British Baptist minister and social activist Steve Chalke has declared that God is "not a Christian".
In a tweet on Wednesday morning, Chalke argued that "God is not a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim, a Hindu, a Buddhist or a Sikh" but is instead "the author and lover of all humanity, regardless of our religion or belief, our race, age, sex, sexual orientation, marriage status, gender, ethnicity, abilities and disabilities".
The responses to his tweet were mixed, with many supporting his inclusive understanding of God as being sovereign over humanity's differing belief systems.
"'The Author and lover of humanity’ is always inclusive. Unfortunately, humanity often chooses to misinterpret the message," one person replied.
Others, however, were more critical of Chalke's sentiments. Another user wrote: "Sigh...where do I start? God is also the judge of all humanity. God clearly wants people to believe in his Son the Lord Jesus for salvation. God loves sinners but commands them to repent and trust in Christ."
Another user felt in agreement with part of Chalke's point while also feeling it missed an element of critical gospel truth, writing: "God is the author and lover of all. And all people can have some knowledge of God through natural theology and spiritual experience. But God is the Father, Son, and Spirit, and no others; and he has revealed himself personally in Christ alone."
Chalke has been involved in several theological controversies over the years. Back in 2003, he famously rejected the idea of penal substitution in his book 'The Lost Message of Jesus', sparking fierce debate about beliefs around atonement within the evangelical community.
Then, in 2013, Chalke publicly announced his support for monogamous same-sex relationships and marriage, after personally performing his first same-sex couple blessing ceremony at his church in 2012. Chalke has also rejected the idea of Biblical inerrancy, saying that Christians must "adopt an open, humble, discursive and transparent approach" to reading the Bible in order to "respond with integrity to the moral, social and political issues which face us as individuals, as local and national communities and as a global society as a whole".