Open Question and Answer sessions provide a great opportunity to be a voice in your community (I did something similar during a session with gay activist Wayne Besen last year). Learn more about JHOP:SD’s work confronting humanism at their site www.godsdelusion.com.
Editor’s Note: A few weeks ago I saw the video below, entitled The Numbers Don’t Lie, which was put out by the Bound4Life folks in June. I thought the video was great, but wondered how they could attribute the shift in public opinion on abortion directly to the Bound4Life/JHOP movement. I asked my friend Gordon MacIlvaine with JHOP:San Diego to share some thoughts on the subject, and he graciously accepted. Below is his guest article for VOR, entitled The Numbers Don’t Lie.
“Who, tho’ he has fought against thee, is now reconciled to thee, and will maintain thy cause against all thine adversaries.”– John Wesley.1
Seeds of Intercession
God contends with those who contend against His people. Then He calls us to be a kingdom of priests who do what He is doing in this generation. Intercession is much more than an activity to which we devote two hours of our time each morning and evening. Intercession is much more than a current trend into which we take refuge for a season of time and then move along as the culture sways us. Intercession is the very reason and the very lifestyle for which we are all created. The purpose of this short piece of writing is to call to account and to bring to remembrance the primary vocation of every believer in Jesus. Even though it is our inheritance to go from glory to glory in the place of intercession, we more frequently than we should lose sight of our identity in Christ the Intercessor.
Secrets of Intercession
Secret of intercession #1 – Jesus Himself made it plain, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” In another place Jesus furthers expands on this, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”
Secret of intercession #2 – To go humbly before God and ask Him questions. You might for example ask God, “Oh Lord, how do I pray?” This is what the twelve disciples asked Him; should we do any differently? Another question which directly relates to revival and reformation is this: “Why has America’s opinion about the practice of abortion shifted from pro-choice to pro-life within the last year?” Several recent polls have all confirmed this to be true, yet why is this happening? Why is America changing her view about abortion? If this causes confusion to you because you think that abortion is just an issue2 that isn’t worth worrying about, then you might want to ask these questions: “God, what do you think about abortion? Should men and women have the right to choose if their child is going to be born?” Many across America have asked this very thing, have heard God answer clearly, and have gone forth in obedience to His unmistakable voice. In simple terms, we cannot enter into intercession unless the voice of God leads us on, and unless the power of the Holy Spirit is alive and active in our midst.
The Red Warriors
Again, I believe that we should indeed be asking the questions, “Why have the hearts and the minds of Americans shifted concerning abortion? Does this shift reflect or relate to the increasing amount of prayer all across America for the ending of abortion and for revival and reformation? This is critical for America to understand in light of the social, political, moral, cultural, health, educational, and spiritual states of emergency into which we find ourselves today. I would dare to say that much of our crisis is undoubtedly bound to the issue of the bloodguilt of America. But don’t just take my word for it. Ask God! He is proclaiming it loud and clear. In all 50 states there are groups of people who have committed themselves to pray for the ending of abortion. Why is this? Because God loves babies!3 Bound4LIFE chapters made up of young and old followers of Jesus gather to fast, weep, and travail in prayer for the ending of abortion. We stand in front of abortion clinics and courthouses praying silently with red tape over our mouths that says LIFE. We wear red wristbands called Life Bands as a symbol and reminder of the covenant with God that we have made to PRAY for abortion to end every time we see the red mark on our wrist, to VOTE for candidates that are actively pro-life, and to OBEY God as he leads us into works of compassion and justice. And we repeat this prayer daily: “Jesus I plead your blood over my sins and the sins of my nation, God end abortion and send revival to America!”
