Monday, December 09, 2013

Court To Cake-Maker: Serve Gays Or Be Fined"

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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.



27 comments:

  1. Curiously enough, I wonder why these two men would want the cake from this business if they are also expecting a quality cake?

    On another note, businesses refuse service for many other reasons. Employers do not hire experienced but older workers.

    There are many already finding ways around laws. It's unfortunate, but that is what needs to happen with this also. Trying to legislate morality is an uphill battle. Minds don't simply change because of laws. And this issue would have met with different acceptance if it had been the will of the people rather than so many cases of people's votes being overturned.

    There is an unanticpated undercurrent of resentment that now exists and that did not exist prior to the marriage legalization. That undercurrent was not thought of, in my mind, by the homosexual community. This undercurrent is not diminishing. That's unfortunate. I do believe we should love and not judge each other but shoving something down folks throats creates animus...and that is what is happening around tables in America.

    I wish they had instead taken a path that created more understanding and support.

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  2. All this "religious freedom" stuff is just silly. Everybody knows the only purpose of the first amendment is to protect the delicate eyes of atheists from the accidental glimpse of a cross.

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  3. Gary, freedom of religion does not allow someone to treat someone else as if they share their religion, they have a constitutional right to their own beliefs. Simply put religious freedom doesn't give someone permission to discrimination against someone else because they don't share that someone's beliefs and act accordingly.

    It is the inability to understand this simple, basic, American truth that makes all these decision such a shock to you and to everyone else saying - "Of course, what other decision could they have reached?"

    As has been shown with the baker's in Oregon and in Colorado they are actually willing to make all sorts of cakes that, if they were consistent about their faith, they shouldn't be making - but they would and have.

    No it is just the gay couple they decide they won't make a cake for because their beliefs support two people of any sex making commitments to each other and the baker's don't. Simple fact is the cake isn't FOR the baker, its for the customer and they can use it for whatever purpose they want, especially if that purpose centers around their beliefs.

    All businesses knew when they went into business that how they deal with the public is regulated for public accommodations. No one went into this blind, they all knew they couldn't refuse members of the public because they were of different beliefs and acted on them, they knew they couldn't refuse them because they belonged to different groups and behaved accordingly.

    Eugene Volokh, a libertarian law professor, recently did a long series of notes on the Hobby Lobby case trying to say they should get a religious based accommodation to not comply with the ACA's coverage requirements. After going through exhaustive discussions supporting the HL side, arguing against it, and trying to predict the ramifications of the various possible outcomes he came down to this final statement the courts will probably use as their lenses for dealing with these issues:

    “How can the legal system put me to such a horrible choice, between sinful complicity and punishment?,”

    The answer may be, “The more broadly you define complicity, the less sympathy we will have for your predicament. The less your views about religious law accommodates the practices of others, the less secular law will accommodate your practices.”


    Which is what I've been saying all along - they want their religious freedom they have to acknowledge the right of others to not be their religion and act accordingly. if they have a right to religious discrimination then everyone else has that same right towards them - nothing good can come from going down that path.

    Either the business sells wedding cakes to the public or they don't - pick one. But they can't reject a customer because of beliefs and practices that allow the customer's to do things that theirs doesn't.

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    1. In Nevada prostitution is legal, yet there is no law I'm aware of that say's a motel owner must let a prostitute operate out of one of their rooms. Same situation, she may rent a room but not operate her deviant behavior. The people in question are attempting to buy a cake for a "wedding" to further their deviant behavior. The owner said no, which is his right. If they really want no issues, go somewhere else. I'm sure there are gay owned bakeries who would love the business.

      I fully expect secular law to oppose Christianity, by its nature it can do nothing else

      craig in Lacey

      Gary, if these people get fined, be sure to let us know how much? maybe some of us can contribute, thanks

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    2. Craig, you don't know in what ways prostitution is legal in Nevada, if you did you would know your example doesn't apply.

      Secular law is not opposing Christianity, the personnel at the business have a right to practice any religion they choose, they just can't treat their customers as if they shared that religion with them and the business can't treat them differently in Colorado because of their disability, race, color, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, sex (includes pregnancy), creed, or marital status.

