“Pay Per View” Gospel

 

The ad above was emailed to me a few weeks ago in advance of Eddie Long’s latest conference. While not as marketing savvy as last year’s ad for the same event (or Eddie’s other ingenious marketing ideas), the point is still clear: if you can’t witness this “life changing event” live, then you can watch it on pay-per-view…like a boxing match…or porn. 

I’ll take a moment to address those of you who constantly accuse me of “hating” before I go further: 

  • Yes, I do believe that pastors should be paid for their service to the Lord, but these pimps have surpassed the title of pastor and landed squarely on the title of “entrepreneur”. They write books and own businesses so there is no good reason for them to continue exploiting the Gospel for personal gain
  • Yes, I realize that “it takes money to do ministry”, but they’re already charging people to attend the event in real-time…can’t they account for broadcasting the services at no additional charge? Also, can’t this be classified as “outreach” since they already collect all manner of tithes, offerings, et al from their members already?
  • Yes, I know “the world charges money for wicked things, so why can’t the mand of gawd charge for righteous things?” – but why do we always have to equate ourselves with the world to justify our behavior?

The Gospel message is a burden – primarily because of its controversial tenets and how many either wholly accept or reject it. Paul warned the early church in 2 Corinthians 2 to be cautious of corrupt hucksters who offered a watered-down “gospel” of atonement in return for payment of their message: 

2 Corinthians 2:17 (New American Standard Bible) 

For we are not like many, peddling the word of God, but as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ in the sight of God. 

Further, in 1 Corinthians 9 Paul asserted that his Apostolic assignment afforded him the ability to earn wages from his labor for God through His Word. Still, however, he stated plainly that he wouldn’t allow money to be a stumbling block for the message of the Gospel: 

1 Corinthians 9:14-18 (New American Standard Bible – emphasis added) 

14So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.  

 15But I have used none of these things And I am not writing these things so that it will be done so in my case; for it would be better for me to die than have any man make my boast an empty one. 

 16For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for I am under compulsion; for woe is me if I do not preach the gospel. 

 17For if I do this voluntarily, I have a reward; but if against my will, I have a stewardship entrusted to me. 

 18What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may offer the gospel without charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel. 

Again, I know it takes money to sustain a viable ministry, but there is a thin line between sustaining an earnest outreach effort and financing foolishness. John Piper’s “Desiring God” Ministry succinctly address what they call (and I agree) the “Currency of Christian Hedonism” (emphasis added): 

Since spreading a passion for the all-satisfying Christ is our first and overwhelming aim, we look to Paul’s example of how to remove every obstacle to this goal.[...] In Paul’s day, like ours, some used the word of God to make money. They peddled it. Marketing was the strategy. Money was the goal. Paul was zealous to distance himself from both the motive and the appearance of money-greedy teachers. 

[...] God honored Paul’s commitment to make the gospel free by putting it in the hearts of churches he had planted in other places to help him make it free for others. He won people to Christ by his authenticity and by not charging for the gospel, and the result was that new believers supported this very strategy with their gifts. And these gifts from other churches were not payment for the gospel; rather they were enabling Paul to offer it to others without payment. Paul was persuaded that appearances of peddling the gospel of free grace would put a stumbling block in the way of the gospel. It would make it harder for people to see the true nature of the message and the Savior. 

[...] So we see three motives—or three ways of expressing one motive—that moved Paul not to charge money for the word of God: 1) to remove every obstacle to the gospel of Christ; 2) to increase his heavenly reward; 3) to win more people to Christ. 

It’s bad enough that Eddie and his ilk flog you about the head and shoulders weekly in their churches clubs – shaking you down for coins, let alone via a “pay per view” event. But, what else do you expect from men (and women) who see the Gospel as just another revenue stream? 

BTW – Eddie unveiled his new “look” at this “Focus Faux-cus 2010″ event last week. It appears as though he planted some hair seeds and got a “30-60-100 fold” return…or he bought a new toupee. Is that where some of your $99 went? 