If this is not God raising up a united cry for the pre-born babies who don’t yet have a voice of their own, then we are to be pitied among Christians because we stand in silent prayer for several hours every week. But if this is what Jesus is doing right now among thousands of His followers throughout America, Canada, Europe and the world, then it doesn’t take a prophetic eye to discern that the Holy Spirit is drawing forth a Moses Generation out of the bloody river of abortion; He is longing much more than we are for abortion to come to an end. In 1994 during the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington DC, Mother Theresa declared boldly before President Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Clinton, Vice President Al Gore and many congressional leaders, “Please don’t kill the child. I want the child. Please give me the child. I am willing to accept any child who would be aborted, and to give that child to a married couple who will love the child, and be loved by the child.”4 Oh that the Church of America would see and embrace the truth!
The Numbers don’t lie. Thousands of Christians, young and old, are gathering together all over America to fast and pray for the ending of abortion.5
The Numbers don’t lie. Since 1973, 50 million American lives have been lost in the bloody river of legalized abortion. Each day, over 4000 children are aborted in America.6
The Numbers don’t lie.
Right now the momentum is on your side. A recent Gallup poll7 shows that in May 2008 50% of Americans considered themselves “Pro-Choice” and 44% considered themselves “Pro-Life.” In the last year, there has been a complete reversal of statistics. As of May 2009 51% of Americans now consider themselves “Pro-Life” while only 42% say “Pro-Choice.” This is a FIRST-the majority of Americans are Pro-Life.
Pew Research8 recently discovered a radical trend indicating a massive loss of support for abortion. Tracing back to August 2008, the number of people that think it should be illegal in all or most cases is dramatically increasing, and those that think it should remain legal is desperately decreasing.
Rasmussen Reports9 recently conducted a study that shows that 58% of Americans now think that abortion is morally wrong. Among them, 64% are women.
In spite of what you hear OR MAY NOT HEAR in the media, America is changing her views on abortion. Bound4LIFE believes this can be directly attributed to the mass mobilization of prayer targeting the ending of abortion and revival in the nation. To put it another way prayer and fasting are in fact shifting the hearts and minds of America. Clearly minds are changing when increasing numbers of people are calling themselves “Pro-Life” and thinking that abortion should be illegal in most cases. The fact that more people believe abortion is morally wrong means that hearts are shifting too.10
Why is this happening? The secret of intercession is found in the blood of Jesus. It is found in the priestly calling of every believer to appropriate the blood and in so doing we give God all the glory. The secret of the Intercessor who stands in the gap on behalf of the land is bound to the fact that He pleads with blood. What does it mean to plead with blood? It means blood for blood. It means life for life. God established the system of atonement during the time of the Levitical Priesthood for this purpose. Ezekiel expresses profound insight into the necessity of bloodshed, sacrifice and atonement, “Therefore, as I live,” says the Lord GOD, ‘I will prepare you for blood, and blood shall pursue you; since you have not hated blood, therefore blood shall pursue you.'” (Ezekiel 35:6). Of course the Torah of Moses is 100% fulfilled in Jesus Christ; He gave everything because of the demand of righteous blood in order for the fulfillment of God’s justice. Jesus pleads with His blood, with His life given over to Father on the cross of Calvary. This is the call to prayer. This is the call to intercession. This is the call – to plead His blood over our sins and the sins of our nation – For He is worthy of it all.
The Future of America
The numbers don’t lie. The reason that Americans now lean more towards pro-life values than we did one year ago is because men and women have counted the cost and have subsequently left all behind, for the sake of pleading the righteous blood of Messiah Yeshua over the future of America. There is no political remedy to the shedding of innocent blood in our nation. The only thing that will cover our sins is the pure, undefiled, innocent and Holy blood of the Son of God. Oh that the destiny of our nation would not be aborted! The perfect justice of His intercession on the cross has set us free. HE is the giver of freedom. For whom the Son sets free shall be free indeed. It cost Jesus His own life, blood for blood, life for life, and freedom for freedom; should we do any differently?
Let me say this clearly, men and women are forsaking the American dream of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; instead we are turning aside to seek the greater reward11 which is God’s dream which is the Cross of Yeshua. For it says of Jesus that He was the lamb slain before the foundation of the world. God’s dream is incomparably more excellent than the humanistic self-empowering American dream in which we ourselves demand from the state the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The eternal reality of God’s everlasting kingdom bears witness to a much more excellent way. Only God can give life, only God can give freedom, and only God can give us the gift of happiness. Let us pursue Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. For it will require all -inside and out – soul, spirit, and body entirely surrendered unto Him who is mighty to save, since there is only one place that true freedom can be found – on the cross.
