"Fixer Upper" star Chip Gaines has issued a powerful response after he and his wife, Joanna, came under fire from the radical left for attending an evangelical church opposed to same-sex marriage.
As earlier reported, Buzzfeed and Cosmopolitan last week ran articles focused in on the views of the Gaines' pastor at Antioch Community Church, Jimmy Seibert, who in a sermon called homosexuality a "sin".
The controversial articles, which supporters of the HGTV couple have called a "political witch hunt", focus on the fact that Pastor Seibert, "takes a hard line against same-sex marriage and promotes converting LGBT people into being straight". The Gaines have been outspoken about their Christian faith, but have not publicly expressed their opinions about gay marriage.
However, Chip finally broke his silence with a simple but powerful tweet on Sunday morning: "In times of trouble.. you'll find the gaines family at church."
And, instead of repaying evil for evil, Chip urged supporters to respect the authors of the Buzzfeed and Cosmopolitan articles - even though many media experts and fans have called their pieces "off base" and a "non-story".
Meanwhile, the Gaines have received overwhelming support from a number of conservative and religious leaders, including evangelist Franklin Graham, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, Dr. Ben Carson, the Benham brothers, and others
"Chip and Joanna are a wonderful family, and Chip and Joanna are believers in Jesus Christ," said David Benham, who, along with his brother Jason, lost his HGTV show over his pro-life and pro-marriage beliefs. "They're not anti-anything. They're pro-God. They're pro-Bible. They're pro-people. They're pro-Jesus...what's happening right now is a witch hunt."
"HGTV will not fire them. I'm confident of that," he added. "The Gaines will not bend to this garbage pressure that's coming from this thought mafia that's forcing them to bow."
The Gaineses' pastor has also refused to bow to the demands of the radical left and has called on Christians to "stand together in the face of adversity."
"When I have a biblical conviction about my lifestyle choices or how I should run my business or how I should run my home, we should be free to do that - to lovingly express our views to the world around us," Seibert said in an interview with conservative pundit Todd Starnes.
The pastor, who has referred to the Gaines as "dear friends", told Starnes he has exchanged texts with the "Fixer Upper" couple following the controversy, but wouldn't reveal their contents.
"People don't know what the Bible says anymore on issues of sexuality," Seibert added. "People don't know what God says on homosexuality or any other issue. I felt the need to say we are all a mess - but the fixed points were set by God - not us."