John MacArthur, pastor of Grace Community Church, in Sun Valley California, has urged ministers to preach on a biblical view of sexual morality on January 16 to protest a Canadian law that could see pastors, Christian counsellors, and parents jailed for up to five years for their obedience to the Bible.
In an open letter addressed to “Ministers of the Gospel,” MacArthur warned that the Canadian government’s decision to pass Bill C-4, “directly comes against parents and counsellors who would seek to offer biblical counsel with respect to sexual immorality and gender.”
The Bill, which passed through the House and Senate without any opposition from the so-called, conservative party, will amend the Criminal Code to ban a dangerously broad definition of “conversion therapy.”
According to the legislation, conversion therapy is defined as, “a practice, treatment or service designed to change a person’s sexual orientation to heterosexual; change a person’s gender identity to cisgender; change a person’s gender expression so that it conforms to the sex assigned to the person at birth; repress or reduce non-heterosexual attraction or sexual behavior; repress a person’s non-cisgender gender identity; or repress or reduce a person’s gender expression that does not conform to the sex assigned to the person at birth.”
Pastor Andrew DeBartolo of Encounter Church told MacArthur that the definition is intentionally broad.
“It can clearly be used against any preacher or elder who either speaks against homosexuality/transgenderism or who counsels a person to obey Christ and abandon their homosexual/transgender actions and lifestyle,” Pastor DeBartolo said.
“This means as of January 8, 2022, it will be against the law to preach, teach, or counsel regarding God’s design for marriage and sexuality.”
Furthermore, it is noted that the Preamble of the Bill officially defines the biblical view of marriage and sexuality as a fiction, deeming the belief that “heterosexuality, cisgender gender identity and gender expression that conforms to the sex assigned to a person at birth are to be preferred over other sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions” as a “myth.”
The law would see “everyone who knowingly causes another person to undergo conversion therapy — including by providing conversion therapy to that other person — is guilty of an indictable offense and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years.”
Similarly, “everyone who knowingly promotes or advertises conversion therapy is guilty of an indictable offense and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years.”
According to Pastor DeBartolo, faithful pastors across Canada will be defying the law by preaching on God’s design for marriage and a biblical ethic of sexuality.
“We will be doing so illegally, declaring to the State that there is one God and one Lord over His church, and that Christ alone gets to both define marriage and dictate what is required in the pulpit,” he said.
MacArthur told ministers he’s eager to support the Canadian church and will be joining their efforts by preaching on biblical sexual morality on January 16. He invited faithful pastors to do the same.
“Our united stand will put the Canadian and the U.S. governments on notice that they have attacked the Word of God,” he said.
MacArthur added, “if we all stand strong in this conviction together, the governmental forces of evil will be put on notice that divine love and sovereign grace compel us to be faithful to proclaim radical transformation at any cost.
“The world system and its human governments will gladly send people to hell, but our calling is to rescue people with the truth (2 Timothy 2:24-26).