This is why America is turning pro-life. God is speaking to us that abortion is wrong, and thousands from all over the nation are refusing the dream of America and accepting the call to plead the better blood of Jesus12, though it may cost them their dreams, their ambitions, their careers, and their very own lives. For it says of Jesus that for the joy set before Him he endured the cross and despised its shame.
Seeds of intercession always bear fruit, provided that they first fall to the earth and die. Jesus Himself declares this in John 12:24. The bloodguilt of America is not beyond God’s power to reckon, nor is it past His people’s place of intercession which is to stand and plead His blood over our sins so that abortion ends. We are crying out for speedy justice. Their blood cries out. His blood cries out. God is alive and He will not be silent, “Life for Life.”
1. John Wesley’s Notes on the Bible, Isaiah 51:22. http://www.ccel.org/ccel/wesley/notes.ii.xxiv.lii.ii.html
2. Many would consider abortion a “health issue” when in reality it is purely criminal. Moreover, in God’s eyes this is hardly an issue, it is a spirit of murder which always seeks to destroy God’s plan and purpose and destiny for an arising generation of deliverers.
3. Psalm 127:3 “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb is a reward.”
Editor’s Note: Unless otherwise stated, we make no endorsements of the links, media, organizations, or people we report on.
Here are some more updates with regard to the Castro story we’ve been following. A woman that was at the Castro confrontation and Lou Engle, father of the JHOP movement, share their story in the video below, taken from the IHOP-KC (International House of Prayer – Kansas City) webstream: [link to video]
Accusations are starting to be made about the JHOP – San Francisco team, and their leader, Lou Engle. For example, Joe. My. God., winner of 2007’s Best LGBT blog according to the WebLog Awards, has posted an article containing the above video, and a crude explanation of Lou Engle’s beliefs, reprinted below:
Lou Engle is a pastor with Joel’s Army, a group that demands that the United States be ruled by strict Biblical principles. From the Southern Poverty Law Center:
Joel’s Army believers are hard-core Christian dominionists, meaning they believe that America, along with the rest of the world, should be governed by conservative Christians and a conservative Christian interpretation of biblical law. There is no room in their doctrine for democracy or pluralism.
Dominionism’s original branch is Christian Reconstructionism, a grim, Calvinist call to theocracy that, as Reconstructionist writer Gary North describes, wants to “get busy in constructing a Bible-based social, political and religious order which finally denies the religious liberty of the enemies of God.”
Notorious for endorsing the public execution by stoning of homosexuals and adulterers, the Christian Reconstructionist movement is far better known in secular America than Joel’s Army. That’s largely because Reconstructionists have made several serious forays into mainstream politics and received a fair amount of negative publicity as a result. Joel’s Army followers eschew the political system, believing the path to world domination lies in taking over churches, not election to public office.
Another key difference between the two branches of dominionism, which maintain a testy, arms-length relationship with one another, is Christian Reconstructionism’s buttoned-down image and heavy emphasis on Bible study, which contrasts sharply with Joel’s Army anti-intellectual distrust of biblical scholars and its unruly style.
Some Castro residents have described the group that was chased out of the neighborhood as “peaceful and harmless”, but their affiliation with Lou Engle and Joel’s Army is chilling indeed. Joel’s Army is a militantly dangerous group that will settle for nothing less than the complete end of secular Democracy in America.
Let’s get the facts straight.
Firstly: Lou Engle is not a “pastor with Joel’s Army”, he is a revivalist that founded The Call, and the Justice Houses of Prayer, and according to his bio page, is currently a senior leader with IHOP-KC.
