I thought about taking a break from my Giant Church Inc series for the Christmas season. We want to be merry and bright and the Giant Church Inc topic is not holly jolly.
But if we’re a people who are courageously committed to the truth, we can’t stick our heads in the sand and pretend it’s not happening. Even during the sacred days of our Christmas celebrations. What better time to contrast the darkness of Giant Church Inc with the Light of the World.
The Insiders Won’t See It
Actually, if we’re paying attention to any kind of news at all, we realize more and more people are talking about the problem of Giant Church Inc. The New York Times got in on it when they wrote about Carl Lentz, the popular pastor of Hillsong New York.
Giant Church Inc is a toxic, idolatrous culture created by greed and abuse of power, done in the name of God. It’s reached far beyond our churches. The stories about RZIM and Jerry Falwell, Jr., former president of Liberty University, surfaced months ago. Those responsible for holding their leaders accountable, did not. Why? Protection of the leader and the institution. Greed. Abuse of power. Idolatry.
The stories of Carl Lentz, RZIM, Jerry Falwell, Jr., and my own Giant Church Inc one, are full of deceit, cover-ups, silencing of victims, bullying, entitlement, and more darkness.
Giant Church Inc culture is in our Christian organizations, movements, and our politics. In a Twitter thread that went viral this month, Beth Moore pointed out the danger of idolizing a man, a nation, a movement, or political cause. Before we jump to conclusions, and assume what she or I are saying, take the time to read the thread.
Then take the time to read this article written by Michael Horton for The Gospel Coalition. He expands on what Moore tweets and includes links to two more articles sounding the alarm.
This Isn’t For You
If you’re not alarmed, then read no further. I don’t write this for you.
I don’t write this for the ones who refuse to see the problem. I don’t speak out to the ones who prefer to praise celebrity pastors and participate in the middle-school-like popularity contest Giant Church Inc creates. I don’t tell our stories for the ones who deny the harm caused by toxic leadership and spiritual abuse.
If you aren’t disturbed by what you see in this video, I don’t write about Giant Church Inc for you.
I write for the ones who know something is wrong, but don’t have the language for it. I tell the stories for those who’ve experienced the pain of rejection from the people who called them their family of choice. I speak up for those on the edge of leaving, who are trying to find the courage to do it, and scared to death of the loss they’ll endure.
I keep writing for the people who reach out and say, “Thank you for telling your story. Thank you for the resources. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
I’ll keep writing about Giant Church Inc for those whose faith is shattered and who need to find their way back to Jesus.
Jesus, the One and Only
Jesus is the One we worship. He’s the One we follow. He’s the One we celebrate.
“And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” – Luke 2:7
Photo by Collin Armstrong on Unsplash
Thank you so much for sharing Marie, This is powerful. Quite interesting, I remember the tweet from Beth Moore. The video you shared is such an eye opener. How the celebrity pastors will go to each other’s churches and praise each other. There is a manipulation technique behind it all. Those introductions were something else.
God bless you so much Marie. May the Christ we worship, follow and celebrate be your strength and shield in 2021. 🙏
Carl, you’re words are such a blessing. Jesus is my strength and sanctuary. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts. Many blessings to you and much grace and peace.
You are very welcome, Marie. My pleasure. May God bless you richly! 🙏
and this is how the Church becomes cult like following a celebrity pastor instead of Jesus…
Yes. And I want to help change this and point the church back to Jesus.