Robert Jeffress’ Position on Homosexuality Hasn’t Changed, So Stop Writing That it Has

Robert Jeffress                                                                                                                                     Photo: Elizabeth Lavin

Today, in a piece by the Associated Press on evangelicals and their shifting views on homosexuality, First Baptist Church’s Robert Jeffress is quoted as saying he now preaches about homosexuality in “a bigger context of God’s plan for sex between one man and one woman in a lifetime relationship called marriage… It would be the height of hypocrisy to condemn homosexuality and not adultery or unbiblical divorce.”

The AP and other sources picked this up and ran with it, splaying the headline “Evangelical Churches Refine Message On Gay Issues” above the piece. Problem is, what Jeffress is saying isn’t new. From our own Michael J. Mooney’s story on Jeffress, printed in January 2012:

I mentioned to him that I had spoken with Mel White, the man who wrote Dr. Criswell’s autobiography. (He did the same for Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, and Billy Graham.) In 1994, White announced to the world that he is gay. Jeffress said he’d heard of White, but that they’d never met or spoken. I told Jeffress that White says that when pastors like Jeffress tell people that gay is not okay, it fuels discrimination and can drive some gay kids into dangerous depressions. Jeffress reminded me that his, Jeffress’, is the message of hope–that homosexuals can change through the power of Christ. He generally equates being gay with alcoholism or a genetic proclivity toward violence. He always points out that no one sin is any worse than the others.

And even his 2008 “Gay is not OK” sermon featured lines of compassion. From Mooney’s piece:

In 2008, when he gave his two-part “Gay Is Not OK” sermon, he told his church: “What they [homosexuals] do is filthy. It is so degrading that it is beyond description. And it is their filthy behavior that explains why they are so much more prone to disease.” But seconds later he reminded the flock to “demonstrate compassion,” noting that “cutting off your children is the biggest mistake you will ever make. You don’t have to approve of what they’re doing. You don’t have to invite their homosexual lover into your home. But let your son or daughter always know that you love them.”

Jeffress’ position may have shifted slightly – “He said he is open to the possibility that sexual orientation has a genetic basis that cannot be cured or prayed away,” the AP story reads – but to say that he’s changed his belief is disingenuous.


  • downtownworker

    Well, he needs a good defense for when he gets caught tapping his foot in the men’s bathroom at DFW Airport.

  • Bobtex

    I may start caring what Robert Jeffress says when Robert Jeffress starts caring what I (and other non-Christian non-heterosexual people) say. His Hell will likely freeze over before THAT happens.

  • mdunlap1

    Robert Jeffress lives in a 4,500 square foot home in Collin County, venturing into Dallas only to condemn people who actually care enough about the city to live in it.

    The guy is a clown.

    • Avid Reader

      Don’t disagree with the second statement or even part of the first; but does living in a city mean you care about it? Is it that automatic?

    • Michael J. Mooney

      Also, unless he moved recently, he doesn’t live in Collin County.

  • C T

    First Baptist Church in Dallas has brought significant harm to gay people over the years and they do not even realize how their actions and comments have brought misery to so many people. No telling how many gay people have been bashed, killed, lost their jobs, were disowned by their families, or committed suicide based on their hatred toward gay people. My guess is that Jesus would approve of what they’ve done.

    • C T

      Sorry – Jesus would NOT approve of what they’ve done

  • sooieeehog

    He didn’t say that living in Dallas automatically means you care about it. He questioned whether choosing to live in Collin County, while senior pastor of the largest church in downtown Dallas, is a comment on how much you care about Dallas.

  • Chet

    If you believe in the cristian god and believe that the bible is the literal word of that god then homosexual acts are a sin. It is in the old and the new testaments. Jeffries preaching, especially with his new, slightly modified view, is what any non hypocritical Christian would read in the bible. One of the many reasons not accept the Christian faith

  • RAB

    “cristian” god? Do you mind if we call you “Cet”?

  • Jo Bennett

    Well “change” is not a word in the Conservative vocabulary…is it?The ain’t gonna be any change from this guy..or any other of the stuck in granite thinking on ANY issue…period!

  • Chet

    No sweat, call me whatever you want, I am far more concerned with substance than finding typos. Heck I probably wouldn’t even notice, but be careful when you pronounce it. Your god is jealous and if you pronounce Chet as set he might think you have another god before him.