Secondly: Not only is he not a “pastor with Joel’s Army”, which according to Joe. My. God.‘s sources are “hard-core Christian dominionists”, but the ministry he’s involved with has openly rejected dominionism, and has openly dealt with the Joel’s Army misunderstanding. Consider what IHOP-KC has posted on their website in their Affirmations and Denials page with regard to these “Joel’s Army” and “Dominion Theology” rumors:
WE AFFIRM that God’s purpose is for Jesus to come back to fully establish His Kingdom rule over all the Earth. After the Second Coming, the saints will rule the Earth under the leadership of Jesus Christ when He sets up His government on the Earth in the Millennial Kingdom (1 Corinthians 6:2; Revelation 5:10 and 20:3–6). We believe that believers in this age are called to serve Jesus in politics and to help establish righteousness and justice in legislation. We do NOT have the assurance that ALL laws and governments will be changed until after the Second Coming of Jesus to establish His Millennial Kingdom.
WE DENY the Church will take over all the governments of the Earth before the return of Christ.
Explanation: some teach and believe that all governments on the Earth will be transformed by the Church before the Second Coming of Jesus.
WE AFFIRM that the army in Joel 2:1–11 was an ungodly Babylonian army that destroyed Jerusalem in 586 BC. We believe that this passage has a double fulfillment as it points to the Antichrist’s army that will attack Israel at the end of the age. We affirm that Joel was prophesying of the lifestyle of godly believers in Joel 2:12–17.
WE DENY Joel 2:1–11 describes the end-time church.
Explanation: The term “Joel’s Army” has been used to signify the people who walk out the principles of prayer with fasting as taught in Joel 2:12–17. The term has been used much like “Joseph Company”, “Gideon Band” or “David Company” to signify the people who embraced the godly qualities that Joel taught about prayer, fasting and wholehearted obedience. Paul Cain had a prophetic word about a “Joel’s Army in training,” referring to a group of people who would give themselves to prayer and fasting according to Joel 2:12–17. When used like this, “Joel’s Army” does not refer specifically to the destroying army mentioned in Joel 2:1–11, but to people who walk out the Joel 2:12–17 lifestyle. The misunderstanding comes from giving the title “Joel’s Army” to both the destroying army (Joel 2:1–11) and the group of people who give themselves to fasting and prayer (Joel 2:12–17).
Thirdly: Whether or not this dominionist “Joel’s Army” described in Joe.My.God.’s article really exists or not, I cannot say, but clearly since Lou Engle has rejected dominionism, there is no proof that he is callling for “the complete end of secular Democracy in America”. Neither does Joe.My.God. have any proof that Lou Engle or his ministry associates are “militant” in a physically or verbally violent way.
Joe.My.God. would do well to check on his facts before publishing such easily debunked rumors.
On Tuesday, we released a story about an assault on a group of Christians in the Castro District of San Francisco. JHOP – San Francisco, the group that was confronted, has released an official statement about what happened on their website, reprinted below:
This is the official statement of what took place in the Castro in San Francisco on Friday, November 14, 2008.
November 18, 2008
Last Friday night (11.14.08) our team of thirteen people, mostly ranging from eighteen to twenty-two years old, left the house around 5:30pm to head to the Castro District as we have done for the majority of Friday nights for the past three years. Over the course of the week we had actually been out in the Castro every night, singing and worshiping in the neighborhood. This night we arrived at Castro and 18th Street, with one guitar to simply worship and bring the presence of God to the Castro District. We understood that since Proposition 8 had passed it would seem instigating to talk with people, so we decided to only play the guitar and sing rather than to engage with anyone on the streets.
Our intention was not to stir up anger, but to worship Jesus on the streets the way we had worshipped there for the past three years. As we were worshiping a man approached us and began yelling “You are haters! Get out of here!” A girl on our team simply told him “We are only here to worship God. We love you.” This man became angrier and was screaming at her using profanity and obscene language. When he noticed that we were standing in front of a memorial that had been dedicated to an AIDS/HIV activist he became even more enraged. We had stood on that particular street corner numerous times when there had been a memorial and it had never been an issue before this night. She continued to answer him “We are only here to worship God. We love you and Jesus loves you,” and eventually he left the street corner. A police officer then came and asked us how long we would be out there. We told him until nine o clock and he said “ok” and left.
