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    • By Jim_Alaska in Jim_Alaska's Sermons & Devotionals
         14
      Closed Communion
      James Foley
       
      I Corinthians 11:17-34: "Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's Supper. For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another. And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come."

      INTRODUCTION

      Historic Baptists, true Baptists, have believed in and still believe in closed communion. Baptists impose upon themselves the same restrictions that they impose on others concerning the Lord’s Supper. Baptists have always insisted that it is the Lord’s Table, not theirs; and He alone has the right to say who shall sit at His table. No amount of so called brotherly love, or ecumenical spirit, should cause us to invite to His table those who have not complied with the requirements laid down plainly in His inspired Word. With respect to Bible doctrines we must always use the scripture as our guide and practice. For Baptists, two of the most important doctrines are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. These are the only two doctrines we recognize as Church Ordinances. The Bible is very clear in teaching how these doctrines are to be practiced and by whom.

      We only have two ordinances that we must never compromise or we risk our very existence, they are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.

      The moment we deviate from the precise method God has prescribed we have started down the slippery slope of error. True Baptists have held fast to the original doctrine of The Lord’s Supper from the time of Christ and the Apostles.

      Unfortunately, in this day of what the Bible describes as the age of luke warmness, Baptists are becoming careless in regard to strictly following the pattern laid out for us in Scripture. Many of our Bible colleges are graduating otherwise sincere, Godly and dedicated pastors and teachers who have not been taught the very strict, biblical requirements that surround the Lord’s Supper. Any Bible college that neglects to teach its students the differences surrounding Closed Communion, Close Communion and Open Communion is not simply short changing its students; it is also not equipping their students to carry on sound Bible traditions. The result is men of God and churches that fall into error. And as we will see, this is serious error.

      Should we as Baptists ignore the restrictions made by our Lord and Master? NO! When we hold to the restrictions placed upon the Lord’s Supper by our Master, we are defending the "faith which was once delivered to the saints" Jude 3.

      The Lord’s Supper is rigidly restricted and I will show this in the following facts:

      IT IS RESTRICTED AS TO PLACE

      A. I Corinthians 11:18 says, "When ye come together in the church." This does not mean the church building; they had none. In other words, when the church assembles. The supper is to be observed by the church, in church capacity. Again this does not mean the church house. Ekklesia, the Greek word for church, means assembly. "When ye come together in the church," is when the church assembles.

      B. When we say church we mean an assembly of properly baptized believers. Acts 2:41-42: "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

      The church is made up of saved people who are baptized by immersion. In the Bible, belief precedes baptism. That’s the Bible way.

      Acts 8:12-13, "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done."

      When we say properly baptized, we mean immersed. No unbeliever should take the Lord’s supper, and no non-immersed believer should take the supper. Those who are sprinkled are not baptized and cannot receive the supper. The Greek word for baptize is baptizo, and it always means to immerse.

      "In every case where communion is referred to, or where it may possibly have been administered, the believers had been baptized Acts 2:42; 8:12; 8:38; 10:47; 6:14-15; 18:8; 20:7. Baptism comes before communion, just as repentance and faith precede baptism".

      C. The Lord’s Supper is for baptized believers in church capacity: "When ye come together in the church," again not a building, but the assembly of the properly baptized believers.

      D. The fact that the Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, to be observed in church capacity, is pointed out by the fact that it is for those who have been immersed and added to the fellowship of the church.

      E. The Lord’s Supper is never spoken of in connection with individuals. When it is referred to, it is only referred to in reference to baptized believers in local church capacity I Cor. 11:20-26).

      I want to quote Dr. W.W. Hamilton,

      "The individual administration of the ordinance has no Bible warrant and is a relic of Romanism. The Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, and anything which goes beyond or comes short of this fails for want of scriptural example or command".

      “The practice of taking a little communion kit to hospitals, nursing homes, etc. is unscriptural and does not follow the scriptural example.”

      IT IS RESTRICTED TO A UNITED CHURCH

      A. The Bible in I Cor. 11:18 is very strong in condemning divisions around the Lord’s table. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
      19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.
      20 When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.

