Fundamentalist Pastor Greg Locke Justifies Divorce From His Wife

pastor greg locke

Greg Locke, famous for his insane sermon videos about everything from Starbucks’ cups to Target’s bathrooms, evidently has divorced from his wife and taken up with a new woman — his secretary. Locke, pastor of Global Vision Bible Church in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, took to the pulpit to defend (without mentioning it) his pending divorce:

Video Link

Locke is right about many things he says in this video. People shouldn’t stay married to abusers and the like just because some preacher (or the Bible) told them to do so. Life is too short to spend it mired in unhappy, loveless marriages. The problem, of course, is that Locke is a Bible-thumping Evangelical who supposedly believes the Bible is the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God, and the Bible is clear: God hates divorce; Moses permitted male (not female) Israelites to divorce only because of the hardness of their hearts; Jesus gave only one grounds for divorce, adultery. And the Bible is also clear that Evangelicals who divorce are forbidden to marry again; and that remarrying is adultery, an act the Bible says damns a person to hell. It seems, then, that Locke is not such a big Bible believer after all, that the Spirit that leads him is his Holy Dick, not the Holy Spirit.

I have no idea about how Locke and his wife got along with each other. Maybe their divorce was justified. But, if a man is going to stand in the pulpit and say, THUS SAITH THE LORD, then he sure as heaven should believe every word of the Bible and practice it in his day-to-day life; and if he doesn’t he shouldn’t be surprised when he is called a skirt-chasing hypocrite.

According to Fundamentalist website Pulpit & Pen, Locke’s wife was the one who filed for divorce, and the good pastor just went along with it so he could get a quick dissolution of their marriage. On to new things — a new woman and a new car:

Indeed, it was Locke’s wife who filed for divorce, citing “irreconcilable differences”. However, court records clearly show that Locke responded in agreement. In arranging what could fairly be called a “quickie divorce” Locke filed documentation with the court stating that his marriage was “irretrievably broken”. There is nothing in Locke’s divorce papers that indicate he took action to fight the divorce proceedings or demand a trial. Locke signed a Marriage Dissolution Agreement. If that’s not taking action to “divorce his wife”, no matter who filed first, then what is?

A trail of witnesses from Mt. Juliet, to Mufreesboro, to the out-of-state women’s shelter in which Melissa now resides contend that Locke coerced his subservient and obedient wife into filing divorce in order to preserve for himself the claim that he was “abandoned”. These same witnesses contend that Locke basically ordered his wife out of the state of Tennessee. The traumatized woman is now isolated far away from her home and her family. Locke is still in close proximity to his church secretary, Tai McGee. The mandatory waiting period required by Tennessee law to make Locke’s divorce final has not elapsed.

Christians still following Greg Locke’s internet antics and attending his church should ask themselves if Locke is worthy of their time and generous donations. As an outspoken moralist, Locke’s actions towards his wife (and his secretary) are on display for the lost world to see and mock. Rather than condone his continuing pastorate, Locke’s familiars would do well to encourage him to repent and reconcile with his wife.

Indeed, those of us in the “lost” world are enjoying the spectacle, including Fundamentalists eating one of their own. It also seems, at least to me, that Locke’s ex-wife put his preaching into practice by divorcing his sorry ass. There will come a day — hopefully soon — when the former Mrs. Locke will be very glad that she jumped off Greg Locke’s crazy train and ran for her life.

As for Locke, he wants the world to know that his affair with his secretary is justified, as is his divorce from his wife. After all, his Ex is crazy:

She’s been in and out of mental health facilities but that is not where she is right now. She is at a place that helps ladies get on their feet again. The only reason why she is there is that the lady who runs it is like her grandmother, and so she’s there. She’s only there because of the comfort…It is a shelter there is no doubt. But it’s not something like a homeless shelter. She’s with the lady who runs the place.

Nice guy, right?

If you have the stomach for it, I encourage readers to read Pulpit & Pen’s latest article on Locke. Keep in mind the purveyors of Pulpit & Pen live for opportunities to expose sin and heresy among the faithful. In Locke’s case, this is a matter of believing the message regardless of the messenger. What matters is whether they are telling the truth, and it seems in this instance Pulpit & Pen is telling the truth about Locke, his wife, his girlfriend, and his recent divorce.

