Dear friend, More and more, we are experiencing governmental lawyers who seem to have no religious affiliation, no exposure to Christianity, and no knowledge of some of the most basic Christian principles like the “Great Commission.” To many governmental lawyers, the concept of a Christian spreading the Gospel is almost putrid to their senses.
I am writing my thoughts as I ponder upon a deposition currently ongoing in one of our cases. Our client was questioned by an attorney from the California Attorney General’s Office and I anticipate, based on her questions, that she will eventually argue that our client’s attempts to share the Gospel is not protected religious speech because it is offensive to some members of the public.
Here’s the “silver lining” that is apparent in the deposition transcript: The deputy attorney general has been questioning our client about hell, sin, salvation, good works, and sexuality. She has also questioned whether our client’s group believed that Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven and salvation. How do think our client responded? He shared the Gospel message in love and compassion to the governmental lawyer!
“When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.” Luke 12:11-12
Far too often, we are experiencing governmental officials who seem to think it is their job to sanitize the public from exposure to a Christian perspective. As our American culture becomes more and more secularized, it is going to be more and more important for us to educate public officials and to defend the First Amendment in courts so that Christianity is not censored in all public arenas.
This is why it is our stated mission to “defend the First Amendment right to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
The good news is that we have had significant success in this arena! From the acquittal of Christians sharing their faith on public property who were criminally charged to students sharing their faith in public schools.
Let us give you some more good news from California! We were recently contacted by Texas-based Liberty Legal Institute and Pastor Rick Moore of Calvary Chapel Laguna Niguel. Pastor Rick was attempting to rent city facilities from the City of Laguna Niguel in order to launch his new church. However, when Pastor Rick contacted the City, he learned that although the City rented their facilities to nonprofit organizations, the City could not rent to religiously based organizations because of a discriminatory provision embodied in the City’s ordinances.
With help from Advocates for Faith & Freedom and Liberty Legal Institute, we were able to properly advise Pastor Rick and warn the City Council about the unconstitutionality of the policy prohibiting the temporary rental of property to religious organizations. After a public hearing last month, the City Council voted unanimously to eliminate the discriminatory policy so that churches could rent City facilities just like other nonprofit organizations.
Thank God for this Victory!
Although we recognize that our culture is embracing a radicalized and secular culture, we are excited that God has placed each of us on this earth “for such a time as this.” (Esther 4:14)
Please remember to pray for us as we continue to work in this ministry of protecting our First Amendment right to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If you have the ability, we would greatly appreciate your financial support for the ongoing costs we incur to protect religious liberty. In His Service,
Robert Tyler General Counsel