The moment he throws the punchline, the audience of Christian comedian John Crist burst into laughter. For a while, the lights shining on his career dimmed after being shaken by controversy. Now, he's returning upstage carrying lessons from the past and making it part of his humor in his stand-up performances and upcoming book.

Wearing his fake glasses to look like a sophisticated author, Crist recounted in a video a 2018 story that he wouldn't forget all his life. After his comedic gig at the church, he went with pastors and church staff to grab dinner at Texas Roadhouse. He openly shared that he wanted to drink at that time but found it so hard because he's with many pastors and church staff.

What he did was pretended to go to the powder room and secretly ordered a double vodka sprite with no lime. Crist instructed the server to put the drink in a cup that looks like an innocent soft drink and tip the server for 20 bucks. When he came back to the table, the server brought it for him. On his way home, Crist admitted what he did with one of the church staff he was with at the time. Then the church staff blurted out that he did the same.

He mentioned this story in promotion of his upcoming book "Delete That: (and Other Failed Attempts to Look Good Online)," a recount of personal experiences and how people would like to always project themselves positively but neglect to become honest for themselves and to others, especially on social media.

While his former Christian subsidized publisher WaterBrook axed his 2019 unreleased book, his new book will be published under secular imprint Penguin Random House's Crown Forum, according to Christianity Today. Though it has similar gist to his previous write-up about social media image, Crist said on Instagram that he will share his thoughts about being canceled, narrating about "the first-ever sex scandal that involved no sex."

In his book promotion in his Net Positive podcast, Crist shared that he tried projecting himself in a good light however after the sexual allegations about him came to light, he found out that people still liked him and that changed his whole life.

Crist Recounts Turning Point

Despite all the turmoil, Crist has a substantial Christian following and has been on tour since 2021, with some towns seeing back-to-back nights of sold-out events. His new YouTube special garnered success of a quarter-million views, and he was scheduled to tape another in Dallas this week. With the unexpected support he received from his Christian fans after getting a rehab, he considered it an extension of God's acceptance.

With so much shame, he shared in an Instagram story thread that he was thinking to end his life 16 months ago at the rehab center in Arizona. Crist falsely believed that the world would be better if he would remove himself. After being sober for the past 17 months, he shared that he was grateful for what happened or else, he would still be living getting approval from people.

Though he admitted that he had still a set of struggles, he said that he was happy and he considered it a miracle. As he reflected on his previous tours, he described himself as being physically present but not really in there. So, it was an emotional moment for him to return to Grand Ole Opry to perform again. He said that people had shown him the love that he never experienced before.

Also Read: Christian Comedian John Crist Shares How He 'Wanted To Commit Suicide' While In Rehab

Victims, Advocates Protest His Return

When Crist had to walk away to confront "sexual sin and addiction difficulties", he blamed his horrible decisions and apologized for disappointing followers. Yet the Christian comedian hasn't publicly apologized to the victims and acknowledged the women who were hurt by his past actions, CT reported.

In one of his comedic stints, a girl from the audience shouted "I love you" and then the comedian answered back "Love you, girl!" He said in jest that's how he got into trouble years ago, then the audience laughed.

Many of his fans applaud his vulnerability and Christian witness in publicly discussing his darkest moments. While some, especially victims who claim Crist is "actually benefiting" from their suffering, have continued to push on him to repent and step down from the platform.


Around his launch, last June, Christian podcaster Annie F. Downs expressed his support for Crist on Instagram and celebrated his friendship with him. Some advocates were disappointed and confronted Downs for her support. Afterward, Downs withdrew her earlier post and posted an apology video.

In an interview last January, he argued that he shouldn't be held to the same standards as a pastor and that dismissing him would be "unfair." Crist affirmed that he was still a believer yet because of his criticisms he wouldn't be performing in churches anymore and it's okay to be fair. He was set to tour across the country, not on megachurches but comedy venues.

Related Article: Christian Comedian John Crist Back With New Comedy Special Following Rehab