Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Oprah and Jesus on the Importance of Belief

Oprah Winfrey has started an online "school" for teaching people about the works of Meister Tolle called "A New Earth." Someone on Godtube had put together a short video of some of the online study's content and some commentary of their own.

It's a horrifyingly dark set of teachings. During the video, Oprah includes a word of personal testimony including how the idea of a jealous God repulsed her.

"God... in the essence of all consciousness... isn't someting to believe. God is. God is. And God is a feeling experience, not a believing experience. And, in fact, if your religion is a believing experience... if God for you is still about a belief, then it's not truly God."
--Oprah Winfrey

So much for her earlier comment in this video, where she defended the idea that there is not one true way to God but that all paths lead there. All paths except belief in a personal, sovereign God who reveals himself in the Word of God and calls all men everywhere to repent and believe.

"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son. This is the verdice: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God."
--Jesus Christ (John 3:16-21; emphasis in the original)

Obviously, Oprah's online "school" is unhealthy stuff. It's cross-denying and therefore leads only to death and eternal woe. But I don't want to just beat up on Oprah.

One thing I'm thankful for from this video is that Oprah helps us preachers to think a bit more carefully about our audience. There are no doubt many in the pew who would find teaching about a jealous God repulsive, and yet they've not understood how God's jealousy for His own name is utterly unlike fallen human jealousy or how it is absolutely right that God infinte in every perfection be jealous for His name, that God's own zeal for His name is commendable in light of who God is. I'd love for Oprah to sit down with Piper and work though some of this! And I'd love to preach to my own people in a way that doesn't leave them at 20-something staggering away from the Lord because they're projecting themselves onto God.

Oh that the Lord would make me a preacher!


KG said...

I recently saw this video as well. Although, I was not surprised that Oprah is now offering formal teaching or that she is leading people to her understanding of God, I did find it interesting as well to her some of her misunderstanding.

It is a reminder to define terms and phrases well so that they are confused by our cultural context.

samurai said...

May God send forth a fresh out pouring to not only Oprah, but to all those who hear these words!

Anonymous said...

I just posted about this very subject myself. I was so saddened when I saw this video clip this morning. But I was encouraged by the two women in the audience who were speaking out and further encouraged that there were some applauding them. We should all be so bold!

AceVentura/Pedaldetective said...

wow...just another notch up the guitar Oprah goes with the secularism drivel.
Thabiti I'd love to give a shameless beg here for you to check my 1st blogpost and drop some love. I know your a hoops junkie I'd love to hear what you think of Stephen Curry, I was so pulling for the little guys to take the whole thing!!

TM said...

I am sick to my stomach.

Rileysowner said...

What can I say about that. It makes me sad and angry. Sad that so many are being deceived. Sad that Christians are so blind to it. Angry that the Evangelical church has done such a bad job, and I include myself in this as well, at discipling those who make a confession of faith that they can't see how wrong this is.

carissa anne said...

you know, it is quite scary and sickening to hear what Oprah is propagating on such a huge scale. it's almost enough to make you think maybe the Left Behind series isn't so far off after all... she could be the false prophet if anyone could.

although, not to make light, but did anyone else find the video's production kinda creepy as well? the voice over, the cheesy visual effects and monologue... seemed apocalyptic and weird.

Bible Believing said...

Oprah has to know she would not be where she is today without God. There is no way God is jeoulous of things that he gave to her. Oprah and her followers are nothing without God. So with that being said Oprah and her followers need to read the Bible and ask God for understanding and may God have Mercy on their Souls.

Barbara said...

Thabiti, wouldn't you love to see Tim Keller on her show? Or, at least get the book (The Reason For God) in her hands? Or arrange a meeting with Piper? Surely there is a Christian among the ranks of her friends or those whom she respects who could make this happen. Can you think of a way to reach her? Maybe this isn't so impossible. Think of the implications for the Kingdom!

leslie said...

this is scary stuff!

Emmanuel said...

i wonder if this is actualy what she believes or ih she was airring the believes of others it will be terrible if this is her believe but did anyone notice that this is an anti campaign message too

Seth Trotman said...

It's instructional, I believe, to notice how Oprah misinterprets the scripture with regards to God's jealousy. She says she couldn't understand why God would be jealous of HER. Of course God is not jealous of HER. But as you state, this could be very instructive for pastors. After all, how many gloss over statements in scripture like "..for I the LORD your God am a jealous God.", thinking that those listening understand what is meant in context. Take nothing for granted -- too many believe the things we consider unbelievable or obviously false.

Richard Abanes said...

You all might be interested in these three videos on my Special Eckhart Tolle Web Page. Tolle has now been answered in a very public way, from an evangelical Christian perspective.


Richard Abanes
author, A New Earth, An Old Deception