50 snakes seized from ‘snake salvation’ church

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A Tennessee preacher known for handling poisonous snakes may have to find a new way to test his faith – wildlife officers seized 50 venomous snakes from the "snake salvation" minister.

"In my name they shall cast out devils, they shall speak with new tongues, they shall take up serpents," Pastor Andrew Hamblin said as he read from his Bible.

Hamblin of the Tabernacle Church of God of Campbell County, TN, takes the Bible literally, using serpents during his services.

On Thursday, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency came and confiscated all 50 of his snakes.

"They say, ‘you know why we're here?" and I said, ‘Sure do,'" Hamblin said. "They were asking me where I kept the snakes at."

Hamblin says he knew this day would come. In Tennessee, it is illegal to possess poisonous snakes, but he says the law is trampling on his religious freedom.

Written By: KCTV News
continue to source article at kctv5.com

11 COMMENTS

    • In Tennessee, it is illegal to possess poisonous snakes, but he says the law is trampling on his religious freedom.*

    Idiot. What about the snakes’ freedom? Why should they be abused by these crazy people. Thank goodness the snakes are out of this man’s clutches. I wish them long and happy lives.

  1. On another thread a person challenged the people here to illustrate and delineate places where the religious are allowed to clearly break the law and not be prosecuted. How long has this asshole been allowed to defiantly break the law? I am glad someone stepped up to enforce the law. It is NOT religious freedom; it is my RIGHT to safety and once again, if I gotta abide by the law, so do you.

    • You could direct this person to the article on faith-healing parents, who in Idaho are apparently allowed to kill their kids in just about every way but cutting off their heads with an axe in the name of religion.

      In reply to #3 by crookedshoes:

      On another thread a person challenged the people here to illustrate and delineate places where the religious are allowed to clearly break the law and not be prosecuted. How long has this asshole been allowed to defiantly break the law? I am glad someone stepped up to enforce the law. It is NOT re…

  2. I recently learned the reason there are not more fatalities in these snake handling cults is they abuse the snakes. They are crowded, malnourished and generally unhealthy. This weakens the venom and makes the snakes less aggressive.

    This may provide the means to shut these lunatics down.

    • In reply to #4 by Roedy:

      I recently learned the reason there are not more fatalities in these snake handling cults is they abuse the snakes. They are crowded, malnourished and generally unhealthy. This weakens the venom and makes the snakes less aggressive.

      Exactly, and when the snakes don’t bite the preacher or others in the church service that handle them that is used as evidence of the power of Gawd. Hallelujah! But really it’s just because the snakes are in poor health. It’s just another con job on the gullible, no different to all those faith healers and prosperity gospel peddlers.

  3. …he says the law is trampling on his religious freedom.

    Does he also think he should have the religious freedom to stone adulterers, have slaves or kill his wife on her father’s doorstep should he discover that she was not a virgin when they married? Get real buddy.

  4. A Tennessee preacher known for handling poisonous snakes may have to find a new way to test his faith – wildlife officers seized 50 venomous snakes from the “snake salvation” minister.

    “In my name they shall cast out devils, they shall speak with new tongues, they shall take up serpents,” Pastor Andrew Hamblin said as he read from his Bible.

    Did Pastor Hamblin end there? The full quotation is:

    “And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues. They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:17-18)

    The solution to Hamblin’s problem is right there in his Bible: he simply has to consume toxicants from now on instead of testing his faith by molesting our ophidian friends. Rat poison is readily available in most hardware stores. If the good pastor is on Facebook or Twitter, perhaps someone reading this could forward him my advice. Be sure to tell him no thanks are necessary; it’s reward enough to know one is helping animals and at the same time building bridges between the atheist and religious communities.


    Since I’ve performed my good deed for the day, I hope the mods won’t mind if I voice a brief, off-topic gripe concerning the Related Contact facility. The articles ‘related’ to this include one about Christians wanting supremacy over their fellows, a tragic piece about child abuse, a story about a referendum on same-sex marriage in the Balkans, and another about the American religious right’s move toward becoming more liberal in its stance on homosexuality. Only one of these seems even remotely related to the OP.

    Here is the actual related content, found by typing “snakes” into the search window; there are probably others which don’t contain that word in the title or opening paragraph:

    Serpent Experts Try To Demystify Pentecostal Snake Handling

    Snake Salvation: One Way to Pray in Appalachia

    Deadly Obsession

    That is all.

  5. In Tennessee, it is illegal to possess poisonous snakes, but he says the law is trampling on his religious freedom

    quite rightly. if relgious freedom was a universal right, there would be no laws.

    the law should protect people’s right to believe what they want and I for one suggest he buys himself some draught excluders to use in his ceremony. he could pretend they’re snakes. just needs a little faith

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