      But again, that's why your side loses these cases - because to prevail you would have to make an argument against all these civil rights equal access laws. Failing that it is completely legal for licensed business and their interactions with the public to be regulated like this, these qualities are 'off the table' when it comes to deciding if someone will be a customer or not.

      As far as the fining I'm sure you will be able to find out. The real risk is continual offenses could lead to their business license not being renewed.

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  4. Until three years ago I used to own an event décor and rental business. We did business in all the major hotels, convention centers, event facilities, churches, etc. We dealt with many nationalities and many people from all walks of life. I have thought a lot about the situation we Christians find ourselves in trying to serve our community and yet hold to solid Biblical beliefs and instructions. I am coming more and more to the conclusion that we must be very, very careful not to be hypocritical in how we live our faith.

    We decorated many, many weddings where unmarried people had been living together. According to the Bible that is fornication. Did we turn them away? No. We never asked heterosexuals if they were living according to Biblical morality. We never discriminated against them.

    One day about 5 years ago a lady called and made an appointment with me for her and her fiancé to come and help them decorate for their wedding. I scheduled a time to meet. About a half an hour later she called back and asked if she could talk with me. She went on to explain that she was a pastor and the "wedding ceremony" was for her and the gal she had lived with for seventeen years. I had come highly recommended but she wanted me to know. She explained that they wanted this to be a happy occasion with vendors that were comfortable with their ceremony. Then she directly asked me if I would be comfortable. They would be happy to contact someone else if I wasn't comfortable. I remember to this day the appreciation I had that she was considering my feelings. I said I would not be comfortable but I thanked her profusely for her kindness to me. We ended the conversation with mutual respect and kindness.

    Since then, as a conservative Christian, I have wrestled over and over again with the fact that Jesus never approved of immorality of any kind but He came down the hardest on the Pharisees who made up rules and regulations that drove people away from God instead of bringing them to God.

    Jesus was berated for associating with people who were the outcasts of society. He never condoned sin but He reached out to everyone and still does to this day.

    What we are dealing with is a sad situation. The person who has asked God into their life and submitted to His principles and commands will forsake behavior like the kind listed in Romans chapter one which includes homosexuality. However, the list of sins includes all of us. The person who is truly filled with God's Holy Spirit cannot ever condone what the God says in the Bible is immoral behavior including homosexual behavior.

    However, how will we ever be like Christ in our behavior if we look the other way at heterosexual sin but not at homosexual sin? We need to look deep within and ask ourselves if we are indeed hypocrites in how we live for Christ.

    If we Christian businessmen and women serve any people who according to the Bible are engaged in immoral heterosexual behavior are we not hypocrites to not serve homosexuals? And did not Christ come to save the lost? How will the lost know Him if we are hypocrites? Will we start asking every person who comes through the door if they are engaging in behavior that the Bible says is sin? Of course not!

    I want my Christianity to be Christ based and not Christian society based. We need to be like Christ who came to "seek and save the lost." Who reached across the great divide between the Jews and the outcast, immoral Samaritan woman at the well and loved her enough to teach her about who He was and about true worship. The result? Many of her friends were drawn to Christ.

    It would be nice if the militant homosexuals would respect people with Christian beliefs and just move on. There are plenty of vendors who have no qualms with homosexuality.

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  5. The hypocrisy of some “Christians” on this issue is deep. The baker claims he's not discriminating against gays, yet I've not heard of a single Christian baker refusing to bake a cake for straight couples who are marrying but who have previously divorced, had premarital sex, committed adultery, had children out of wedlock, who follow other religions, who are atheists, etc. – all sins according to the Bible.

    Why not? Because no one really believes that selling a cake to paying customers is equivalent to supporting or participating in their life choices. This isn’t about religious freedom. This is about a desire to discriminate against gay customers and to call it discrimination because they can't discriminate.

    Also, you can keep pushing your false “homosexuality is a behavior” premise, but it’s beside the point. Christianity is a chosen behavior, and yet it is still illegal to refuse service to anyone in the public realm because of their chosen religious belief.

    In other words, a gay baker would not be able to discriminate against a Christian couple in the way that Christians want to discriminate against gays. Gays appear to be more Christian-like on this issue.

