A BBC radio host has left his position and will “no longer be presenting his shows” following a heated clash with a Christian lawyer during which he repeatedly challenged her beliefs and called specific verses from the Bible “bigoted.”
Iain Lee, 42, has left the BBC’s “Three Counties Radio” show after reading 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 on air — verses that speak against homosexuality, among other acts deemed “sexually immoral,” and proclaiming, “That is bigoted.”
Verses 9-10 read: “Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”
Libby Powell, an attorney for Christian Concern, a faith-based organization in the U.K., pushed back against his contentions, the BBC reported.
Powell had appeared on-air to defend the Rev. Barry Trayhorn, a prison chaplain who claims that he was punished by officials for publicly sharing Bible verses opposed to homosexuality, and that he was forced to resign as a result of an uncomfortable work environment.
“His message was one of repentance from sin and as part of the verses he read, he did mention homosexuality as well as a host of other sins,” Powell said during the interview, with Lee responding that he believes “homophobia is bigotry.”
“Do you support bigotry?” he asked. “You’ve chosen not to question it, because you’re a bigot.”
Listen to the heated clash below:
Powell responded that the situation surrounding Trayhorn didn’t involve homophobia, but that it, instead, was an instance of him sharing “God’s word” with prisoners, according to the BBC.
“I guess you don’t know what the definition of bigotry is,” the radio host said at one point. “What he’s preaching is hatred.”
The BBC later called the interview “at several points inappropriate.”
Lee has since been retweeting supporters who have spoken out in his defense, including Leading Britain’s Conversation radio host Iain Dale.
— Iain Dale (@IainDale) November 16, 2015
“The BBC treatment of @IainLee is a disgrace,” Dale tweeted. “If I had said what he did and stood up to bigotry @LBC would have praised me, not sacked me.”
Front page image via Shutterstock.com.
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