How Should Pastors And Churches Respond To The COVID Crackdowns? – With Andrew Wommack: Was it wise for Jesus to touch the lepers? Did Jesus ask doctors for advice about how to conduct His ministry? Is your church a front-line ministry? What is the “Christian” thing to do during a crisis? Does the Word of God different instructions for living during a pandemic? Tune in to hear this important conversation with Andrew Wommack.

Air Date: 07/28/20

Guest: Andrew Wommack

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


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Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith and the Culture

Rick:

You find your way to the intersection of faith and the culture. Welcome to WallBuilders Live, where we talk about all the hot topics of the day from a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective.

My name is Rick Green. I’m a former Texas legislator and America’s Constitution coach. And I’m hanging out today with America’s premier historian, that’s David Barton. He’s the founder of WallBuilders. And also, Tim Barton, national speaker and pastor and president of WallBuilders. And we’re looking at things from that biblical, historical and constitutional perspective, because that’s the only way you can get the right answers to the tough questions of today, to whatever the societal issue is, biblical, historical and constitutional perspective.

We’ll get you to the right answer, so that we can have a good society you got to have a good formula pouring into the culture in order to get all the benefits that we all want from society such as peace and prosperity and all those things. That doesn’t happen by accident. There’s a formula that produces that. That’s what we talk about here on WallBuilders Live.

What is the formula that produces those things? And certainly, the influence of pastors and Christians in the culture is vital. It is actually what made America great in the first place. We need more of it today, no doubt about it. So, we’re going to look at some of those issues today as well.

Check us out at wallbuilderslive.com for our radio site. That’s where you can get a list of our stations, you can get archives of the program from the last few weeks and months. And that’s the place you can make a contribution. If you want to help educate your fellow Americans, if you want to help us train pastors and legislators and young leaders of the rising generation, make that donation today at wallbuilderslive.com.

Alright, David, Tim, Andrew Wommack with us later in the program. Churches all over the country really struggling with when to open, can they open if their State’s telling them they can’t? At what point does civil disobedience kick in? And to make it even more complicated, it’s different in virtually every State and now more and more States are going back to lockdown. So today, we’re talking about what should pastors do, what should churches do in the midst of these continued COVID crackdowns situation?

FEDERALISM

David:

You know, with the situation is out there, just that the founding fathers talked about the uniqueness of America and that how States were different from each other and you really couldn’t have what we call the one size all thing where it’s the same for every State, they allowed federalism. It’s been interesting to watch how States and governors have responded toward faith, religion, churches throughout this thing. There’s really kind of been three groups.

There’s been the group that’s really been hostile toward churches and gone after them and shuts them down and treats them differently. Then there’s been a group that’s really elevated churches, right off the bat said, hey, these are essential services, these stay open. And then you’ve had the group kind of the middle of didn’t really think about it and if they get pushed one way or the other, say, oh, yeah, forgot about churches. Yeah, let’s protect them too.

And it was kind of interesting to say that you’ve had a really polarized position from HAN. And there’s also a group of governors in the middle is kind of gone with whatever the winds were. But nonetheless, it has created a lot I have situations in America that we haven’t seen before, probably more lawsuits on any single thing than we’ve ever seen at any point.

Tim:

Yeah, we’ve had several interviews and programs covering some of this how there’s levels of irony that alcohol or alcohol stores are considered essential and churches are not in many places, where governors have said it’s understandable that people want to riot, it’s understandable they go out there. They don’t oppose the riots, certainly, not discouraging people from going out.

David:

But at least, they required social distancing and face mass with the rioting.

Tim:

Wells, it’s right. So, levels of irony. Because you do have governors, like governors in Colorado. For example, the governor of Colorado who said, look, I understand that, you know, these are tough times, and you want your voice to be heard and you’re going to do it. But if you’re going to go out in these big protests, please consider social distancing and wearing masks and then you see the pictures of them protesting, nobody social distancing. Very few people are wearing masks in some of the pictures you see. So, you do see a lot of inconsistency in hypocrisy.

And we were just talking with one of our staff members who said, hey, you got to see this post. And so, there was a social media post that we saw and thought, you know, that’s a really interesting thought. We shared it on our social media. And let me read part of it real quick. It says, “It wasn’t wise for Jesus to touch the lepers. He healed or conduct healing services in homes. He put the entire ministry and future of the gospel at risk. What if he and all of the disciples got sick? That would have ruined everything.

Did Jesus Ask Doctors for Advice?

