11 Comments

Easter and the ‘God Gimme’ Generation


I read about this at the Christian Post early today, but Karen S. Zacharias, author of the book,  “Will Jesus Buy Me a Doublewide? ‘Cause I Need More Room for My Plasma TV”, wrote an article at Ethics Daily which echo’s more closely my feelings on the matter;

The Meaning of Easter? Free Cars!

I don’t care if he’s a Christian and a pastor, I feel like smacking Bill Cornelius upside the head with Mama’s cast-iron skillet. It’s clear that the man needs some sense knocked into him, or at the very least some stupidity knocked outta him.

Cornelius is the Chief Mucky-Muck at Bay Area Fellowship, a megachurch in Corpus Christi, Texas. He’s come up with a lame-brained idea to help celebrate Easter – he’s giving away stuff. Lots of stuff.

According to a report in the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, the church has gathered 15,000 gift bags, valued at $300 apiece, and they are going to give it all away, along with some cars. Yes. Used cars. Fifteen of them, including an Audi A4, Jeep, Chevy Aveo, Mazda RX8, Volkswagen Jetta, two BMWs, Chevy Avalanche, Jaguar and two Mitsubishi Eclipses.

“We’re going to give some stuff away and say, ‘Imagine how great heaven is going to be if you feel that excited about a car,'” Pastor Cornelius said. “It’s completely free – all you have to do is receive him.”

It’s the latest gimmick of the God Gimme Generation.

Cornelius says his hope is that people who don’t normally come to church will come out for the Easter goods. An estimated 20,000 are expected to turn out. Cornelius maintains that a slew of people don’t come to church because they don’t feel worthy enough.

“A lot of people won’t come to Easter services because they think, ‘Well, I haven’t been good,'” Cornelius said.

Maybe Cornelius ought to consider that there are other reasons people might be dissuaded from attending church. Good reasons. When surveyed, 72 percent of adults who don’t attend church said they believed in God or some supreme being, but those same folks said the reason they don’t go to church is because the church is “full of hypocrites.”

And 44 percent agreed with the statement “Christians get on my nerves.” The survey was conducted in 2008 by LifeWay Research, an arm of the Southern Baptist Convention.

One of the church members, who contributed the Audi, said, “Can you imagine? Everything always works out for a reason. When God is behind something, all you have to do is believe.”

(Lord, I believe, but you’d better hold my unbelief in check before I hurt somebody.)

Cornelius and his folks can try and rationalize it all they want, but what they are doing is downright undignified. It cheapens Christ, his death and his resurrection.

By commodifying Jesus, Cornelius and his followers have missed the whole point of the Gospel. They are in essence teaching people that the resurrection isn’t reason enough to find meaning in Easter. What they are doing is exploiting people and prostituting Jesus.

Christians who seek the stuff of life, over the blood of Christ, get on my very last nerve. Somebody hand me my mama’s skillet.

11 comments on “Easter and the ‘God Gimme’ Generation

  1. Oh wow. I actually attended a church (once) that “gave away” Ipods to “keep ’em comin’ back”…and that was on an Easter Sunday…to boot!

    I was saddened to see that the simplicity of the Gospel message just didn’t seem to be enough for them. Pitiful…and all I could think was …Jesus wept.

  2. I guess God’s PRECIOUS GIFT OF HIS ONLY SON just aint enough for some…SIGH!

    This stuff makes me feel quite sick.

  3. How sad? Is this a church or Oprah show?

  4. These free gifts are not available to everyone. There wouldn’t be enough to go round. On his website there is a short tv interview – shows the church service with a tombola on the stage!. I’m assuming everyone is given a ticket and then numbers are called. This is gambling. Also he is leading his own congregation astray because I’m assuming he will do his Easter talk and then the “lucky winners” will be called and with the best will in the world most people’s minds will be on whether or not they will get a big prize. A tombola on the stage is a first for me!

  5. I am disappointed in my church. All they are giving my is a message of redemption and salvation tomorrow. I think I am leaving.

    • You shouldn’t have to think whether to leave or not – leave. Do not settle for anything less than the pure gospel of Christ.

  6. Hmmmmm!

    I have a solution to offer. It’s a rather simple solution. But, once you start you cannot stop until you see what you are praying come to pass!

    Ready?

    Here it is:::>

    Luk 10:1 After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go.
    Luk 10:2 And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.

  7. Might want to view this another way…

    I listened to a testimonial of a man who claimed that after his church prayed for him about losing his home, someone suddenly showed up and paid it off. Then of course he boasted of receiving other good things in his life; whereby prayer came first, asking God for those things and they were given to him.

    A man in the back of the church was getting rather angered by what he was hearing, so he seriously huffed and puffed himself out the back door. When I asked him what made him so angered, he answered with this:

    “ok so first he expects me to believe “what we ask, we shall receive”, and I ask, and I ask and I ask, but I get nothing! And then this guy comes along and tells me God gave him these really nice things, so then why does it seem as if God picks and chooses who he wants to have nice things… when do I get my BREAK?!”

    Would it not be considered a Test of Faith in our lives… a Test of Heart, as to why we Serve a Savior; why we choose to follow Jesus?

    God seems to allow this sort devilish behavior inside the walls we call church, and I wonder at times if God does so to bring out the True Heart… devilish, or pure.

    I know people think it is wrong to Judge people, yet I cannot help to say… this man condemns himself out of his own heart. People desire; having the same like mind as those they follow. If their heart is not geared toward the real Jesus, then their mind won’t be either.

  8. On the surface this seems distrubing. Yet, what if it is truly inspired by God. What if he gives folks something needed, not just desired. What if…
    Now it is also possible this is well intentioned but simpy an idea of flesh. Let God decide. Let us pray that it may lead some to experiencing the true great prize, Eternal Salvation. For Today is the day. He HAS RISEN!

  9. Peacebringer my question to your comment on this one is simply “where in scripture does Jesus (or any true apostle or follower) OPERATE A TOMBOLA?
    Just asking. 🙂
    I appreciate your Easter musings btw.

  10. Bil was a “youth pastor” at my former church years ago, before I arrived in 1998. He was called back to our church a few years back to speak at one of their insipid “Leadership Summits”. The first words out of his mouth were that discipleship was over rated and that the reason the church was not as effective as it could be was the church didn’t look like or speak like the culture.

    I was friends with his father for several years.

    My wife and I are continually thankful to our God for leading us to our current church.

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