The con man, the church, human gullibility and our beliefs

Once we have spent time in a particular belief system, especially in a “church” environment that demands massive contributions, unquestioned loyalty, absorbs all spare time and which forms the entire social network for people, most don’t have enough mental energy to figure out that something is terribly wrong. A year and a half ago, I did a [Read More…]

Ask the Thoughtful Pastor: Prosperity Gospel and The Consumer-Driven Church

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: My family and I have broken free from a Prosperity Gospel Church.I’m curious why so many people: A) Don’t see Prosperity Gospel for what it is, a money making business?  B) How society or media is not making a bigger deal on Prosperity Gospel pastors misusing the Word of God to make [Read More…]

The Pull of the Prosperity "Gospel" and the Subtlety of Evil

Did you know that the Lord’s Prayer can be read as “Hey, Jesus, can teach us to pray that way you do so we can get the same stuff from God that you do?” This, among other things, is what I learned when visiting a church in Frisco in June of 2015. The newspaper article ran [Read More…]

Sick Day Mystery Worship: Sunday Morning Religious Programs

I’m rarely ill, but last weekend reminded me that I am nonetheless not invincible. Honoring my shut-in status, I turned on the TV for my church, choosing local broadcast TV offerings. At 9 am, the glamorous, perfectly perky blonde Victoria Osteen burst on the screen, reminding us that she “can do all things through Christ [Read More…]

Getting Rich with Jesus

There’s an article in this past week’s NY Times that quickly made its way through a circle of colleagues and acquaintances:The opening paragraph reads: Onstage before thousands of believers weighed down by debt and economic insecurity, Kenneth and Gloria Copeland and their all-star lineup of “prosperity gospel” preachers delighted the crowd with anecdotes about the [Read More…]