Jack Phillips is a cake shop owner. He is also a Christian.
He refused to make a cake for Dave Mullins and Charlie Craig's same-sex "wedding" celebration last July.
Phillips told Mullins and Craig it was because of his religious beliefs. He was not discriminating, he simply could not violate his conscience regarding marriage.
He told KCNC- TV in Denver his "beliefs on marriage doesn't allow him to support same-sex marriage."
The ACLU filed a complaint against Phillips on behalf of Mullins and Craig who had "married" in Massachusetts, but wanted to celebrate their "marriage" in Colorado.
A Colorado judge ruled on Phillips this past Friday.
Biblical Christians should be aware of the ruling. We should also be informed as to the reasoning behind the ruling.
Judge Robert Spencer announced Friday that Masterpiece Cake Shop owner Jack Phillips must "cease and desist from further discrimination" or he will be fined.
But is he discriminating against Mullins and Craig? Or refusing to act against his deeply held biblical beliefs and his conscience?
The judge said he is discriminating "because of their sexual orientation" by refusing to sell them a "wedding cake" for their same-sex "marriage."
The judge noted that the "cake maker had earlier served cakes for the 'marriage' of two dogs, but declined to make a cake for same-sex couples."
He said, "At first blush, it may seem reasonable that a private business should be able to refuse service to anyone it chooses, their view, however, fails to take into account the cost to society and the hurt caused to persons who are denied service simply because of who they are."
I think his reasoning is hollow and his rationale hypocritical.
Homosexuality is a behavior, not an identity. Nor is it equivalent to ethnicity. How does not affirming it "do harm to society?"
If the issue is discrimination, does it matter that Christians are discriminated against because of their beliefs?
His rationale, then, is that it may seem right to allow people to refuse service to whomever they choose in their personally owned business, but it isn't.
The judge assumes the cake-maker is discriminating against the homosexuals, when in fact he says he is not. He says he is not discriminating, he is acting on his biblical faith and conscience on the matter of marriage.
What about religious freedom? What about religious expression?
Well, Amanda Goad, attorney for the ACLU explains the "mis-conception of religious freedom."
She says, "While we all agree that religious freedom is important, no one's religious beliefs make it acceptable to break the law by discrimination against prospective customers."
She says "no one is asking Master Piece's owner to change his beliefs."
But they are forcing him, by force of the law, not to practice his beliefs. And labeling him as someone who is discriminatory when he says he is not, he is merely practicing his religious beliefs and being true to his conscience.
Talk about discrimination.
Phillip's lawyer, Nicolle Martin, said this judicial order forces the owner to go against his Christian faith.
"He can't violate his conscience in order to collect a pay check," she says.
Martin says, "If Jack can't make wedding cakes, he can't continue to support his family. And in order to make wedding cakes, Jack must violate his belief system. That is a reprehensible choice. It is antithetical to everything America stands for."
It is, but that's where we are.
Remember the sign on the door of some shops and cafes that said, "No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service?"
Jack Phillips says while he is being punished for "discriminating," he is not discriminatory toward gays.
He told KCNC TV, the CBS affiliate, "If gays come and want to order birthday cakes or any cakes for any occasion, graduation, whatever, I have no prejudice."
He says, "It's just the wedding cake, not the people, not even the lifestyle." With him it's about affirming same-sex marriage by participating, when his deeply held religious beliefs and conscience dictates otherwise.
Phillips says he would rather "close down the bakery before we would compromise our beliefs."
Is this "for the good of society?" Does it matter that a Christian may lose his business so a homosexual couple will not have hurt feelings?
This case is telling America that homosexual rights are more important than a Christian's right to practice his religious beliefs in his own business.
It also highlights the destructive path our present leadership has charted in remaking America. This is a direction and these are policies that our Founding Fathers would neither agree with, nor approve. They fled religious persecution.
Not only are a Christian's religious liberties being undermined, but his freedom of religious expression as well.
Recently I have shared the multiple accounts of military intervention and reprisal against personnel who share their personal faith with their colleagues. Some have defined it as a religious---specifically Christian---purge in the United States military.
In recent years, government run schools have been the target of the secular left progressives, causing Douglas Fir trees to become specifically Christian during December---all under the threat of lawsuits.
The public has been bullied into not using the word "Christmas" but substituting it with "holiday," solstice" or whatever best undermines the expression of the Christian faith during the Christmas season.
Now this atheistic, cultural Marxism has "progressed" and "evolved" into private business. The message of the day is, "Believe what you want, but don't practice those beliefs if they conflict with the new agenda."
"Tolerance" is not a virtue in this new world, it's a battering ram used to advance certain beliefs, while silencing others.
"Equality" appears as a mirage of virtue, while in fact it is a guise under which to advance a political agenda that violates the very biblical principles upon which this country was founded.
"Relativism," as it is taught and practiced, is not fairness, it's an escape from accountability and an attempted escape from consequence.
Even certain biblical teaching is now being attacked, because it conflicts with this new social order.
Jay Sekulow said of this case: "Forcing Christians to promote ideas against their will undermines our Constitutionally protected freedom of expression and our right to live free. If the government can take away our First Amendment, there is nothing it can't take away."
Jack Phillips will likely appeal.
It is also time for all people of faith to appeal. Our appeal must be to the Giver of life and freedom.
There can be no political renewal until there is spiritual renewal. Political change will follow spiritual change.
It was the Great Spiritual Awakening of the 1730's that gave America the courage and motivation to declare our independence and win our freedom by winning a war against powerful England that most said was unwinnable. And by every human measure, it was.
I believe in a sovereign God, and I believe in destiny.
A spiritual awakening is needed now, not to deliver us from an enemy across the Atlantic, but an enemy within that is perpetrating a culture that shakes its fist at the Giver of freedom saying we will decide what is truth and what is right and what is wrong.
History affirms, biblical and non-biblical, that mankind can, regardless of how far he drifts from the Truth, be restored spiritually, socially and culturally.
I believe that the end of our country will not come at the end of a spiritual, cultural death spiral, but the destiny will be completed following tens, perhaps hundreds of millions being caught up to be with the Lord.
Thank you for standing with me in these convictions. There is much to do.
May God help us.