I’m sure if he’d asked doctors or his advisors, they would have said, no, we don’t advise that and maybe we should close hospitals too. After all, more people, including caregivers are getting sick in hospitals. We can send the drugs and equipment through Amazon to each home and let them care for themselves. That’s an essence what we’re doing for people who are struggling emotionally and spiritually through this. 54% of Americans say they are depressed and discouraged, even hopeless.

Suicide is up 800% and child abuse is up also. If your church is on about one hour gathering and some songs and an offering plate, then maybe it’s not a big deal if they close it. But if it’s truly about ministering to people, then it’s a front line and should be open.”

And we thought, you know, this is a really great point in this argument and debate. You know, what’s the Christian thing to do? Jesus kept his ministry going the whole time. Certainly, it wasn’t easy. Certainly, there were protests. Certainly, there were things going on. And so, we posted this and there was some controversy on our social media, even pastors, saying, hey, I feel like we’re getting persecuted out here.

And so, we put a little bit of disclaimer saying look, we’re not trying necessarily to target pastors who are trying to navigate their way through this very difficult time, we understand it’s a difficult time. However, we also recognize that there are levels of hypocrisy when pastors are saying we want to be really spiritual and so therefore, we’re just going to do online services to so we don’t threaten anybody’s health.

Well, if you’re going to be really spiritual, you want to meet people’s needs, spiritual needs as well as emotional mental and physical. And it seems that the church is just missing it in some areas, some leaders. Again, not that there’s not great leaders who are trying to do more than they can. They’re trying to reach their community. And we understand there’s tough situations for a lot of pastors and many states are very different in their situations. But what we also know is we’ve got a lot of friends who are pastors who are opening up and they were saying, people are in need and we’re going to help meet needs because that’s the role of the church.

Rick:

When we need more churches like that for sure, let’s talk a little bit more about the proper role of the church in these COVID crackdowns. Well, let’s take a quick break first. Stay with us, folks, we’ll be right back on WallBuilders Live.

Duty is Ours. Results Are God’s

Hey friends, Rick Green here. I know there’s a lot of crazy stuff going on in America right now, but we know God is sovereign. We also know that “duty is ours, results are God’s”. And that means we do our duty. You know, Proverbs 22:3 says “A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions, the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.”

Friends, if you are not prepared to defend your family, can I just challenge you to come spend a few days with us for a training we call ‘Constitutional Defense of your Family and Freedom’? During the day, on the range, you’re going to get the best handgun defense training in the world. And in the evening, I’m going to teach you on the Constitution, “Handgun Defense by day, Constitutional Knowledge by night.”

Sign up today at rickgreen.com. We’re going to take you out there for 1/10th, that’s only 10% of the normal price of going out to these very, very good trainings and no more important time than to do it right now. Rickgreen.com, sign up today. Doesn’t matter if you’ve had a lifetime of gun experience or you’ve never touched a gun ever in your life. Check it out at Rickgreen.com, we’ve got multiple dates coming up and we want you to be with us for constitutional defense.

A Moment from American History

This is Tim Barton from wall builders with another moment from American history. The Second Amendment to the Constitution which guarantees to every individual the right to keep and bear arms has been targeted for years now by those who are determined to dismantle the individual right to self-protection. Opponents argue that only the militia, the military and law enforcement are to have and use firearms.

But those who wrote the Second Amendment strenuously disagreed, including founding father Richard Henry Lee, a signer of the Declaration, a president of the Continental Congress and one of those who actually framed the Second Amendment. He declared, “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young how to use them.”

For more information about Richard Henry Lee and the history of the Second Amendment, go to wallbuilders.com.

Rick:

We’re back here on WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us, folks. Alright, guys, we’re talking about, you know, some churches are pushing back and opening up and serving their communities, others have stayed close to this whole thing. And of course, a social media post, Tim, you were talking about a lot of, you know, pushback and discussion.

And there’s some out there who say, you know, the right thing to do is just be respectful and nice to everybody. So, we’re not going to open, not going to put anybody in a bad position, not going to, you know, let anybody feel like their health is threatened. But then it’s kind of difficult for the church to be the salt and light in the service to the needs of the community if it’s not even open.

David:

Well, one of the things I’ve seen been really interesting and this has come from some of these pastors that are on the side of we’re going to reopen is look, this is not a choice that the governor makes, this is not a choice that any civil official makes, this is a choice made by God, made by the Scriptures. The Scriptures tell us where to baptize people and you can’t baptize through social distancing. It just doesn’t work. I guess, you could be the old Jewish way of self-baptism. I’ll be on this side of the room, you go baptize yourself over there, I’ll say the right words.

