On our August 30th, 2020 Facebook live we had two questions that came from Marshall Horwitz that are the topic of this month’s blog. The first question was “Up till now, church attacks have been done by individuals. Do you fear attacks by gangs on churches? Could that be next?” My initial response to that Marshall was go out and listen to the webinar we did on July 30, 2020 called “Tale of Two Churches”. But to be fair to Marshall, a recent listener, the answer to the question is yes, I do feel that protesters or gangs could descend on churches like they did on the two churches I talked about in our webinar.
In this discussion we saw Antifa and BLM show up on church campuses and basically attack the church and members of the church. Of course, the protesters said it was a peaceful demonstration. I have a different opinion of what the definition of what is considered a peaceful protest. If you want to walk down the street and carry signs for your cause and after you are finished you go home, that is peaceful and a right guaranteed by the 1st Amendment. Yet neither protest against the churches we discussed were peaceful; in fact, the protests that happened in Troy, New York we saw members of the church assaulted when church members went to escort other members into the church through the “peaceful protesters”. This was an attack. The other church in San Antonio saw protesters walking around the building with signs and yelling profanities at church members and their children because they disagreed on their view of sexuality. The church had stated on their web page that they believed what the Bible said about marriage being between a man and a woman.
So, what do we do about it? Train. Assess your strength and weaknesses. Next step is to sit down with your team and create a plan. Approach the leaders of your church and get approval for it, then practice your plan. Another church once asked me to come and critique their training. One of their scenarios was that of angry protesters showing up at their campus. Except for a few suggestions I had, it was good training because they thought of it and worked out a “what if”. This is something we are going to be looking to do at our church. If I can be of any assistance with your church, please give us a call.
Marshall’s second question “Hello from Sarasota. Can you comment on the incident in Tallahassee when the innocent bystander was attacked by the mob and thwarted the assault but pulling his weapon? Thankfully, the attackers dispersed, and he faces no charges.” When I first saw this question once again my initial response was “no, I am not going to comment”. I have my reasons and I will give them later. After calming down I went out and looked for the video, because you know there is video on everything these days. The first video was just as I thought. From the film it looks like “innocent bystander (IB)” provoked the peaceful protesters and the protesters had to defend themselves. This is from the angle that the mainstream media wants you to see. The next video titled “Video from Historic Capitol shows the moment a man pulled a gun on protesters Saturday”. This video shows a different angle which also paints a different picture. The Capital camera shows the IB being viciously attacked by the mob and beaten to the ground. If he had not pulled his weapon he might have been seriously injured.
But here is the reason that I wasn’t going to comment but since you asked here goes. Why would anyone of sound mind go to a protest? Can you please explain that? Unless you are a camera crew; a reporter from a news agency who is getting paid big bucks, a police officer who has been ordered to protect the streets or you work in the area and your boss says you’ve got to be there then what is your reason for being at a protest? Right now, if you are not one of those I listed, stay home or you might have a bad day like the poor guy in Portland or this guy almost did. The second thing that bothers me is that from all reports I have read he was down there to document the protest (once again for what news organization) and was caught taking pictures of protesters' vehicles. I am just as frustrated as everyone else about the violence going on around this country but I will say this once again; if you do not have one of the reasons I listed for being there, why are you there? Then you show up armed. I have a real problem with that and am really surprised it went as well as it did.
That IB is lucky he didn’t get shot. I am still sitting here in shocked that he didn’t get shot. I hate to say this, but I really am glad I wasn’t there. Understand a white guy standing in the middle of a BLM protest waving a gun around is perceived as a threat, period. Maybe the officer who confronted him knew more about what was going on, but I am still (I will be saying this all day long) shocked he didn’t get shot. I am so happy that he didn’t shoot anyone because the outcome of this story would be completely different. Sorry folks from all initial indications I believe this IB went there to cause trouble. Remember the things that I said would be the only excuse I would accept; from what I am reading his job description wasn’t one of them.
Now as I write this blog, I just had another thought cross my mind about the Tallahassee incident. Maybe that IB was on the job. Having worked situations like the protest at Florida’s state capital the police department would send us into the crowd; in plain clothes so we would blend in, to get pictures of those in the crowd and their vehicles so we could identify them later. If this is the case, then yes, he had a reason to be there. However, he is still lucky he didn’t get shot. But maybe the other officer knew him and had to place him under arrest to protect his identity, I had that happen to me once and I can tell you I was also lucky I didn’t get killed by friendly fire that night.
