Pastor defends hate-filled sermon on Orlando shootings

Posted at 9:49 AM, Jun 15, 2016

SACRAMENTO -- "There's no tragedy. I wish the government would round them all up, put them up against a wall, put a firing squad in front of them and blow their brains out."

That was one Sacramento pastor's response to the massacre in an Orlando nightclub.

The "them" Pastor Roger Jimenez is referring to is gay men.

"The tragedy is that more of them didn't die," he said during a 45-minute sermon the morning after 49 people were killed inside Pulse nightclub.

On Tuesday, Jimenez was doubling down on his stance that the horrific murders were justified, even cause for celebration.

"What about the component of Christianity that says we should love everyone equally?" FOX40 asked Jimenez in an interview at his home.

Jimenez referred us to a passage from the story of David in the Old Testament.

"The Bible doesn't teach that," he said. "The Bible tells us to hate the enemy of God."

Jimenez's message of hate has gone viral.

FOX40 asked about a gay or lesbian person, a bisexual person or a transgender person who is a Christian.

"Well, here's the thing: if you read Romans, Chapter 1 in context, that God gave them over to a reprobate mind," Jimenez said.

His message is being met with shock and dismay by other religious leaders in the area.

"I don't like the misrepresentation. I just want to say that's not the Bible I know, that's not the God I know, that's not the Jesus I know," said Francis Anfuso, vice president of City Pastor's Fellowship.

Anfuso is also pastor at the Rock of Roseville. He says he was horrified to hear Jimenez's message coming from a religious leader in this community.

"This is a very volatile time, in our nation, where people are unfortunately choosing sides and yelling across ravines," Anfuso said.

Anfuso welcomes gay members to his church, even when there are theological disagreements.

"But most preachers are interested in having a big crowd and getting a lot of money, and not interested in the truth," Jimenez said.

And Jimenez says the religious community isn't the only one getting it wrong. He says the media is painting him as a zealot who is encouraging his congregation to take up arms against the LGBT community. He says that wasn't the message of his sermon, and he's right. Jimenez doesn't ask his congregation to kill homosexuals.

He says the government should be doing it for them.

"The bible teaches that this is the government's role. If we lived in a society that followed biblical principles, the government should be doing these things," Jimenez said. "I know there are people who agree with what I'm saying -- normal people who think it's disgusting."

Meanwhile, at his church in a strip mall in North Sacramento, there is more evidence of those who disagree with his message.

The door has been smeared with peanut butter.

Jimenez says he's gotten several threats since his sermon, too.

Still, there is also evidence on the Internet that he isn't alone in his beliefs.

"The good news is that there's 50 less pedophiles in this world. Because these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and pedophiles."

That was pastor Steve Anderson of Tempe Arizona, in his own YouTube sermon Sunday.

YouTube has since deleted the clip, saying it violates their rules about hate speech.

The language both men use is nearly identical, right down to misidentifying gay men as pedophiles.

FOX40 asked if the sermons were coordinated.

"It's not coordinated with him. Pastor Steve Anderson is a good friend of mine. We've known each other for many years," Jimenez said.

And in fact, Jiminez and Anderson will be headlining a prayer conference here in Sacramento at the end of July.