DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The news of NFL quarterback Tim Tebow appearing at First Baptist Church of Dallas in April has drawn much criticism from media outlets that have branded that leader of the church Dr. Robert Jeffress as controversial.
Tebow was scheduled to speak on Sunday April 28th at the church headed by Jeffress, who has spoken out in the past against Muslims, Jews, Mormons and homosexuals.
The 11,000-member congregation invited Tebow to speak weeks after the inauguration of a new $130 million campus in downtown Dallas.
On Thursday morning, Tebow sent the following message via his twitter account @TimTebow.
"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!"
Dr Robert Jeffress was speaking with 105.3 The Fan's New School Morning Show when Tebow tweeted that he was canceling his visit.
Dr Robert Jeffress with New School
"Tim called me last night, so I was aware of this" Jeffress said. "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 quoted Tebow as saying to him.
In the past, Jeffress has claimed that Islam promoted pedophilia, said Judaism "leads people to an eternity of separation from God in hell," and reportedly reduced Catholics, Hindus, Buddhists and others to members of cults. (Jeffress criticized Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney for his Mormon faith but eventually supported him over Barack Obama, whose reelection he said would "pav(e) the way for the future reign of the Antichrist.") Jeffress denounced the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" by observing that "It's a fact that [AIDS is] a gay disease so there's a reasonable reason to exclude gays from the military."
You can listen to the full interview with Dr. Robert Jeffress here:
Dr Robert Jeffress talks about the Tebow appearance with New School
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