Two churches in Iowa are fighting back against the government’s push to allow men into facilities where women and girls expect privacy and safety.
Like other state civil rights or human rights commissions, the one in Iowa seeks to suppress the free speech and religious liberty of residents who oppose special rights for homosexuals, including those who pretend to be women. From the Des Moines Register (emphasis added):
Fort Des Moines Church of Christ filed a federal lawsuit Monday in U.S. District Court in Des Moines claiming the commission’s interpretation of state civil rights law prohibits church members from making any public comments — including from the pulpit — that could be viewed as unwelcome to people who do not identify with their biological sex.
The federal lawsuit also names the city of Des Moines as a defendant because it has enacted a city ordinance that is nearly identical to a state law prohibiting discrimination by public accommodations.
Will the state end up outlawing the Gospel?
Fort Des Moines Church of Christ and Cornerstone World Outreach are trying to make sure that’s not the case.
They said they are asking the commission to declare that Iowans have a right to speak from church pulpits about biblical teachings on sexuality. The Sioux City church also wants a declaration that Iowa churches are free to follow their religious doctrines in how they accommodate people in restrooms, locker rooms and living facilities.
The article mentions religious exemptions in the law, but churches fear the government will interpret policies in favor of groups that want to stop them from speaking against homosexuality.
Paul Gowder, a law professor at the University of Iowa Law School and an expert in constitutional law, said it would be “blatantly unconstitutional” for state officials to try to regulate the content of church sermons.
“The notion that the Civil Rights Commission can prohibit a church from sermonizing in whatever hateful or discriminatory way they want is absurd on its face,” he said.
Christians must continue to fight. There is more to come.