Leading off his Sunday sermon at his Grace Community Church, influential Pastor John MacArthur cited new statistics from the CDC and declared, "There is no pandemic."
The congregation reacted with loud applause.
MacArthur, who has been embroiled in a heated back-and-forth with Los Angeles County about indoor worship amid state-ordered coronavirus restrictions, said from the pulpit:
"I don't want to offer myself as any kind of an expert, but a rather telling report came out this week, and, for the first time, we heard the truth. The CDC ... said that, in truth, 6% of the deaths that have occurred can be directly attributable to COVID. 94% cannot. Of the 160,000 people that have died, 9,210 actually died from COVID. There is no pandemic."
"We've all been suspicious of the fact that we've been meeting together now for weeks and weeks and weeks, and we don't know anyone who's ill. Nobody in our congregation has ever been to the hospital with this ...
We know there are reasons for this that have nothing to do with the virus. There's another virus loose in the world and it's the virus of deception, and the one who is behind the virus of deception is the arch-deceiver, Satan himself. And it's not a surprise to me that, in the midst of all this deception, the great effort that is going on is to shut down churches that preach the gospel."
? Grace Community Church's weekly attendance is roughly 6,000.