Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Matthew 7:14-16 (English Standard Version)
I have a concern. Thanks to the explosion in cable/satellite TV channels, we’re witnessing a plethora of religion-themed channels-especially in the Christian sphere. The choices I see on my cable provider range from EWTN (Catholic) to Word Network (Charismatic); which includes “veterans” Trinity Broadcasting Network and Christian Broadcasting Network (Pat Robertson’s baby). This explosion has enabled many a preacher to go from unknown to mega-preacher/televangelist overnight. Such “luminaries” we see include, Creflo Dollar, Eddie Long, T.D. Jakes, Joseph Prince, Michael Freeman, Joyce Meyer, Bill and Jan Crouch, Pat Robertson, Charles Stanley, and Joel Osteen. And with 24/7 broadcasting, you get to see these cats non-stop. Plus, these broadcasters have websites and smartphone apps that allow you even more access to these preachers.
With such “teachings” come a variety of doctrines-doctrines that may not be in line with what Jesus (or God’s prophets and apostles) teach. A constant stream of such information bombarding one’s mind can easily be an assault that could make one open to almost anything thrown at them. I had the opportunity to catch a smattering of one broadcast day while home, and it was an earful! You got smatterings of law, grace, old covenant, new covenant, and the old “God wants you to be (fill in the blank)” to round it all out. Although I’m no apologist, there are lots of Christian apologetic websites that voice the same concern.
My concern is that these programs (and their preachers) are like wolves at the doors of people’s hearts. They prey on the spiritual needs of people by empty promises that don’t fully line up with God’s word-especially in finances and health. People are fleeced of their money “sowing” into ministries that reap huge profits, but give little dividends. People who are sick are told that “God doesn’t want them to be sick”, putting false hope in the viewers. Plus, mainline preachers have been reading and watching these wolves and applying some of their principles into their ministries as well.
Yes, the argument can be made that such programs do help those noted above, and there are preachers preaching sound doctrine on the tube-that is true and I commend those ministers who do “divide the word rightly”. However for the most part, you get a lot of “gospel junk” on the air being received by people looking for something to cling to.
And when these poor souls have been spiritually, emotionally and even financially ravaged by these wolves, what happens? Will they just keep limping along in their faith hoping for that miracle? Or will they renounce the Faith and toss out the spiritual baby with the religious bathwater?
The wolves are at the door. Beware what you watch on “Christian broadcasting”. Does it truly line up with what you know in your heart-where God dwells-is true? If you don’t watch out and open the door to your heart and mind, the wolves will come in and will ravage you.