When I was younger, it was not uncommon to hear people say, “I may not agree with what you say, but I will fight for your right to say it.” We fundamentally believed in liberty—in freedom of religion, speech, and thought.
Today, however, a radical movement is racing across North America, the United Kingdom, and many other nations, to censor and erase anyone or anything that a vocal minority finds offensive. This “woke” movement has no problem with blatant forms of sin being displayed publicly on television and the internet. But they want to ban expressions from people who embrace traditional views of morality, family, and religion. This “cancel culture” doesn’t allow for free speech. When they find a sports team, a politician, or an entertainer who stands for Biblical values, they immediately want to silence and remove them.
We experienced this in Blackpool, England, when a small but influential group of activists protested our 2018 Lancashire Festival of Hope, where I was going to be preaching the Gospel. When LGBT activists piled on Twitter, complaining about the evangelistic event because they disagree with my convictions about marriage, they pressured the local bus company to remove our ads from their vehicles. After the Festival, we filed a case in the court system to fight this injustice.
We praise God that a judge in the United Kingdom recently ruled the Blackpool Borough Council and Blackpool Transportation Services Limited had discriminated against us. It was a strong and clear rebuke.
Ruling overwhelmingly on our side, the judge said that Blackpool “had a wholesale disregard” for the Festival’s right to freedom of expression while at the same time giving obvious preference to the rights and views of the LGBT community. She said that sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage do not make the people or organizations who hold those views “extremist.”
This is a huge win in the battle against “cancel culture.” This helps every Christian and church in the U.K., confirming what we already knew to be true: All believers have the right to openly share God’s truth—including the Gospel itself—in the public square without being discriminated against, threatened, or punished by those who want to keep them quiet. It is essential for America and the West to continue to stand up for religious liberty, which includes the rights to assemble and to speak and act on our Biblical convictions. We cannot allow the cancel culture movement to silence the church. We must remain faithful in this season to be “speaking the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15, ESV) as God gives
My son Will hosted a live telecast on Good Friday from the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, N.C. He shared the Gospel with more than 40,000 viewers, and we praise God that over 400 people indicated they made decisions for Jesus Christ.
Alyson* was one of those who responded to the Good Friday invitation online. She shared, “I 100 per cent want to accept Jesus as my Savior and have Him in my life.” For months, she has been reading the New Testament daily, wanting to know if God was real and what He wanted from her. When Alyson called in to speak with a volunteer about Christ’s sacrifice for our sins, she called on the Lord for salvation and is now connected to our online interactive discipleship course to help her grow in her new faith.
Through your prayers and gifts, you are taking the Gospel to thousands of people and holding fast to God’s Word. Thank you for your faithful partnership in this ministry.
*Names changed to protect privacy.
May God richly bless you,
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