Theologically Sound. Culturally Relevant.

Jonathan Pokluda

Is Jonathan Pokluda A False Teacher?

Category 1

Verdict: Jonathan Pokluda is a trendy megachurch pastor who has entertained the heresies of others, but the evidence of being a false teacher is insufficient.

Preface

Part of how this Discernment ministry operates is taking in reader questions about prevalent teachers. Pokluda has the most active requests. You can make a request here and see our answered verdicts here.

Biography

Jonathan Pokluda is an American pastor, author, and speaker. He was born on August 20, 1984, in Dallas, Texas. Pokluda grew up in a Christian family and gave his life to Christ at a young age. He attended Baylor University, where he earned a degree in business administration.

 After college, Pokluda worked in the business world for several years before surrendering to a call to ministry. He attended Dallas Theological Seminary, earning a Master of Theology degree. Pokluda began preaching and teaching at various churches and events during his seminary days.

 In 2012, Pokluda became the leader of The Porch, a young adult ministry at Watermark Community Church in Dallas. Under his leadership, The Porch grew to become one of the country’s largest and most influential young adult ministries.

Pokluda has written several books, including “Outdated: Find Love That Lasts” and “Welcome to Adulting: Navigating Faith, Friendship, Finances, and the Real World.” He has also been a featured speaker at various conferences and events, including the Passion Conference and the Catalyst Conference.

In 2020, Pokluda became the senior pastor of Harris Creek Baptist Church in Waco, Texas. He is married to Monica Pokluda, and they have three children together.

The Porch

Jonathan Pokluda founded and led The Porch, a young adult-focused parachurch ministry that met weekly. Though Jonathan Pokluda was the face of the ministry he was not the only one teaching there. Celebrity pastors often teach there, both men and women.

The Porch Taught Side B Theology

David Marvin who regularly preached at The Porch preached Side B Theology.[1] Marvin teaches that homosexual desires are not sinful. Marvin even specifies that identifying as gay is compatible with being a Christian. Marvin teaches that celibacy is the solution misapplying 1 Corinthians 7. Additionally, Marvin equates eunuchs to celibate sodomites.[2] This example is highlighted as Pokluda was leading The Porch at the time, so the teachings are Marvin are attributable to the beliefs of Pokluda.

Harris Creek Baptist Church

Harris Creek is a megachurch in McGregor, Texas. On paper, the church is orthodox with its orthodoxy. The website is not overtly heretical and there are no female pastors.

Branch Covidianism

It’s worth noting that Harris Creek Baptist Church locked down in 2020. Professing to be wise, they trusted the government and shut down their church.[3] Harris Creek Baptist Church received PPP Loans, and they were among the quickest in Big Eva to do so.

Egalitarianism

In a recent podcast, Jonathan Pokluda promotes egalitarianism in the viewpoint that women can be pastors but not senior pastors or elders, treating 1 Timothy 2:12 as a difficult passage.[4] Female pastors are treated as an agree-to-disagree issue, citing Gavin Ortlund, a theological liberal.[5]

Is Jonathan Pokluda Woke?

The question of whether Jonathan Pokluda is woke is worth asking as he clearly peddled the George Floyd Martyrdom narrative in 2020. In a June 2020 sermon, Jonathan Pokluda entertained the idea of interposing to save George Floyd while he locked down his church in disobedience to Scripture.[6] He promoted a sermon from Mike Kelsey, the woke pastor of McLean Bible Church.[7] In addition to promoting a woke pastor, he uses woke language like “people of color.”

Jonathan Pokluda and woke pastor Derwin Gray are “homies.”[8] Yet Jonathan Pokluda’s wokeness is unoriginal. He’s not someone driving Critical Race Theory in the church. He is someone going along with it, akin to Peter and the Judaizers.

Associations With False Teachers

Jonathan Pokluda has a long history of associating with false teachers. As previously mentioned, Pokluda promotes woke preachers like Derwin Gray and “torch all White people” Mike Kelsey.[9]

Some other false teachers Pokluda associates with are Jennie Allen, Craig Groeschel, and the liberal Josh Howerton, just to name a few of his recent podcast guests.

Glorification of Singleness

Jonathan Pokluda embraced the trend of trying to glorify singleness in response to young adult loneliness. Pokluda went on Allie Stuckey’s podcast and apologized on behalf of the church for having “incorrectly elevated marriage above singleness.”[10] Glorifying young singleness is a rather harmful deposition for the church to have which has been all to common in Big Eva the last several years.