      There were no less than four divisions in the Corinthian church.
      I Cor. 1:12: "Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ."

      Because of these divisions, it was impossible for them to scripturally eat the Lord’s Supper. Division in the local church is reason to hold off observing the Lord’s Supper. But there are also other reasons to forego taking the Lord’s Supper. If there is gross sin in the membership we do not take it. Here is scriptural evidence for this: 1Co 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us:
      8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
      10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. 11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

      B. At this point, I want to ask these questions: Are there not doctrinal divisions among the many denominations? Is it not our doctrinal differences that cause us to be separate religious bodies?

      IT IS RESTRICTED BY DOCTRINE

      A. Those in the early church at Jerusalem who partook "continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine" Acts 2:42. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

      B. Those that do not hold to apostolic truth are not to partake. This means there is to be discipline in the local body. How can you discipline those who do not belong to the local body? You can’t. The clear command of scripture is to withdraw fellowship from those who are not doctrinally sound.

      II Thes 3:6: "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."
      Rom. 16:17: "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them."
      To commune together means to have the same doctrine.
      II Thes. 2:15: "Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle."
      II John 10-11: "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

      C. Some Baptists in our day have watered down this doctrine by practicing what they call “Close Communion.” By this they mean that they believe that members of another Baptist church may take communion with us because they are of the same beliefs. Once again, this is unscriptural.

      The welcome to the Lord's Table should not be extended beyond the discipline of the local church. When we take the Lord’s Supper there is supposed to be no gross sin among us and no divisions among us. We have no idea of the spiritual condition of another church’s members. If there is sin or division in the case of this other church’s members, we have no way of knowing it. We cannot discipline them because they are not members of our church. This is why we practice “Closed” communion, meaning it is restricted solely to our church membership. 
      So then, in closing I would like to reiterate the three different ideas concerning the Lord’s Supper and who is to take it. 
      Closed Communion = Only members of a single local church. 
      Close Communion = Members of like faith and order may partake. 
      Open Communion = If you claim to be a Christian, or simply attending the service, you may partake. 
      It is no small thing to attempt to change that which was implemented by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
      Mt. 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. 
      Many of our Baptist churches have a real need to consider the gravity of the act of observing The Lord’s Supper. It is not a light thing that is to be taken casually or without regard to the spiritual condition of ourselves or our church.
      1Co. 11:27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

       28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

       29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

       30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

There she goes/ Supreme Court ruling


Potatochip

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Hi John,  Well I guess I helped "wreck it".  I can hardly remember it.  I was not a Christian back then.  A strange thing happened back then when my grandmother died.  She was the closest relative that I knew that died.  It was like the first funeral I went to.  Things changed.  I took on a lot of my parents values.  Pretty conservative.  I changed my lifestyle.  A lot of people see doom here.  I see a whole lot of people running for cover.  Not just committed Christians.  A lot of young people are probably perplexed, confused.  TV is a a lot of it filled with sin its no conspiracy.  It's just sin filled.  Whats worse promoting the sodomite lifestyle or nudity?  its a clever thing sin is.  A lot of whats sold and the programming all involve sinners enticing  people with sin.  TV has always been that way a lot of people disagree with me of course.  It brings the world your supposed to come out and be separate from into your home.   Saved Christians I don't necessarily worry about thats a pastors job.  I'm no pastor of course I believe in eternal security.  I'm not going to assume all millennials think this sodomite business is swell either.  In a way its like opportunity like say relations with Cuba.  Conservatives may not like it.   Liberals may laud it.  A missionary well he's going to see it as opportunity get his hiking boots on and a plane ticket and go for it.  Thats pretty much all I saw when relations were re-established opportunity for the Gospel.