 

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24 Responses to ““Pay Per View” Gospel”


  1. 1 Brother K April 27, 2010 at 2:07 pm

    Wowee, between the new ‘do and the showy biceps, I guess New Birthers can expect an upcoming series on Samson, no? I’ll write one up for the Bishop at half his normal expense if he’ll just introduce me to his hairstylist and tailor…

    • 2 speaking truth April 27, 2010 at 4:02 pm

      Brother K!!!!!!!!!!!! Great to hear from you again brother. You and yours have been in my prayers, and I pray that all is well with y’all. Most of Club New Birth’s attendees just see Eddie’s excess as “manifestations of blessings” so they could care less about the heresy that falls from his lips – or the lips of those he consecrates and associates with.

  2. 3 Jeanie April 28, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    ST,
    Why does he always flaunt himself on everything from CDS to this? He even flaunts himself and his so called “biceps” I am totally turned off by this. Was he ever like this in the beginning? Why are people still attending there? It just boggles my mind ST.

    Jeanie

  3. 4 Jeanie April 28, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    I am sooooo fed up with these people and I am praying for them that they will open their eyes. The scripture says that we wrestle not against flesh and blood and that the god of this world has truly blinded eyes. Battles are won on our knees.

  4. 5 gcmwatch April 30, 2010 at 4:00 pm

    Well, I guess I cant hate on em for fixin that head up but thats about as far as I can walk with him on this. Maybe he used his own money. How we determine that is a toss up.

    But this is merchandising the gospel plain and simple. IST you have already succinctly made the case why this is far beyond the parameters of what scriptures instruct us to do.

    I cant help but wonder when I see/hear of stuff like this if God is just giving the itching ear crowd what they truly want. They want a god they can feel and see. One who fulfills their perverted fantasies disguised as spirituality. Enter stage left…. Bishop/Apostle/Dr…[fill in the name here]

    And btw, I have “unsubscribed” myself over and over from these pathetic pimp promotional companies and somehow they keep sending stuff like this to me. As if I really want to get in on every new money making scheme they cook up. Every now and then we ought to just rip into it like a wild dog after fat red meat.

    Thanks, IST. You ripped this one good.
    E Long, please stop. Just. Stop. It.

    • 6 Darlene May 3, 2010 at 11:34 pm

      Ya know, maybe it would be a good idea to take one of their envelopes and tell them that you are sick of their latest schemes to fleece the flock, then cite the Word. I know that it doesn’t seem like much would be accomplished, but if many Christians responded in this way, it might have an effect.

      Lately, I’ve had the experience with some argumentative people, where nothing I said did a bit of good UNTIL I simply and plainly spoke the Word of God and referenced it. The reaction of the contender was surpising. Silence. Argument over. My close friend experienced the same thing as well, only recently. The Word of God only had just plain shut the mouth of her accuser.

      I bet these greedy scammers hate those verses from Paul regarding being CONTENT with little or much. We do have weaponry, and it is certainly mighty.

      • 7 speaking truth May 4, 2010 at 10:08 am

        Darlene – you have to remember that the people we argue with believe that the same Word we read in truth to combat lies STILL sanctions all manner of evil purported by slick hucksters. When I was under deception, I wouldn’t listen to ANYONE until the Holy Spirit led me directly to His truth in the Word and I had to fall on my face and repent. Don’t waste your breadth addressing the hucksters – pray for them from a distance (unless the Lord arranges a way for you to confront them face to face). For the decieved, all we can do is present the Word as-is and leave them to God.

        • 8 Darlene May 4, 2010 at 1:57 pm

          Good point. I haev to believe that the one that I mentioned was under the conviction of the Holy Spirt–hence the silence. But you are right. We are warned not to argue with a fool.

  5. 9 hiscrivener May 3, 2010 at 12:56 am

    Is that bulk the result of vitamins and prayers, or is this PPV (and ridiculous for those scoring at home) a fund raiser for some shall we say, less-than-nutritional-supplementation for those beef roid guns he’s showing off?

    It’s amazing how many folk do NOT have an issue with a church service via PPV. It’s church! Buy the DVD if you got to have it that bad.

  6. 10 teechme May 5, 2010 at 7:23 am

    ,,,like a boxing match…or porn…. Your sarcasm is hilarious!

