Colorado baker Jack Phillips is heading to the U.S. Supreme Court to argue that the government shouldn't force him to violate his religious beliefs but does his faith also allow him to create a wedding cake for an event he views as immoral?
Dr. Richard Land of Southern Evangelical Seminary tells OneNewsNow he supports Phillips' conviction but believes the Holy Spirit might direct another baker to do things differently.
Phillips, who owns bakery Masterpiece Cake Shop, was fined by that state for violating a non-discrimination law when he refused to design and bake a cake for a homosexual wedding in 2012. He has said he didn't refuse service to the two men who sued - he opposed the event they were involved in.
"I don't do cakes for same-sex weddings," he told the men.
The bakery owner's case will be heard in October by the Supreme Court, setting up a landmark decision that affects other Christian bakers, florists, photographers and others who have repeatedly lost their court fights while claims of illegal discrimination have won the day – so far - in front of judges.
Phillips has said he serves homosexual customers in his shop, meaning he doesn't turn them away at the door, but he refuses to create bawdy cakes for bachelor parties, anti-American cakes, and demonic images for Halloween.
"If I was judging the people, I wouldn't allow them in my store," Phillips told Fox News over the weekend.
"It really is a matter of individual conscience," observes Land, "and nobody else can be somebody else's conscience."
In the Fox News interview, Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Kristen Waggoner was asked about Phillips' recent appearance of the "The View," where it was suggested by the left-wing hosts that Jesus would bake the cake for a homosexual wedding.
"That's what this case is about. If someone wants to make the cake because of their religious beliefs and their convictions, they should have the right to do that," Waggoner said. "Likewise, Jack should have the right to speak his messages and create his artistic expression that's consistent with his beliefs. And that's what the First Amendment protects."
Referring to nondiscrimination laws, Land says Christians should follow laws if they don't violate clear principles of the Bible. He points to Jesus' famous statement to "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's."
"I do not believe they have the right to refuse service to someone based upon their race, their ethnicity, their religion or their sexual orientation," he says.
Christian author and speaker Alex McFarland tells OneNewsNow that God expects Christians, including business owners, to follow their religious convictions and refuse to participate in evil.
"I would encourage Christians that they should – they really before God have the mandate, the expectation of the Lord and his Word, to stand against things that are blatantly ungodly and evil," he says.