Article By Rebecca Johnson // EEW Magazine News
After a clip of the 44-year-old Houston pastor’s sermon railing against “that perverted homosexual spirit” in the church appeared on YouTube Friday, Dec. 30, the backlash has been swift and widespread.
“I came to tell you about sin,” said the Love and Liberty Fellowship International leader in the fiery message. “That sin nature—that perverted homosexual spirit is the spirit of delusion and confusion—it has deceived many men and women and it has cast a stain on the body of Christ.”
In the snippet, Burrell, who has enjoyed a string of successful nationally televised performances of “I See a Victory” with producer-songwriter Pharrell, from the Hidden Figures movie soundtrack, was chastising professing Christians within her local assembly for choosing an openly gay lifestyle which the Bible speaks against.
The pointed sermon addressed the seeming epidemic in Christendom of folks purporting to follow the Bible, while engaging in same-sex relations, which Burrell believes is hypocritical and injurious to the witness of the church.
“You as a man, you open your mouth and take a man’s penis in your face, you are perverted and you better not tell me what thus saith the Lord," she said. "You are a woman and will shake your face in another woman’s breast, you are perverted. It has come to our church and it has embarrassed the Kingdom of God."
Speaking on Bishop Eddie Long's alleged homosexual affairs which he never denied and subsequent health challenges, as well as "delivert" Andrew Caldwell's media circus, she told believers that in 2017 those who feign righteousness while engaging in perversion will die.
Once misleading headlines, misinformation and negative reactions claiming that she condemned all gays to hell began popping up in cyberspace, the gospel-jazz singer shot down false claims in two separate Facebook Live videos Friday.
“I came on because I care about God’s creation and every person from the LGBT [community] and anything else—any other kind of thing that is supporting gay—I never said LGBT last night. I said S-I-N, and whatever falls under sin was preached,” said Burrell of her message.
Pointing out the fact that what was published on YouTube “wasn’t all I preached,” the embattled preacher said, “Isn’t that something? That is designed of the enemy to make it look like I have a personal agenda against people. It’s a heartbreak, but it’s the world we live in.”
Despite the difficulty of being misunderstood, Burrell maintains that she is fully aware that speaking her faith convictions as she feels divinely led carries risks.
“Don’t you understand I know that people are going to be mad? I have to do what God tells me to do and I’m passionate about what I do. And when people take it personal, especially if we’ve never met, you know that the enemy is setting that up,” she said.
To those who support the longtime artist in the midst of the controversy, she gave direct advice: “Don’t you dare be discouraged. Don’t you dare let what these people are saying [make you] think that it’s rocking my world. I’m not to be shaken, because I’m out here for God.”
For individuals attracted to the same sex, Burrell said, “To every person that is dealing with the homosexual spirit, that has it, I love you because God loves you, but God hates the sin in you and me—anything that is against the nature of God.”
The singer, oft compared to Ella Fitzgerald, wants it to be known that she does not discriminate against anyone because of their sexual orientation, nor does she feel it is her place to determine their eternal fate.
“There are a lot of people that I’m aware of that struggle, or deal, or have that spirit. Have I discriminated against them? Have I ever outright told them, ‘I don’t love you’ and ‘you’re going to hell?’ Who gives me the right to say that I’m telling someone that they’re going to hell? I don’t get that call. There’s a responsibility that we have in the church to represent the Almighty God,” she expressed.
For those who expected Burrell to backpedal under the glare of scrutiny, she said, “I don’t have to backtrack. Nobody’s backtracking.”
Before signing off, she expressed love for her more than 1 million followers and asked them to “pray for me,” adding, “I talk to the spirit of that thing and I won’t take it back.”