  7. 11 anointedvessel May 8, 2010 at 2:39 am

    I see Eddie Wrong has been reading “The Circus Driven Church” A book I made up of course! But it would be the perfect match. He’s a clown and I am sure there are paper’s somewhere proving this to be so! Ba Doom Ting!!!! (canned audience laghter)

    Thank you

    and

    Good night!!

  8. 12 Paul N May 13, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    What is up with dude and the close fit shirts?

    These people are something else! You know they have to do these things to finance their lavish lifestyles. Thats the point of this, keep the money flowing so my private jet doesnt ge repoed.

    They have no shame and these are the one in the forefront of the Christian faith!!!!

  9. 13 GaryV May 14, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    Actually………..it’s exactly like porn. A shallow, 2 dimensional, isolating substitute for intimacy (with the opposite sex in porn, with Christ and Scripture in PPV Church) which is designed for short term excitement rather than long term fulfillment and and maturity.

    Both leave the participants emotionally infantile and spiritually vacuous.

  10. 14 cpciv May 16, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    Does this guy have a legitimate case against Paul Washer and Charles?

    • 15 GaryV May 17, 2010 at 9:22 pm

      Errrrrrrrr………no. While the tithe is not nor has ever been binding on ANYONE but Jews, and not a single verse or command or word in the NT even mentions tithing for Christians, Ringo goes off on his usual Jew-hating black supremacist trash.

      They have no authority whatsoever to teach a Christian tithe. The New Testament model is freewill giving as the Spirit leads.

      In fact, you’ll notice that it is conceded that there IS no mention of Christian tithing in Scripture, yet that fact is glossed over and we’re told that the tithe of the Jews has now transformed into a good “starting point” to begin our giving…..yet nary a verse to support this position.

      Should we give generously?? Absolutely. And the Spirit is at work to purpose in our hearts to do all His will. What God has established WILL be supported, and it will be so without compromising the Bible by adding to it what cannot be found in Scripture to wring cash from the sheep.

      If there were no buildings, there would be no teaching on the tithe. The only reason the tithe is pushed despite all the Biblical evidence to the contrary is to support real estate.

      • 16 speaking truth May 17, 2010 at 11:17 pm

        I gotta concur, GaryV,

        You already know how I feel about tithing, but I’m surprised to see Paul Washer involved in this. Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I’m not sure I even saw Washer speaking in the vid. Even so, no one is above corruption, and I’ll stick to aligning with the Word rather than a man.

  11. 17 GaryV May 18, 2010 at 2:02 am

    I don’t think Paul or the other fellow in the vid are being purposefully deceptive. It’s simply a matter of having the Bible obscured by traditions of men. They’ve been taught the tithe for decades and they have so assumed it that they don’t consider really examining it. It’s a given fact to them.

    I think Ringo is being unfair to impute sinister motives, and for someone who claims to want to follow the Bible he sure has no problem judging hearts rather than fruit and wallowing in racism and outright lies concerning the Jewish people.

  12. 18 truthofgod May 22, 2010 at 9:38 am

    Interesting point Gary!! I first saw the vid a couple of weeks ago and it dawned on me that they may be caught on tradition moreso than deception. Though, IST correctly stated, no man is above corruption. I find it interesting that Ringo finds the liberty to rail against the so-called false prophets, yet is caught in falsehood himself. From what i understand, he is affiliated with the Black Hebrew Israelites. They believe that the black man are Jews, and not the current inhabitants of Israel. The Gentiles, (Hispanics, Asians, Indian..etc – EXCEPT the White man) has the opportunity to be saved. They outright deny the virgin birth of Jesus Christ, which makes Joseph his NATURAL Father. They don’t believe in marriage. They believe that you are married to the person that you sleep with, which means that they support FORNICATION.

