New York Jets Tim Tebow Scraps Planned Visit to 'Anti-Semitic' Church

Dallas Pastor Denigrated Other Faiths and Gays

Church Drama: Tim Tebow, who wears his fundamentalist Christian faith on his sleeve, has cancelled an appearance at a Dallas church where the pastor has made insensitive remarks.
getty images
Church Drama: Tim Tebow, who wears his fundamentalist Christian faith on his sleeve, has cancelled an appearance at a Dallas church where the pastor has made insensitive remarks.

By Reuters

Published February 21, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow, a devout Christian, has canceled an appearance at the Dallas mega-church led by a prominent pastor who has sparked controversy over remarks he made from the pulpit about gays and other religions.

Tebow, 25, who famously kneels in prayer on the football field in a move that has come to be known as “Tebowing”, called off his April 28 appearance in a series of Twitter messages on Thursday.

“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,” he said.

The First Baptist Church in Dallas, which had invited Tebow to celebrate the opening of its $130 million campus, is led by Robert Jeffress, a TV evangelist who has criticized gays and other faiths, such as Islam and Mormonism.

Tebow, whose parents are missionaries, called Jeffress on Wednesday evening and said he “needed to avoid controversy at this time, but would like to come to First Baptist Dallas to speak at a future date,” according to a statement from the church.

The church on Thursday blamed news media for having “grossly misrepresented” Jeffress’ opinions and for putting pressure on Tebow.

It said: “The reason for the recent media fire storm is not because the Word of God has changed, but because society has changed.”

Jeffress on Thursday softened past statements he has made criticizing the Roman Catholic Church, but defended his position on gays and lesbians.

“I believe that homosexuality is a sin, just like adultery,” Jeffress told CNN. “Sex should be between a man and a woman. God created sex. He knows how it works best,” Jeffress said.

Tebow was a first-round draft pick in 2010 and the first college sophomore to win the Heisman Trophy, according to his website. Tebow was traded by the Denver Broncos to the Jets, but saw little playing time during the 2012 season.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Maybe he was trying to give her a "schtickle of fluoride"...
  • It's all fun, fun, fun, until her dad takes the T-Bird away for Shabbos.
  • "Like many Jewish people around the world, I observed Shabbat this weekend. I didn’t light candles or recite Hebrew prayers; I didn’t eat challah or matzoh ball soup or brisket. I spent my Shabbat marching for justice for Eric Garner of Staten Island, Michael Brown of Ferguson, and all victims of police brutality."
  • Happy #NationalDogDay! To celebrate, here's a little something from our archives:
  • A Jewish couple was attacked on Monday night in New York City's Upper East Side. According to police, the attackers flew Palestinian flags.
  • "If the only thing viewers knew about the Jews was what they saw on The Simpsons they — and we — would be well served." What's your favorite Simpsons' moment?
  • "One uncle of mine said, 'I came to America after World War II and I hitchhiked.' And Robin said, 'I waited until there was a 747 and a kosher meal.'" Watch Billy Crystal's moving tribute to Robin Williams at last night's #Emmys:
  • "Americans are much more focused on the long term and on the end goal which is ending the violence, and peace. It’s a matter of zooming out rather than debating the day to day.”
  • "I feel great sorrow about the fact that you decided to return the honor and recognition that you so greatly deserve." Rivka Ben-Pazi, who got Dutchman Henk Zanoli recognized as a "Righteous Gentile," has written him an open letter.
  • Is there a right way to criticize Israel?
  • From The Daily Show to Lizzy Caplan, here's your Who's Jew guide to the 2014 #Emmys. Who are you rooting for?
  • “People at archives like Yad Vashem used to consider genealogists old ladies in tennis shoes. But they have been impressed with our work on indexing documents. Now they are lining up to work with us." This year's Jewish Genealogical Societies conference took place in Utah. We got a behind-the-scenes look:
  • What would Maimonides say about Warby Parker's buy-one, give-one charity model?
  • For 22 years, Seeds of Peace has fostered dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian teens in an idyllic camp. But with Israel at war in Gaza, this summer was different. http://jd.fo/p57AB
  • J.J. Goldberg doesn't usually respond to his critics. But this time, he just had to make an exception.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.