An Alabama church is coming under fire for a sign on its billboard that compared Roy Moore, the state’s controversial Republican Senate candidate, to Jesus.
Last week, the sign at Living Way Ministries in Opelika featured this message: “They falsely accused Jesus! Vote Roy Moore.”
The political message sparked some blowback on the church’s Facebook page.
It’s also possible the message violated Internal Revenue Service rules governing political speech by churches and charities.
The IRS code prohibits organizations exempt from income tax under section 501(a) or section 501(c)(3) from participating in, or intervening in any political campaign, in favor of or against any candidate for public office.
However, the organizations can host forums including all candidates or take positions on policy issues.
Living Way Ministries now is doing some damage control.
One church official told Huntsville-based station WHNT-TV that a congregation member posted the message without telling the pastor, who had it removed two days later.
Church officials did not immediately respond to a HuffPost request for comment.
At least nine women have accused Moore, a former judge, of sexual harassment and assault when he was in his 30s. Several of the women said they were teenagers when he pursued them decades ago.
Moore, 70, has denied all the accusations and called his accusers liars, even those who have provided evidence of their time with the candidate.
Moore is opposed by Democrat Doug Jones in a Dec. 12 special election.
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.