IRVINE, Calif. – In an effort to prevent hate crime legislation from infringing on religious speech a Christian advocacy group has recently filed two amendments to the California Constitution.
Pastor Allan Esses, founder of “Yes Jesus is Lord” and proponent of the amendments, said, “Although the Bill of Rights guarantees religious liberty, recent restrictions on the free exercise of religion have compelled the organization to submit clarifications of citizen’s First Amendment rights, similar to the need felt by some of the nation’s Founding Fathers to clarify in the Bill of Rights what they believed existed in the Constitution.
“Those of us involved with Yes Jesus Is Lord are concerned that the time is fast approaching when Californians, as well as all Americans, will be subject to some of the most unbelievable acts and restrictive laws we have seen or heard,” Esses said.
Citing Psalm 119:126, “It is time for you to act, O Lord, for they have regarded your law as void,” Esses, who has been a pastor in Moscow and Irvine, said the consequences of not acting on these amendments will include believers in Jesus suffering a further eroding and abridging of their 1st Amendment and 14th Amendment rights of freedom of religion, as guaranteed under the Constitution, “to the point where we will no longer be permitted to legally share the full council of God’s Word that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, and that no man comes to the Father except by Him.”
Esses said that the U.S. Founding Fathers would have been appalled that such amendments were necessary to secure rights that were so important to them. He noted that the Bible has formed the basis for much of our law, and Judeo-Christian values have guided our Republic for more than two centuries.
“Our founders welcomed people of all faiths, as well as to those who had no faith at all. Yet, they also were clear they believed in a Creator, the God of the Bible, that our rights come from Him and that the government should not prohibit the free exercise of religion,” Esses said.
“What is particularly ironic and disturbing is the growing intolerance of so many people who preach tolerance. Increasingly, Christians are expected to violate our beliefs and conform our religious convictions to accommodate those who support positions that are clearly unbiblical,” he said. “As the move to enact so-called ‘hate-crime’ laws continues, it is necessary to spell out what is included in free speech rights. Second, it is important to point out places in which the free exercise of religion can occur.”
The wording of the amendments found at www.YesJesusIsLord.org includes:
1. To provide that a person using any part of the Bible’s content as authority may freely communicate any view about various actions and principles at public or private gatherings, or in other places and circumstances or in any communicative medium.
2. To enumerate specific topics understood by pastors to be included in the free exercise of their biblical duty to preach the whole counsel of the Scriptures.
3. To reaffirm that it is not a crime, hate crime or unlawful for a person to use any part of the Bible’s content as authority.
“It is time for born again, Bible-believing, Spirit-filled Christians to boldly stand, in love for Jesus Christ and the Bible, before it is unlawful to do so,” Esses said.
Source: ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net)