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Ed Litton Plagiarism? New SBC President’s Church Deletes Over 100 Sermons After Accusations

Greear (2019): “Jen Wilkin, who’s one of our favorite Bible teachers here and who’s actually leading our women’s conference, she said we ought to whisper about what the Bible whispers about and we ought to shout about what it shouts about. And the Bible appears more to whisper when it comes to sexual sin compared to its shouts about materialism and religious pride.”

Litton (2020): “In the Bible, sexual sin is whispered, compared to the shout God makes about greed and judgmentalism.”

Greear (2019): “Throughout Jesus’ ministry in his life, we see him demonstrating great, just incredible sympathy, for those caught in sexual sin and great animosity toward the religiously proud. In fact, Jesus not one time ever say that it was difficult for the same-sex attracted to go to heaven. He did say it was easier for a camel to go through the eye of the needle then it was for a religiously proud or materialistically successful person to enter the Kingdom of God.”

Litton (2020): “Jesus forgave prostitutes, but he was harsh with religious materialists. Matter of fact, he said it will be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one of these.”

Greear (2019): “Only when we grasp this truth will we become ministers of the gospel, when we understand like Paul did that we are the worst sinner that we know. Only when you understand that will you understand that if Jesus came to die for you that there is nobody he didn’t die for.”

Litton (2020): “We can’t grasp this Gospel till we confess with Paul these words. In 1 Timothy 1:15, he says this is a trustworthy saying deserving full acceptance, that Christ has come into the world to save sinners of whom I am the foremost.”

Greear (2019): “Here’s the third way we go wrong. Number three, assuming it’s hard for LGBTQ people to get to heaven. Homosexuality does not send you to hell. You know how I know that? Cause heterosexuality does not send you to heaven.”

Litton (2020): “Thirdly we go wrong thinking LGBT people can’t go to heaven. Homosexuality does not send people to hell. How do I know that? Cause heterosexuality doesn’t send people to heaven.”

Greear (2019):Rosaria Butterfield, whose story I’ve shared with you before here. She was a practicing lesbian, very outspoken, professor of literature and women’s studies at Syracuse University. A culture warrior on the far left. She said it was Romans 1 that brought her to faith in Christ…’Homosexuality is not the core of our rebellion against God; a desire to be God is. A desire to be the one who get to declare good and evil, play judge rather than be judged. A desire to use God’s creation for our own gratification rather than with pleasure, for his glory.’ ”

Litton (2020): “She [Rosaria Butterfield] was a practicing lesbian in a committed relationship…and then she said, and I quote, ‘Homosexuality is not the core of our rebellion against God; a desire to be God is. A desire to be the one who get to declare good and evil, play judge rather than be judged. A desire to use God’s creation for our own gratification rather than with pleasure, for his glory.’,”

Litton Apologizes for Not Giving Greear Credit

Litton released a statement on Redemption Church’s website addressing the concerns regarding the similarities to Greear’s sermon on Romans 1.

“In preparation for our series on Romans, I used several resources to help me think through how to structure the series and how best to communicate the profound truths we encounter in these passages,” he said. Explaining his church uses a preaching team approach that includes eight men from their staff and congregation, Litton mentioned in their sermon prep process they listen to “strong communicators.” One of those communicators happened to be his friend J.D. Greear and his sermons on Romans. Litton said that he “discovered what he had recently preached resonated with the direction God was leading me and our preaching team. We often consulted his manuscripts along with other resources as we prepared.”

“I found that J.D. Greear’s message on Romans 1 was insightful; particularly his three points of application,” Litton said. Then revealed that he was granted permission by Greear to borrow “some of his insights and those three closing points.” Paul David Tripp’s story about idol worship in India that was used in Litton’s sermon was from Tripp’s devotional book, New Morning Mercies.

Litton also stated that they had Greear’s full permission to use “chapter and verse” breakdown of Greear’s Romans’ sermon series. “Out of a commitment to full transparency,” Litton said, “I have gone back through all the 46 sermons in this series. I have located in some places similar illustrations, quotes or points of application. One shares the same title, and one has a similar outline.”

He shared that pastors rely on scholars and other pastors for help communicating to their congregations the truth of the scriptures. “But I am sorry for not mentioning J.D.’s generosity and ownership of these points. I should have given him credit as I shared these insights.”

Litton said he “felt it important to address this in order to provide the truth and to take responsibility for places where I should have been more careful.” He reassured those in his congregation and churches within the SBC that he is “committed to being a man of integrity and humility. I will not waver from that as I lead Redemption Church to be Christ followers and the SBC to unite around her mission.”

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Jesse is the Content Editor for ChurchLeaders and Site Manager for ChristianNewsNow. An undeserving husband to a beautiful wife, and a father to 4 beautiful children. He serves as a deacon, a growth group leader, and is a member of University Baptist Church in Beavercreek, Ohio. Follow him on twitter here (https://twitter.com/jessetjackson)