‘The Government Can’t Intrude in Worship’: John MacArthur Defends Church Reopening to Tucker Carlson By Tré Goins-Phillips for Faith Wire
GNN Note – Pastor John MacArthur announced on Saturday July 25 that he would not be complying with Gov. Newsom’s shutdown order. We applaud Pastor MacArthur and would encourage 100% of ministers, pastors and all faith leaders to follow suit. We do not follow the dictates of government, we follow Jesus Christ. Our right to worship is granted by God, not government. You, faith leader, need to start acting like this is true.
John MacArthur, the Los Angeles pastor who reopened his church in defiance of lockdown orders from California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), is defending his much-talked-about decision.
On Sunday, the Grace Community Church leader told his congregation, “The world does not understand the importance of the church,” explaining why he is bucking Newsom’s renewed closures, which came in mid-July across dozens of counties in California.
The restrictions on religious gatherings also includes a ban on singing, because doing so would “negate the risk-reduction achieved through six feet of physical distancing.”
MacArthur appeared on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Tuesday to further defend the reopening of Grace Community Church.
Pastor John MacArthur interviewed on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” pic.twitter.com/LPSfDy54Q6
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He told host Tucker Carlson the Democratic governor’s measures are in violation of the First Amendment, which states Congress “shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
“The government can’t intrude in worship,” MacArthur said. “We stand on that amendment.”
The pastor went on to argue his decision is “sensible” because there are approximately 40 million people living in California and just north of 8,700 residents have died with COVID-19 since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.
“So in California, you have a 99.99% chance to survive COVID,” MacArthur said. “So why would you shut down the entire state, and particularly when people are frightened, and sometimes, terrified that they’re going to die, shut down the church, where most of the intense relationships in our society exist?”