The primary issue at stake in the Jack Phillips case is whether homosexual rights trump religious rights. Does a homosexual have the right to force Jack Phillips to violate his religious convictions by using his artistic talents to celebrate a cause that he believes to be sinful? If so, fines and other punishments for not doing so would either force him to violate his conscience or go out of business.
Granting homosexuals that power would enable them to drive Christians in many professions out of business. They could demand that a Christian photographer take pictures of a homosexual kiss. They could demand that a Christian architect use his skills to design a homosexual night club or a Christian contractor to build one or Christian electricians, plumbers, carpenters, and others in the building trades to use their skills for that purpose. They could demand that Christian printers, greeting card designers, and graphic designers use their skills to publish books, leaflets, cards, brochures, and other materials promoting a cause that would violate their consciences. Christians in many other occupations would face similar threats. In fact, victory in this Supreme Court case would place a large segment of the Christian community in jeopardy of losing their businesses, depriving them and their families of their livelihood.
Adding to this danger is the reality that the homosexual movement would specifically target these people. They have no problem finding vendors who can serve them without violating their consciences. Their objective in demanding these services from Christians is to drive those who view homosexuality as immoral from American society.
Therefore, ruling against Jack Phillips would throw into chaos the lives of many Christians and cause others to live in fear. It would seriously damage the American business community and economy.
Despite the significance of these outcomes, a Supreme Court decision to give homosexual rights priority over religious rights poses an even greater threat. Identifying that danger requires a look at history.
A 1962 Supreme Court decision banned prayer from our public schools. Make no mistake about it. This was not a case of nine justices honestly seeking to apply the Constitution. Any reasonable effort to discern the intent of the founders and the meaning of the First Amendment would support the constitutional right to pray in public schools. Rather, the justices supporting this decision were imposing their animus toward God on public school children.
My father-in-law, Rev. Clarence Didden, a godly and very successful pastor, grasping the spiritual implications of this decision, in response wrote a tract entitled, “The Day America Died.” He understood the immensity of America’s offense against God. After God had poured out immeasurable and unsurpassed blessing on our nation, we showed our gratitude by prohibiting our schoolchildren from praying to Him. He also understood the related truth of Hebrews 10:31, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” He realized that America could not snub God so blatantly and offend Him so deeply without His retribution being poured out on us as a nation. The Supreme Court added to its affront toward God the following year by banning Bible reading from public schools.
History reveals the accuracy of Rev. Didden’s obituary on America. Five years after this decision, the hippie movement took root in our country, manifesting itself in the Summer of Love in the Haight district of San Francisco in 1967. It is a special note that those college students providing the impetus for this movement were the very ones deprived of prayer and Scripture during their high school years. It was as if God told America, “You don’t want your young people exposed to Me. Let’s see how well they do without Me.” And we did.
As those hippies became adults, they propagated their philosophy throughout our society, resulting in what today has become the American Left. Since that 1962 Supreme Court decision, America has lost ground in every element of national life: economically, militarily educationally, morally, physically, and relationally. David Barton published a book entitled, America: to Prayer Not to Pray that statistically demonstrates America’s precipitous decline since prayer was banned from public schools. Virtually every dastardly, putrefying sore experienced by contemporary American society represents the full grown fruit of the hippie movement. Slapping God in the face has consequences.
However, God is also gracious, no doubt showing mercy on many American believers who had not bowed the knee to Baal. He gave Ronald Reagan to America to at least temporarily slow the juggernaut of the Left. A few decades later, however, American society had sunk to its lowest depths ever under the destructive administration of Barack Obama. Again, God showed mercy in the defeat of Hillary Clinton and the election of Donald Trump. As with Ronald Reagan, we see Pres. Trump restoring a modicum of order and success to our society, despite the all-out effort of the Left to destroy him.
The question confronting us today, however, is how the Lord would respond to the profound insult of granting homosexuality greater importance than obedience to His scriptural mandates. Whatever damage this decision might inflict at the human level, its ultimate devastation would reside in this offense to God. We need to be very much in prayer that our Supreme Court will not dishonor God again and incur even greater wrath upon America. I have deep concern that such a decision might result in God driving the final nail into the American coffin. The good news is that a decision affirming religious rights might signal God’s continued grace and blessing on America.