Our team continued to sing as a young man approached us. He stood near by until another man joined him. He was wearing a headdress, which led us to believe that he was affiliated with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. This man in the headdress began to surround us with a cloth and shoving us to encircle us fully with the cloth. He wanted to do this so that people on the outside could not see us. While this was happening the other man instigated to people walking by that we were the “Yes on 8 people”. When in reality, we were only doing what we had always done at the Castro since before proposition 8 was even in sight. This was not a proposition 8 event.
At this point our team was standing in a circle holding hands singing “Amazing Grace.”
While they were holding the cloth around us someone from the crowd threw hot coffee over the cloth and it hit our team, including splashing two of our girls in the face and one on her head going down her back. At first the girls thought it was boiling water until they smelled that it was coffee.
During the event people lunging through the crowd to get at us hit a couple of our girls in the face.
Then a man picked up one of our Bibles and started to walk away with it. A girl from our team walked out of the circle after him and said, “Excuse me that is our Bible. Could I have that back please?” He turned to her and said “no” then hit her on the head with the Bible knocking her to the ground, then began kicking her legs. A man from the crowd pulled him off of her. A police officer then came and detained the man who hit her. One officer asked the girl on our team if she would like to press charges. She said “No. Tell him I forgive him.”
A couple of the people who were holding the cloth around our team walk up to her and said “We are sorry that happened to you.” and “He is not with us.” referring to the man that hit her. Then the man who had been responsible for making the crowd think we were there concerning Proposition 8 said to her “I’m glad to see that you’re feeling better, but let that be a lesson to you not to come here.”
At different points throughout the night one girl on our team had her camera and was able to film some of what was happening.
The crowd around began to grow as people started to scream “Shame on you! Shame on you!” over and over. They were yelling all kinds of obscenities and cursing us. That is when one of the young men who was with us called the police department to let them know what was happening. It was difficult to say how many people were surrounding us due to the chaos of the situation. We were trying to focus on worshiping rather than the masses, but we would guess anywhere from 200 to 500 people. One of the girls then stepped out to see how the girl who got hit was doing. And as she rejoined the team singing, she overheard a few men saying things like “we should grab them.” As well as “yeah we should grab their butts.” At that point we realized that it was climaxing into a really hostile situation.
Then it seemed like out of nowhere hundreds of whistles were being blown in our ears. Around that time someone removed the cloth which enabled the crowd to enclose around us turning the situation into what resembled a mob frenzy. The people in the crowd were shoving us against the wall blowing the whistles in our ears so close that we could feel the spit from the whistles hitting our faces. Around that time we began to sing “Oh the Blood of Jesus.” Things grew more intense and the crowd came in closer around us shoving and pushing us. Some men from the crowd began grabbing a few of the young men on our team inappropriately, sexually assaulting them and trying to take down the pants of one of them. When that began the young men with us quickly pulled all the girls into the middle so that no one could get to them.
The intensity of the mob around us grew until finally the police had to shove the crowd off of us and they made a wall between the crowd and our group. There was one moment when a man from the crowd around us pointed out Roger, the leader of our team, and said, “I’m going to kill you!” An officer overheard and said to him “What did you say!?” The man said “nothing.” And the officer replied, “I heard what you said.”
Then one officer said to Roger “Do you want to leave?” and he replied, “We would like to stay” because we knew we had the freedom to be there. A few minutes later as the crowd was growing quickly the officer said to Roger “I am sorry, but we need to get you out of here because we fear for your life, you no longer have a choice.” Roger turned to our team and explained that we were going to honor the police and follow them. The officer came back, asked us where we were parked and told us we would be moving out in five minutes. At that point there was somewhere between 15 and 25 police officers. They surrounded our team and escorted us to 20th and Eureka Street where our van was parked. As they were escorting us to our van the crowd followed our team and continued to scream and threaten us. They even threatened to follow us all the way home. As we were being escorted out a man with a news camera showed up and began filming us. (Later we found the footage on KTVU, a local news station in the Bay Area) They had reported that we were doing a religious march regarding Proposition 8, when in all actuality we were being escorted out of the Castro. Realizing the hostility of the people who were still following us, and their threats to “follow us all the way home” we covered our license plate with post-it notes that a guy on our team had in his wallet. We did this so that they could not identify our vehicle later. We then loaded our entire team into the van and drove home. The time when we left was 8:30.
