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Televangelists: Fake, or genuine?





LittleBlackKitten
*I can just SEE Chris waiting to get his teeth into this one, lol*

Televangelism. There are the healers, the money grabbers, the prophets, and the ones who just want to talk and preach their little hearts out. But, are they real? Are their prophiecies, their healing, theit speeches, are they genuine, or scripted and worded to rake in the money?

What about the obvious phonies like Peter Popoff, or the maybe blurry-lined prophets like Jack Van Impe, or those that don't care about the money and have a genuine gift, like Joyce Meyers, or John Hagee? Are they trying to reach a larger audience, or are they just trying to get rich quick off of the money there is in televangelism?

What's your take? Are they ALL fake, or just some of them? Are they all genuine followers of faith? Or, is it half and half? What's YOUR take?
Bikerman
Well, let's examine the ones that 'don't care about the money'.
Joyce Meyer :-
Quote:
Meyer, who owns several homes and travels in a private jet (currently a Gulfstream IV), has been criticized by some of her peers for living an excessive lifestyle. She claims that she doesn't have to defend her spending habits because "there’s no need for us to apologize for being blessed." Meyer commented, "You can be a businessman here in St. Louis, and people think the more you have, the more wonderful it is...but if you’re a preacher, then all of a sudden it becomes a problem.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joyce_Meyer
John Hagee :-
Quote:
Hagee is the President and CEO of John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts his national radio and television ministry carried in the United States on 160 TV stations, 50 radio stations, and eight networks, including The Inspiration Network (INSP), Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), and Inspiration Now TV.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Hagee
Quote:
According to income tax statements that GETV filed with the Internal Revenue Service, the nonprofit organization drew $18.3 million in revenue in 2001, the most recent year the organization submitted a return to the IRS. That year, Hagee's total compensation package amounted to more than $1.25 million.
http://www.rickross.com/reference/tv_preachers/tv_preachers7.html

Hmm......
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_evangelist_scandals
Indi
Why target televangelists specifically? Why not any preacher that makes a living off of it?
Bikerman
Fair question.
I suppose one difference might be motivation - though obviously that is speculation to some extent. It is difficult to imagine that the average C of E vicar could be motivated by money, but it isn't do difficult to imagine of the majority of televangelists...
<sidetrack> I came across a nice little vid on youtube earlier:
</sidetrack>
Indi
Bikerman wrote:
Fair question.
I suppose one difference might be motivation - though obviously that is speculation to some extent. It is difficult to imagine that the average C of E vicar could be motivated by money, but it isn't do difficult to imagine of the majority of televangelists...

Well, i wouldn't pick on your average vicar, rector or pastor. Their motivation is at least justifiable: if you assume the flock needs a shepherd, and you believe you're a good shepherd, you naturally set up shop in the nearest parish.

But there are entire classes of preachers who go way beyond shepherding a flock, and televangelists are only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. There's revivalists of all stripes, touring preachers, tract writers, all those people who publish preachy books.... i could go on for quite a bit.
Bikerman
Yes indeed. I'm not quite so forgiving of the vicar though. I would be, if they didn't 'educate' children. The C of E has come a long way towards 'reasonableness' - probably more than any other Christian sect. If they could just make the next step and accept that indoctrinating kids is basically wrong..then I think it could be a form of Christianity that it was possible to live with in relative peace...
(of course, as Hitchens points out, the less a religion behaves like a religion the more acceptable it is Smile )
deanhills
Indi wrote:
But there are entire classes of preachers who go way beyond shepherding a flock, and televangelists are only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. There's revivalists of all stripes, touring preachers, tract writers, all those people who publish preachy books.... i could go on for quite a bit.
Why should preaching be limited to religion? What about people like Dawkins? And Hitchens? What about books like the "God Delusion", all those presentations, discussions etc?

Preaching to me has to do with an attempt to teach the public in a very earnest way. I'd not dream of comparing any of the New Atheists I mentioned with televangelists however. Particularly Hitchens whom I admire very much. I think positive preaching can be good. Televangelism to me is negative preaching. Most of it is fake. Although I do believe that if someone is in real sync with the person on the other end of the line that there can be a shift in mental paradigms that can create healing opportunities for the person on the other end of the line. Suicide Anonymous would be a good example of that. Or someone who is just a genuinely caring person.
Indi
Bikerman wrote:
Yes indeed. I'm not quite so forgiving of the vicar though. I would be, if they didn't 'educate' children. The C of E has come a long way towards 'reasonableness' - probably more than any other Christian sect. If they could just make the next step and accept that indoctrinating kids is basically wrong..then I think it could be a form of Christianity that it was possible to live with in relative peace...
(of course, as Hitchens points out, the less a religion behaves like a religion the more acceptable it is Smile )

Forgiving? ^_^; Not me. i'm just not accusing them of this particular crime: specifically, exploiting people's religious fervour for money. i just don't believe that your average parish-level cleric is in it for the money, really. Granted, they may consider it a cushy job (especially the ones who continue to preach after losing their faith), but that's a far cry from exploiting people for their money, and milking them dry.

The indoctrination of children is a completely separate crime, the monstrosity of which that video does a fairly neat job of deconstructing. (Of course, the video barely scratches the surface of the kinds of evils these people do when indoctrinating.)
Bluedoll
LittleBlackKitten wrote:
Are they ALL fake, or just some of them? Are they all genuine followers of faith? Or, is it half and half? What's YOUR take?
They could be true or false, I am not sure, and it is only one opinion. The one I think best expresses my feelings about televangelism in general would be using one example - deceased now, Billy Graham. Now, I am certainly not an expert on this by any means but I do remember listening for about four minutes to a broadcast of his before he died. I do remember thinking, well, nothing he is saying is offensive nor am I against his words but I remember thinking about one thing he did. I mean, what I usually do is avoid the image seeking and the talk show stuff and just pay attention to what is being said. There is an East Indian man I pass by in channel surfing that has a calm voice and talks about names I am not at all familiar with but his messages seem fine to me and so far, I do not consider him doing anyone any harm. Actually he reminds me of a post that once read here in frihost going along the lines of “attitude of gratitude” a catchy little one liner that I think is a good philosophy in life for anyone to connect to regardless of their belief.

However, getting back to Billy Graham, as I was saying his message was certainly straight forward and he might have helped a lot of people in their life struggles, I am not sure because I was not involved much but the one thing I found a little questionable was not about his preaching at all but about his book. His book which he called, “The Billy Graham Crusade” – has anyone read it? ... was I thought an inappropriate title. But it seems to go along with televangelism by nature because to get noticed, I suspect one has to be on top of the ratings or loose their air time, which is another way of saying televangelers need to advertise strongly.

I have to confess that I do not listen for long to telecasts but yes, Joyce Meyers seems to have a gift. If I had a choice between John Hagee and Jack Van Impe, I would go with Jack and his wife for they do seem sincere though certainly over the top with the applications of prophesy but they do actually seem on camera to belief all they say. John Hagee just scares me. There is another one, I do not see him on the network often but he is a young good looking southern American man that encourages positive thinking though he was heavily criticized of cherry picking only the good parts in the bible. Do you think people only talking about the good things of bible should be removed from public speaking as it could hurt people if they actually considered listening to some positive things? Not me, but maybe some do. The money aspect of telecasts is debatable and certainly there are abuses though perhaps some are just necessary to do what they do. I guess they do need to be investigated for that.
LittleBlackKitten
Joyce Meyers and Billy Graham are two of my favorite televangelists. Jack Van Impe has some good stuff, but his "give me money to get my valued information" business really sets me off. If it is valuable end-times information, don't charge for it.... :/
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