(brother Greg, what I write in response to this article posted is NOT geared towards you or any other dear brethren on this forum, I want you to know that, salted with my love, but I just had it with these soft sissy boy pulpit ornaments dotting the landscape these days)
this is whole thing is just abysmal! I want to compare what this "pastor" (with that big NICE building, and a big nice budget, funded and hiding up under that whole 501c3 monkey business, and then whining and squalling because when you take get "wedded" to a govt tax scheme, he doesn't think SOONER or later, the govt is going to attempt to call the shots?....he doesn't think that when you GET something from govt, they're going to feel they OWN YOU?)..let me continue, I want to compare what this pastor says, with what the Word of God testifies in the Book of Acts, and what Paul writes under the Leading of God:
this pastor said:
"Gordon told The Daily Signal:
As it reads, according to their interpretation of the Iowa code, if you discuss anything out of the Scripture that relates to sexuality or marriage … you’re not in compliance with the law and you can be sort of treated like a criminal."
"“It’s fundamentally wrong and I can’t comply with that,” Gordon added. “I’ve taken an oath to the Lord Jesus Christ, and I obey the Bible above all men. … I have to obey God, and that puts me in a precarious position.”
(oh no!!! "treated like a criminal"? ".....or "puts me in a precarious position.”......that's just terrible, we wouldn't want THAT!!)
and finally this:
"“I would hate to see a day when a pastor for doing his duties is arrested or something and taken to jail,” Gordon said..."
("taken to jail"???.....oh no!!....)
so lets go to the Word, and see what happened to the saints there, and how THEY reacted to what happened to them:
this is from Acts chapter 5, (and I do hope nobody has a problem with me quoting and using the ESV, and if you do, take it the Lord, and He will deal with me, if He feels I've something wrong.)
" But the high priest rose up, and all who were with him (that is, the party of the Sadducees), and filled with jealousy they arrested the apostles and put them in the public prison. But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, “Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this Life.” And when they heard this, they entered the temple at daybreak and began to teach.
and skipping ahead a bit, we get to the bite:
"Then the captain with the officers went and brought them, but not by force, for they were afraid of being stoned by the people.
And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them, saying, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man's blood upon us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised Jesus, whom you killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”
When they heard this, they were enraged and wanted to kill them." Acts 5:26-33
(did you read that?....wanted to "KILL THEM"!!!....this wasn't playtime! with fancy suits, and titled "senior pastor", big budgets, fancy big old church buildings, and organizations and their machinations in "civil" courts, and TV cameras and websites...this was down and dirty, in your face, the "religious institutions"...wanting to "KILL THEM"!...and these saints, instruments of the Risen Messiah, were plain men, who were Fire Baptized, and didn't even CARE, that the "religious elite" wanted to "KILL THEM"....they didn't give a hoot.....but these saints weren't "off the hook", so to speak...so lets SEE how they react:)
So, righteous old Gamaliel, who had a grasp of the Deep Things of God, basically counseled this gaggle of religious fleshlings, intent on violence, if this is NOT of God, it will FAIL, but.......and i'll pick the Word up here:
"....but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice, and when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name." Acts 5:39-41
did you read that?....oh God help us, how far we fallen! One could counter, "well, that was the 1st Century, things are "different" now, we have the "first amendment", the "bill of rights", etc etc etc".
to which I lovingly reply , "balderdash! nonsense!....if we start leaning on the CIVIL and SECULAR "laws" of MEN to "protect us"?....then we are undone, we are frauds, imposters!
can we agree on this simple Precept?..that God is the same, yesterday, today and forever?
can we agree on that?..ok?...amen then.
So, wouldn't it be TRUTH, to go further, and say that since these dear saints had the Indwelling Holy Spirit IN them....we, too, have the EXACT SAME Holy Spirit indwelling in us?......yes?
YES!....so lets just consider for a second the REALITY of getting the tar beat of you, you are in pain, maybe your skin laid open, some bones broke, a blackened eye OR two...this is REAL pain, it hurts ....BAD....(and I've had a large dose of this in the last month, because some incompetent doctors crushed the femoral artery in my right leg, hovering between life and death, or losing the leg...and that all, wasn't even in the realm of the Ministry of Christ and him Crucified!! just life, and the nature of it!....and REAL pain isn't fun, i KNOW some of you know that)
Now when these saints have had the tar beat out of them, did they go stumbling to the "First Liberty Institute", whining and crying, writing checks to lawyers to plead their "case"?!?
NO!!!!...and this all is what just causes me to just hang my head in shame....these plain humble men of God ....all beat up, went out, ""rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name."
in the natural, that just sounds crazy, you get a bad beating, but you're
""rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name."
"counted worthy to suffer" "counted worthy to suffer""counted worthy to suffer""counted worthy to suffer".
my ire isn't directed at those who consistently and most foolishly thumb their noises at a Holy God, have no reverential Awe and Love of Him, nor Messiah Jesus and the Blood that cleanses the beleaguered sinner of ALL sin....to expect ANYTHING as such out of those who ignore the Majesty of God, would be like expecting a cow to lay eggs.....no, my ire is directed at how far we have fallen, and I will include myself, lest I seem to be extolling myself, God forbid that terrible notion.
much love in Jesus Name, neil