Religion

Greg Locke says Easter Bible burning a sign that Christianity is under attack in America 


(RNS) — A Tennessee pastor identified for burning books, casting out demons and creating outrage says somebody burned 200 Bibles exterior his church on Easter Sunday (March 31).

Greg Locke, pastor of International Imaginative and prescient Bible Church in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, stated the church’s safety cameras recorded a “well mannered criminal” stopping their car in the course of an intersection by the doorway to the church, placing on their hazard lights, then dousing a trailer stuffed with Bibles with gasoline and setting it on fireplace. 

“You bought to be kidding me,” Locke stated through the Easter revival service, in accordance with a video posted on the International Imaginative and prescient web site. “What number of church buildings in America have a trailer stuffed with Bibles getting burned to dam the car parking zone?”

The hearth is at the moment underneath investigation by the Wilson County Sheriff’s Division.

In keeping with a press launch from the sheriff’s workplace, the Mt. Juliet Fireplace Division responded to the hearth at about 6 a.m. on Sunday morning and rapidly extinguished the hearth. 

“The trailer, containing bibles, had been dropped off in the course of the intersection after which deliberately set on fireplace,” in accordance with the sheriff’s division. “To uphold the integrity of the continued investigation, different particular particulars can’t be offered presently. Nevertheless, we guarantee the neighborhood that additional updates can be shared on the acceptable juncture.”

At first, Locke joked concerning the fireplace, saying he had requested regulation enforcement to provide the charred pages of the Bible to the church — so the church may hand them out as a reminder of the necessity for prayer. 

Then he referred to as the hearth one other signal that Christianity was being threatened in America and that the return of Jesus and the Finish Instances have been imminent. 

“Should you assume that Christianity will not be (underneath) assault greater than ever earlier than in the USA of America, you haven’t been paying consideration,” he instructed his church. “Stop being lukewarm. Stop being so passive aggressive and mamby-pamby and spiritually sissified. OK? I’m telling you, they’re attacking church buildings in America.”

Locke then instructed his congregation he had simply returned from a visit to Israel, which he stated was the most secure place on the earth and that information experiences concerning the warfare in Gaza have been media lies. He then went into an extended monologue concerning the so-called Pink Heifer prophecy — the concept that a crimson cow needs to be sacrificed on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem to usher within the return of Jesus and the tip of the world. 

The Temple Mount is at the moment the location of the Dome of the Rock, one of many holiest locations in Islam. Locke instructed his congregation that the mosque on the Temple Mount would quickly be “dropped at rubble” and {that a} crimson heifer would quickly be sacrificed — which might enable first the Antichrist after which Jesus Christ to reach. 

“We’re watching the phrase of God be fulfilled earlier than our very eyes,” he stated.  

Locke was as soon as a comparatively obscure Tennessee preacher — identified principally for publicity stunts like backpacking a whole bunch of miles to lift cash for missions and staying up all evening on a cherry picker to lift consciousness about homelessness. 

He turned a social media influencer after a 2016 video of him condemning the inclusive lavatory insurance policies at Goal went viral. Locke has since used his on-line affect to advertise Donald Trump and Christian nationalism — in addition to to declare himself an exorcist, able to casting out demons.

Locke has additionally claimed witches infiltrated his church in an try to deliver his ministry down and has clashed together with his neighbors and native officers after erecting an unlimited tent on the grounds of his church through the COVID-19 pandemic. That tent, Locke has claimed, is required to accommodate the crowds of recent folks attracted by his help for Trump and his newfound profession casting out demons.



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