Christian evangelist Franklin Graham is calling on Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg to repent for being gay. Graham, who is the CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association says that the candidate needs to acknowledge his sin and stop flaunting his homosexuality.
The Daily Beast reports that Graham tweeted that homosexuality is “something to be repentant of, not something to be flaunted, praised or politicized,” after Buttigieg announced at a CNN town hall meeting that “God does not have a political party.”
Graham, who is a staunch supporter of Donald Trump, responded, saying that Buttigieg is correct that God doesn’t have a political party, but he has commandments which need to be followed.
“Mayor Buttigieg says he’s a gay Christian… The Bible says marriage is between a man & a woman — not two men, not two women.”
Buttigieg, or Mayor Pete as he is often called, stated that it can often be a challenge to be a member of the LGBTQ community and be a person of faith, but he says that it’s God’s love that leads to the way we can and should support one another.
Graham took offense to Buttigieg calling himself a “gay Christian,” says The Hill, saying that the Bible defines homosexuality as a sin, and he “gives us words to live by.”
Graham is calling on Buttigieg to repent or face damnation after the Indiana mayor called on “liberals and conservatives of faith” to unite in his 2020 campaign for president.
This is not the first time that Buttigieg has gone head to head in a challenge over faith, as he previously called out Vice President Mike Pence over his judgment of the LGBTQ community. Buttigieg and Pence both hail from Indiana, but have distinctly different views when it comes to their religion and homosexuality.
Buttigieg says that Pence is entitled to his personal credo, but he needs to understand how those views affect other people.
“The vice president is entitled to his religious beliefs. My problem is when those religious beliefs are used as an excuse to harm other people.”
The New York Daily News says that Graham and other evangelicals have continued to push back against Buttigieg with various Bible verses, but critics say that one from Leviticus went too far, as it ends with the suggestion that homosexuals “shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.”
Graham quoted the first part of Leviticus 20:13, but stopped before sharing the part which mentions God’s punishment for homosexuality.