There’s also James 5, where you lay hands on the sick and you can’t do that through social distancing. And there’s also visiting the widows and the orphans in their affliction. You can’t do that through social distancing. And you just go down all of the Bible verses that tell us, for example, to get together.

Bible says do not forsake the assembling of yourselves together. But the governor said, we can’t. No, no, no, the Bible is really clear. There’s so much of the ministry of Christians engages the lives of others in a very real way, sometimes, in a way where you actually, as Tim pointed out, Jesus laid hands on the lepers and prayed for them, you know, that wouldn’t be acceptable today. So, there’s a lot there.

Thanks to Andrew Wommack!

And it’s interesting to some of these more courageous pastors that have really taken a step. And now they’re getting targeted for even following the guidelines that are put out, even though some of these guidelines are really hostile. There’s these things that well, you can have services if you’re only at 25% or if you’re only a 50%, whatever the State is and you can have services if your social distancing, etc.

We have a good friend up in Colorado who has a great ministry there. Andrew Wommack, he has a great school there, has a great conference center, has a really big television ministry, is well known all over the United States. And he’s just one of these guys, that’s going to do what the Scripture says. And so, they had a conference this summer and, in their facility which seats well over 3,000 people, they had what, Tim, was it 1,200 people in there or something of sort?

Tim:

They estimate, but somewhere between 800 and 1,000 people, their auditorium seats 3,200, so they were well below the 50% capacity. They even met with the local county officials to get details on what the guidelines were. Because even though the State said nobody can meet, they said, look, we’ve got this conference planned. The Attorney General actually sent them a notice in the middle of their conference saying, they need to close. And he said, look, we’re going to finish our conference.

We’re already here. We’re already meeting. But he met with the county officials, they gave him further guidelines, which they readily met. They met with local law enforcement to see hey, what do you need from us? And so, they met with all the local officials, followed every guideline that was given to them and yet, the Attorney General said, that’s not going to be enough and we’re not going to let you do ministry anymore. So now, there’s a case going on and now our friends over at Liberty Council, which that’s Mat Stavers organization, Mat is been on the program many times, they’re the ones now representing Andrew Wommack in this kind of nonsensical case.

Rick:

Well, in fact, Andrew is going to be with us when we come back from the break so we’ll get it firsthand from him how all this turned out and how the suits going as well. Stay with us, folks, you’re listening to WallBuilders Live.

One-Room Schoolhouse

Hey friends, this Rick Green from WallBuilders Live and I have had so many requests about, what in the world could we be studying at home right now you know I got the kids at home, they’re normally in school? Or if you homeschool, you’re looking for additional material. One-Room Schoolhouse. It is a great new series WallBuilders is putting out where you literally get a tour of the WallBuilders library as Tim Barton and Jonathan Ritchie bring history to life. There’s a couple of resources on this.

You go to YouTube and search for WallBuilders and look for a One-Room Schoolhouse. You can go to our Facebook page and get it right there on Facebook as we do it live each Monday and sometimes additional days from there. And then you can also just go to wallbuilders.com, scroll down to the bottom and we’ll be posting the videos as they come out. This is such a great way to learn and a great way for you to share with others. Gather the family around, watch the One-Room Schoolhouse and learn some great history. It’ll be vitally important to restoring our nation and bringing back these principles that made America great in the first place. Check it out oneroomschoolhouse@wallbuilders.com.

Rick:

Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us today, Andrew Wommack back with us. Good to have you back again, sir. Thanks so much for some time today.

Andrew:

Well, thank you, Rick. It’s a real honor to be associated with WallBuilders, you guys are doing a great job.

Rick:

Well, right back at you so many places we could send folks to learn more, but awmi.net for Andrew Wommack Ministries, Charis Bible college, I mean, all the great stuff you guys are doing and trying to do some great stuff this summer as well. Colorado coming out after you for your Bible conference. You know, it’s okay to have big protests in the streets, but don’t get together to talk about the Bible, I guess. Tell us what happened. You guys had a whole July conference going and I guess, was it in the middle of the conference they had you, tried to shut down or how did this happen?

The One Thing They Didn’t Comply With…

Andrew:

Yeah, well, the tele-county health officials, we’ve been in contact with him and trying to plan, you know, how to hold our conference without violating their restrictions. And so, we had met with them and we complied with everything they asked, even did extra things, like doing temperature checks on every person that came, questions about things with all of the sanitation, the distancing. But the only thing we didn’t comply with was the governor of Colorado has said that we can only have 175 people maximum in a facility. We had about 1,000 counting the children and…

Rick:

And this is a facility that holds several thousand, well, like 3,200 or something?

