MONROE, Ohio – A six-story-tall statue of Jesus Christ with his arms raised along a highway was struck by lightning in a thunderstorm Monday night and burned to the ground, police said.
The "King of Kings" statue, one of southwest Ohio's most familiar landmarks, had stood since 2004 at the evangelical Solid Rock Church along Interstate 75 in Monroe, just north of Cincinnati.
The lightning strike set the statue ablaze around 11:15 p.m., Monroe police dispatchers said.
The sculpture, 62 feet tall and 40 feet wide at the base, showed Jesus from the torso up and was nicknamed Touchdown Jesus because of the way the arms were raised, similar to a referee signaling a touchdown. It was made of plastic foam and fiberglass over a steel frame, which is all that remained early Tuesday.
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"The King of Kings statue is believed to be the largest sculpture of Jesus Christ in the United States, according to the church." The statue was also popularly known as 'Big Butter Jesus'.
"For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our God?" (Ps. 18:3). Not preachers and politicians, I submit... and not bad praxis: "Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock." (Matt. 7:24-25)
Maybe all the waterworks there are well placed, then, and they should look at another 3:16: "So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth." (Rev. 3:16)