Far-left U.S. Sen. Rafael Warnock (D) of Georgia set off a theological bomb Sunday when he tweeted that "the meaning of Easter is more transcendent than the resurrection of Jesus Christ."
Warnock — who's also senior pastor of iconic Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, which Martin Luther King Jr. once led — also said in his now-deleted tweet that "whether you are Christian or not, through a commitment to helping others we are able to save ourselves."
Naturally many Twitter users took issue with the good reverend's jaw-dropping point of view, calling it "heresy" and "literally the opposite of what the Gospel says," among numerous other critiques.
Among Warnock's detractors was Jenna Ellis, who recently served as senior legal counsel and attorney for former President Donald Trump, and she called Warnock a "false teacher."
Joy Reid fires back
MSNBC's Joy Reid caught an eyeful of Ellis' response to Warnock and launched a defense on his behalf, saying she will side with Warnock since he's "a pastor and a scholar on the Word":
This lady is literally calling the pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church -- The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s churc… https://t.co/uUyItJPlyy— Joy-Ann Pro-Democracy & Masks Reid 😷 (@Joy-Ann Pro-Democracy & Masks Reid 😷)1617576456.0
Ellis replied mistakenly that Reid deleted her tweet — Reid did not delete it — and told the MSNBC host to "read your Bible, and you'd have known this was heresy and a false gospel."
Reid, of course, didn't like that one bit — and added a zinger directed at Trump and his supporters:
Nope. Deleted nothing. And I have read the Bible, dear - cover to cover; including the parts about idolatry and wor… https://t.co/9PcQTfU7vS— Joy-Ann Pro-Democracy & Masks Reid 😷 (@Joy-Ann Pro-Democracy & Masks Reid 😷)1617595655.0
"I have read the Bible, dear — cover to cover; including the parts about idolatry and worshiping false Gods," she wrote. "And to repeat: I will take @ReverendWarnock over you, who defended the right's literal golden calf, as an expert on the Gospel any day."
Reid also questioned Ellis' "credentials" to "debate theology" with Warnock — an "actual pastor." And Ellis replied with a zinger of her own:
I’m an actual Christian. https://t.co/cEz4559n6G— Jenna Ellis (@Jenna Ellis)1617594624.0
Ellis posted other tweets about the issue:
Trying to make this about race simply because he’s black is shameful. What matters is his heresy, not the color of… https://t.co/oaCqu7OKu6— Jenna Ellis (@Jenna Ellis)1617580656.0
"Trying to make this about race simply because he's black is shameful," she later noted. "What matters is his heresy, not the color of his skin."
This is also why it’s VERY important for Christians not to just defend anything and everything a Republican says or… https://t.co/algI7yhTKU— Jenna Ellis (@Jenna Ellis)1617598516.0
Let’s not forget that the “Reverend” Warnock is pro-choice, which is also against the Bible and moral truth. Warn… https://t.co/8GMkLp3Rx4— Jenna Ellis (@Jenna Ellis)1617593091.0
Warnock deleted his heretical tweet. He should delete Reverend in front of his name too. https://t.co/6FYNG6LFZ1— Jenna Ellis (@Jenna Ellis)1617583515.0
Warnock and fellow Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff won a bitterly contested Georgia runoff election in January that resulted in a 50-50 count in the Senate between Democrats and Republicans, effectively giving Democrats control since Vice President Kamala Harris holds the deciding vote.
But Warnock was met with plenty of opposition along the way, including from black pastors who criticized his outspoken support of abortion.
"We implore you to uphold the Biblical defense of life and to fight against the systemic racism of abortion," the letter from 25 pastors read.
Former NFL coach Tony Dungy also called out Warnock for his pro-choice views, saying "Rev. Warner may be a pastor. My question would be, 'Is he a Christian?' That is, does he follow the teachings of Jesus, and does he believe that the Bible is the absolute word of God?"