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While the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association was spreading the message of Jesus across the UK, multiple event centers tried to silence the gospel from going forth. Two years later, BGEA saw an incredible victory after facing the major backlash and event cancellations in the UK.
A Scottish court ruled that they were discriminated against for being a religious group after an event center in Glasgow, Scotland canceled the evangelistic crusade. Sheriff John McCormick ruled that the Scottish Event Campus (SEC) treated the ministry unfairly and unequally.
In a Twitter post on Jan. 30, 2020 an assembly member at one of the venues said, "We shouldn't be welcoming Franklin Graham to Newport." Other LGBTQ pride groups contacted venues asking for the event to be canceled–and it was. Numerous venues across the UK canceled Graham's event because of his biblical values.
McCormick says they found no evidence that Graham was going to make "homophobic" or "Islamophobic" comments during the outreach event. In his strong ruling he called out the SEC for "virtue signaling" and bowing to "public pressure, spurred on and whipped up by political leaders online."
"This ruling will be a great encouragement for Christians and people of all faiths across the UK and many other parts of the world," CEO of BGEA Franklin Graham said in a written statement.
McCormick found the SEC violated the Equality Act 2010 for favoring the opinions of those who were against the evangelistic outreach and what it stands for, and ignoring the thoughts of those who were in support.
In his statement Graham says, "I am grateful to God for this decision—it is a clear victory for freedom of speech and religion in the UK. This case was never about financial remedies—it was about the preservation of religious freedom in the UK—particularly the right for Christians to share the gospel in the public square. I want to thank Sheriff John McCormick for upholding the law and affirming that Christians must be treated fairly and equally. This ruling will be a great encouragement for Christians and people of all faiths across the UK and many other parts of the world."
Franklin Graham isn't the only one fighting for religious liberty. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito spoke on the new challenge we are facing today regarding religious liberty worldwide. In his impassioned speech in Rome, he said "It's hard to convince people that religion is worth defending if they don't think it's that important."
As the world turns further from God and biblical values many people in society don't see what's at stake if religious liberty is torn down. Christians worldwide need to stand up for their beliefs and act as engines of reform to see a shift happen worldwide for the glory of God.
Shelby Lindsay is an assistant editor for Charisma Media.
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