During the middle of delivering a sermon Wednesday night, a Maryland pastor tore up a cease-and-desist letter after local officials threatened to fine his church $5,000 for holding in-person services.
Stacey Shiflett, lead pastor of Calvary Baptist Church near Baltimore, held a Wednesday night service in full compliance with Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan's 50% capacity mandate for houses of worship.
Shiflett's service, however, was in defiance of the Baltimore County Department of Health and Human Services' order, which still limits public gatherings to no more than 10 people.
The pastor posted a video on Twitter of him destroying the letter while saying, "We're gonna do it God's way!"
"With this cease-and-desist letter in my hand, the Bible says to the New Testament church 'not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together as the manner of some is, but so much more as you see the day approaching,' and the closer we get to Jesus coming back, the more church we ought to be having, not less church," Shiflett said during his sermon.
"Now that's God's parameters. So I'm tearing up this cease-and-desist order right here, and I'm telling you right now, we're gonna do it God's way! God tells us how to worship Him, nobody else gets to do that."