Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz, already endorsed by several homophobes from the religious right, has picked up one more, a minister who believes marriage equality is a harbinger of the end of the world.
Mike Bickle, director of the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Mo., has preached that marriage equality is a sign of the End Times — a period of great turmoil that some Christians believe will occur before the Second Coming of Christ — and that the Supreme Court’s affirmative decision on the issue will lead to Christians being jailed and pedophilia being taught in public schools. He announced his endorsement of Cruz for president Friday.
In a sermon shortly before the court’s ruling was announced, video of which was posted by Right Wing Watch, Bickle warned of grave consequences should same-sex marriage become legal nationwide. Christians who oppose marriage equality “will be labeled as a hate group,” he said, and “literally, it will become illegal activities to stand up and speak for the biblical view of these things.”
In public schools, he said, as early as elementary school “all the sexual options,” including “the transgender, the boy with boy, the girl with girl, the threesomes, the fivesomes … the young boy with the old man, the pedophiles, all of this will end up being presented as normative, acceptable, healthy sexual patterns.”
Several months after the ruling, he called it “a unique signal of the End Times.” He explained, “Two thousand years ago, Paul said, ‘In the latter times, there’s going to be a falling away and one of the signals of it is you will find governments forbidding marriage.’ Beloved, we are on the cusp of that happening right now. This is alerting anybody paying attention that we’re in a time frame where things are escalating according to these lines. This is a unique signal of the End Times and the forbidding of marriage is an escalator of the darkness of the End Times as well.”
Among Bickle’s other beliefs: that Oprah Winfrey is a forerunner of the Antichrist, an evil and deceptive being who will dominate the world before ultimately being defeated by Christ, and that for Jews who refuse to convert to Christianity, God will “raise up the hunters” to round them up and imprison them. “The most famous hunter in recent history is a man named Adolf Hitler,” he once said. On her MSNBC show Friday, Rachel Maddow pointed out these statements by Bickle and noted that while some past candidates have distanced themselves from religious extremists, Cruz welcomed Bickle’s endorsement enthusiastically.
Watch the sermon clips below, courtesy of Right Wing Watch, along with Maddow’s report.