A Baptist pastor in Sacramento is being heavily criticized for his Sunday sermon in the wake of a massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando.
Pastor Roger Jimenez of Verity Baptist Church said that his churchgoers should not feel sad for the victims. At least 53 people were injured in addition to the 49 people who lost their lives.
“As a Christian, we shouldn’t be mourning the death of 50 sodomites. Let me go ahead and start right there. As a Christian, we shouldn’t be sad or upset,” Jimenez said in his sermon, which was posted online to YouTube. YouTube has since removed the sermon, deeming it “hate speech.”
ABC10 News spoke with Jimenez at his Sacramento home on Tuesday morning. He said he did not have any regrets about the sentiments expressed in his Sunday sermon.
“The bible does teach that homosexuality deserves the death penalty. Leviticus 20:13 says that if a man lie with mankind like he does with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination and will surely be put to death. Romans 1 says that they which commit such things are worthy of death,” Jimenez said. “My whole point was, if people die who deserve to die, we don’t need to be mourning that. This gunman there that shot people up, the bible says he deserves to die, he died and we shouldn’t be mourning his death, either. That’s the whole point I was making, and it’s been taken out of context.”
Jimenez was asked to explain how his statements are not an incitement to violence against the LGBT community.
“I’m not calling people to arms. And I’m not telling people they should go do this … What I’m saying is that if the government followed the laws of God, that’s what they would be doing. And if the government did that, I’d be fine with that,” Jimenez said.
When asked to clarify whether he was saying that he’d support the government killing gay people, Jimenez said, “I would be fine. I would be totally okay with that, if the government did that. That’s what they would do, if we lived in a righteous nation.”
Jimenez said he will be holding his weekly sermon on Sunday as usual, and invites Christians who are not afraid of the media to attend Verity Baptist Church.