Vigil at Pastor John MacArthur’s Grace Community Church

Vigil at Pastor John MacArthur’s Grace Community Church


Charles E. Carlson


April 22, 2007.




Project Strait Gate held a Vigil for Peace with Justice outside Pastor John Macarthur’s Grace Community Church at Sun Valley, CA, on Sunday morning April 22.  Several thousand attended two services.  Among them were a number of seminary students at MacArthur’s Master’s Seminary.




Of fourteen Project Strait Gate participants, six came from far off Fresno, CA; one came from Bakersfield, and one from near San Diego, all long and sacrificial trips.   Among the observers interviewing us was a writer of a research report on Christian Zionism, and a filmmaker shooting a documentary about the same subject, who filmed the entire Vigil, and interviewed several team members and church attendees.




Directly across the street from the church entrance stood our four by eight foot long sign reading:






Christ Followers Do Not Kill




Our purpose is to use strictly scriptural arguments (not secular ones) to influence fellow Christ-followers to oppose continued slaughter in the Middle East, and to hold churches responsible for their role in enabling these false “wars.” 




At Grace Church no pastor came forth to accept our invitation to dialogue, but some members did, and several hundred attendees accepted our literature among thousands who rejected it.  Some complained and lectured to us, thinking us lost sinners, but others came to confer and listen.  Among these were two Master’s Seminary students each of whom said he opposed the wars and the church’s role in them and would welcome dialogue with We Hold These Truths in search of a way to stop serial wars.  A man with his bible under his arm signed up to join our next vigil in the Los Angeles area while leaving church on a bike.  One Grace attendee, who said he opposes Zionism and its wars, asked to join the vigil team for lunch afterwards at a local Coca’s, and he did.




The defining question we ask attendees is:


1) Is Israel a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy?


2) (Assuming the answer is “yes”): Is there anything that Israel could do to its neighbors that would cause you to change your mind about supporting it? 




Zionist engendering race hatred starts in church with distorted “End Times” prophecy.  It is the ungodly notion that God holds Israelis (or any Jew) to be more precious in his sight than the rest of us.  It is impossible to teach that God granted the Philistine’s land to present day political Israel without causing belief that Israelis have a right to kill Palestinians, destroy their homes, and drive them out to get it.  Richard L. Land, spokesman for the Southern Baptists, stated this awful apostasy: “It’s God s way or the highway.”




The Vigil was slightly marred by one participant who errantly thought Project Strait Gate wants him to argue about the trespassing laws with the security guards, questioning their rights to prohibit demonstrators from the church property.  Project Strait Gate expects the church to obey the local laws, but we never challenge the property rights of the church, nor do we care how much money the church or its pastor have or what they do with it. We do not join these arguments much as we might be tempted at times. Grace Church has a history of entrapping and arresting any demonstrator who strays on their property and we were alert to this. 




A common question from onlookers at our vigils is, “How do you know you’re doing any good?” or “Where is the evidence of your progress?” Our answer to this is that we are not accountable to God for success, but we are accountable to do something, and for how we go about it, for we represent Him Please read about the progress already being witnessed as reflected in the last elections, and our groundbreaking account of John Hagee’s CUFI.




One heart warming experience came on the words of a well dressed man with a bible who stopped to take literature from me as he left, and with a stern face and a firm voice ringing of emotion stated:


  “I want you to know I am with you 100%”


 He went on to tell me how wrong is the killing in the Middle East, and yes he agreed with our conclusion that the church is the root to the problem.  As he shook my hand he said:


“We must do something…we will do something.” 




Our handout literature at the church was a four-page flier, God’s Terrible Law that Judeo-Christians Break. It is our hope you will read it, for it discusses the sin of this church, taking God’s name in vain. Un-Christian Racism takes God’s Holy name in vain.  A man named John Hagee of San Antonio Texas, founder of Christians United For Israel, practices it in church on a circuit. 




On Sunday, April 29th our new Vigil Team in Minneapolis, led by Stan Jakubowski, will hold its first in a series or vigils at meetings of Hagee’s CUFI in northern metro-Minneapolis.  Your writer will be there.  Please join us in Minnesota if you can… and support us if you cannot come.




Endnote 1) Vigils in Motion:




Endnote) An Analysis of CUFIand a Dispensational Critique of Christian Zionism, by Mark M. Hanna, PH.D.




Endnote) Why stand for Israel, Hayford




Endnote) Post Election Query: Is the Christian Right seeking the Way?




Reference: Christian Zionism’s Roots:


Audio/video  (




Literature passed out: God’s Terrible Law that Judeo-Christians Break