Tony Spell is not a revolutionary and neither are any of the people foolish enough to listen to him and attend a church service in the middle of a plague. A zealot he might be but as Calvin once said, zeal without doctrine is like a lunatic with a sword. Tony Spell is that lunatic right now. He is asked a very fair question about whether he would have blood on his hands if someone died from COVID after catching it at his church. His second response is simply reprehensible. That he feels his congregants should look at death as a welcomed friend. Trivializing the death of his sheep is something he will answer for when he stands before Christ. His first response however is worse because he cannot even see how he is mangling scripture to try and prove a point he does not have.
He quotes Psalm 23:4, the key verse for today but only quotes half of it. Yea though I walk through the shadow of death I will fear no evil for you are with me. First is the obvious problem that this Psalm is not recommending that people seek out the valley of death to walk through because God is with us. That is simply juvenile thinking to assume that because God is with us we should seek death out as if to test God. It is not wise to tempt the Lord your God, as Jesus told Satan during His own temptation. The portion Spell left out however is the imagery of the shepherd, with his rod and staff. These instruments were used to guide the sheep and ward off predators. Why did Spell ignore this part? Because it destroys his "they don't mind dying" narrative. The reality is that it is HIS job as their shepherd to protect and guide them. Not casually lead them to slaughter for his own self-glorification.
"This led to the following exchange: TMZ: You're saying that they wouldn't mind if they died?
SPELL: True Christians do not mind dying. They fear living in fear, [cowardice] of their convictions.
TMZ: So you're saying that you think that your parishioners would prefer to come to the service and potentially get coronavirus and die than not come to the service and be fine?
SPELL: A people that can prefer disgrace to danger are headed for a master and deserve one. People that prefer tyranny over freedom do not deserve freedom. People have been locked in their homes for 23 days now, like prisoners. The only vent that they have to their emotion is coming to the house of God and worshiping like free people." -- Pastor Tony Spell
Wow. What an utter pile of garbage. First of all, obeying the law and not helping to spread a worldwide contagion is not "living in fear of their convictions." It simple means being a good citizen and showing godly concern for our neighbors, which last time I checked was part of the greatest commandment. Secondly, the state asking for a temporary hold on public gatherings is not "tyranny." That is straight up NAR talking points. People have not been "locked in their homes." I just got home from a nice walk actually on a beautiful sunny day. The only escape they have is to violate the law, endanger everyone they may come into contact with all to attend your church? What an ego. We are the body of Christ, not some building in downtown New Orleans. If you cannot worship at home and must be in a gathering of 500 in order to worship, then it is not God that you are worshiping. Next, choosing to take the wise path is now a disgrace in the eyes of this hireling? Let me be clear for you Mr. Spell, sorry but you are NOT a pastor. It is a disgrace to lead people who rely on you for guidance into a situation where not only could they die but so could everyone they come into contact with after attending your service. What is a disgrace is to do so solely to gain notoriety and fame, hiding behind Jesus. Our Lord and Savior does not need you to hold your little service. It is not that important. You are not that important.
Perhaps the worst part here is that because Spell is so enamored with himself and this grand statement he thinks he is making he keeps missing the utter disbelief in the questions being asked of him by a secular reporter writing for a secular magazine. This is what it means when the bible says that false teachers will lead unbelievers to blaspheme the way of truth. I feel badly for the TMZ reporter because they must have been blown away by the careless and reckless answers from someone who claims to be a pastor.