Homosexual activists are labeling evangelist Greg Laurie as the "anti-gay California pastor" and are asking government officials to rescind Laurie's invitation to lead National Day of Prayer-related events in Washington, D.C. as the event's honorary chairman.
The Human Rights Campaign, the largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) advocacy group in America, contends that Laurie has a history of speaking out against LGBT Americans. And OutServe-SLDN, an association of actively serving LGBT military personnel, is calling on the Pentagon to remove the pastor from the agenda, citing "his blatantly anti-LGBT message."
"Pastor Laurie's message is out of step with what the majority of people of faith across this country believe," said Dr. Sharon Groves, director of HRC's Religion & Faith Program. "In greater numbers than ever before, people of faith are feeling compelled to speak up and organize for equality – because of their faith."
Laurie, who is the founder of Harvest Crusades and the lead pastor at Harvest churches in Riverside and Orange County, did not immediately respond to a request by The Christian Post for a response. The California pastor preaches that the Bible is the inerrant word of God and that the Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin.
During the NDOP, Laurie is scheduled to participate at the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill, with Dr. James and Shirley Dobson, Congressman Robert Aderholt, Vonette Bright, Pat Boone, Congressman Frank Wolf, and others. Prior to the Capitol Hill event, Laurie is scheduled to appear at a prayer breakfast at the Pentagon.
Earlier this year, homosexual activists also put pressure on the Rev. Louie Giglio of Passion City Church in Roswell, Ga., for a more than 15-year-old sermon in which the pastor said that homosexuality is a sin and that there is an aggressive agenda against the traditional family. Giglio ended up withdrawing from President Barack Obama's inauguration ceremony, where he was scheduled to perform the benediction. Giglio publicly said that he withdrew because he did not wish to be part of a debate on homosexuality at a time when America is deeply divided.
The NDOP Task Force said the upcoming 62nd annual event on Thursday, May 2, will have profound significance for the nation.
"We have an unprecedented opportunity to see the Lord's healing and renewing power made manifest as we call on citizens to humbly come before His throne," the NDOP Task Force stated. "To echo the words of Mary Washington, mother of our nation's first president, we believe it is time to 'Remember that God is our only sure trust.'"
The theme for 2013 is "Pray for America," emphasizing the need for individuals, corporately and individually, to place their faith in the unfailing character of their Creator, who is sovereign over all governments, authorities, and men, organizers state. "To further highlight our theme, we've chosen Matthew 12:21 as our Scripture for this year: 'In His name the nations will put their hope.'"
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Laurie has written a special prayer to be simultaneously read throughout the nation at noon (EDT). "This recitation will create a huge wave of prayer, flowing from one coast to the other, illustrating the unity of God's people and acknowledging His dominion over the circumstances facing us."
Prayer to be prayed for the National Day of Prayer by Pastor Greg Laurie, honorary chairman for the NDOP in Washington, DC, May 2nd, 2013:
Father, we come to You to pray for our nation, the United States of America.
How You have blessed us through the years, Lord! We rightly sing, "America, America, God shed His grace on thee." Yet we see trouble in our culture today. We see the breakdown of the family, crippling addictions, and random acts of horrific violence.
Lord, we need Your help in America. In recent days, we have done our best to remove Your Word and Your counsel from our courtrooms, classrooms, and culture. It seems, as President Lincoln once said, that we have "forgotten God." But Lord, You have not forgotten us! You can bless and help and revive our country again.
Scripture tells us that "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people" (Proverbs 14:34). Lord, in Your mercy, we ask that You would exalt our country again. We have had a number of great awakenings in America. We have experienced times of refreshing, and revivals that changed not only the spiritual but also the moral landscape. As the psalmist said, "Will You not revive us again, so that Your people may rejoice in You?" (Psalm 85:6).
That is our prayer for America today, Lord. Send a mighty spiritual awakening that will turn the hearts of men and women, boys and girls, back to you. You have told us if we will humble ourselves and pray, and seek Your face and turn from our wicked ways, that You will forgive our sins and heal our land (2 Chronicles7:14).
Forgive us today, Lord, and heal this troubled land that we love so much.
We ask all of this in the name of Jesus Christ.