Breaking: John MacArthur Gets a Win: Grace Church To Stay Open Until 2021

Pastor John MacArthur and Grace Community Church scored a big win on Thursday when Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff ruled against LA County for the fifth time. The county wanted a decision against MacArthur for contempt of court charges; the result of the Church having Sunday services indoors after specifically being told not to by the court.

Before contempt charges could be adjudicated, however, lawyers for GCC argued that the Church was first entitled to a full-blown trial on the merits of their lawsuit challenging Gavin Newsom’s shutdown orders, proposing that “a final determination on the constitutionality of the orders must occur before the county could seek contempt against MacArthur for merely holding church.” The Judge was persuaded and agreed. Special Counsel Charles LiMandri explains in a statement from the Thomas More Society:

We are pleased that Judge Beckloff indicated he agreed with the major points that we made on behalf of Pastor MacArthur and Grace Community Church and we are very gratified that the judge’s ruling today reflects that he appreciates the importance of the constitutionally protected rights at issue in this case.

Special Counsel Jenna Ellis likewise said in a Statement:

This is significant because no person can or should be held in contempt of a constitutionally invalid order. Los Angeles County continues to presume that its order is valid, with utter disregard for First Amendment protections. It’s tyranny to even suggest that a government action cannot be challenged and must be obeyed without question. This case goes to the heart of what our founders designed for the purpose of legitimate government—not to be above the rule of law. Pastor MacArthur is simply holding church, which is clearly his constitutionally protected right in this country.

With LA’s Superior Court suspending civil trials the rest of the year, this decision effectively lets GCC continue holding services for at least 3 and a half months- January 2021 at the earliest. It will cost the church substantially in legal fees, but for now, it guarantees them the freedom to have their services unimpeded.

MacArthur will get a reprieve for a while, barring any funny business on the part of LA County. The next hearing is scheduled on November 13, 2020 to discuss the extent, scope, and merits of the trial.


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39 thoughts on “Breaking: John MacArthur Gets a Win: Grace Church To Stay Open Until 2021

    1. quote from the article:
      “barring any funny business on the part of LA County.”
      YES, like canceling a 45 year old lease for part of the parking facility (including handicap spots). “Funny business” indeed!
      Purely vindictive and punitive action, meant to punish the church for DARING to disregard the County’s draconian and ridiculous mandates!
      Just shameful!

      1. The synagogue down the street has offered the church the use of their parking lot—with more spaces than the old one.

  1. Thank you Pastor John for being available to be God’s representative in such a time as this. You continue to encourage and bless me.

  2. Civil rights and spiritual freedom: An American dilemma. Thank God we don’t live under Roman tyranny. Let’s see how brave we are while looking into the mouth of a lion. I thank God I received Christ 50 years ago. This kind of pompous, self-righteous aggrandizement would have probably steered me away from doing so.

    1. Daniel, I’m not sure whether you consider the county or MacArthur or the church’s lawyer to be pompous and self-aggrandizing. I’m guessing that you were referring to MacArthur. If you’d paid attention to his ministry over the past decades, you’d know that he’s one of the least pompous, least self-aggrandizing of the pastors of megachurches. He’s never been a publicity hound. His advice to other preachers is to take care of the depth of your ministry, and God will take care of the breadth. He’s not infallible, but he honestly believes that people’s spiritual health is more important than their physical health. He honestly believes that politicians and health officials are not qualified to tell the church long-term that they know better than God about how worship should be done. The Bible tells us to sing. The Bible tells us to assemble together. The Bible tells us to greet one another with a holy kiss–which might possibly be contextualized as far as a handshake or a fist-bump, but can hardly be bent to mean “stay more than 6 feet apart.” MacArthur figured out that the restrictions on Grace Community Church were not really about health at all–otherwise, the health department would have been concerned about such things as demonstrations.

    2. If I’m understanding you correctly, I agree completely. There is absolutely no need for this kind of response and life-threatening rebellion by a CHURCH. There is a grand opportunity being missed where they could show how to LOVINGLY hold services during a pandemic. Distanced, with masks on, outside weather-permitting. In smaller groups at parishioners homes with regular testing. Working WITH health officials instead of AGAINST them. Protecting our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, putting others ahead of ourselves…this is TRUE and LOVING worship.

    3. Daniel there is no continuity to the things you are saying. It’s as if you just grabbed thoughts out of the air in order to make a point. While the point you were trying to make fell flat, you inadvertently did make another point. I’ll express it using an analogy! When two dogs come together to breed and the female doesn’t have puppies, the breeding didn’t take! I encourage you to revisit the cross because what you did 50 years ago didn’t take!

  3. Thank you Jesus Christ, please continue to fight the churches battle, thank you for your man of God to stand in the gap. Please strengthen him and Grace Community Church. The battle is Your’s LORD, thank You. Matthew 16: 18 ” And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

  4. Thank God for the victory. I would rejoice if more pastors with join with Pastor MacArthur in his fight against the tyranny of the state.

  5. Hallelujah!!!
    I’ve been communicating with a local pastor who simply tells me we’re to follow the government guidelines.
    Oh the apostasy!

