This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, January 24, 2022:
John MacArthur, senior pastor of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles and founder of his ministry Grace to You, was one of the reported 4,000 pastors who preached last Sunday against Canada’s new law, Bill C-4. For telling the Biblical truth about human sexuality and morality, his sermon was initially banned by YouTube for promoting what it called “hate speech.”
The video was later restored, and can be seen here.
But the threat to free speech remains, and not only for pastors and preachers such as MacArthur. The Canadian law punishes anyone promoting “conversion therapy” to transgenders, homosexuals, and others whom the culture has confused about their sexual identity. The law has teeth: violations could by punished by up to five years in jail.
The anti-Bible culture in Canada is vicious. Pastors who followed God’s word and kept their churches open during the COVID-19 pandemic, violating government mandates, were jailed.
MacArthur and his church felt the bite from secular authorities as well when health “authorities” in Los Angeles County attempted to shut down his church during the pandemic. After a long and costly legal battle, Grace Community Church and MacArthur were vindicated, and the county was forced to reimburse the church for its legal expenses and other costs, to the tune of $800,000. Nevertheless, MacArthur expects the government’s pressure against him to continue in intensity.
In his sermon on January 16, he said:
There is no such thing as transgender. You are either XX or XY, that’s it. God made man male and female. That is determined genetically, that is physiology, that is science, that is reality.… The reality of that lie and deception is so damaging, so destructive, so isolating, so corrupting, that it needs to be confronted.
He was joined in preaching on this theme by thousands of pastors across North America on Sunday, January 16, following the urging by MacArthur and Liberty Coalition Canada to do so.
MacArthur drew inspiration for the title of his sermon, “And Such Were Some of You,” from the apostle Paul’s letter to Christians in Corinth:
And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
To the anti-God voices this is anathema. No one must pledge allegiance to any other power but to that of the state. And that’s the real threat from the Canadian law: The business of the church is “conversion” of sinners of every stripe, hue, and color. If they are sinners then they are ripe for conversion, according to the Word of God. If the Canadian law is allowed to stand, and a similar law is implemented in the United States, it’s easy to see how anyone attempting to promote the Christian faith to a non-believer could be subject to sanctions by the state.
As James Coates, the first Canadian pastor to be jailed for keeping his church open during the pandemic, said,
I believe our government is capitalizing on a politically expedient [event] in an effort to further dismantle Western civilization as we know it. To do this, it must outlaw its very foundation, which is rooted in a Judeo-Christian worldview.
Bill C-4 is another brick laid in this effort and is evidence that our government is under the judgment of God.
Those who stand against the state can expect to suffer, added Coates:
As governments seek totalitarian authority over every aspect of society, it’s inevitable that they will persecute any and all who refuse to declare allegiance to the state. As such, unless the tide of totalitarianism is stemmed, Christians can expect persecution to increase.
For proof, YouTube’s banning of Biblical truth from its platform (even though it restored MacArthur’s sermon later) should awaken those who think the attack is only on preachers in Canada protesting an obscure law. It’s a shot across the bow of every one who believes in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and who is urged to take that message of salvation to the world.
As Marty Moore, a Canadian attorney for the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, told Fox News, “This piece of legislation is by the far the most direct attack we’ve seen on freedom of expression and freedom of conscience and religion.” In essence, the law is an attempt to criminalize Christianity.
MacArthur put the matter succinctly:
This notion that you are something other than your biology is a cultural construct intended as an assault on God.