Isaiah 5:20: “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”
This week saw the announcement of a great victory in the highest court in our islands, the UK Supreme Court, for the disgracefully persecuted Asher’s Bakery.
While no doubt the vast majority of readers are familiar with the case, we will briefly recap lest any are left in the dark.
A sodomite called Gareth Lee ordered a cake from the Christian run bakery based in Belfast, asking that it be emblazoned with the message ‘Support gay marriage’. The order was initially taken by a member of staff who was unaware of how to handle the situation before being passed to the bakery’s owner, Daniel McArthur, who contacted Gareth Lee to tell him they were unable to carry out the order and gave him a refund.
The unhappy Gareth Lee, a campaigner for sodomy, got in touch with the Inequality Commission, who took legal action against Asher’s Bakery and, shamefully, they were found to have discriminated against Gareth Lee.
Asher’s appealed the decision, with the matter going all the way to the UK Supreme Court, who, praise God, overturned the initial decision on a unanimous 5-0 verdict.
While the whole issue was shameful enough as it was, the fact that Michael Wardlow, the Chief Commissioner of the Inequality Commission, is a professing Christian, compounded the matter.
And to put the tin hat on it, the Deputy Chief Commissioner of the Inequality Commission is a ‘minister’ in the Presbyterian Church, ‘Rev’ Lesley Carroll.
We previously highlighted how she had failed to speak up at any point throughout the whole process, not making any public pronouncements on the case, thereby showing her support for the persecution of Asher’s Bakery by the organisation in which she holds the second highest post.
Had she, as a supposedly Christian ‘minister’, been opposed to the legal action against this Christian owned bakery, she would surely have done so at some point over the past four years, for that is how long the McArthur family have been subjected to this distressing process.
Instead, her only response is to share online the statement issued by the Inequality Commission in which they expressed their “disappointment” at the verdict delivered by the UK Supreme Court.
The Inequality Commission issued a statement shortly after the ruling was made public, linking to it from their Twitter page, and ‘Rev’ Lesley Carroll was quick to retweet it so as to further spread the resolutely defiant and anti-Christian stance of the Inequality Commission.
It starts by saying: “The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland is disappointed in the judgement given today by the Supreme Court…”
Certainly little introspection there.
They continue by saying the previous judgments which found in their favour were “in line with case law developed over the years”. In the next breath they say: “The Supreme Court has overturned these findings…”
There is most definitely at least a passive aggressive narrative at play here, with what appears to be more than a hint of a swipe at the unanimous judgement by the five members of the Supreme Court.
In the final paragraph of the fairly brief statement, they say: “There is a concern… that the beliefs of business owners may take precedence over a customer’s equality rights…”
This is steadfastly refusing to accept the key thrust of the Supreme Court ruling.
Gareth Lee was treated absolutely equally with everyone else, no difference was made for him because he is a sodomite. Had a heterosexual man requested the exact same cake, he would have been rebuffed as well. Indeed, it is highly probable the staff at Asher’s Bakery didn’t even know Gareth Lee was a homosexual.
This absolute lack of humility on the part of the Inequality Commission highlights how it is utterly unfit for purpose.
And ‘Rev’ Lesley Carroll’s continuing to reject Biblical standards demonstrates emphatically that she is, even laying aside the Bible’s warning against female ‘ministers’ (1 Timothy 2:12), an utterly inappropriate candidate for the ministry.
This is in addition to her consistently ecumenical conduct, such as preaching at a service during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity in a Roman Catholic Church, at which she compared the Pope’s then-impending visit to the Republic of Ireland to the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
It is also noteworthy that the church she vacated two years ago to contest the Northern Ireland Assembly election of May 2016 (at which she received a paltry 5.4% of the vote) will close tomorrow (Sunday).
Fortwilliam and Macrory Presbyterian Church, itself an amalgamation, is to close due to a drastically dwindling congregation, proving once again that, when a church which once stood for the truth moves away from God’s Word, attendances fall.
It is hardly coincidental that the further the Church of England moves away from God, the further attendances dwindle. Their solution is to further water down the message and the result is even greater wasting away of a church which once stood firmly for God.
Apostasy is rejected and punished by God.
Deuteronomy 29:18-20, 24-28: “Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: The Lord will not spare him, but then the anger of the Lord and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall blot out his name from under heaven. Even all nations shall say, Wherefore hath the Lord done thus unto this land? what meaneth the heat of this great anger? Then men shall say, Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord God of their fathers, which he made with them when he brought them forth out of the land of Egypt: For they went and served other gods, and worshipped them, gods whom they knew not, and whom he had not given unto them: And the anger of the Lord was kindled against this land, to bring upon it all the curses that are written in this book: And the Lord rooted them out of their land in anger, and in wrath, and in great indignation, and cast them into another land, as it is this day.”
God will uproot those who turn away from His Word and will destroy them, just as Fortwilliam and Macrory Presbyterian Church will be consigned to the dustbin of history.
Those who bemoan its closing can look to this passage in Deuteronomy for the explanation of why it has died – Ichabod has been raised above it, the glory of God has long since departed.
Let us ever be diligent to protect our church, whichever it may be; if it is faithful to God, if it preaches salvation through the blood of Christ, through faith alone in Him, if it rejects error, if it rejects compromise with Rome, if it speaks out against the sins of the day, let our desire and efforts be directed towards preserving those old paths.
If we do this, then God will surely bless us.
Jeremiah 6:16: “Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.”
We will find rest for our souls if we walk in the old paths, but just a few verses down we see the punishment for rejecting the ways laid down by God for us to follow.
Jeremiah 6:19-20 says: “Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it. To what purpose cometh there to me incense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices sweet unto me.”
The worship of those who seek to go their own way is not acceptable to God.
Isaiah 29:13: “Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men.”
We must cleave to God’s ordained way of worshipping Him and to the precepts He has laid down in His Word.
And that includes standing up to those who would seek to persecute true Christians like the McArthurs as they defend themselves from those who, whether they claim to be Christian or don’t, would seek to denigrate the cause of Christ in our land.