    But praise God not all have bowed to bail.

  6. Gavin Newsom has trashed California, he can’t trash the church, it’s time for him to read the constitution and get on board

  7. Well-stated by Mr Swindle above. Could Coronavirus be contracted at church? Of course. Can singing without masks on cause a super-spreader event? Most assuredly.
    Can the local, state, or national governments legally prohibit us from attending church? Nope, not the way I am understanding the Constitution.
    Life is dangerous; none of us are getting out of this situation alive! Live your life with integrity and faith and courage; and with good judgment, weighing risks and seeking to understand what is the Father’s will for you and your life!

  8. Ii too have studied under John MacArthur and can attest to his sound teaching. But when he went political and gave his support to Trump and went on Fox news revelling in his new found martyr status, I was disappointed. To talk of this as being brave is quite ridiculous and an insult to many of the brave men and women who in the past, gave their lives for the Gospel of Jesus. Well said Daniel.

    1. I thank God for you and your reply! I’m a Christian nurse. I used to listen to MacArthur on the radio many years ago and admired and respected him for his work as I knew it. I too am shocked at the things I’m learning about his words, behavior and choices recently. We CAN have services indoors in smaller settings. Remember churches in folk’s homes? That’s how many megachurches began. What is wrong with wearing a mask and staying physically a few feet away from one another if it can save lives and livelihoods? Why not listen to pre-recorded music during services and DANCE? Why not serve as an EXAMPLE of how to love one another in worship during a difficult time? Why would he lead a rebellious service of 3,000 indoors without masks close together singing? Why NOT simply hold services outside, or in cars…being creative and thoughtful? Why compare church to protests? Is anger and dissent in display in church now? Even the protests are happening OUTSIDE. We are keeping children home from school for their safety and the safety of their families and communities. There are many ways to worship, worship that endangers lives when there ARE ALTERNATIVES should NIT be protected, constitutionally or otherwise. How does that even remotely resemble loving your neighbor or being your brother’s keeper or holding others ahead of yourself? I’m so incredibly saddened to see such an amazing Pastor be led so astray. I heard him say that “the democratic candidate said that if he’s elected he’s going to fill the white house with muslims”. Shocking to hear such untruths and distortions from him. Biden committed to ending the Muslim travel ban because it encourages discrimination and there has been an exponential ruse in hate crimes. That is very different from the sweepingly incendiary remark the pastor made. When I heard him say that he’d been on Tucker Carlson…that explained things to me right there. I’m so very, very sad about this!

  9. We will continue to pray for John and GCC. Thank you, John, for standing on the Gospel; and religious freedom at a time when our rights are eroding. “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the
    strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)

  10. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe Pastor MacArthur’s church has been fully open for about six Sundays now, and I haven’t heard of one person getting the Corona virus.
    That speaks volumes to me. Carry on GCC!

    1. How do you know who is or is not being tested? Being tested requires consent. I doubt many who would so knowingly defy public health laws are lining up to be tested in any meaningful way, since they clearly don’t see it as a danger to themselves or others and/or they don’t care if it is…bt it I mean the way they are choosing to worship and not exercising their right to worship in a way that can hurt people. What makes you think you’d “hear” anything one way or the other? A person’s medical information is legally confidential and protected. Things are not as simple as you’re making them out to be or choosing to believe. I’m praying you or a loved one doesn’t have to come down with the virus to wake up. I believe our Lord looks lovingly at folks willing to make sacrifices out if love for others and concern for their health. I know my Lord sees my worship and the worship of socially distanced folks with masks on listening to music for a time as beautiful to Him and with just as much reverence, if not more, than if I went about things as if no one were in danger. You can have the virus and spread it without showing symptoms. You may never feel the need to be tested or be asked to be tested. Still, someone could DIE because of your choice. How can you be “pro-life”, yet make such “anti-life” choices in your WORSHIP, of all things?

  11. Maybe I am just ignorant of how the court system works, but I don’t understand how LA county can keep coming after Johnny Mac for the same thing over and over again. What’s the point in ruling for GCC if they can just come back again and again? It should be one ruling and that’s that. Yes?

  12. YEAH! Hopefully this will embolden other churches that have been shut down unreasonably too long, to stand up and challenge this over the top order by Newsom.

  13. Wendy, please read your bible. Our God is bigger than any virus. Do you think He would allow a virus to touch His children as they gather to worship Him?

    1. Amen Elle! Our faith needs to be bigger than our fear! Oh and the numbers prove we aren’t in a pandemic so I am really confused as to why some are still stuck on this…..

  14. For someone with a rep for correct Bible handling, John MacArthur appears to have blown this one. The same Bible which says don’t forsake assembling also says Christ is in the midst of two or three gathering in His Name. And, “two or three” gatherings can be done in ways which comply with health-related directives from authorities which the Bible says to submit to. The strong considering the weak (versus themselves only) is also a solid principle (of christian maturity) outlined by the apostle, Paul. It seems MacArthur, etc. have misunderstood / misapplied / mischaracterized a MEGA gathering issue as a GATHERING issue. Those who misuse the Lord’s Name / Word have no right to expect His protection therein.

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