Pastor John MacArthur of Grace Community Church is defying state orders that his church remains shuttered during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The Pastor announced his decision in a recent episode of the "Edify With Billy Hallowell" podcast.
MacArthur states, 'this is not the America' he's known. Hoping that the government could categorize churches as essential, he doesn't want governors to have control over the old church he's been maintaining for years.
"I've been here 50 years; the church is 63 years old, and this church has never had any kind of mandate from the government to close. So when they came up with this mandate it seemed to be so rare and so unusual that we were listening."
According to Grace Community Church, MacArthur stated, it was "enough to make anybody with common sense." The church initially moved to a live stream model and closed down in-person services but within a few weeks, MacArthur said parishioners started showing up again.
"The governor said the church is not essential. Some things were essential, liquor stores were essential, abortion clinics were essential, grocery stores were essential but the church was not essential."
"Based on the Constitution, the governor doesn't have the authority to say what is essential ... the governor has no constitutional authority to say the church is not."
In the end, MacArthur believes "intentional discrimination" is unfolding "against biblical Christianity and the church." And he said there's no end in sight to the restrictions ushered in by COVID-19.