    Hypocrisy.

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    1. Have you heard every single thing all Christian bakers have ever said all through time? I didn't think so..... a preposterous statement on the face of it.

      How many people walk into a bakery and announce that they're previously divorced but now want to order a cake, how many announce that they're promiscious, adulterous, etc., etc. and want to order a cake? I could make your claim and say "never heard of it" and still not know if they did and were turned down or not. Don't make blanket statements, makes you look foolish

      1. It's not a false premise, homosexuality is a choice

      2. Freedom of religion is a constitutional right

      3. Homosexual "marriage" is not.


      4. Yes, many believe that facilitating a sinful behavior is wrong, like giving a match to a pyro, a drink to an alcoholic, drugs to an addict, a license to a prostitute, a cake to "affirm gay marriage"


      If someone walks into a business wearing a suicide vest and said sell me a cake or else, I suppose you'd call it discrimination not to.

      I've said this before, if the government commands something God forbids, we can't obey......if the government forbids something God commands, then we can't comply. You can arrest me, throw me in prison, fine me, torture me, execute me, doesn't matter. God's law trumps man's law every time.

      End of story

      Craig in Lacey

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    2. Craig,

      "Have you heard every single thing all Christian bakers have ever said all through time? I didn't think so..... a preposterous statement on the face of it."

      Neither of us needs to talk to every baker in the world to come up with even a few examples of Christian bakers denying service for "sinful" straight marriages. So, by your comment, can I conclude you could not come up with any at all???

      And, yes, it's quite easy to tell if a straight couple has committed a sin. If a couple with a child walks into a bakery and asks for their wedding cake, it's obvious the couple either had premarital sex or was divorced. And, in many towns and neighborhoods, the bakers know their customers well enough to know who they're living with and what children they have, and who they've been married to over the years. Yet, Christian bakers gleefully continue to provide service to these folks, yet hold gay couples to a different standard.

      Finally, Craig, if you think you could actually CHOOSE to be gay, then I hate to break it to you, but you already are.

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    3. Easy? Really? Obvious? Its comforting to know you can read minds. How do you know the child's not adopted or orphaned or abandoned by one parent? Oh, you mean you don't......you do know what "assumed "means , right?. Most others don't know either, including bakers.

      I don't know enough bakers to say who did or didn't, neither do you, that's the point. This case is about one particular baker, not all bakers or all anything else.

      Everyone will stand before God and give an account of what they did or didn't do. One persons failure to obey God is their responsibility alone, as is one persons obedience to God. Bravo to this man for standing up for biblical teaching, whether you like it or not.

      Finally, 12:23, if you think you CAN"T choose to be a pedophile, have sex with animals, your family members or the same-sex, I hate to break it to you, you are deceived.

      Craig In Lacey

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    4. So, I guess I can assume you cannot come up with any instances at all where a Christian baker has rejected a cake for a sinful straight marriage, since you seem to avoid the question at all costs by making claims that we have to be mind readers in order for this to happen.

      Also, glad to hear that you could choose to have sex with kids and animals. Personally, I could not under any circumstances. The attraction isn't there. Thanks for sharing.

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    5. I wasn''t claimng that you personally choose to but that people do. Did you read my post? I said I don't know enough bakers or who they've sold to or not sold to. As I also said, they'll have to give account on judgement day about everything they've done, as will you and I .

      This particular baker will also .... I'm glad to see that he's doing the right thing in this case.

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  6. "In other words, a gay baker would not be able to discriminate against a Christian couple in the way that Christians want to discriminate against gays. "

    Do you really think that would hold up in real life? I'd bet that if, say, Westboro Baptist demanded that a gay business cater one of their hate-fests, it would be treated very differently.

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    1. Joel, you have no idea. I can assure you that gay business owners serve people whom we'd rather not serve (and who despise us) every single day. Westboro, whatever.

      The difference is that most gays understand that in order to not be discriminated against, we have to agree to not discriminate. There’s a give and take in order to live with each other in peace.

      Gary and other “Christians” seem to believe the marketplace to belongs to Christians only, and Christians should be free to discriminate under the name of God while remaining under the protection of anti-discrimination laws themselves.

