Dr. Russell Moore critiques Pat Robertson’s latest televised symptoms of his apparent Foot in Mouth disease here. In a nutshell, Robertson made some crazy statements directed to a female caller of multi-ethnic adopted children who was lamenting that she could not find a man who was willing to marry her. Telling the female caller that no man wants to “marry the United Nations” or that “adopted kids might grow up weird”, is not only dumb and insensitive but contradicts the message of the gospel of hope and redemption. Moore makes some really good points that are worth reading. He also blames Robertson’s foundation of the prosperity gospel as the culprit for a worldview that disdains anything that doesn’t fit within a picture of success. I particularly liked what he said about real Christianity that cannot be found on TV
I say to my non-Christian friends and neighbors, if you want to see the gospel of Christ, the gospel that has energized this church for two thousand years, turn off the television. The grinning cartoon characters who claim to speak for Christ don’t speak for him. Find the followers who do what Jesus did. Find the people who risk their lives to carry a beaten stranger to safety. Find the houses opened to unwed mothers and their babies in crisis. Find the men who are man enough to be a father to troubled children of multiple ethnicity and backgrounds.
And find a Sunday School class filled with children with Down Syndrome and cerebral palsy and fetal alcohol syndrome. Find a place where no one considers them “weird” or “defective,” but where they joyfully sing, “Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world.”
That might not have the polish of television talk-show theme music, but that’s the sound of bloody cross gospel.
I confess I don’t watch what passes for Christian TV. The rare times I do make me feel like I’ve turned on some kind of magic show advertised on QVC with the peddling of prayer cloths and miracles for the right “seed” amount. If you don’t have that, you can just speak something into existence. It’s only a matter of minutes before I change the channel.
But it does make me wonder, is there any legitimate representation of Christianity on TV?