A California pastor was forced out of his own church by followers who said they would leave if he didn’t. That pastor, as you may remember, put up a sign that said “Bruce Jenner is still a man.”
One day after we reported on the sign outside Trinity Bible Presbyterian Church, which also said that “God is good,” Pastor Justin Hoke resigned his position following an ultimatum from his own congregation. He later posted about his decision on Facebook.
As of today, I am no longer the pastor of Trinity Bible Presbyterian Church.
After much prayer and counsel, I have decided that it is best to briefly communicate what has taken place.
1. I was informed by our other elder that he felt he could no longer follow my lead as Pastor of TBPC.
2. I was informed that essentially all but one couple in membership would leave the church if I continued as pastor of TBPC.
3. Our other elder and the couple felt that those who left would likely return if I would leave.
4. Our other elder was agreeable to stay and assume the pastoral responsibilities.
Therefore it was determined that it would be in the best interest of the local body for us (TBPC and the Hoke family) to part ways.Update 1/14/19
I would like to add this, I did not want to leave, I did not quit, and I was willing to stay.
Notice he says nothing about the message itself. He supported it before, he supported it after it was vandalized, and he hasn’t learned anything from the protests from LGBTQ people and church members themselves.
On Facebook, Hoke posted that he is also getting supportive messages. Though it seems likely many of those messages are coming from other anti-trans activists who have no connection to his church.
Many people have reached out asking if they could help me in some physical or monetary way. I am really thankful for such thoughts and offers.
But, I don’t want to use this 5 minutes of fame as a chance to capitalize on the sympathy and good will of others. The Lord has taken care of my needs.
Please pray that God would open more doors for me to preach the gospel, that is all I want or need.
It remains to be seen if he really doesn’t capitalize on his notoriety, but he seems shocked that his attention-seeking sign received attention. Oh well. Thoughts and prayers to him. And good riddance.