My wife and I are raising two sons together. As Christians, it is our goal to raise them to be men who love God, love their neighbor, and pursue holiness with passion, bravery, joy, and discernment.We are very careful about the media that they consume that might derail that parental objective.
With that in mind, I can honestly say that I would rather my boys spend all day watching Netflix unsupervised than 30 minutes listening to anything Pat Robertson has to say.
Pat Robertson is often referred to as an “evangelical leader.” He’s not. I’ve been a Christian for a majority of my life. I’ve spent a lot of time around other Christians. I have yet to meet one who would follow Pat Robertson anywhere.
Instead of being an “evangelical leader”, Pat Robertson is more like that “Nigerian prince” who used to send us all e-mails asking for money. That “prince” reached a lot of people with his message and some of them must have followed him because he kept on going. But in the grand scheme of things, both the “prince” and the “evangelical leader” are simply hucksters using a title to make a few extra bucks for themselves.
The latest example of this came to us this week when Robertson took some time on his television show to encourage viewers to look past the apparent murder of Jamal Khashoggi in Saudi Arabia for fears that any sort of rebuke toward that government’s alleged involvement in the murder would have a negative impact on relations between our nation and the Saudis.
It’s almost as if Robertson actually picked up a Bible, read it, and decided to say something that completely contradicts it.
“For those who are screaming blood for the Saudis — look, these people are key allies.” He continued, “We’ve got an arms deal that everybody wanted a piece of…it’ll be a lot of jobs, a lot of money come to our coffers. It’s not something you want to blow up willy-nilly.”
Ahh yes. Remember that time when Jesus told his followers that the international arms trade was to always take precedence over willy-nilly human beings created in the image of God?
Neither do I.
Robertson went on to defend the way that President Trump is handling the Saudi situation because that’s the default mode of Robertson and his syndicate of Scripture twisters.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow to the king’s statue.
John the Baptist opposed Herod directly, deciding that it was better to lose his head than his soul and backbone.
Peter, John, James, Paul, and countless other true followers of Christ said with their words and their lives, “We must obey God rather than men.”
Robertson's so-called ministry exists for two primary reasons.
1.) Making money
2.) Making Donald Trump look good
So rather than following the great cloud of witnesses before him, Pat Robertson has chosen instead to reduce his gospel to one of presidential PR. To be fair, the left is no different. They use Jesus’ name in vain to promote irresponsible spending but mock his teachings on marriage and sexuality.
Jamal Khashoggi was a native of Saudi Arabia and a permanent resident of the United States. He was a journalist who was very critical of the Saudi’s empire of evil. During one of his frequent visits back to his homeland several days ago, Khashoggi was allegedly beaten, drugged, dismembered, and killed.
There is most certainly more to this story. A careful response from our government is necessary. This isn't something to go to war over but it does demand a response. Good people can disagree on what that response should be. Good people cannot, however, invoke the name of Jesus and speak as though a human life is somehow less valuable than an arms deal.
But then again, good people don’t start television networks where they use the name of Christ, “willy-nilly” to declare that a man is free to leave his ailing wife for a healthier woman and that something bordering on the apocalypse will happen in 2007. By the way, it's 2018.
I am a follower of Jesus Christ.
I believe every word of the Bible.
I am imperfect and rely daily on the grace of God while trying to live in accordance to what the Bible teaches.
As some people see it, that makes me an evangelical.
Fine. But Pat Robertson and others like him do not lead any movement that I belong to. Rather, they lead a kingdom that is directly opposed to the Kingdom of Christ while simultaneously using the name of Christ for financial and political gain.
If Pat Robertson is an evangelical leader, then I’m not an evangelical.
Just give me Jesus.
He is more than enough.