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24 Comments

  1. Rachel

    If this couple are miserable together, it’s better that they aren’t together. I am hope (against hope?) that this experience will soften his attitudes towards OTHER couples who divorce.

    His remarks about his wife’s mental health issues are nasty. If they are any sort of emasure of him, then she really is going to benefit from the end of the marriage.

    Reply
    1. howitis

      I suspect he is the cause of his wife’s mental health issues, honestly. He sounds like a textbook malignant narcissist. He maybe not be physically abusive (though I would not be surprised at all if he was), but he is almost certainly mentally and emotionally abusive.

      Women don’t turn up and women’s shelters, just to “get back on their feet,” especially out-of-state ones. They go because they are in sick, abusive relationships, and because they are terrified of their partners. I spent some time volunteering at a shelter for abused women; we had plenty of physically abused women, but we had plenty of women who were beaten down mentally and emotionally as well. I also remember the woman who turned up at our shelter, 1,000 miles from where she lived; she said she didn’t dare go to a shelter in her home state, because her husband was a prominent law enforcement official there, and she knew he had the ability to track her down at any shelter in that state…and she was terrified of what he might do to her if he found her. This could well be a similar situation.

      My sympathies lie with this asshole’s wives, both his ex, and his new one. I have no doubt he will abuse the new wife exactly like he did his ex-wife. Guys like this don’t change their stripes, ever. And churches are full of them….

      Reply
  2. Lynn123

    Wow. It’s like a soap opera with God as one of the characters. So, you have a difficult marriage, as many people do. But you’re in this religious world, so you can’t just try to figure out what to do like normal people-you have the religious stuff you’ve been taught all mixed in with it. Talk about confusion! What you usually hear within religion is that marriage is a good thing and there are all kinds of great reasons for not dissolving it-generally good, common sense advice.

    But here, you have this guy obviously tickled pink to be free of his marriage-it was holding him back, God didn’t like that-God had in fact been trying to tell him all along to move on-lol-I mean, wow. This is a new angle-those in the pews must be mighty confused by what the heck it is exactly that God wants for them.

    Also not classy for him to even imply publicly that there is anything wrong with his wife. And aside from the fact that he’s assured you that he’s got God’s stamp of approval on whatever he’s doing (lol)-if he wanted to say something publicly about it all, he could just say it in plain English-not all this vague stuff where you have to read between the lines.

    In addition, you’d have to be an idiot to go to him for counseling after hearing this sermon. Imagine if you’re one of those guys who went to talk with him re your marital problems-then he mocks you in a sermon. Plus if you’re one of those guys, wouldn’t you have assumed that your pastor would try to help you figure out how to improve your marriage and would commend you for patiently hanging in there? Now he’s telling the whole congregation that you’re actually an idiot and need to call her bluff and quit jumping thru hoops. Confusing, yes? I think people should use their own good judgement, talk with a wise older person, talk with a therapist, etc. AND to keep their sanity-leave out God as one of the characters in the soap opera. Don’t explain to the world that God approves of whatever you’re doing. Cause then you’re the one that looks like an idiot.

    Reply
  3. maura a hart

    they’re miserable because she is brainwshed and he is an asswipe

    Reply
  4. ObstacleChick

    Oh, boy, I read the “Pulpit & Pen” article too – it sounds like a cross between an expose article and a gossip column….but in any case, if one strives to be prominent in a judgmental religion, one must live up to the standards of the religion or else face judgment.

    It is very sad how these people weave their religious strictures through human relationships, and how they choose to react and talk about their relationships using the religious terminology and “guidelines”. Human relationships are difficult enough without adding interpretations of books written 2000 years ago at a time when most were illiterate and uneducated and women were considered property. What a great basis upon which to form one’s relationships.

    I do feel sorry for the wife and children who are going through this. Locke wasted no time outing his wife’s legitimate struggles with mental illness. I guess that sends a message to his congregation that if they are married to someone with mental illness, no worries, just divorce the spouse and get a new model.

    Reply
    1. ObstacleChick

      The video gave me flashbacks to years growing up in a Southern Baptist Church in Tennessee. As my mom would have said, Lordy Mercy!

      Reply
  5. Becky Wiren

    A lying, hypocritical fundamentalist pastor? So it isn’t so! Seriously, this dude is a piece of, well, excrement. Smearing his wife all over the place? Lovely.

    Reply
  6. Angiep

    I don’t understand how people give any credit to this guy. He’s a kook. Why can’t he eat or sleep? Because of all the stuff god is “downloading” into his head? Looks to me like he’s high on coke or something. Seriously. And he did the unforgivable – spoke of himself in the third person. That’s a sign of a narcissist in my book. He talks way too much about himself. I’ve been out of the church for over 25 years now, and I did not realize this is what sermons sound like now. Still as nauseating as the old style, but I guess it resonates with the young people. You need that if you don’t want your church to die. I did find myself lol’ing when he said he’s seen too many marriages ruined by PORNOGRAPHY!!

    Reply
  7. Rebecca

    What a sad situation for both this man and his wife. I sense underneath all of this, he is really hurting and confused.

    It is no easy thing to live with someone with serious mental illness. In our extended family, we experienced this around severe bi polar disorder. My nephew’s wife refused to continue with her medication. After seven years of counseling, both realized that they could not continue to do this anymore.

    And, in extreme cases, especially where there is abuse, I think divorce can be the lesser of the evils.

    Perhaps through this whole thing, Pastor Locke will grow into a more humble and compassionate person. Sometimes it is those who have experienced great brokenness that are most able to minister to those who in need.

    I think it is very sad when Christians of any stripe want to “eat their own” rather than to respond with compassion and understanding. This is not the same thing as justifying the behavior if it is indeed harmful to others or even self destructive.

    Reply
    1. Brian

      Rebecca, the very tragic reality is that the ‘compassion’ the Christian shows can be a denial of simple, balanced reality. I listen to this character howl away on the stage and strut his shepherding in such a manner that it seems very clear to me that he is a bully. He rails on about people in relationships being held back by their spouse! Don’t you see the obvious narcissism at the very least and very possibly even a sociopathic attitude? Held back? Why choose such a phrasing as if somebody has tied him up and is keeping him a prisoner. And yet you talk of how he might become a more compassionate person through his brokenness… I don’ t agree,though I think brokenness can lead to more healthy living, sure. But his tiread makes him appear to be intent on going forward as he is! He will get rid of his problem to discover another problem that holds him back. This is not insight and the sick sick thing is how he uses his selfish needs to preach how we have to embrace our Jesus and get past our personal relationships. This is sick Christianity, entirely Biblical as he reads it. People love this stuff because it helps them hurt themselves and continue to live in denial. You talk of how it grieves you to see Christians cannabilize their own. It grieves me too and and it saddens me to hear you soften the reality of it. Can responding with compassion and understanding also be not accepting everything that comes your way but crying out in resistance and saying ‘No!”? I cannot tolerate this kind of manipulation and hatred called Christian love. It is so far from genuine human love that it makes me guffaw and get grumpy. We are indeed broken, my blog friend, all of us and Christianity says it is because we are born that way. I say bullshit. We are broken because of the failure of human love in our lives, because some of us have been told we are evil from birth and we have been set in second place by our parents so that they can give themselves to God Woo, to Woo Woo God. We are broken because we are harmed in human life, not by devil Satan before birth. If one believes that shit, then one can sit and actually listen to wack-brains talk about Starbucks cups and bathrooms and actually take it seriously. Very sad. Why do you support these people? Do you? Is it an effort to see good at any cost? Is it you saying that all life is precious in the same sense it was stated in The Walking Dead series? Do you believe the stuff about divorce being fundamentally wrong, a sin? I am just curious to go a bit into it if you care to but please nevermind if my thoughts are troubling to you. You seem a very caring person and you remind me of myself about forty years ago…

      Reply
      1. Rebecca

        Hi, Brian, I’ll do my best to respond, although it is difficult to talk across these blogs. I find that a lot can get lost or misunderstood in the interchange.

        I certainly agree with you that this pastor appears to have some really deep problems and issues. I’m not trying to minimize that. However, I don’t think anyone is beyond God’s grace or healing. It is difficult to know if he will learn and grow from this sad situation in the long term, or will simply
        as you say, go forward as he is. I don’t know. I care about Pastor Locke as a brother in Christ. That doesn’t mean I support all of his actions, or feel that he should not be held accountable.

        However, the way I personally take hold of the Christian faith is very different from this brother. For instance, I’m not completely certain what he means, by running hard after God. I think God has already found us, and we can simply rest in that. I don’t see a division between the secular and the sacred. So, to me spending time and nurturing one’s own children is as important and as much a service to God, in a sense, as preaching sermons and leading Bible studies. If anything, it is more important, really.

        I also think I”m praising God, and enjoying Him when I’m out in nature as well. “It is in Him that we live and move and have our being.” It’s more in resting in Him, rather than in striving to please Him, if this makes sense.

        I think a failure of human love is one very good way to conceptualize sin..I also think sin is doing harm to ourselves and others. To me there is this paradox, that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made, ” a blessing, but flawed and broken at the same time. This doesn’t feel me with self loathing. It just means that there are areas in my life, in all of our lives that need restoration and healing. None of us can claim the perfect love of Christ in our lives. We are works in process.

        I don’t look for demons beyond every bush. It is easy to say “the devil made me do it,” when in reality we need to bear responsibility for our own actions.

        This concern about Starbuck’s cups and who should use the public restrooms is pretty much a non issue for me. Starbucks has great coffee. I don’t care what type of cups they want to use. Also, I wish we didn’t have public restrooms assigned by gender at all. Nothing is more irritating than to have to wait in a long line outside the woman’s bathroom when no one is using the men’s room at all. Just put doors down to the floor in all the stalls, and I’m good to go. Seriously. 🙂 So much of this is a “tempest in a teapot.” I have no difficulty at all if a trans gender person is sharing the restroom with me.

        I do think that God’s ideal will is not for people to divorce. I’m sure God would want marriages to flourish, and where they are broken to be healed and restored. But, we live in a fallen world, Brian. This is not always possible especially in cases relating to serious abuse. It takes both parties to want to work on a relationship. I, myself, am married to a man who had been divorced, and have three step children, so I know that even through divorce, God is faithful, and can bring blessing. People deserve another chance.

        I don’t know, Brian, if I’ve covered all of your questions and concerns. Perhaps the center of this is that fundamentalist Christians have a very different view and way of using Scripture than people who are more in the mainstream thought of the church. This doesn’t mean, though, that I don’t consider them my brothers or sisters in Christ, or feel that they have nothing positive to say at all. We should “eat the fish, and spit out the bones.”

        I think we should call out spiritual abuse where it’s found, but also care deeply about both the victims and the abusers.

        Thanks for responding. Hope we get to talk and share more in the future, Brian. It is always good for us to dialogue, and come to deeper understanding together.

        Reply
        1. Brian

          Thanks Rebecca, I am in much agreement with you until you involve God but to my mind, that is a small matter. I am delighted to feel comfortable with belief providing it is used to help the self in terms of compassion and being aware of the neighbor. I do feel that it is used in wildly unhealthy manners when it is manipulated to cover numan weakness. We are not perfect but we are not flawed and fallen as Christianity teaches. We are harmed, each of us and have opportunities to remedy to osme extent that harm done. The advice, ‘first, do no harm’, makes very good sense to me but not to be like the fella you worship whose father was a absentee love…. or, if you insist (the father being the son and the son the father) then the father thought some sick stuff about letting himself essentially be murdered by dingdongs to save you and me! (Wait, I think that exclamation mark should be a question mark.) I find Christianity more and more odd as I grow older but it pleases me to no end that there are believers like you whe seem to take the harm in it (that I see as inherent) and reduce its viral possibilities by pragmatic, very human use among us. I used to believe very much as you do now but I am afraid the emperor still has no clothes, Rebecca. He’s as naked as the the day. When you suggest that all of us are worth something, even the worst of us (I’m paraphrasing), I agree, of course. Nevertheless, I wish men like the right reverend Copeland would take his Cirrus jet and try to fly it to the moon, believing he could be ther first there to evangelize. And I wish the wife of the pastor, Greg Locke, congratulations on having been dumped by Greg. She will see that being faithful to somebody as damaged as Greg, is not a cure and she will be stronger because of it, even more faithful in relationship to someone else who deserves it (preferrably a real human and not an imaginary one). That’s my take on the Locke story above and I realize that it involves some surmising. We don’t know anything about the wife here and how she held poor Greg back in his love of the saviour. Frankly, the way he expressed all this, completely turned me from him and made me want to protect those near him.
          Thanks for the response, Rebecca. I apologize if i have spoken of your belief in some snarky manner. I was brought up inside fundamentalism and will forever probably need to be somewhat harsh and sarcastic about it sometimes.

          Reply
          1. Rebecca

            No worries, Brian, or need to apologize. I understand that you are speaking honestly from your heart, are concerned, and have the best of intentions.

  8. Anonymous

    Same thing pretty much happened to me after 24 years of marriage and three children, except my pastor husband was not as “big time” as Greg Locke. He committed adultery with a member of the church who also was my very best friend. I spent three days in a mental institution only to be told by each of the five doctors who evaluated me that I was not crazy and that I had just experienced one of the worst things a woman who had been married for 24 years could experience. He married this woman and still remains the pastor at “his” church, because he owns the building and handles all finances. God has been good to me – blessing me with a wonderful, loving husband who too suffered from a spouse of 21 years leaving him for another man. God has the final answer and everything that is done in secret will come out one day.

    Reply
    1. Lynn123

      Anonymous, I’m sorry that happened to you. Watching him try to spiritualize it all must be quite sickening.

      Reply
      1. Rebecca

        Years ago I remember a man sharing after leaving his wife of twenty some years for a much younger woman that God never actually married them anyway. Huh. Why not just tell the truth?

        Our marriages are precious and require ongoing maintenance and loving effort, never to be taken for granted.

        Reply
    2. Kay

      Anonymous, you mentioned that you spent 3 days in a mental hospital after the separation from your ex-husband. Out of curosity, did your ex-husband have you involuntarily committed to that hospital against your will? Or did you admit yourself into the hospital?

      Reply
  9. Steve

    “Holy dick”, oh dear lord! You’re killing me, bro! HAHAHAHHAHAAAAA!!!

    Reply
    1. Lynn123

      lol, exactly

      Reply
  10. Lynn123

    I was just re-watching this and now it’s cracking me up. I’m imagining Bruce watching it and laughing too. Why? Because I think men would really quickly see thru all this guy’s bullshit about his situation. I mean he’s up there with a straight face explaining how it’s all about him having an extremely deep love for Jesus?! Give me a break. Now that he’s rid of an annoying wife, I’m hoping his girlfriend decides to dump him because she wouldn’t want to get between him and Jesus cause that might slow him down. Wouldn’t want that! In fact, shouldn’t he truly go all the way and take up the celibate life so he can have total devotion to Jesus?

    I bet even the guys sitting there nodding understand the real deal.

    Reply
  11. maura a hart

    2 things, there never was an emporer, he had not ever had clothes. there was some ignorant cave men and women who mythologized an “emporor and gave him mythical powers” of course since “empore” r was male it was clear from that to the ignorant cave people that men were dominant and it has ever been thus. what you see there in that video is the modern form of cave man exploiting “emperor” for all he wants. he;s done with first wife, time to denigrate everything he praised about her last week. time for a new vessel. his audience is transfix ed since they have been indoctrinated since birth and they all adore and agree with him. as far as they are concerned he is the embodiment of “emperor”. it happens like this all over” emperordom” thus people with dicks act like greedy powerul dicks they are and women bear the children, bruises and broken bones

    Reply
  12. Ian for a long time

    This was a new one for me. Justifying divorce because God was cutting away the dead wood. Your love for Jesus should mean everything else goes away.

    Too bad Jack Hyles didn’t think of this.

    Reply
  13. Anonymous

    I believe Pastorious Greg got a younger model and decided to make himself look blameless
    blamed his wife. If he can throw her under the bus for mental illness then it takes the focus off him…sonhe thinks!
    Just own it! If you made a mistake, ask for forgiveness and go on but don’t try being the
    victim! Clearly you’re not,
    I believe it’s truly a blessing in disguise that he left her, I also believe he’s the reason for her mental issues!
    Last but not least….the thing that amazes me is how she was perfectly good enough and her illness apparently wasn’t a problem while he was “working his way up” but now that the church has grown it’s a problem! Years and four children later! How convenient for him.
    So,in the end….she’s the winner

    Reply
  14. Mark R

    Actually P&P has doubled down and has now established a GoFundMe account for Melissa (the link is on their website). P&P states that they will send a “polite card with a Scripture verse” to Greg for every donation.

    I think that every atheist/humanist/agnostic should send a donation, just so P&P can stick it to Greg that even unbelievers don’t like what he did.

    Reply

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