This article comes from Dr. John MacArthur from Grace Community Church. Scriptures that were not typed out in the article were added in the text as quotes in this version for ease of reading.
The following is an open letter from Pastor John MacArthur to Governor Gavin Newsom, in response to billboard advertisements placed across the country by Newsom’s campaign shamelessly misquoting Mark 12:31 in support of abortion.
“The second is this, ‘aYOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”Mark 12:31
September 29, 2022 Governor Gavin Newsom 1021 O Street, Suite 9000 Sacramento, CA 95814 Sir, Almighty God says in His Word, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). Scripture also teaches that it is the chief duty of any civic leader to reward those who do well and to punish evildoers (Romans 13:1–7). You have not only failed in that responsibility; you routinely turn it on its head, rewarding evildoers and punishing the righteous. The Word of God pronounces judgment on those who call evil good and good evil (Isaiah 5:20), and yet many of your policies reflect this unholy, upside-down view of honor and morality. The diabolical effects of your worldview are evident in the statistics of California’s epidemics of crime, homelessness, sexual perversions (like homosexuality and transgenderism), and other malignant expressions of human misery that stem directly from corrupt public policy. I don’t need to itemize or elaborate on the many immoral decisions you have perpetrated against God and the people of our state, which have only exacerbated these problems. Nevertheless, my goal in writing is not to contend with your politics, but rather to plead with you to hear and heed what the Word of God says to men in your position. “Let all kings bow down before Him, all nations serve Him” (Psalm 72:11). “He who rules over men righteously, who rules in the fear of God, is as the light of the morning when the sun rises” (2 Samuel 23:3–4). “It is an abomination for kings to commit wicked acts, for a throne is established on righteousness” (Proverbs 16:12). What God said to Cyrus is a truth you should take to heart: “I am the LORD, and there is no other; besides Me there is no God. I will gird you, though you have not known Me; that men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun that there is no one besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other” (Isaiah 45:5–6). In mid-September, you revealed to the entire nation how thoroughly rebellious against God you are when you sponsored billboards across America promoting the slaughter of children, whom He creates in the womb (Psalm 139:13–16; Isaiah 45:9–12).
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And intricately woven in the depths of the earth;
Your eyes have seen my unshaped substance; And in Your book all of them were written The days that were formed for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.Psalms 139:13-16
“Woe to the one who contends with his 1Maker— An earthenware vessel among the vessels of earth!
Will the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you doing?’ Or the thing you are making say, ‘He has no hands’?
“Woe to him who says to a father, ‘What are you begetting?’ Or to a woman, ‘With what are you in labor pains?’”
Thus says Yahweh, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker: Ask Me about the things that are to come concerning My sons,
And you shall commit to Me the work of My hands.
“It is I who made the earth and created man upon it. I stretched out the heavens with My hands, And I commanded all their host.Isaiah 45:9-12
You further compounded the wickedness of that murderous campaign with a reprehensible act of gross blasphemy, quoting the very words of Jesus from Mark 12:31 as if you could somehow twist His meaning and arrogate His name in favor of butchering unborn infants. You used the name and the words of Christ to promote the credo of Molech (Leviticus 20:1–5). It would be hard to imagine a greater sacrilege.
Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
“You shall also say to the sons of Israel: ‘Any man from the sons of Israel or from the sojourners sojourning in Israel who gives any of his seed to Molech shall surely be put to death; the people of the land shall stone him with stones.
‘I will also set My face against that man and will cut him off from among his people because he has given some of those who are his seed to Molech, so as to defile My sanctuary and to profane My holy name.
‘If the people of the land, however, should ever turn a blind eye to that man when he gives any of those who are his seed to Molech, so as not to put him to death,
then I Myself will set My face against that man and against his family, and I will cut off from among their people both him and all those who play the harlot after him, in playing the harlot after Molech.Leviticus 20:1-5
Furthermore, you chose words from the lips of Jesus without admitting that in the same moment He gave the greatest commandment: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). You cannot love God as He commands while aiding in the murder of His image-bearers.
Psalm 50:16–19 speaks to people who pervert the Word of God for their own sinful ends:
But to the wicked God says,
“What right have you to recount My statutes
And to take My covenant in your mouth?
For you hate discipline,
And you cast My words behind you.
When you see a thief, you are pleased with him,
And you associate with adulterers.
You let your mouth loose in evil
And you harness your tongue for deceit.”
My concern, Governor Newsom, is that your own soul lies in grave, eternal peril. “Each one of us will give an account of himself to God” (Romans 14:12). One day, not very long from now, you will face that reality. Nothing is more certain. “It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). You will stand in the presence of the Holy God who created you, who is your Judge, and He will demand that you give an account for how you have flouted His authority in your governing, and how you have twisted His own Holy Word to rationalize it. As you look over the precipice of eternity, what will your answer be? When you look ahead of you and see that nothing awaits you but eternal misery—the just punishment for your sins—what will all the clever rationalizations and political talking points avail for you then? And by then it will be too late for any remedy or redemption. “It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).
My plea to you, Sir, is that you would not let it come to that—that you would not go to that day of judgment apart from receiving forgiveness and righteousness through faith in Christ alone. In Psalm 50, after rebuking the wicked for uttering God’s words in a profane way, Scripture makes this promise: “Now consider this, you who forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there will be none to deliver. He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving glorifies Me; and he who orders his way, I shall show the salvation of God” (Psalm 50:22–23).
So there is salvation for those who repent. Christ purchased full redemption for all who will turn from wickedness, forsake their evil thoughts and actions, and trust fully in Him as Lord and Savior.
Our church, and countless Christians nationwide, are praying for your full repentance. Please respond to the gospel, forsake the path of wickedness you have pursued all your life, turn to Christ, ask for forgiveness, and use your office to advance the cause of righteousness (as is your duty) instead of undermining it (as has been your pattern).
Seek the LORD while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to the LORD, and He will have compassion on him, and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:6–7)
Governor Newsom, “now is the acceptable time, behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).
For the Master,
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