Pastor Michael Todd Apologizes For 'Extreme And Disgusting' Act Of Wiping Spit On Brother's Face

Transformation Church pastor Michael Todd preparing to put spit on his brother's face
Transformation Church pastor Michael Todd (left) preparing to put spit on his brother's face (right). |

Pastor Michael Todd from Transformation Church in Bixby, Oklahoma became the talk of the Internet on Tuesday when footage of him discussing his message on vision while wiping spit of one of his followers went viral. Many were concerned that his actions were unsafe amidst the coronavirus pandemic, which continues to rage on in the U.S.

According to the Christian Post, Todd referenced the Bible verse Mark 8:23, which tells of the story of Jesus healing a blind man at Bethsaida by spitting into his eyes. Todd underscored how Jesus refrained from embarrassing the blind man by healing him through his spit privately, not publicly.

"So He had to get him outside of what was comfortable. ... He wasn't going to not spit on him," Todd explained to the congregation. "He just didn't do it in front of everybody 'cause he didn't want their reputation or His reputation to be tarnished by what he had to go through to receive the miracle."

Todd then turned to an unidentified man standing next to him on the stage with eyes closed and demonstrated an act contrary to Jesus' teaching. The pastor spit into his hand, rubbed his spit together and lathered it across the churchgoer's eyes as the spittle spread across his face. The congregant then wiped some of it off his mouth. Most congregants watched in horror as this took place.

Footage of the odd reenactment made it online, where Christian writer and theology student Dante Stewart, author of "Shoutin' In The Fire: An American Epistle," described Todd's actions as spiritually and theologically abusive. On Twitter, Stewart wrote,

"That Mike Todd video has so many layers of terribleness wrapped up in it, I don't know even where to start. The audacity. The cult energy. The spiritual and theological abusiveness. The hocking and rubbing and spitting and deflecting. I couldn't believe my eyes. Ain't no way."

"This is more than terrible theology or performance or arrogant views of one's self and power. I don't know a word for this but it ain't nice or holy or pastoral or good," Stewart added. "It's abuse and trauma."

On Monday, Todd appeared to have come to his senses and issued an apology for his bizarre reenactment of a Bible verse on Sunday, a separate report from the Christian Post revealed. Todd took to social media to apologize to his 1.8 million and more followers after he was condemned for wiping spit from who turned out to be his own brother during Sunday's sermon.

"It's never my intention to distract others from God's Word and the message of Jesus...even with illustrations! I apologize for my example being too extreme and disgusting!" Todd tweeted on Monday afternoon. The Oklahoma pastor admitted that he watched the footage of his sermon and said that "it was disgusting" and "that was gross."

Todd explained that through his apology, he wanted to "validate everybody's feelings" and admitted that his act of wiping spit on his brother's face was a "distraction" from his true goal, which was to try to "make the word come alive" and make people understand Jesus' story. He added that he could be at times so "passionate" that he tries "to do extreme things to help people get it."

"Yesterday, I crossed the line," Todd admitted.