Rev. Franklin Graham told a group of conservative pastors that he loves LGBT people enough to warn them they risked falling into the “the flames of hell.”
“I love them enough to care to warn them that if they want to continue living like this, it’s the flames of hell for you,” Graham said Thursday night at the Watchmen on the Wall National Pastor’s Briefing in Washington, D.C.
“Now, if you don’t like that, don’t get mad at me,” Graham said. “I didn’t write the rule book. Almighty God wrote it, and it’s a sin against Him.”
He said religious leaders were stifled by political correctness.
“We don’t want to be called a homophobic,” he said, “and I tell people, listen, I’m not afraid of homosexuals, I’m really not — matter of fact, I love them.”
Graham, who has repeatedly praised Russian President Vladimir Putin for his anti-gay policies, cautioned the pastors not to compromise in their teaching.
“Listen gentlemen — we live in a world where there is so much compromise,” said Graham. “This city that we’re in, that’s all they do is compromise. We cannot go down that road because you and I are going to have to stand before God one day and give an account to Him, and you don’t want Him to say from His lips, ‘You were a coward.’”
He told the pastors should be willing to risk their lives to preach against homosexuality.
“Are we going to be cowards because we’re afraid?,” Graham said. “Could we get our heads chopped off? We could, maybe one day. So what? Chop it off!”
The son of famed evangelist Rev. Billy Graham made similar remarks about the risk of eternal damnation faced by gay people in a March newspaper interview, when he also questioned the motives of LGBT couple who adopted children.
“You can adopt a child into a marriage, but you can also recruit children into your cause,” Graham told a reporter. “I believe in protecting children from exploitation – all exploitations.”
The Family Research Council sponsors the annual Watchmen on the Wall conference to promote the idea that Judeo-Christian values should inform politics.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) made the misleading claim at last week’s event that Senate Democrats intended to repeal the First Amendment through a new constitutional amendment.
In fact, Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) has proposed an amendment – which stands virtually no chance of passing – that would again permit federal and state government to regulate campaign financing.
The U.S. Supreme Court loosened those regulations in its recent rulings on the Citizens United and McCutcheon cases.
Watch this video of Graham’s remarks posted online by CNS News: