Bible

When a society embraces godlessness, it results in anarchy–people taking the law into their own hands. The Lord warned in His Word to not embrace a lifestyle of “everyone doing whatever is right in his own eyes” (Deuteronomy 12:8, ESV). Instead, Moses told God’s people to “{span}be careful to obey all these words that I command you, that it may go well with you and with your children after you forever” (Deuteronomy 12:28, ESV). If we choose to reject the ways of God, we will reap devastating consequences.

Few understand this better than our nation’s law enforcement. These brave men and women have a dangerous job, and they’re always looking over their shoulders–on duty or off. Tragically, fatal officer-involved shootings are all too common today, and the need to minister to them has never been greater.

When I was younger, it was not uncommon to hear people say, “I may not agree with what you say, but I will fight for your right to say it.” As a nation, we fundamentally believed in liberty–in freedom of religion, speech, and thought.

Today, however, a radical movement is racing across our country, the United Kingdom, and many other nations, to censor and erase anyone or anything that a vocal minority finds offensive. This “woke” movement has no problem with blatant forms of sin being displayed publicly on television and the internet. But they want to ban expressions from people who embrace traditional views of morality, family, and religion. This “cancel culture” doesn’t allow for free speech. When they find a sports team, a politician, or an entertainer who stands for Biblical values, they immediately want to silence and remove them.

We experienced this in Blackpool, England, when a small but influential group of activists protested our 2018 Lancashire Festival of Hope, where I was going to be preaching the Gospel. When LGBT activists piled on Twitter, complaining about the evangelistic event because they disagree with my convictions about marriage, they pressured the local bus company to remove our ads from their vehicles. After the Festival, we filed a case in the court system to fight this injustice.

We praise God that a judge in the United Kingdom recently ruled the Blackpool Borough Council and Blackpool Transportation Services Limited had discriminated against us. It was a strong and clear rebuke.

Ruling overwhelmingly on our side, the judge said that Blackpool “had a wholesale disregard” for the Festival’s right to freedom of expression while at the same time giving obvious preference to the rights and views of the LGBT community. She said that sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage do not make the people or organizations who hold those views “extremist.”

This is a huge win in the battle against “cancel culture.” This helps every Christian and church in the U.K., confirming what we already knew to be true: All believers have the right to openly share God’s truth–including the Gospel itself–in the public square without being discriminated against, threatened, or punished by those who want to keep them quiet.

It is essential for America and the West to continue to stand up for religious liberty, which includes the rights to assemble and to speak and act on our Biblical convictions.

We cannot allow the cancel culture movement to silence the church. We must remain faithful in this season to be “speaking the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15, ESV) as God gives the opportunity.

A recent Gallup poll showed that less than half of Americans belong to a religious group. The percentage fell from 70% in 1999 to 47% in 2020–including some who once called themselves Christian. More and more of our citizens live their lives without regular interaction, encouragement, and instruction from God’s Word through a local body of believers.

Though our nation drifts further away from the Bible, we can stand on the certainty of His promises and keep sharing His truth. Later this fall, I am planning to preach the Good News in eight cities along the historic U.S. Route 66, which is nicknamed the Main Street of America. We’re calling this the Route 66 God Loves You Tour. Please pray for these opportunities to share the Gospel through the heart of America.

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