Our Response to SB 1146

Tolerate: verb. Allow the existence, occurrence, or practice of (something that one does not necessarily like or agree with) without interference.

This word no longer holds true to its definition, especially when it comes to this culture’s interaction with Christians. To be tolerant one must now support and affirm something going against their beliefs so as to not offend or persecute. This is seen plainly in California’s SB 1146 bill. This bill would make it illegal for Christian institutions to not hire employees or reject students based upon LGBT status and provides a basis for these individuals to file lawsuits against the institution. Another intended consequence is the removal of a student’s ability to apply state-awarded Cal Grant funds toward the cost of their education at these institutions. Ultimately, it restricts The Master’s University’s ability to fulfill our mission, dedication, and commitment to Christ and Scripture. At its core, SB 1146 is a governmental attack on religious freedom currently targeting religious-based education.

The irony of this is, as a speaker at the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference poignantly stated, “America’s first and greatest universities were founded and financed by religious institutions. Faith is not an enemy of scholarship in America, but the foundation of scholarship in America. Faith based education is as American as the Constitution itself, and we mustn’t let this piece of legislation threaten that heritage”.

So, the question remains, how will we respond? Will we doubt God’s sovereignty and disobey his commands by compromising in order to make life comfortable? Or will we, like Martin Luther who faced a similar choice, stand firm and say, “Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures or by clear reason. . . I am bound by the Scriptures . . . and my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and will not recant anything since it is neither safe nor right to go against my conscience”.

There is no question. We will not bow.

The Master’s University is doing what we can to show our opposition. Our Executive Vice President, Dr. Lee Duncan, has been communicating weekly with a coalition of 23 faith-based institutions to discuss the bill and its progression. We have also joined a concerted effort to employ a lobbying firm representing our absolute opposition to this and other closely related bills currently being pursued. We are asking that all alumni and friends that currently live in the state of California reach out to their representatives and join us in voicing opposition to this bill and the motivation behind it. Thankfully, other Christian universities and national leaders, both Democrat and Republican, have spoken out against this unconstitutional overreach. We are not alone.

In Romans the Apostle Paul, speaking on God’s absolute authority, said, “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” There is no doubt the Lord works all things together for the good of those who love him and are called according to his purpose. This bill gives us, as believers, the opportunity to both stand firm on the inerrant Word and stand out amongst a culture that so easily compromises. We look forward to seeing God continue to work in His way.

In the attached video, Dr. John MacArthur offers his perspective on this bill as well as what our response as a university and those bearing the name of Christ should be. Please let us know If you have any questions as to how you can be involved, especially if you are a California resident. Thank you for your continued prayers and support. These are very exciting days for all of us at The Master’s University.

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