Steve threw out a question that stopped my thoughts dead in their tracks. We were in the middle of dicussing Senator Grassley (Iowa) and his investigation of several televangelists' finances. Now do I have a problem if a Pastor drives a German-made car? I guess not. But how that comes across to others needs to be considered. I'm not saying small luxuaries here and there are in a sense bad. I mean, it's ok to have some things - it's all about balance, people! But private jets, Rolls Royces, boats, expensive vacations, multiple homes, high-end hotel stays and then they expect a church to pay a pretty penny for them to visit seems kinda strange to me. Like they are celebrities instead of servants of the Lord. No accountablity along with withholding the full list of funds from the givers who work hard for that money, which really isn't their money anyway, but God's, is a church that is asking to be probed and looked in to. I can't blame this Senator, really. I can go on and on about how I feel these leaders are knee deep in pride doo-doo, but I am not God, He is, and I'll leave the judging to Him.
So in the midst of this conversation Steve makes a profound statement: If we are going to put these church leaders under the microscope and slap their hands for living lavish lifestyles, then what about celebrities like Britney Spears, Amy Winehouse, Snoop Dog, Paris Hilton and sooooo many more that get an enormous amount of money, get in major trouble, but society feeds into their addictions and problems by giving them more. Isn't it better to think that these church leaders are preaching the gospel of Christ in the midst of lavish living, then these out-of-control celebrities that are billboards for godlessness and worldly behavior? Where's the accountablity there? (May I remind you that Winehouse won a Grammy last night. Interesting, but no surprise.)
Steve wasn't excusing these televangelists, but making a valid point. So I throw his question out to you. Comment away!