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Speaking to FOX News Radio host Todd Starnes, right-wing Pastor Robert Jeffress insisted that climate change was a hoax and that 16-year-old activist Greta Thunberg would be better off reading the Bible instead of all those science books.

A meeting of the minds, this was not.

But in case you thought it couldn’t get any dumber, Jeffress also insisted that rainbows were proof that God isn’t going to destroy the planet.

“It was absolutely tremendous,” Jeffress said [of Donald Trump’s speech about religious freedom]. “The only thing more fun than listening to him is listening to the [liberals] whine that he had the audacity to skip the climate summit. I tell people all the time, ‘This president is brilliant.’ He decides to skip attending a session on an imaginary crisis — climate change — and instead he chooses to lead his own conference on a very real problem, global persecution.”

“God said he created the environment to serve us, not for us to serve the environment,” Jeffress replied. “This Greta Thunberg, the 16 year-old, she was warning today about the mass extinction of humanity. Somebody needs to read poor Greta Genesis chapter 9 and tell her the next time she worries about global warming, just look at a rainbow; that’s God’s promise that the polar ice caps aren’t going to melt and flood the world again.”

No one needs to read Thunberg anything; she can fend for herself just fine. Leave it to two white Christians known for their cult-like devotion to Trump and their repeated defense of conservative conspiracy theories to mock a child who’s actually changing the world for the better. Genesis 9, by the way, is also the chapter that says Noah lived to be 950 years old. That’s biblical wisdom for you.

Needless to say, rainbows aren’t a “sign” of anything other than “It must have rained a little bit ago.” Climate change is real and the Christians in power are foolish enough to think God’s Covenant is more than enough reason to ignore the mounting evidence of our own destruction. We need fewer pastors echoing their ignorance and more Thunbergs taking the world by storm.

This is also why so many young people are walking away from evangelical Christianity: If you listen to what its most prominent voices say, especially to a national audience, it’s almost always synonymous with ignorance, scientific illiteracy, condescension, and revulsion against any kind of decency.

If being a Christian means being like these guys, it’s not surprising when “No religion” becomes a more appealing option.

(via Right Wing Watch)

Hemant Mehta is the founder of, a YouTube creator, podcast co-host, and author of multiple books about atheism. He can be reached at @HemantMehta.

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