those who fall asleep in the Lord, not to leave their bodies as a health hazard decomposing amongst the living. We should neither seek the living among the dead (Luke 24:5), nor should we try to keep the dead among the living. Their bodies should be put away out of sight, and out of the presence of the living, until the day of resurrection. We see from this the misguided fanaticism that people can fall into when they abandon Scripture as their sole authority for how they are to live, and follow instead delusive, untested, unbiblical 'impressions' as if these were direct divine revelations.
Evidence ... The pastor is exactly right in that there are clear and consistent evidences (fruit) in the life of a truly converted individual. The way we think, speak and act indicates if we are striving for godliness or simply playing a game of self-deception. What is troublesome, however, is that this pastor consistently preaches messages dealing with assurance of salvation. It seems that there are many "members" of this local church that struggle with this concept despite the fact they have been attending for many years, if not decades. Perhaps they are truly saved as I don't see any evidence in scripture of unsaved people faithfully attending to the preaching of God's Word for years; quite the opposite as light drives away the darkness. We must be careful not to "persuade" immature Christian that they are most probably not saved; perhaps what they need is some serious discipling and not a weekly flogging.
It seems to me that Pat Robertson has done very little thinking about this issue. He hasn't thought through the implications of what it would means for Adam to be a non-human ape like creature suddenly 'transformed' into a human by God endowing him/it with a human soul. He wants to avoid looking 'stupid' in the eyes of the world, but in reality, all he accomplishes when he tries to 'make room' for evolutionary thinking in his reading of Genesis is to appear apologetic for his belief in the Word of God. There is no ultimate compatibility between the biblical worldview and the worldview on which belief in a Darwinian biological origin of mankind rests. Evolution says the difference between the first homo sapiens and earlier primates is one of degree, not one of kind. But the distance between Bonzo and Beethoven is not one of a few 'degrees' of difference, but light years. Man is totally unique. It is impossible that he evolved. Moreover, the Bible states plainly that Eve was created from the body of Adam-- a totally supernaturalistic origin that can never be reconciled with an evolutionary theory for human origins. We need to stop trying to look 'smart' by the world's standards, and believe the Bible is not only inerrant, but clear and straightforward in its meaning.
And to think that in our country the beautiful grin on this unborn baby could be turned into a shocked scowl of pain as he is willfully murdered by the hands of selfish adults, with the full approval of our laws, right up to the moment of his birth. . . And we thought the ancient pagans were barbaric!