Daniel McArthur, the General Manager of Ashers Baking Company, speaks about his company’s courageous stance, freedom of conscience and The Christian Institute. Ashers Baking Co. was recently taken to court by the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland and is now awaiting the judges decision on whether they discriminated against homosexuals for refusing to ice a cake with a pro-gay marriage message.
What a beautiful, brave, and inspiring speech! And this is the kind of quality person being declared a bigot and beyond the pale of civilized society. God, have mercy upon us.
Reading some books on the history of apologetics recently, I’ve been struck by how many of the early church apologists were focused merely on winning tolerance from extremely hostile pagan government. That was it. It was all about survival and carving out just enough space to practice the basics of the Christian faith without state interference. Nothing more ambitious than that.
Given the similarities with our current situation, there’s much we can learn from these courageous men. One thing’s for sure, we desperately need alternatives to the conservative politicians who wilt under the slightest pressure and don’t have sufficient convictions or skills to answer the most basic questions from journalists in a clear and convincing way.
- We need multiple apologists who will be strong without being obnoxious pugilists;
- Apologists who will have the confidence of Christians but who will not just play to the gallery;
- Apologists who can argue on biblical grounds but also on the grounds of common sense and constitutional law when necessary;
- Apologists who have the discipline to stick to this one subject, to play this one note, to focus on this one target;
- Apologists who genuinely and demonstrably love people regardless of their sexuality;
- Apologists whose only and limited aim is to outline the very few areas of life where Christians must, in good conscience, refuse certain services to gay people;
- Apologists who can explain the difference between refusing a service because it violates a central religious principle and a general discrimination based upon hatred of people;
- Apologists who can convince that Christians will not withhold goods and services from gay people in the other 99.9% of everyday life;
- Apologists who can illustrate the gracious manner in which Christians will communicate this;
- Apologists who can highlight and expose the terrible bigotry and hate that Christians are suffering at the hands of gay activists.
At the moment, there doesn’t seem to be any indication that God is raising up such apologists. Maybe, because few realize how desperate the situation is, and even fewer are praying for God’s intervention.
The time is short. The need is great. The consequences are enormous. The church is asleep. God, have mercy upon us!
UPDATE: If you think this is too alarmist, have a look at this: Social Media Mob Closes Christian-owned Pizza Shop. As Denny says, the bigotry and hate is all on the other side.