Analysis of a Misleading Facebook MemePosted: June 24, 2015
Below is a capture of an (unexpanded) post on Facebook. Would you agree that it claims that a pastor wants gays killed? I think so. The image below does not show the expanded version of the Facebook post, but the full wording only has a longer response, and no further content from the original pastor. But did the pastor actually say that he wants gays killed?
So what is this Facebook post based on? Well, in August last year, Brainerd Baptist Church reportedly broadcast a sermon on homosexuality. We know this because the following month, Raw Story published a far-left report on it, and included a Youtube recording of the sermon. Unfortunately the link to the Youtube recording, is no longer active, so I don’t know the entire contents of the sermon. But I can see from the Facebook page of the church, that members recommended that critics watch the whole sermon, and that they deny the pastor was advocating killing gays. I can also see by Googling, that this church is so big, that they have several pastors, several campuses and their own TV broadcast. Do churches of this size advocate killing people? No. Never the less, Raw Story titled their report –
TN pastor vows not to ‘repent’ for homophobia: God says gays ‘must be put to death’
The report stated in part –
After spending about 20 minutes recounting the perils of homosexuality throughout history, Gallaty asserted that the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by God because of gay sex.
“God said that the sins of the people had infected the very land in which they live,” he explained. “So what happens to people who engage in this activity, this sexual immoral activity? Go to Leviticus 20, God gives us the punishment for engaging in these sins… ‘If a man sleeps with a man as with a woman, they have both committed a detestable thing. They must be put to death. And their blood is on their own hands.’”
So as your average Biblically-literate Christian would agree, the pastor was obviously reading from the Old Testament of the Bible (Leviticus 20) and quoting where it said that homosexual offenders must be put to death, and was exploring why the Bible says the towns of Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed. Saying that gays must be put to death, were not the pastors own words. For the leftist Raw Story, such facts or nuance were not important to whoever wrote that headline. They saw an opportunity to demonise Christians in the headline, and they weren’t going to waste it.
Then on the same day, a Patheos blogger cited the Raw Story report, writing about it giving his post much the same title and angle as was used by Raw Story. Almost a year later, in June 2015, a gay church posted a link to the Patheos report, on their Facebook page. Another pastor commented on that Facebook posting. 20 minutes later, that pastor had posted the above comments and pictures about this, on his own church Facebook page. HOWEVER, this Facebook post omitted the original quote that Raw Story provided, which illustrated (however obscure it was) that the pastor was simply quoting the Bible, and that killing people was not his point.