    **So when i see these videos from time to time. Sure, they are noteworthy. But more times than not, you have to consider the source.

    my2cents ;O)

  13. 19 naomi-precious June 6, 2010 at 8:15 pm

    leave the men of God alone,u seeds of destruction!u dare point filthy fingers @ d lord’s anointed whereas,4 fingers are pointed back @ you!u speak in ur blind flesh JUDE 1:8-10,11,13-19. THESE PEOPLE RE IMPACTING & SAVING MILLIONS OF LIVES AROUND THE GLOBE,what are u watchdemons doing? blocking the narrow door thru which people are suppose 2 come in,and not entering in yourself!There’s nothing new under the sun!just like in d days of old when d jews persecuited Jesus, history is repeating itself,anyone that is not for christ will not suffer persecuition! my message 2 all our men of God our lovely Benny hinn,my heart goes out to u,& D whole family,i pray ur heart not 2 fail u one bit,i just read about your wife divorcing u 2day,i was shocked,i read all d nasty comments of the so called watchdogs/demons,& i prayed d lord 2 keep u! & be glade in d lord because it is a solid sign & proof that u re in d perfect will of God,in d times when d future generations will read about us also as apostles of God,u will be the second ‘JOB’ U re such a threat 2 d devil that he has gone 2 seek permission from God 2 sift u,just as he did with job,but b’cos jesus overcame,u will over,studing your life over d years,i know u as a faithful servant & will see dis happening in d true light of it, as a distraction ( strike the shephered & d flock will b scattered)mark4:11!!!but form of lifting from the lord!But since nobody knows other people’s Achilles hill a.k.a soft spot,i adjure u not 2 b blindfolded 2 d whiles of the devil,shake yourself awake from d shocke,fear /disappointment,PHIL 1:12,28,29, pHIL 4:4 Allow God 2 use this moment as rightly as it it planned 2 b “laugh d devil in d face”phil4:7 is my last word 2 u benny (if anyone close 2 u reads this please let them show u my word 2 u,God is in us,& uses us,he uses unknowing people 2 console or bless,his idea was 2 multiply himself,he has done that thru u & me.2 our dear Eddie long,mike murdock,d cerullos,perrystone,joyce meyer,T.d jakes,joel osteen,billy graham etc my heart goes out 2 u all!my word 2 u is donot be distracted into fighting back or bothered ,u should see it as an exam expo from God that u re on the right tract,if u don’t matter d devil will not even care 2 know ur name!history is repeating itself,so that u will ve a ‘His-story’ 2 tell & b d modern apostles writing ur epistles 2 d churches 2 come!life is a stage & everyman plays his part & go!

    • 20 speaking truth June 7, 2010 at 12:05 pm

      naomi,

      Thanks for chiming in from the “blind Kool-Aid drinkers” section of the peanut gallery – we anxiously awaited your reply. Of course these vipers are “saving lives” because they have the power to “speak those things…” – they’re like God! Which of course means that those of us who read the bible and call the liars out on all of their false teachings are just “dirty-handed haters”.

      Yup – your succinct commentary was well worth waiting for…

      Footnote: this is not a text message, so feel free to use whole words commonly found in the English language next time (if you come back with more sage wisdom, that is)…

    • 21 N'Catina June 8, 2010 at 8:28 am

      While you’re at it, please learn proper sentence structure, captialization, punctuation as well as proper scriptural context before posting again. These garbage postings have become quite old.

  14. 22 J-Will June 8, 2010 at 12:36 pm

    I am confused about the whole purpose of this website’s focus on “exposing” others. Once you personally realize a ministry is not of God do something amazing, walk away!Simple as that.

    A sin is a sin is a sin and one sin does not weigh more than another, whether it is being a false prophet, or participating in slander. (James 4:11: Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.)

    To be quite honest this website reminds me of some church people who are always complaining of how things are done or how things are ran, but don’t lift a positive finger to change things. The bible says:1 Peter 4:8: Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.

    So instead of focusing on “exposing” the wrong doings of others, it may be best, in my opinion, to love those and do something positive, because God is love.

    There is no need to “Expose” because God’s word says:

    Psalm 37:1-3
    Do not fret because of evil men
    or be envious of those who do wrong;
    for like the grass they will soon wither,
    like green plants they will soon die away.

    Trust in the LORD and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.

  15. 24 Cathy September 23, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    GREAT website!! Found you while searching about the nonsense of Eddie Long. Thanks.


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