In closing, though this event was one of the scariest moments in our individual lives, because of those who have died in America to purchase freedom, we felt in this situation we were to stand firm and not be intimidated out of our rights. Furthermore our faith in Christ calls us to be willing to die for the sake of the gospel, and we are not to sacrifice for the sake of comfort or a false peace. Though the American church has not often been tested in this, these days seem to be upon us. We love the LGBT community and we do not believe that everyone in this community is filled with hate or anger. What happened on Friday night was different than what we have ever encountered. We forgive those who assaulted us physically and sexually. We forgive the anger and threats of violence against us. Our desire has always been to be a bridge to bring the love of Jesus.
Editor’s Note: The YouTube account mentioned below was later taken off of the video’s site.
People have asked us how we got our information concerning the Kingdoms in Conflict: Castro District Mob Assaults Christians article we posted. Our information came from an email from someone affiliated with JHOP containing substantially the same story that was posted on the YouTube video we linked to (the account can be seen if you click on “More Info” to the upper right). An identical version to the email we received, which was slightly different from the YouTube video account, was posted on Free Republic. You will find all the information contained in the article we posted in the Free Republic account, reprinted below:
We wanted to write you and fill you guys in on what happened to our team here in San Francisco last night. This is what happened from Daniel’s point of view and gives a pretty good overview of the night.
I went to the Castro (the homosexual district of San Francisco) with JHOPSF (I have been with the Justice House of Prayer San Francisco since April 2008.) like we usually do on Friday nights. Normally, we sit on 18th and Castro, and someone plays the guitar, and we all worship God. Often times people will be drawn to us, even if only for curiosity of what we’re doing, so we get to talk to them, and tell them about the Love of Jesus Christ. On rare occasions, when the Holy Spirit clearly guides one of us (Usually a leader, probably Roger), one person will open-air preach for a little bit.
Sometimes a person will yell at us, or maybe a few. Sometimes people will ignore us. Sometimes people will let us pray with them. We get different responses from different people each time, but the Lord always meets us there.
This time was not a normal night. It was the first time we’d been back in the Castro to do our normal outreach since California Proposition 8, which defined marriage as “one man with one woman” was passed. Apparently, previously, someone at a no on 8 rally singled out Promised Land Fellowship (The church that we attend), and specifically the team they send out to the Castro on Friday nights (Us) as being affiliated with the yes on 8 campaign (Which is partially true. All the individuals involved with the Castro Outreach were involved with the yes on 8 campaign, but mostly in prayer. However, the Castro Outreach isn’t about Gay marriage, or politics – it’s about Jesus Christ.).
We played the guitar and sang together and worshiped the Lord. Nobody preached. Nobody even really talked to anyone except for a little bit near the beginning. After just singing and worshiping God for a while, Roger decided that we should all hold hands in a circle and continue singing. So we did.
Someone (Actually a person who came up and hugged and kissed some of us who he knew from the past and was asking us how we were doing) convinced some people that we were there to protest against the no on 8 campaign. Then some guy who was dressed up like one of the sisters (The sisters of perpetual indulgence is a group of men who dress up in drag like nuns and call themselves the spiritual authority of the Castro.) took a curtain-type thing (Which I think they use to curse people) and wrapped it around us.
Then a crowd started gathering. We began to sing “Amazing Grace”, and basically sang that song the whole night. (At some points we also sang “Nothing but the Blood of Jesus” and “Oh the Blood of Jesus”.)