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    2. Why don't you put that theory to the test, Joel?

      There are plenty of LGBT owned and operated businesses in the Seattle area, why don't have Gary and some of his friends request that they cater an event for you?

      My guess is you won't because you and I both know that:
      A. it is highly unlikely that an LGBT business would engage in such blatant discrimination (with or without the temerity to claim it isn't discrimination)
      B. if they did, they would lose in court just like the discriminating "Christians" you and Gary wish to paint as victims.

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    3. "I can assure you that gay business owners serve people whom we'd rather not serve (and who despise us) every single day. Westboro, whatever."

      You would serve them, but would you actively participate in one of their rallies? That's why the prostitute comparison applies as well. He's not discriminating against the people involved; he won't participate in blasphemy for anyone.

      Which the plaintiffs know perfectly well. It's not as though nobody would be part of their wedding. Bakers are (pardon the expression) a dime a dozen. They want him involved BECAUSE they know he finds it repugnant.

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    4. I'm sorry, but selling a cake to customers who are getting married is nowhere near the same thing as attending the wedding. I don't care how you slice and dice it. When my baker sells me rolls for Thanksgiving, he's not participating in my Thanksgiving. He's selling me rolls.

      Finally, bakers are not a dime a dozen every where. In some small towns, there's one good bakery. And that's beside the point, anyway. Houses are everywhere, too, but we don't allow sellers to not sell to blacks to keep their neighborhood all white.

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    5. Yes, baking a cake is what the baker does that is the only act he is 'participating' in. If they ask him to be part of the wedding, best man, flower girl, etc, he of course could refuse, but all they want to do is buy a cake which he could easily use a temp hire to bake for him if he wanted to.

      This is just religious discrimination by the baker pure and simple, he wants to treat customers as if they shared his religion when they have a constitutional right to their own beliefs.

      I do wonder though why these few call themselves Christians and yet ignore that Paul explicitly said that it was ok to do business with people of this world, that any sins they have are between them and God, and none of the Christian's concern.

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    6. Yes, we can do business with the world, we are also called to not be "unequally yoked together with unbelievers" that means don't participate in their activities. He can bake a birthday cake, a bar-mitzpah cake or any other cake as long it doesn't affirm anti-biblical behavior. Marriage is between one man and one woman, not whatever society decides is the flavor of the month.

      That's what you people don't understand, God's law takes precedence over man's in the life of a Christian. Not only that, we are called to preach the gospel, which leads to repentance. Repentance from what? Sin. So yes, sin leading to death is very much a Christian's concern. Paul made that abundantly clear, as did Jesus in Matt. 28.

      This couple could easily buy a cake somewhere else if they wanted to, no, they're determined to make this man affirm their "marriage", whether he wants to or not.

      Yes, the buyers have every right to their own beliefs, yet want this baker to act as if he should overlook his own. See, it works both ways.

      Craig in Lacey

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  7. Also, the terminology is wrong. The baker is not refusing to "serve gays." He has served gay people many times. He will not participate in one particular event, for anybody. Even a prostitute is expected to have certain acts she won't commit for money. Why is a baker allowed less self-determination?

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    1. This is not similar to a case of a prostitute not committing certain acts for money. He/she does not commit those acts for any of her customers. The baker is allowed to do the same. He's not forced to make profiteroles, or muffins, but if he does, he has to sell them without regard for religion, race, sexual orientation, etc.

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    2. The baker made the point that he has served gays many times. Homosexuality per se is not the issue, marriage is the issue.

      Craig in Lacey

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    3. I'm well aware of the baker's claims. I'm just pointing out the Judge's determination as to the validity of those claims.

      Not providing the same service to same-sex couples that a business provides to opposite-sex couples is, by definition, discrimination! Dance around it and deny it all you wish, but you can't change that fact.

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    4. Craig, when the baker refuses service only for "sinful" gay weddings and not "sinful" straight weddings, he's clearly targeted gays only.

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    5. 12:16

      By definition all gay "marriage" is sinful, all straight ones are not

      Craig in Lacey

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    6. Craig, luckily we don't live under your religious theocracy.

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    7. 9:50, luckily we don't live under your atheistic theocracy

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