It is wrong to compel any baker to say something they don't believe

Daniel McArthur, general manager of Ashers Bakery said Ashers did not discriminate and they took issue with "the message on the cake and not the customer". The Supreme Court agreed and ruled that no discrimination had taken place against Gareth LeeThe Christian Institute

LGBT campaigner Gareth Lee is appealing the Supreme Court's decision in the Ashers case to the European Court of Human Rights. I respect Mr Lee's right to appeal, but I am not losing any sleep over it.

The McArthur family are not involved. The UK Government is responsible for defending the case. The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland is also not part of the appeal.

The five Supreme Court judges ruled unanimously that equality law cannot compel people to say something with which they profoundly disagree.

This is good for everybody, whatever their views.

Media reports suggest Mr Lee will ask the European Court of Human Rights to consider narrow aspects of the ruling. It appears that the focus of the appeal is political discrimination, which is a law unique to Northern Ireland.

The process could take years, and the court may yet choose not to hear the case (please see our website for more on this development). 

If it is wrong to compel an individual baker to say something they do not believe, it is just as wrong to compel a small family bakery.

People do not relinquish fundamental freedoms just because they set up a family company. This is where lawyers for Mr Lee disagree.

Our Ashers briefing considers the implications of the landmark decision in more detail. Please pray that the Ashers ruling will continue to benefit religious liberty and freedom of speech.

Colin Hart is Director of The Christian Institute