New York Jets backup quarterback Tim Tebow has canceled an upcoming appearance at a controversial Dallas megachurch. According to CBS New York, the former University of Florida quarterback has called off plans to address the congregation of Pastor Robert Jeffress after the clergyman’s incendiary remarks about Jews, Mormons and LGBT people came to light.
Tebow, was scheduled to appear at two services on Sunday, April 28, but said in a statement released via Twitter on Thursday, “While I was looking forward to sharing a message of hope and Christ’s unconditional love with the faithful members of the historic First Baptist Church of Dallas in April, due to new information that has been brought to my attention, I have decided to cancel my upcoming appearance. I will continue to use the platform God has blessed me with to bring Faith, Hope and Love to all those needing a brighter day. Thank you for all of your love and support. God Bless!”
Jeffress has famously called Mormonism and Islam “heretical” religions straight from “the pit of Hell.” He also said that “you can’t be saved as a Jew” and called President Barack Obama a harbinger of the Antichrist.
Just prior to Election Day, 2012, the pastor said that while he still believes that Mormonism is a cult, voters should chose Romney over Obama because Obama is “like Hitler.”
The pastor was asked about Tebow’s decision during an interview with CBS Dallas.
“Tim called me last night, so I was aware of this,” Jeffress said. He claimed that Tebow had texted him, assuring him, “Because of personal reasons and professional reasons I need to steer clear of controversy right now but I would love to come back to your church at sometime in the future.”
Jeffress said that the second-string quarterback must be “under incredible pressure” and said that First Baptist “would never condemn” Tebow.
“We love him and appreciate him, but he has to do what he thinks is right,” the pastor said.