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Something I brought up in my sermon yesterday, is that, until fairly recently, even many non-Christians tended to have at least a sympathetic view of believers, particularly those being oppressed and persecuted. Just common decency. True, not all, but many.  But now, homosexuality has become the 'cool' thing: many youth play with it, declaring at 12 or 13 that they are gay or lesbian, (more the girls, I think, than the boys), its cool and trendy to 'be gay'. As such, with same-sex 'marriage' not all the rage, and everyone on Facebook changing their avatars to have rainbows on them, its not only trendy and cool, its seen as enlightened and possibly the next step in human evolution. So now, to be a Christians who stands against it, means you are standing against love, against progress, against enlightenment, against all supposed good things that will make society a better place, (they believe), so now, standing against, even persecuting Christians is going to be seen as a great help to society, which cant possibly soar with the majestic New Age eagles if they are being weighed down by the Neandertals (sic) who believe in creation, God, absolute truth and hell.  Who would have thought they could actually make persecution of Christians cool and trendy?  

Also, prepare to see the new Popester begin a shift of official church position on same sex marriage. 

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Of course Ukulelemike.  Its going to be trendy.  Thats not good at all.  I got salvation and was swept out of "trendiness" for which I am really grateful.  Many may not become that way -sodomite.  There's a line you just don't cross over.  It's not convenient.  What I am saying is its not a lifestyle "choice".  It's not by influence.  It's cause.  Then God gives them over to vile affections. The world doesn't get that it is not cause and effect.  It's God purposely giving them over to that.  It could be Gods judgement to hand them over.  That I am not sure however God does that.  For worshipping the creature.  Bible says preach the Gospel to every living creature how that breaks down from the original language I don't know the word "creature" out of Greek or Hebrew.  People may dabble but that isn't their way.  They may say things they don't mean also because it is "trendy".  

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One of the biggest problems with the citizens of the world is they think continually changing the rules will make things better.  Everyone thinks of changing the world and no one thinks of changing himself.

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One of the biggest problems with the citizens of the world is they think continually changing the rules will make things better.  Everyone thinks of changing the world and no one thinks of changing himself.

Thats what more than some of the Bible is about.  I agree. 

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James 4:4 (KJV) 4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

James 4:5 (KJV) 5  Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?

 

the one that defends the world's standards, the one who defends sin, is an enemy og God.

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Amen Standing Firm.  I may not always get there but I try.  Lord willing.  

A story.  I was handing out tracts at an intown festival in a trendy inner city neighborhood.  You know the kind where a lot of the cars have the coexist bumper sticker  Fairly large festival got some lemonade in very very hot weather at a booth that was run by the local Church of God in Christ.  Ordered and the guy I assumed was the pastor said whatcha got? Looking at my tracts.  I didn't hand him one he insisted.  lol.  Got my lemonade meanwhile he had handed it to his wife who after reading it handed it back to me and said:  "We aren't interested".  She didn't say were saved.  Which prompts me to tell them to give the tract to someone that isn't.  I never refuse people tracts.  I don't know if it was because it was hot or what.  I just didn't want to give him one.  

The apostate church's are probably having a hootenanny about now.  I remember that Bishop whats his face causing the divide in the Episcopal church.  That was a big part of this people seem to have forgotten.  The pope is probably winding up with that papal curve ball right about now.  lol.  The Roman Catholics are probably still in Communion with the Episcopal see.  I bet he says something swell.  To try and convince Bible believers hes just jake.  (papal curve).  One day that part of the root of the problem will be gone. 

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Many today want to befriend the sodomites in order to "win them to Christ later."

Problem is, once they are "friends," they are afraid of pointing out the sin for fear of offending their friend and losing him/her as a friend.

And so, they defend their friend when others point out the sin, making the good guy look like the bad guy.

Isaiah prophesied it would happen centuries ago. People will call good evil and evil good.

