It has been pretty well established that if Jesus Christ were alive today, nobody would like or follow that dude. Republicans would be so averse to his teaching that they would have denounced him as a Middle Eastern radical socialist whose only purpose is to serve as drone fodder – but that’s only if he managed to live long enough to escape Mary’s womb. Liberal Democrats like Nancy Pelosi and Bill and Melinda Gates would have done their best to convince Mary that the best course for her as an unwed, teen mom would be to abort her baby and pursue a career retailing olive oil. Given how successful Democrats have been in convincing the poor and disenfranchised that the unborn among their ranks have little to no human value, it’s safe to say that there would be no Jesus, no salvation story and no blog to entertain you today. Praise God that His Son lived!
Saints, did you know God is can be relied on to be completely unpredictable? 1 Corinthians says:
But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
I don’t know why God chose a cowardly stammerer to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt’s bondage (Moses), nor do I know why He chose the architect of a Jewish genocide to later preach salvation to Jews and Gentiles alike (Paul). All I know is, God works in mysterious and wacky ways and those methods don’t always make sense to us Earthlings.
There has been much ado in the last few days about an appeal that Creflo Dollar made to his congregants and ministry partners concerning a jet he needed to purchase. Creflo already has a jet, which was purchased in 1999. He uses it to fly all over the world to preach God’s word and do the work of the ministry and the call he believes he’s meant to accomplish. God called John the Baptist to live in the wild, eat locust and wear camel hair. Believe it or not, John’s lifestyle was just as offensive to the Jews as it rankles many that Creflo Dollar would choose to cruise the planet in a private jet.
I don’t know many Americans who keep anything for 16 consistent years…and before y’all scream “My parents have lived in the same house for 30 years!” ask them if they really want to. They don’t. Even the celebrities we blindly adore that live in mansions cycle out their homes every 3-7 years. Shoot, we don’t even keep cell phones for that long! And when it comes to automotive equipment, we ALL try to upgrade as frequently as possible…sometimes without having the means to do so. (This is bad stewardship of your funds, by the way.) So Creflo has had his jet for 16 years and I’m sure after the demise of Miles Monroe (God rest him), he took a look at his craft and thought it prudent to get a more current model. This sent the world into a tizzy. A veritable fit! Why? Not because Creflo Dollar stole church funds, or asked the government for a grant or bailout, or prostituted kids or charged his congregants a penalty for not adhering church law (I’m looking at YOU Obama, with your healthcare penalties and ridiculous tax policy!), but because he asked for the money. Made an appeal. Didn’t try to swindle anyone ooo! He merely asked the people who support his ministry and believe in his vision anyway to assist him in this way.
Well, what does a pastor need with a jet if he can’t afford one anyway? Well, what did Jesus need with a colt he ain’t buy nor could afford? Remember this story from the book of Matthew?
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”
This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:
“Say to Daughter Zion,
‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”
The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
“Hosanna to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”
The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”
Jesus had his disciples go and jack a dude for his colt AND his donkey because he needed them both to do his work and fulfill a prophecy. That donkey money didn’t come out of his pocket…it was crowd sourced! This looks selfish, self-serving and haughty, does it not? I’m not in Creflo Dollars prayer closet, and I don’t know if the Lord told him to “get thee thine own jet so that thoust may preach my word hastily!” I don’t know and I don’t care. Creflo Dollar wasn’t holding a gun to anyone’s head when he asked for the money, and as far as I know, he also didn’t promise anything in return for the donations. He didn’t promise a blessing, double honor or any of the manipulative language real charlatans employ when they are trying to fleece true believers and gullible people alike.
Am I going to be giving Creflo Dollar any money for his new aircraft? Probably not. My church needs all the pennies I can spare. And although I am not a part of his ministry, I do appreciate the work Creflo Dollar has done in support of the victims of Hurricane Katrina and several of the other projects he’s sanctioned in the city of Atlanta…and I do hope his partners will not abandon him and help fund this need. I mean that sincerely. Out of ALL the crazy things we put our time and energy into supporting – the Kardashian empire, the Disney juggernaut, the porn industry – it should not be so shocking (or appalling) that a group of men or women who want to support their pastor in this way should be allowed to do so, despite the offense that it might cause YOU.
Locust, anyone? I’m fresh out of tea.