This is welcome news though we believe that it does not indicate that such sentiments will not emerge again in the future when it is deemed by ‘the powers that be’ that the time for such a move against the Bible is apposite!
The Lord Jesus indicates clearly to us that the worldling has an undying hatred of His Word and will, when it is thought the time is right, ever seek to silence it.
He said to the Pharisees: “I know that ye are Abraham’s seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you,” John 8:37. They hated the Living Word, the Lord Jesus and put Him to death and they and all of their ilk, would seek to silence the Written Word. “Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us,” Acts 5:28.
It is the Christian’s duty to ever defy such interdicts by the enemies of the gospel, though it is only by the Lord’s grace that this can be done.
This latest development in this controversy is most welcome and we say in response to it: “This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvellous in our eyes,” Psalm 118:23.
I sincerely thank Baroness Hoey, an Ulster women who has sought to uphold the cause of Ulster time and again, for obtaining this response.
I am including a copy of an email I sent to Baroness Hoey, thanking her for her efforts.
Sincerely in Christ’s name,
Dear Baroness Hoey,
As one long engaged in the battle for the old-fashioned gospel witness here in Ulster, I have noted with thanksgiving the response you obtained from the CPS.
A full report of that was printed in today’s ‘Belfast Newsletter’.
I have a website which deals with such issues and I seek to keep my readers updated on my postings. I know that they will welcome the results your intervention has obtained.
For your information, I have included a copy of the email I sent out after seeing the article.
Again, my sincere thanks for your efforts on behalf of the maligned Protestant people of this Province.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has disowned an earlier statement by some of its prosecutors that it is “no longer appropriate” to read parts of the Bible aloud in public.
By Adam Kula
(‘Belfast Newsletter’ – 13th December 2022)
Kate Hoey, the former Labour MP who now sits in the House of Lords, has obtained an admission from the government that such a declaration should never have been made.
Via a written question in the Lords, Baroness Hoey had asked the government “what assessment they have made” of the CPS’ claim about the Bible.
She has now received a response from Lord Stewart of Dirleton, representing the Attorney General’s Office.
He said: “The Wessex Area of the CPS has undertaken a post-case review and acknowledges that the statement was inappropriate.
“The statement was not intended to and does not represent a change to published CPS policy.
“It is not indicative of a general approach by the CPS to cases involving the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and the right to freedom of expression.
“As a result of the post-case review, in future, where skeleton arguments are ordered, in cases where there is scope for argument to arise as to rights such as that of freedom of expression, such arguments will be submitted to the Senior District Crown Prosecutor for signing off, prior to service.”
– ‘NO LONGER APPROPRIATE IN MODERN SOCIETY’ –
This is just the latest twist in a major UK news story which the News Letter has been alone in following.
It is a story two years in the making, and began with efforts to charge a man called John Dunn with threatening or abusive behaviour that amounted to harassment.
Mr Dunn had been preaching in the street in Swindon, Wiltshire, two years previously when a lesbian couple walked by.
It was alleged Mr Dunn had shouted that the women would “burn in hell” and called one of them a “devil woman”.
Mr Dunn denied this. His lawyers said that he had told the couple: “It says in the Bible that homosexuals will not inherit the kingdom of God”.The case against him fell apart when the complainants could not be reached.
But during its attempts to convict him, it emerged that the CPS had made the following statement in writing to the defence team:
“Whether a statement of Christian belief or not, the court is being asked to consider whether the language has the potential to cause harassment, alarm or distress…
“There are references in the bible which are simply no longer appropriate in modern society and which would be deemed offensive if stated in public.”
The CPS gave examples of what these offensive bits of scripture are though at one point mixed up which verses they were talking about.
This has since drawn criticism from barristers and traditionalist Christians – though all the biggest churches in Ireland and England have remained steadfastly silent on the issue.
The answer obtained by Baroness Hoey stands in contrast to repeated sidestepping of the issue by the CPS when contacted by this newspaper.
When criticism of its stated stance on the Bible was put to it, the CPS would only say:
“On the day of the trial the complainants could not be located to provide vital evidence for the prosecution, which resulted in us offering no evidence.
“It is not the function of the CPS to decide whether a person is guilty of a criminal offence, but to make fair, independent and objective assessments of the evidence to put our case before the court.”