When Fred Phelps, former leader of Westboro Baptist, passed away not long ago, it got me to thinking about what Jesus would say about the hate-filled and homophobic preacher and his congregation of like minded followers. Then I wondered what Jesus would have to say about the myriad television evangelists that clog the cable network system these days.
I’ve never been a big fan of “celebrity” preachers who, to me, appear to be nothing more than con-men and women who want to separate people from their money in order to support their lavish lifestyles. I can’t imagine Jesus would condone the conduct of people like Benny Hinn, Creflo Dollar, Kenneth Copeland or Paula White who seem to take pleasure in taking money from those who can least afford it like the old and the infirm.
I’d also like to hear what Jesus thinks of Joel Osteen, the pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas that’s said to be the largest protestant church in the United States. I have a bit of a soft spot for Osteen. He gets criticized for being more of a motivational speaker than a preacher by some but, I never really enjoy getting preached down to when I go to church. I think the guy might be onto something but, I’m always highly suspicious of any religious organization that gets to be so big because it just seems to open the door to corruption somewhere down the road.
I’d also like to hear Jesus’ opinion on the Southern Baptist Convention and there tenant that women should be subservient to men. I know, some women say they want it that way but, I don’t see how a religious order in America can place males above females and expect the approval of Jesus Christ. Do we want America to be like Saudi Arabia where women are subjugated as second class citizens?
I wonder what Jesus would say about churches of all kinds around America condemn gay people because they’re perceived as being perverted. I’m not gay myself but, I don’t see how anyone of any religion can condemn a person just because of their preference for a person who happens to be the same sex as they are.
When you think about it, Jesus hung out with and stood up for people who would be considered unsavory by many who sit in the pews of their choice around America every Sunday.