Pastor To Officials Threatening Jail: ‘Bring it on!’

John MacArthur, Grace Community Church

In an interview on Fox News’ Laura Ingram, Pastor John MacArthur explained that he is not afraid of being thrown in jail for refusing to comply with Gavin Newsom’s order to shut down his church.

“You know my Biblical hero apart from the Lord Jesus Christ is the apostle Paul, and when he went into a town he didn’t ask what the hotel was like, he asked what the jail was like because he knew that’s where he was going to spend his time,” MacArthur said. “So, I don’t mind being a little apostolic if they want to tuck me into jail. I’m hoping for a jail ministry. I’ve done a lot of other ministries and haven’t had the opportunity to do that one, so bring it on!”

MacArthur also added that both the constitution and the President are on his side to remain open.

“The constitution supports us, and by the way, I am so thankful that President Trump has told me personally that he supports the church as essential, and the churches need to stay open,” MacArthur told the Fox News Host. “So with the constitution on our side and the president’s backing, we’re open.”

“The church doesn’t exist to make sure it navigates around politicians whims; the church exists in the world to preach the saving gospel of Christ,” he reminded the audience. “We’re not concerned about the flu; we’re concerned about eternity, eternal life, salvation. And the more dire circumstances become in the world around us, the more critical, the more essential the church becomes…”

Read the Full Interview Below:


Laura Ingram: Pastor John McArthur of Grace Community Church joins me now. Pastor MacArthur, why is it so important for you to stand up to these onerous edicts?

Pastor John McArthur: Well, we believe that the governor, the county, the city and the health department are going against the constitution. And just to remove one obvious question, the rate of COVID in California is 1/100th of 1%. So, 1/100th of 1% of 40 million people have COVID, and that eliminates freedom to worship from the entire state. That is the onerous reality.

The constitution supports us, and by the way, I am so thankful that President Trump has told me personally that he supports the church as essential, and the churches need to stay open. So with the constitution on our side and the President’s backing, we’re open.

Ingram: Pastor McArthur, Kamala Harris thinks we’re in essentially world war 2, listen:

Harris: “This is not about punishment, it’s not about big brother, it is simply about saying what a leader says in times of crisis. You look at world war 2; you look at the great depression, where leaders said we each have to sacrifice for the sake of the nation and the collective, and that’s what this is about.”

Ingram: Now, almost half a million Americans died during world war 2, trying to free Europe from the grip of nazi Germany. Is that similar, Pastor MacArthur, to what’s happening now to somehow justify depriving people of their inalienable rights to assemble to petition the government and, of course, to worship as a community?

McArthur: Well, of course not, but it’s more than that laura. The church preaches the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that Jesus died and rose again and is the only source of eternal salvation. The church doesn’t exist to make sure it navigates around politicians whims; the church exists in the world to preach the saving gospel of Christ. We’re not concerned about the flu; we’re concerned about eternity, eternal life, salvation. And the more dire circumstances become in the world around us, the more critical, the more essential the church becomes, and the more important the Gospel becomes.

I’ll tell you something our church is literally flooded with people. We have them in every nook and cranny, jammed together inside, outside, on several floors, in our children’s education building, in the gym, in a tent outside. They’re flooding the place to hear the message of forgiveness and salvation in a time when fear is being propagated on every street.

Ingram: Pastor MacArthur, I’ve listened to so many of your sermons over the years, you’re unbelievable, you’re incredible, and not only, of course, your message about the Gospel but your courage and your strength at this time is inspiring. I’ve got to say, I’m a Roman Catholic, but I’m very disappointed with a lot of ways that the catholic church has rolled over for these prohibitions and you turned around and said ‘put us in jail, we’re going to go preach the Gospel. People are coming. We’re going to try to be responsible. But look, put us in jail.’ Did Gavin Newsom threaten to do anything to you personally for defying, essentially, his order?

McArthur: No, not personally, but we received a letter with a threat that we could be fined, or I could go to jail for a maximum of six months. Of course, you know my Biblical hero apart from the Lord Jesus Christ is the apostle Paul, and when he went into a town, he didn’t ask what the hotel was like, he asked what the jail was like because he knew that’s where he was going to spend his time. So, I don’t mind being a little apostolic if they want to tuck me into jail. I’m hoping for a jail ministry. I’ve done a lot of other ministries and haven’t had the opportunity to do that one, so bring it on!

Ingram: Pastor MacArthur, I hope everyone across the country takes what you just said to heart because they work for us, not the other way around, and you just we can’t roll over to these ridiculous ongoing edicts that never involve a legislature. You notice that? There’s no legislature involved, just an executive fiat, and then everyone’s supposed to go into a defensive crouch, but you are not going to do that. I’ve been so wanting to talk to you. Thank you so much for coming on and come back soon.