CLIO, Mich. — Rhyan Glezman, an evangelical pastor who is also the “brother-in-law” of Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, has been speaking out after Buttigieg recently used the Bible to support his views in favor of abortion “rights,” suggesting that the Scriptures can be read by some to say that life doesn’t begin until one takes their first breath.
“My brother-in-law needs to repent from this radical false teaching,” Glezman, the senior pastor of Clio Community Church of God in Michigan, posted to social media on Friday. “God does not endorse this nonsense. Only false religion does.”
Glezman was referring to Buttigieg’s interview with “The Breakfast Club,” in which he discussed various issues, from homosexuality to religion in politics. Buttigieg is a homosexual and is “married” to Glezman’s brother, Chasten.
“[Republicans] hold everybody in line with this one piece of doctrine about abortion, which is obviously a tough issue for a lot of people to think through morally. Then again, there’s a lot of parts of the Bible that talk about how life begins with breath, and so even that is something that we can interpret differently,” Buttigieg said at one point during the radio show.
“No matter what you think about the kind of cosmic question of how life begins, most Americans can get on board with the idea of, ‘Alright, I might draw the line here; you draw the line there.’ But the most important thing is the person who should be drawing the line: … the woman making the decision,” he continued. “Since when should men be dictating what women ought to be able to do?”
Glezman says that he feels compelled to speak out about the matter in light of what Buttigieg suggested, which he believes is a “manipulation” of the Bible.
“God places a very high value on all human life,” he told the Washington Examiner. “Everyone is created fearfully and wonderfully in the image of God with intrinsic value. That doesn’t start at the first breath. It starts when we enter our mother’s womb.”
“If we’re going to say we’re for all people and we love all people, but we don’t value human life in the womb, that’s being a hypocrite,” Glezman said. “You’re hypocritical if you don’t stand up for all life. So that’s why I’m speaking out.”
Minutes after making his abortion remarks during the “Breakfast Club” interview, when asked if he believes if God cares about politics, Buttigieg said that God cares about how men treat each other. He pointed to the words of Abraham Lincoln, who said that men should seek to be on being on God’s side rather than working to get Him on their side.
“Lincoln talked about — I think during the Civil War — [how] everyone wants to call God onto their side, but we should spend less time praying to get God on our side and more time figuring out if I can get on God’s side,” Buttigieg noted. “And that’s how I come at this.”
“The funny thing about praying is that sometimes we do it in the sense of telling God what to do,” he also remarked moments later. “I think it ought to be more a process where we’re deciding how to align ourselves, how we tune our own hearts. If we’re going to pray for our politics, let’s pray for ourselves to walk in a way that is better for humanity on all sides of our politics.”
Glezman said that he loves Pete, but is concerned with Buttigieg’s use of Christian terminology to justify his liberal policies, such as those on abortion and homosexuality.
“Anyone who makes those claims, anyone who’s going to weaponize the [Bible] in that way, I would say to anyone that you need to repent. This is leading people astray and it’s very, very dangerous,” he stated.
Buttigieg commented during the interview that he believes Republicans have used “faith as a way to order people into living their lives a certain way.”
Conversely, Glezman, who suffered division in his family when he became a Christian, said that it is the liberals who are rather pressuring people of faith. He compared those such as Buttigieg to the Pharisees of Jesus’ time, as they came up with their own human rules and traditions, which superseded God’s commands and made the Word of God “of no effect” (Mark 7:13).
“In their eyes, if we don’t celebrate or endorse their marriage views or their abortion views, then all of a sudden we become the homophobic bigots, which is just not true. You can love people and have a disagreement,” he told the Washington Examiner.
“And that’s what I’m seeing with this false religion,” Glezman stated. “That’s why I compared them to the Pharisees of today, with their new laws that they’re trying to instill. And they’re saying, ‘If you don’t believe the way I do, then you’re a hateful, bigoted person; you’re homophobic, you’re anti-woman.’ It becomes this hostile division.”
He urged followers on Friday to pray for Buttigieg, and posted a Scriptural reminder on Sunday from 2 Timothy 4:3, “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions.”