At first, they just shouted at us, using crude, rude, and foul language and calling us names like “haters” and “bigots”. Since it was a long night, I can’t even begin to remember all of the things that were shouted and/or chanted at us.
Then, they started throwing hot coffee, some people got it in their faces, soda and alcohol on us and spitting (and maybe even peeing) on us. Then, a group of guys surrounded us with whistles, and blasted them inches away from our ears continually.
Then, they started getting violent and started shoving us. We just gathered in as tight as we could together and worshiped singing Amazing Grace. At one point a man tried to steal one of our Bibles. Chrisdene noticed, so she walked up to him and said “Hey, that’s not yours, can you please give it back?”. He responded by hitting her on the head with the Bible, shoving her to the ground, and kicking her. I called the cops, and when they got there, they pulled her out of the circle and asked her if she wanted to press charges. She said “No, tell him I forgive him.” Afterwards, she didn’t rejoin us in the circle, but she made friends with one of the people in the crowd, and really connected heart to heart.
Roger got death threats. As the leader of our group, people looked him in the eyes and said “I am going to kill you.”, and they were serious. A cop heard one of them, and confronted him.
(This part is kinda graphic, so you should skip the paragraph if you don’t want to be offended.) It wasn’t long before the violence turned to perversion. They were touching and grabbing me, and trying to shove things in my butt, and even trying to take off my pants – basically trying to molest me. I used one hand to hold my pants up, while I used the other arm to hold one of the girls. The guys huddled around all the girls, and protected them.
Soon after, the cops came and stood between us and the mob. When it was getting more heated, the cops were like “You guys should leave.” because it was getting harder to protect us. and Roger said “We want to stay.” Then he said if you want to get out you have to get out now.
Someone tried to steal my backpack, but I tapped a cop on the shoulder, and said “Hey, that’s my bag.” and he got it from him and gave it to me. Others weren’t so lucky. Probably half our team got their jackets stolen.
Eventually, as the crowd was getting more and more uncontrollable, the cops were afraid for our lives, so they escorted us to our van. (The cops were very nice to us from start to finish.) Our van was parked pretty far because it was hard to find parking that day. As the cops escorted us, the mob followed us, until the cops formed a line, and held off the people so we could drive away. We took the long way home, just in case anyone tried to follow us.
When we got home, we prayed and sang more, and then prayed over each-other.The whole experience made me love, and brought me closer to God, and my friends, and the people in the Castro, as well as the church in general, and the lost in general.
Please know my heart. All of what we do is for the Love of Jesus Christ, and the love for those in the Castro. The Bible says to love God, and then love people. We can only love because He loved us first. We can’t hate the people because they are just broken and blinded by the spirit of this age. Our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against Principalities and Powers. It’s not a political thing, we just love the people. We don’t want to convert gays to straight people. We want them to know the Love of Jesus Christ. Even if someone never becomes attracted to the other sex, they can still love Jesus Christ with all their heart, mind, and soul.
As the mob raged, all I could pray was “God have mercy.”. It really is all about God’s mercy. He desires mercy over judgment. He desires for all to be saved.
One of the things that I remember them chanting was “Shame on you.”. One of our girls later pointed out how, in some weird way, it’s a privilege for us, because we know that Jesus bore all our shame, and all our transgressions on the cross, so it’s kinda like taking on their shame, so we can cast it onto Jesus.
This is the raw footage of the walk from 18th and Castro Street to our car. It was only the very tail end of the night and says that we were all about prop8… when in reality we had nothing to do with prop 8 this night.
May the Holy Lord God Almighty, Who Was, Who Is, and Who Is To Come, be glorified, now and forevermore. Amen. -Daniel-
Thank you for praying for us, and more for this people in the Castro. We have found ourselves even more broken over them. We love you!
A group of homosexual protesters turned violent on Friday, Nov. 14th when an outreach team from the Justice House of Prayer gathered together to worship on the streets of the Castro District in San Francisco.These young Christians had been meeting to worship and reach out to the Castro community on Friday nights for months, with this being their first time in the community since the passing of Proposition 8 in California, which defines marriage as being between a man and a woman and has sparked nationwide protests from the GLBT community.
