“You know how much self-control it took me not to choke her?” he said, clenching his left hand into a fist. Congregants laughed.
(Editor's note: No, we do not know how much self-control is required to keep a preacher from violently assaulting a woman. Presumably, ministering angels would play a hand in preventing something like that, but we feel certain that no angel in good standing would get within a mile of one of this guy's "sermons," though the other kind might.)
“And my big brother Matthew was there, protecting me. He could have just did one —” (here, Burden punches his palm) "— blow to the face and she would've been out cold for the rest of the night.” Then, he spoke in tongues.
(Editor's note: Based on his family tree, we regretfully confess to harboring some doubt that Matthew meets the qualifications for ministering angel in good standing.)
Burden didn’t respond to the Observer’s requests for comment.
This isn’t the first time the Frisco pastor has made headlines over violent words. Last year, he advised congregants to stock up on food and prepare to shoot intruders ahead of Joe Biden’s inauguration.
During his most recent Sunday sermon, Burden described “taking control” of the Denton County GOP meeting earlier that week. He recounts standing 10 feet from someone he dubs “Jezebel." Even though Burden doesn't say her name, Denton County Republican Party Chair Jayne Howell told the Observer by phone that she's fairly sure he meant her.
(Editor's note: For those who didn’t grow up in the church, Jezebel was a queen of Israel and wicked, murderous prostitute. She's one of many females whose stories offer valuable lessons about how one should behave. We're particularly fond of the anecdote in John 8:1-12, but perhaps Burden hasn't gotten that deep into the book just yet.)
As first reported by the Denton Record-Chronicle, Burden accuses “this Jezebel” of having a "bullying spirit." He then explains that some members “made her sit down” and prevented her from talking; they also appointed someone else to run the meeting.
“See, what I’m saying is, you’ve got to stop listening to the mocking and the Goliath, and those that want to cut your liver out,” Burden said, pacing the darkened stage. “You’ve got to tune that out.”
Burden then goes on to explain how David stood up to Goliath. Congregants similarly need to “get comfortable” confronting Goliath and “going toe-to-toe with Jezebel,” he continued.
“I'll teach you guys how to do this ... What I’m talking about is a bona-fide, Holy-Ghost, Elijah-and-the-prophets-of-Baal confrontation where God says we’re calling down fire on top of the Baal-worshippers,” he said. “And Jezebel — throw her out of the window and let the dogs eat her.”
“It just saddens me that this kind of rhetoric is preached from the pulpit." – Jayne Howell, Denton County GOP chair
(Editor's note: ICYMI, we reiterate: Burden is a Denton County GOP precinct chair.)
In response, Howell condemned the pastor's sermon as "extremely disturbing" in a letter addressed to party precinct chairs, elected officials and other “concerned Republicans.” The 65-year-old Denton resident notes that in the Bible, a righteous mob killed Jezebel in the same manner.
Burden is wrong about his claims of a decade of a bullying spirit, fraud and corruption within the Denton GOP, she wrote. “I will not stand and be a target of Brandon Burden's false accusation and lies,” Howell said. “His conduct is unacceptable.”
The Denton County GOP didn’t return the Observer’s request for comment.
The way Howell sees it, Burden’s anger stems from the fact that she’d rejected the filing of a county chair hopeful. Howell told the Observer that the person hadn’t produced the proper paperwork by the deadline, but some in the party still accused her of impropriety.
Howell said that for nearly four years, she’d worked “tirelessly” to build the party and was always respectful of others’ ideas. It saddens her to be slandered like this, especially given her track record promoting conservative principles and values.
Last summer, Howell announced that she wouldn’t be seeking reelection. She hopes that moving forward, the party will focus on its true priority: registering and mobilizing voters.
Burden’s Sunday sermon was “just so disheartening,” Howell added. “Our society has … brought so much awareness to [violence towards women],” she said. “It just saddens me that this kind of rhetoric is preached from the pulpit.”