According the prosecutor that argued against two street preachers in a Bristol, England, courtroom, “free speech must yield to multicultural reality in modern Britain, and that there was a clear threat to violence due to the words of the preachers and the criticism of Islam.” The judge agreed and found Michael Overd and American Michael Stockwell guilty on February 28 of violating the Crime and Disorder Act of 1998 with “threatening or abusive words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress, thereby, and the offence was religiously aggravated.”
Overd’s and Stockwell’s troubles began on July 6, 2016 when they were preaching at a shopping center in Bristol with two other men. As they took turns preaching from the King James Bible, they drew a crowd, many of whom were pro-Islamic. Stockwell quoted John 14:6 and explained that people could not be saved through Catholicism, Jehovah’s Witnesses, or Mormonism.
Not liking the message they presented, a few in the crowd began heckling them. One Muslim man even began debating with Stockwell, telling him why he disliked Christianity. Stockwell responded with more of what the Bible says. About an hour later, the police began showing up. After talking with them for awhile and telling Overd he was causing a disturbance, the police took the four of them to jail.
Charges were eventually dropped for two of them, leaving Overd and Stockwell undergoing a four day trial that ended February 28, 2017, with a guilty verdict despite the fact the Muslim man in the crowd and the hecklers were the ones who started in with their disturbances, but never faced any charges. Both men were ordered to pay £2016 in legal costs and Overd will face another trial on criminal charges in May. The Christian Legal Centre, who represented the men, plans to appeal the decision, noting how disturbing it is that a judge would forego the importance of freedom of speech and freedom of religion to actually claim that publicly quoting the Bible is hate speech. The decision reveals how pervasive the sharia mentality is in the UK when criticizing the blatant weaknesses and/or oppressiveness of Islam is frowned upon under the unjust demands of Islam.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy Psalm 107:2
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16
…for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! 1 Corinthians 9:16b
Source: Street preachers convicted for quoting Bible in ‘modern day heresy trial’, ChristianConcern.org, February 28, 2017.