The paper is saying he didn’t get charged. If they find out that he is with another group that was in the protest to cause trouble this might not be over. Remember the shooting at the convenience store where the shooter confronted the woman over parking in the handicap spot and her boyfriend came out of the store and assaulted the shooter? The Pinellas County Sheriff at first called it self-defense until they looked at the shooter and found out that he was a troublemaker and had threatened to shoot people in many incidents around the county. He ended up being charged and is now serving 20 years for manslaughter. Heck remember the couple that was protecting their house when “peaceful protesters” showed up on their block. At first it looked like they were not going to be charged but guess what? They got charged.
So, what did we learn here today? One stay away from places that are holding a “peaceful protest”. Two which I didn’t bring up; if you do find yourself in a situation like the IB, armed and in a hostile environment, this is wrong time to be thinking I wish I had listened to Jim and had joined USCCA. In today’s scary times when so many of us are now thinking of carrying concealed you need that extra protection USCCA offers. If things would not had gone right for this IB, remember the first video we saw? The IB could have really used the help from USCCA. For more information on USCCA go to our website and click on the link Concealed Carry Legal Protection. Sorry Wendy made me do the plug for USCCA who is going to speak be at our Church Safety Conference on October 17th. For more information on the conference go here.
I once heard the most important part of the body in carrying concealed was the brain matter between the ears. Proverbs 14:16 says “The wise are cautious and avoid danger; fools plunge ahead with reckless confidence”, and Proverbs 22:3 says, “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty”. I think we can all agree God is warning us to be smart about our actions. Thank you, Marshall, for the questions. Be safe and be blessed.
So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:26-28
Back in June I wrote a blog “Is now the time for a Christian Revolution?”. I had pointed out how Satan was dancing in the streets because he is using something that can tear this country apart, racism. Let us be perfectly clear here, any type of “ism” is hate and that is nothing but sin and cannot be tolerated, period. If we as Christians do not stand up and show the love of Christ and fight for His teachings then we are going to lose this country that we love. But I really didn’t realize just how deep sin has bored its way into our Christians leadership and now I am really scared about our country and our churches.
I was sitting around a campground with a friend of mine, I will call him Sammy-six-pack (his recommendation), when he told me that his church had a special family meeting to discuss the subject of previous services. There was a panel to discuss the issues when a black member of the church was asked to speak. Members of the church were thinking this member would be talking about the issues everyone was there for but this member took over the meeting and talked about the racial inequalities he and his family faced growing up and the issues facing blacks today. It was later discussed in the church that all whites are privileged people there should be some sort of reparations. Sammy-six-pack told me that he lost his mind for several reasons. Sammy-six-pack explained that he and his wife were founding members of the church and knew all the families since they had first started coming to the church. They had always accepted them as Christian brothers and sisters, not black Christian brothers and sisters. Sammy-six-pack told me that he was hurt because if these brother and sisters had at anytime felt they were discriminated against why didn’t they come to the church and talk about it; not paraded on stage and unleash this unhealthy agenda right in front of everyone. The second thing that bothered Sammy-six-pack was that he comes from a family of immigrants that came to the United States way after slavery was over. Sammy-six-pack and his wife almost walked out of the church but have decided to stay for the time being and work on making this right.
A month later I was at a Christian business meeting and I met Michael O’Fallon from Sovereign Nations (calm down my police brothers and sisters I didn’t say he was a Sovereign Citizen, two different animals). Now Sovereign Nations is a think tank “that serves as an exploration of the intellectual viability of the conservative political habitat, with a view to establishing the groundwork for the construction and elaboration of a broader and more comprehensive vision for the movement in relation to the exegetical intent of our founders through our national founding documents.” Let me put this in layman’s terms, they are a conservative organization that is made up of Christians that want to make sure we are following Christ’s teachings and the Founding Fathers’ vision of how the country should be run.