 

We'd best stand with Christ and truth, or we will fall with the world

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I dunno correct me if I am wrong.  This is the one thing God hands people over to.  Outside of Jewish people I would surmise.  It's not your run of the mill thing.  I dunno that's the one place you find reprobate mind.  Dictionary describes it among other things as a depraved mind.  Which could be.  I have seen it described in Bible footnotes as a "failed mind".  I think its a  more serious condition in any case vs unsaved sinners if there could be such a thing.  Given the numbers vs the general population.  It doesn't occur frequently. Some people go to sodomite parades and use signage, bullhorns, tracts, preach. I won't go to one of their circuses.  If they are there they are there I'll preach and tract but I won't go out of my way.  I never assume someone is a sodomite people really never make it known that they are if your out preaching the Gospel.  Stop and think their condition is pretty far gone.  I hope those who try have success. There are just too many people out there unsaved at the places I go to, youth etc.  For me to concentrate my efforts on one or two people.  However if someone happened to be say in immediate sphere of travel I might try.  The Gospel saves not friendship.

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I was looking at the Foxnews website.  They had a story with a video of St. Lukes Episcopal "church" in Atlanta.  It's an intown church.  Those people actually all gave a standing ovation and were cheering loudly because of the Same sex marriage ruling.  I don't know.  lol.  I wonder if those people even look at a Bible.  When we do outreaches and we are near one of those apostate "churchs".  We are really active in seeking those people out.  They need Salvation.

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

In many churches the whole counsel of God isn't preached. In some churches only a few pet or preferred points of Scripture are preached. In some of these politics or social issues override Scripture. Some churches have adopted the "social gospel" as their central theme rather than Scripture.

In witnessing to lost "christians" I've found them to be a very difficult group. While they might accept a tract and simple greeting, most will bristle at the idea they need to hear the Gospel. They are quick to declare themselves to be Christians and quick to lash out, quote "judge not..." and declare the one trying to share Christ with them as being judgmental, a hater, mean-spirited, not a real Christian, etc.

I've actually had better results witnessing to Catholics who were sincere in wanting to walk with God but had no idea so much of what the RCC teaches goes against Scripture. At the same time, those who are strong secular Catholics can be even more abrasive to try and share the Gospel with than those from wayward "protestant" (used in the general sense) churches.

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The RCC doesn't even use the Bible.  They don't teach it in their schools they use catechism.  They add in Saints, purgatory, Mary etc.  Social Gospel first time I heard that was from an Assemblies of God congregant.   Another words trying to cure the ill's of a fallen world and fallen man by implementing the "principles" of the Bible.  Letting congregants go out there and fight the "good fight" and change society or convince society to see things their way using the Gospel in some cases to address any social ill.  The Gospel is the Gospel intended for Salvation not to debate issues with.  On the other hand I did seen Franklin Graham the other day use some verses for Salvation on Fox News.  "Jesus died for your sins" He managed to get quite a few verses in.  1 Timothy 115 made me aware of that they were using Salvation verses.  I never noticed that.  

I try not to be judgemental.  Hey 600 miles away on a computer you can do that.  In person well.  It can become an unpleasant debate.  So I try with an IFB pastors advice I might add.  To focus on Salvation, Bible verses.   Leave the apologetics and the controversial topics till I am done preaching the Good News because in some cases they will bring those topics up.  It's good to know apologetics to respond to what is being said.  However after preaching the Gospel to that person or persons.  Just a note a lot of these street preachers - not all that get into these verbal street brawls are arminian which teaches you can loose your salvation.  

Being that man was an Assemblies of God congregant as I mentioned above.  He of course believed in the "prosperity gospel".  The poor are rich in faith how many times does the Bible have to address that issue of the poor have people ignore it.  God mentions the poor of His people afflicted and oppressed, several times.   In the city you get the people shot in crack deals gone bad and other maladies on that nights news.  Yet you talk to a whole lot of people without they very much believe it's surprising really, hey some people are happy with what they have.  God hears the cry of the poor the Bible says it.  Jesus doesn't recognize flesh that would be respect of persons.  He does know if your his or not.

On the other hand with these apostate churches.  I have to agree with what several IFB pastors have said.  They line up with the RCC way to much and are pretty much offshoots of the RCC.  So one could say its a fine line but its not those church's believe in works salvation.  I would rather that term be applied instead of "social gospel", works salvation would be more accurate.