Controversy

In early 2023, Jonathan Pokluda got into some rare controversy over describing an ideally attractive woman coming onto him early in his marriage. The point that he made was that the seductress woman hated him because she wanted to destroy his life.[11] Many feminists raged over this story causing Jonathan Pokluda to apologize.[12] So despite the fact that Jonathan Pokluda did nothing wrong, he still succumbed to online pressure from sex-hating feminists like Sheila Wray Gregoire.[13] This denotes incredible weakness on Pokluda’s part.

Conclusion

Little research has been previously done on Jonathan Pokluda, despite his prominence. This is likely due to his specific history of appealing to younger audiences. Indeed several of his books and sermons are geared towards young single adults, and his entire platform was built on young adult gatherings. Jonathan Pokluda is a trendy individual, almost a White version of Mike Todd. Whereas Todd published a book called Relationship Goals, Pokluda published one called Adulting capturing internet trends at the time.

Jonathan Pokluda is on paper orthodox. There is no evidence that he holds any heretical views on the Holy Trinity, Christ, or soteriology. Pokluda does not preach a false gospel. There is even some wisdom to be found in his teaching. He is relatively strong on the issue of abortion.

Pokluda’s associations with false teachers and false teaching are the most glaring evidence against his ministry. It was not Pokluda who taught Side B Theology at The Porch, yet he went along with it. It was not he who preached Critical Race Theory, yet he promoted the teachings of those who do. His numerous associations with false teachers indicate a negative trajectory. It’s worth noting that Evangelical Dark Web does not label people false teachers because of associations.

In conclusion, Jonathan Pokluda is a sanitized megachurch pastor who does not speak controversial truths. He locked his church down during Covid and proceeded to peddle wokeness. This is not a man who knows what time it is. The man possesses sufficient talent to excel as a pastor, however, lacks the necessary fortitude. Instead, he is closer to being a whitewashed tomb.


[1] Can Someone Be Gay and Be a Christian? | David Marvin Aug 2, 2018

[2] ibid

[3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f40cp7mn4Vc

[4] https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/becoming-something/episode-256-should-women-be-RovLX8zGBJ-/

[5] https://evangelicaldarkweb.org/2024/01/16/debunking-gavin-ortlunds-local-flood-liberalism/

[6] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyCl7AnfwHw

[7] ibid

[8] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZT0uO0_Xbg

[9] https://evangelicaldarkweb.org/2023/12/04/christianity-today-profiles-woke-new-lead-pastor-at-mclean-bible-church/

[10] https://twitter.com/BlazeTV/status/1384599109294858240

[11] https://twitter.com/LChas22/status/1626359788492791808

[12] https://baptistnews.com/article/pokluda-apologizes-for-hurting-women-with-sermon-illustration/

[13] https://baptistnews.com/article/can-pastors-please-stop-salivating-over-womens-bodies-in-sermons-a-response-to-jonathan-pokludas-objectification-of-the-perfect-woman/

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2 Responses

  1. His remarks on singleness, in the interview with Allie Beth Stuckey, were correct. For too long single individuals, particularly if older, such as myself, have been looked down upon. Over at another discernment ministry’s site, one troll decided to target me non-stop, putting me down not only for being old and single, but for being a virgin and for not being sexually immoral. Since the same troll also posted here a couple of times, I suspect it was someone from your readership.

    You know the church is in a sad state when your supposed brothers and sisters in Christ are berating you for NOT being sexually immoral.

    Add to that this notion of some, such as stephen wolfe, who are basically arguing if you don’t marry and have children, and, according to some, don’t make an effort to marry someone of the same skin color as you, then you are committing some sort of mortal sin. As if God has commanded that His church be built and grown by breeding. And as if the children born will automatically be saved. Such nonsense is nowhere to be found in scripture. It’s a bunch of Pharisaical hooey, making up a bunch of mess God never commanded, akin to saying one can only take so many steps on the Sabbath. And it is contrary to scripture such as 1 Cor. 7.

    Ray, it is not up to you to decide what does and does not put the Lord’s church in any sort of harmful disposition. It’s God’s church. Not yours. He decides, and He has decided.

    You might as well argue that God’s word puts His church in a harmful disposition.

    1 Cor. 7 is very clear. As far as I know, only one of the 12 apostles ever married. Jesus was single. Eleven of the twelve were single. Paul was single. All single. And none were sexually immoral.

    The scripture is not “glorifying” singleness, or saying that married people are lesser. Nor is it saying the reverse. It is not a sin to stay single. It is not a sin to marry. It is not a sin to marry someone with a different color of skin or ethnicity.

    1. It is not some sort of competition. It’s not our job to try to help the Lord win.

      He has already won.

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