Mike was talking about how dangerous the times really are, that the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) had tried to slip in something in a resolution that would hurt the organization, maybe even cripple it or split it apart. Having grown up Southern Baptist I was in a bit of denial but remembered reading that the president of the Southern Baptist Convention had made the statement that we needed to stop saying “all lives matter” but say “black lives matter”. Let us be perfectly clear here, All Lives Matter! I don’t want to go down that rabbit hole here you need to do your own research and look at the Black Lives Matter’s website. They are not into trying to talk about a solution to help people in Chicago or other major cities where there are inner city issues; they are for tearing down the country we love. If you go to their website and read what they believe it is not Biblical and that is where I draw the line. Paul says it best “I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought”. 1 Corinthians 1:10
So let me finish my issue with the SBC and then close. In Resolution 9 a portion of it states:
WHEREAS, Critical race theory is a set of analytical tools that explain how race has and continues to function in society, and intersectionality is the study of how different personal characteristics overlap and inform one’s experience; and
WHEREAS, Critical race theory and intersectionality have been appropriated by individuals with worldviews that are contrary to the Christian faith, resulting in ideologies and methods that contradict Scripture; and
WHEREAS, Evangelical scholars who affirm the authority and sufficiency of Scripture have employed selective insights from critical race theory and intersectionality to understand multifaceted social dynamics….
It goes on to say WHEREAS, Critical race theory and intersectionality alone are insufficient to diagnose and redress the root causes of the social ills that they identify, which result from sin, yet these analytical tools can aid in evaluating a variety of human experiences; and
As I write this I still can’t believe that the SBC would even entertain anything from critical race theory or intersectionality. If any Christian organization says something is “contrary to the Christian faith, resulting in ideologies and methods that contradict Scripture” it shouldn’t be recommended but followed up with stay far away from these “analytical tools”, as SBC put it. Now I don’t have time to go through the whole definition of critical race theory but the quick definition is “Critical race theory (CRT), the view that the law and legal institutions are inherently racist and that race itself, instead of being biologically grounded and natural, is a socially constructed concept that is used by white people to further their economic and political interests at the expense of people of color.” Don’t believe me, you can read it for yourself in the Encyclopedia Britannica. Oxford Dictionary defines intersectionality as “The interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage; a theoretical approach based on such a premise”.
Breaking intersectionality down into layman’s terms the chart from the Association for Women in Science (AWIS) says I, as a white, heterosexual, Gentile male am racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Semitic. There is more but I feel a little strange saying I am attractive but that would also place another strike against me. All of this is saying that I am one of the privileged and hate all those listed above. I find this offensive. But let me finish this part off. I am privileged because I am a child of God. I am an heir to the throne, have been forgiven of all my sins and been given the gift of freedom and eternal life. Please place that on a chart of Jesus Christ in the center and those that believe in Him will enjoy their eternal resting place and those that don’t, won’t. One last thing about being a Christian, this privilege is offered to everyone, no matter their race, sex or ethnicity.
Closing on this rant or I would be here all day (please feel free to contact me if you want to talk about this issue), earlier in the post I said that I really didn’t realize just how deep sin has boarded its way into our Christians leadership and now I am really scared about our country and our churches. Let me be clear on this. I am afraid for our next generation. I have enjoyed such freedoms in this country that is offered to everyone, everyone! I am only privileged because of God’s grace and nothing else. Once again as Paul says it best, “I repeat: Let no one take me for a fool. But if you do, then tolerate me just as you would a fool, so that I may do a little boasting. In this self-confident boasting I am not talking as the Lord would, but as a fool. Since many are boasting in the way the world does, I too will boast. You gladly put up with fools since you are so wise! In fact, you even put up with anyone who enslaves you or exploits you or takes advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face.” 2 Corinthians 11:16-20. You want to go toe to toe on bad things that has happened in your life, bring it on. Just know, I will always come back to this fact; God’s saving grace surpasses all, without it we are bowing down to those that will “exploit you or take advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face.” Brothers and sisters, hate is alive and well in this world and our only hope is in Jesus Christ and the Biblical teachings. Those that want to lie to us and put us in chains on how to love one another are not for us but against us and must be stopped. Now is the time for a Christian Revolution.
Christ and the Holy Spirit enable me to forgive and love those that have tried to create as much chaos in this world. I pray for them and hope one day they will see their mistaken ways and join us in our true quest to make this a better place for all, no prejudice, no hate only a place where all are equal under the eyes of the Lord. So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:26-28. Contact me, let’s work together in bring Christ back into this great country. God bless you and God bless America.
Jim has many years of law enforcement experience and has run the safety team at his church for several years. TSA was formed after he realized God's calling when multiple churches reached out and asked him to present at their church.