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Episcopal Church approves gay marriage, allowing religious weddings for same-sex couples -  http://bit.ly/1UaktOB

Oh of course thats where a lot of this started.  With Bishop whats his face.  Look I don't know if your out in the rural areas.  John81 a lot of these apostate church's are in the city and the suburbs.  I don't know how to put it all you would have to see.  Yuppies lol thats what they used to be I guess.  Now with the coexist bumper stickers you know with all the symbols of all religions. Some of the poor in the city where I am are some of the finest believers in Christ you will ever find.  They will talk to you about Jesus in long conversation.  Works salvation churches are just that works salvation churches.  They get so goofy with their works they don't know which way is up any more.  True.  Salvation is believing in Jesus for Salvation of course thats it.  When your not your own.  Then He works in you to do his will.  Faith without works is dead.  Tell that to a Catholic or someone from her offspring church. Faith without works is dead.  Its like picking lotto numbers to them as in accord to picking out random verses.  If you don't have Jesus your not saved and its confusing.  Their pastors don't get it (obvious), they don't get it.  Its just some really good person (even if they admit the Trinity) with some really good works that they need to teach society and be examples for.  You would have to see for yourself what I am talking about.  I'm used to it.  United Methodist, PCA, Episcopal.  There is a whole list that has virtually the same approach as the RCC in their services.  PCA might be the exception.  They have some very activist people in those church's.  Meanwhile in the inner city.  You have a lot of Bible believing Christians its what you don't see on the news. 

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And I wonder how many Christians have wept over this and other travesties that have happened in recent years in this country. Wept and begged God for forgiveness for our part in this becoming a reality. Because we have not been what we should have been for far too many years.

And, yes, part of it is the voting/lack thereof. Not just voting Republican but not seeing to it that good people who believe the Constitution get into office. On all levels. But that pales in comparison to the lack of spirituality amongst far too many Christians of all stripes.

Talking about how awful this is and how sick they are is all well and good. But are we begging God for help, mercy and revival?  I don't think the majority are.

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It's a mess LuAnne that's for sure.  The only Joy I seem get out of life is preaching the gospel.  All the discontent that seems to be in society.  Which there is a lot of sensationalism that the news loves to hunt for.  But it's still a fallen world.  It's enough for me that the governments keep cops on the street and protects us from external people that would harm us. The one institution that God ordained to keep order in a land,  government.  One could say they are finding rights in the Constitution that don't exist there.  I mean the overturning of the sodomy laws given the health risks.  The one that really got me and my jaw hit the floor was sodomite adoption I just can't get over that one. I still can't believe that is legal.  This marriage thing in my opinion is nothing compared to that malady.  Like I say following lust porn,  sin all over TV.  Were some of the major causes in my opinion.  Christians need to keep in mind God hands a person over to being a sodomite.  They aren't born with it.  It's not another's influence.  It was never psychological. Not retaining God in their thought pursuing the creature instead of the creator.  God says thats it thats just about enough.  It's interesting that its such a small percentage of the population so my guess is it takes a lot to get to that point where God gives them over.  Given the way society is this could be the tip of a future iceberg of whats coming with people that deny God.  I don't know.

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There's a news article wherein a straight married couple are petitioning to allow for polygamous marriages in their state. This of course right on the heels of the SCOTUS 5 judge betrayal of America and the Constitution.

After that is granted because it will be deemed a civil right to have plural spouses, male and female because otherwise it would be sexist to only permit this for men and multiple wives, there will be homosexuals in polygamous unions. I refuse to call their sin marriage.

After that we'll hear of the ephebophiles petitioning the ACLU once again on their behalf , probably supported by NAMBLA as ACLU did once before, so that the ephebophile (molester of minor adolescents) demanding the right to marry their consenting victim(s), because it will elevate to a demand of polygamy as well there, and with parental permission in all 50 states.
That too will go to this unconscionable court and they'll make a five vote verdict that will once again send America closer to the sequel of Sodom.

 

God Save America! :peek:

Because with all the faith we've had in the midst of this the people of God are still being defeated by the stronger adversary.

 

 

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