Andrew:

That’s the reason that I felt good about it, because we had about 200-250 of the people were children or youth and they were scattered all throughout the building. So, we only had about 700- 800 maximum in our 3,200 seat auditorium and they practice distancing. So, we felt like, that we had complied and our governor had said that he was going to keep these restrictions in place until a vaccine was made or some kind of a cure for it, which that’s open ended. He’s talking about the end of 2021…

Rick:

And may never find one, right? I mean, there’s many viruses they’ve been…

Andrew:

There, I sent a letter to the governor saying that, you know, I had voluntarily complied with it, but that my voluntary compliance was over. We weren’t going to shutter everything until 2021. So, we went ahead with the conference and the health officials knew about it, but they were cooperating with us.

And then we had a panel discussion on Wednesday night during the conference. But we had Bill Federer and Tony Perkins and General Boykin, and E. W. Jackson and Janet Boynes on there. And we were talking about all the current events and trying to turn out the boat for 2020 this year. And I mean, it stirred something up, our website got hot and I think that somebody in the government heard that, upset people.

Liberty Counsel

And so, the next morning, we had a cease and desist order which was a Thursday morning and we had until nine o’clock on Friday morning to respond. And so, I just decided to go ahead and finish the conference, Friday noon was the end of the conference. And I went ahead and finished it and we sent a letter. We contacted Liberty Counsel with their lawyers. We sent a letter saying we weren’t going to comply, we were doing everything we knew and felt like the 175 person restriction was unfair and discriminatory since they had actually allowed and encouraged protests with thousands of people. So, we went ahead with it.

Rick:

By the way, Andrew, the thousands of protesters not social distancing, not following all the protocols that you guys were going to put in place, you all were doing it, you know, trying to follow all of what the county wanted and the state wanted and the protest didn’t do any of that and yet wasn’t a problem for the governor?

Andrew:

No. And so, we sent a letter with the Liberty Counsel for help and anyway, they didn’t come after us and our meeting was over on Friday by noon. But then on Saturday, we had a special musical presentation and at that, we had a big crowd of over 1,000 show up for that. And we were prepared for possibly some kind of an action, but they didn’t do it. So, anyway, we went ahead and finished out the conference and I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen. But now all of our future meetings are in jeopardy, they’re talking about putting an injunction against us. So, we’re still in the midst of it. We haven’t seen the end of it yet.

Rick:

Well, you have some of the best legal counsel in the country there with Mat Staver and Mast and the rest of that team at Liberty Counsel. I’m so glad you’re using them. I got to tell you though, brother, it is great, it’s encouraging to so many of us across the country for you not to just, you know, stay shuttered and cower down and say, well, whatever they want. I mean, four months into this thing, you know, I think the church is having to say, look, we can’t keep our church doors closed. I mean, we can’t fulfill our mission if we continue to do this.

Andrew:

Well, pandemic did not put the constitution on hold, we still want one of these rights. And we have to balance that against, you know, the potential damage to people and so I’m aware of that, and I just don’t want to give up those First Amendment rights.

First Amendment Rights

Rick:

That’s right. That’s right. Well, we appreciate you standing in and definitely going to be praying for favor as you go forward and good counsel. And, you know, I just hope people see the duplicity and the hypocrisy of government shutting down some things and not other things. And of course, as you know, well, what you’re doing is protected multiple times in the Constitution, specifically, multiple times in the First Amendment. So, we’re going to be praying for you to continue to exercise that freedom of religion and assembly and speech and all the other things that we do when we gather as a church and hope that it’s an example to other churches to open up as well.

Andrew:

That’s awesome. I appreciate it, Rick. Thank you very much for everything you guys are doing.

Rick:

Well, thanks for your time today. And we’re going to have links today to the website and also to Liberty Counsel to follow the suit and the things that you’re having to deal with on this. But we appreciate your time this afternoon. Look forward to having you back.

Andrew:

Thank you, God bless.

Rick:

You too. Stay with us, folks. David and Tim Barton when we return on WallBuilders Live.

Biographical Sketches You Don’t Want to Miss!

Hi, friends, this is Tim Barton of WallBuilders. This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history or even heroes of the faith. And I know oftentimes we, parents, we’re trying to find good content for our kids to read.

And if you remember back to the Bible, to the book of Hebrews, it has the faith Hall of Fame where they outline the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that as Americans, we really want to go back and outline some of these heroes, not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity in our faith as well.

I want to let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called The Courageous Leaders collection. And this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright brothers. 

