On Jan. 21, Megachurch Pastor Chris Conlee attacked people who criticized Pastor Andy Savage who confessed to a “sexual incident” with a 17-year-old girl two decades earlier when he was her youth pastor (video below).
Both pastors are employed by the Highpoint Church in Memphis, Tennessee.
The victim, Jules Woodson, said that Savage drove her to a secluded area, pulled out his penis, and pressured her into giving him oral sex.
CBS News reported that Savage admitted to a “sexual incident,” which drew aa standing ovation from the Highpoint Church, which resulted in public condemnation of Savage and the church (video below).
Savage took a leave of absence, but Conlee compared people — who are outraged by Savage and the church’s support of Savage — to the devil, notes the Friendly Atheist:
Now it’s also my responsibility to lead and to educate along the way, and to point out — it’s okay for me to point out some things that are also wrong, alright? What happened 20 years ago was wrong. What is happening with bloggers and social media critics being so hateful is also wrong.
So let me ask you this question: Why is Bible reading so selective? Matthew 7:2 says this: “For in the way you judge, you will be judged, and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.”
And so what I would ask for us to be a people to do, is it is okay for us to acknowledge when wrong has existed, but it’s also okay for us to acknowledge that there are some sources in life that are not reliable or responsible. It is okay for us to respectfully disagree, and that’s what we’re doing.
And so I ask you this question: What do you want us to do? If you were watching a movie right now of this story, and in this particular movie we happen to be the main characters, what would you want us to do? Do you want us to compromise and cave in to the critics? Do you want us to quit? See, that’s what the enemy wants.
What you want us to do is be people of incredible integrity. You want us to be people who are sold out, committed to doing everything we possibly can. To respond the way Jesus would respond. To speak truth in love. To have that perfect balance and tension that exists there.
And so here’s what I want you to know: As your leader, as your pastor, I am committed to fighting the good fight. But watch this — don’t don’t get mistaken about the word fight — I’m committed to fighting the good fight, in the right way, at the right time, with the right heartbeat. Okay?
So here’s what you need to know. 1 Peter 5:8… “Be sober-minded. Be watchful. Your adversary, the Devil, prowls around — watch this — like… like a roaring lion. He is not a roaring lion. He is like a roaring lion. There is only one roaring lion, and that is the lion of the tribe of Judah.
You know what he does? He imitates in order to intimidate. Seeking someone to devour, resist him firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world, and after you have suffered a little while, the God of all Grace, who has called you to eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you, to Him be the Dominion, forever and ever amen…