While the outreach team sang worship songs, the homosexual protesters became erroneously convinced that the group from JHOP was there to protest the “No on 8” Campaign that the GLBT community has been promoting throughout the country.A crowd gathered around the JHOP team as they sang “Amazing Grace”, and as tensions mounted, the crowd began shouting vulgarities and taunts at the Christians, eventually throwing hot coffee, alcohol, and soda at the group, and according to some at the scene, even spitting on them, all the while blowing whistles inches from their ears.As the scene progressed, the team was also shoved, had their personal belongings stolen, and were hit and kicked, requiring them to call the police. Eventually, a riot team was called in to protect the victims as they worshiped.One victim said that when one of the homosexuals was confronted by a young woman for stealing her Bible, “he responded by hitting her on the head with the Bible, shoving her to the ground, and kicking her.”When asked by the police if she wanted to press charges, she declined, choosing to extend forgiveness to her attacker instead.
Violence and verbal abuse weren’t the only things they had to endure however, as perverse acts of molestation also took place. Accordingto one of the victims, individuals in the crowd touched and grabbed them, tried to remove their pants, and even made attempts to penetrate them anally with foreign objects. Following this, the police had to surround the outreach team to protect them from the mob, and confront a man who threatened the team leader with death.The police asked the outreach group to leave for their protection due to the violence of the crowd, despite the police presence.They escorted the group during the long walk back to their van, followed by the mob who continued to shout, chant and blow whistles.The press only arrived in time to capture some of their walk back to the van, and you can view the raw footage of this here (YouTube version posted below).
Incredibly, the article published by the news team from KTVU in San Francisco has many of the facts of the event wrong, but with the only interviews performed being from the homosexual community, rather than representatives from both sides or even the police who were called to protect the victims, who should be surprised?The group who went from JHOP to the Castro area was not “marching” to support Proposition 8, nor did they blatantly “confront” anyone from the homosexual community on Friday night.And despite the aggressive nature of the mob, KTVU fails to mention it in the least, and even quotes a homosexual man who says “Their rights were respected…They got a chance to go ahead and pray on the sidewalk and I had the opportunity to express my freedom of speech which is telling them to get out of my neighborhood.” (emphasis mine)They also quote another homosexual man saying “It’s not religious. It’s not a racial thing. It’s about hate. We’re trying to send a message across the world that we’re standing up and we don’t want this to go on anymore.”But they print not a word from a police officer or one of the victims of the attack.
“Their rights were respected?”As hot coffee and other things are thrown on them, their belongings are stolen, and they are physically and sexually assaulted?“It’s about hate?”Since when is praying and singing hymns classifiable as hatred?Emotions are running very high within the GLBT community, but the actions of some of the protesters have overstepped the laws of the nation as well as the “tolerance” and “equality” that they themselves demand of those who believe in God’s design of marriage between a man and a woman.The victims from JHOP attacked in the Castro district would have been well within their rights to press charges, but instead they chose to love and forgive instead of meeting hatred with hatred, or even seeking justice from the laws which protect members of both sides of the issue.
The heart of the group who was chased out of the Castro district is this:
“We don’t want to convert gays to straight people. We want them to know the Love of Jesus Christ. Even if someone never becomes attracted to the other sex, they can still love Jesus Christ with all their heart, mind, and soul. As the mob raged, all I could pray was “God have mercy.”
Every one of us stands in need of the mercy of God, without exception.Let us pray for God to have mercy on the GLBT community, that they would have a true encounter with the Spirit of God who is the very embodiment of love, holiness, and truth, and that we may be able to reach out to them with a heart of compassion for the heavy struggle facing those who deal with this issue which lies at the very core of the way they identify themselves.Which one among us has not needed God to redefine core beliefs about who we are/were?The transformation must be accomplished by the Spirit, not the strength of men. We must cry out to Messiah Jesus to have mercy!