And there’s a second collection called Heroes of History. In this collection, you’ll read about people like Benjamin Franklin or Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman, friends, the list goes on and on. This is a great collection for your young person to have and read and it’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at www.wallbuilders.com. That’s www.wallbuilders.com.

Rick:

We’re back here on WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us and thanks to Andrew Wommack for joining us as well. Alright, so, David, Tim, so like you said, Tim, the conference went on, they went ahead and finished the conference. And of course, the intimidation factor, though, not only to them, but also to other churches to stay closed is definitely there. So, I mean, pastors are going to have to have the backbone that Andrew had to say, no, well, yes, we’re going to take care of our people, of course, we’re going to do what’s safe and healthy, but we’re not going to keep the church doors closed.

Tim:

Well, this definitely does seem to be a targeted situation from the Attorney General. Because the governor there in Colorado is someone that when protests were going on, he told people, essentially protest, but be safe, wear a mask, but he didn’t tell him you can’t have these large groups of people.

So, if you’re going to say, you can have huge groups of protesters, which was much more than what Andrew had there in their ministry, at that point, you definitely see the double standard. And one of the things, it’s very clear in the law is you can’t have one set of rules for nonreligious institutions and one set of rules for religious structures, facilities, institutions, pastors, whatever the case is.

Who Defines the Church?

So, this should not be that difficult of a case unless you just have some really liberal leftist, secular Judge who’s anti-religious. But ultimately, this is one that will be one. It’s just these are battles that you shouldn’t have to fight on some levels, because we’re encouraging protests or at the very least, for tolerating protest, then you certainly the very least should be tolerating some of these religious gatherings who are meeting with the county officials, who were doing everything the county officials told them to do, above and beyond what they were already doing, who are meeting with the law enforcement and I mean, just absolutely doing as much as they can to keep everybody safe and healthy.

They’re far below 50%. They were social distancing inside their building. Everything that largely has been said to do they did, except they did not close their meeting when they were told to and again, they shouldn’t have to do that. Because if you’re going to allow protests of thousands upon thousands of people, then it doesn’t make sense you’re going to tell religious groups that they can’t meet when they follow safety guidelines that the protest didn’t.

David:

And this whole thing to me goes back to where we started the very beginning. Tim was reading that post that we put up on social media and it really is, who defines a church and who defines what it does? Is it the governor? Is a civil authorities? Or is it the Bible? Is that the example of Jesus Christ? I mean, which one are we going to follow there? And I would not think that it would be as hard of a decision as it’s become for so many people today. For so many people, it seems difficult to follow the Bible if the governor says I can’t do so. It seems difficult to do what churches have done for 2,000 years if the Attorney General says I can’t do so. I mean, that should not be a difficult question at all.

This is something the apostles faced in Acts 4, where the leaders of the day said, hey, you can’t do this anymore. And they said, well, we have to decide whether we’re going to obey you or God and we think we’ll choose God. And so, the apostles themselves committed civil disobedience against the leaders of that day. It just does not seem to me that it should be as difficult as it is or that when we put up a post like that, that people should be defending. I mean, it’s just and is refreshing to see someone like Andrew say, no, we’re going to do this. This is biblical and this is legal.

Tim:

Well, and especially recognizing the role of the church and the role of ministries is helping meet people’s needs, helping them connect to God so they can be healed emotionally and physically and spiritually and mentally. This is not just about being in a physical location, it’s about helping people be ministered to and we applaud those organizations, churches, ministries that are saying, we’re going to keep ministering to people and we’re not closing our doors.

Push Back to Put and End to the Nonsense

Rick:

We need so many more of them to do the same thing. It’s that kind of pushback that’s going to put an end to the nonsense and make sure that the church remains essential in our nation, in our community. So, we’re asking and calling on pastors to do exactly that. Pastors who says, no time to let the Constitution sleep, it’s certainly no time for our churches to continue to be shuttered.

So obviously, protecting your flock and, and taking health precautions and being smart about it, but not being overly reactive to the scare tactics that have been going on for the last four or five months. Looking at the science, looking at the data, realizing what we’re actually facing, not what we theorize that we could face, that changes everything. So, we just encourage folks to use some common sense and certainly pray about it and get your church meeting again. And once again being salt and light into the community and a place of refuge for those in your community as well.

How Should Pastors And Churches Respond To The COVID Crackdowns? – With Andrew Wommack

Thanks so much for listening today. We encourage you to visit our website, wallbuilderslive.com today if you want to listen to more of these programs that are in our archive section there. And also, to make that contribution, come alongside us, team up with us, help us get out there and train more pastors and more legislators and more young people. You can be a part of that by donating at wallbuilderslive.com

We sure appreciate you listening today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live.