The great British stand-off
Ashers Baking company
Ashers Baking Company is not just rolling over in its fight to defend itself against the Equality Commission of Northern Ireland. Instead, it is determined to protect freedom of conscience. There is much at stake here.
Three days after Judge Isobel Brownlie levied a £500 penalty on Northern Ireland’s Ashers Baking Company for refusing to decorate a cake in favour of gay marriage, the vultures swooped. The Belfast Telegraph’s Sunday life paper sent a reporter to Ashers requesting them to decorate a celebration cake that was an exact replica of the one Ashers refused to produce in 2014 for a pro-gay marriage campaign group.
Recent days have seen the citizens of Ireland decide by popular vote to accept ‘same-sex marriage’. The BBC revelled in the outcome and reported it as yet another endorsement of the West’s new social position.
What are the implications for our society? Does this new morality undermine the Bible and its revealed position concerning marriage?
This is a vital question, since, in our own day, extraordinary claims are sometimes made and extraordinary practices undertaken on the basis that a contemporary ministry is supposed to be ‘apostolic’. To answer the question, we must first look carefully at the teaching of Scripture, to see what the biblical qualifications of New Testament apostles really were.
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