Christian Right Weekly Round-Up: Pastor Pillow Bets the Farm on Materiality

derby-horseHello, I’m Pastor Pillow! And welcome to Cubic Zirconium Cathedral Ministries of Las Vegas!

What, you’re a Palladium Lifetime Member? Well, then, let me shake your hand. Heck, if it weren’t for all this desert dust, I might even offer to wash your feet.

Because of the generous contributions of blessed believers like you, sacrificing your nest eggs and the college funds of your children—and let’s face it, who wants to send their kids to some godless Ivory Tower institution where they teach natural selection and Aristotle?—we are able to stand in the stained-glass lobby of this world-class charismatic casino, which, amidst all these heathen houses of ill repute along the Strip, calls out like a voice in the wilderness, “Prepare the way of the John the Baptist Poolside Shop!”

By the way, best thing I ever did was contract with Billy Blanks to run the Carry Your CrossFit Training Center. Just look at me, down 15 pounds in the past month—although I’ve got to do something about all those wood slivers in my back. Very difficult to reach.

Anyway, I bet I know the reason you’re here today. There aren’t too many places a person of Prosperity Gospel faith can sit back and enjoy a nonalcoholic mint julep and place tax-deductible prophetic investments on competitive events. And just look at that packed board today. The Kentucky Derby, NBA and NHL playoffs, Mayweather versus Pacquiao, Hillary’s Political Cash Tote Board, not to mention the Baltimore Curfew. (Word of warning: there’s a street bet going around that says every presidential contender this side of Bernie Sanders will promise Urban America to disband the Prison Industrial Complex and not deliver. I’d keep my money in my fanny pack on that one.)

By the way, while we’re into under-the-table tips, if I were you, I’d head on down to the Tim Tebow Players Club as fast as Elijah down the mountain and put down a grand on Houston over the Clippers. I heard Dwight Howard has been working hard on his “thank God” speech for the series conclusion. And as you know, no athlete ever thanked God for a loss.

Also, not sure who you have in the Derby, but I’m throwing money into the offering plate on Materiality. For mustard seed’s sake, just look at me. I’m wearing a $1,500 Stefano Ricci Swarovski Crystal-Plated necktie. Tell me God doesn’t reward the slick. But what do I know? Go ahead and bet—I mean, invest—on American Pharoah; risk bringing down plagues of frogs upon us all!

And, finally, bet the farm on the Filipino. Yes, this means God might occasionally root for a foreigner over an American. But let’s face it: just ask Rick Warren, Manny’s a Bible-quoting maniac. He can catch chapters and verses faster than Rocky can choke a chicken.

I don’t mean to blow you off, but I’ve got a meeting in a few minutes with Ken Ham and Cirque du Soleil. We’ve got this great idea for a Noah’s Ark water show. Clowns, dinosaurs, the whole works—no rainbows, though. Don’t want all the same-sexers to show up. Say, I wonder if Donny Osmond is available to play Noah.

All right now. Maybe catch you later in the Prodigal Son Returned Buffet.

Please open your hymnals to No. 13.

I thought I’d be your king baby, yes and you could be my queen
But you used me for your joker ´cause I thought you’re deal was clean

Behold, the Christian Right Weekly Round-Up!

Think Fox News is a journalistic joke? Trust me, Roger Ailes can’t hold a light under a bushel compared to the Christian Right Media. According to Forbes, the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) rakes in nearly $300 million per year in revenue. And CBN is a mere bright star in a galactic empire of right-wing Christian media organizations, including members of the National Religious Broadcasters and the Evangelical Press Association and beyond.

In the name of Christ, these news outlets perpetuate racism, sexism, classism and militarism every day across the Fruited Plain. So if you’re looking for a good excuse to mail your write-in ballot for Hillary/Bernie today or apply for political asylum at the nearest Finnish consulate, check out these five articles:

5. Southern Baptist Convention Sucker Punches Megachurch Culture, via Christian Post: “How the Prosperity Gospel Hurts Racial Reconciliation”

“The primary harm the prosperity gospel does to racial reconciliation, though, is that it is not the gospel.”

Zounds! Those are the words of Russell Moore, Southern Baptist Convention Ethics Commission Chair. Last week, we rode Moore pretty hard for his bizarre remarks tying the transgender “cultural narrative” a la Bruce Jenner to the ancient heresy of Gnosticism.

But Moore may be standing (perhaps accidentally) on firm, progressive ground with his execration against the Prosperity Gospel “witchcraft” of Joel Osteen, Benny Hinn and Creflo Dollar, et al:

This will mean that we must oppose not only the full-deal heresy of the prosperity gospel but also the implicit ways we have absorbed a kind of discount-rate prosperity gospel that can view Christianity as centered around white, middle-class American success.

Man, if only the Southern Baptist Convention sounded this revolutionary all the time. This of course means that SBC Chair Adrian Rogers and President Ronnie Floyd are heading to Baltimore to join the rallies as we speak, right?

4. Take Cover! Incoming Same-Sex Marriage ICBM!, so says Focus on the Family: ACTION ALERT: Historic Marriage Decision Ahead: How It Will Impact You – And What You Can Do About It”

The sky is falling! The sky is falling! (You know, you never do see Chicken Little and James Dobson in the same place at the same time.)

But seriously, folks, Dr. Dobson’s group desperately needs $1.85 million to defend straight marriage. Please tap into your child’s college fund—or else there might not even be straight people universities by the time your sons and daughters graduate from high school.

And don’t forget, according to Focus on the Family: “Marriage is about more than romance and benefits: It’s about children.” (Just ask Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Aristotle Onassis.)

3. Pastor Robert Lee of Ten Commandments Church Says “Homosexuality is a Death-Worthy Crime, via Charisma News: Pastor Defends His Westboro Baptist Church-Style Sign Judging Homosexuals”

By now you’ve surely heard of Antichrist Pastor Robert Lee of Milledgeville, Georgia. He is the man who recently stated in a WGXA local news interview that gays are “people who deserve not to live.” He also maintains a rather Westboro Baptist-style church sign that declares “Homosexuality is a Death Worthy Crime!”

Here, however, is Charisma News reporter-on-the-scene Jessilyn Justice’s take on the loathsome affair: “Watch the video to see what’s going on and sound off on the pastor’s beliefs.”

Wow. Talk about “trusted insight from a Spirit-filled perspective.” I’m sure the Holy Spirit considers this a zenith of Christian news coverage.

2. Captain Huckabee Defends Republic from Baron Rainbow, over at Gospel Herald: Mike Huckabee Warns U.S. Supreme Court ‘Cannot Overrule God’ on Same-Sex Marriage”

Screw it. I can only take so much misinterpretation of the Bible on marriage in one day.

Captain Huckabee, it’s time you read “What Every American Should Know about the Biblical ‘Definitions’ of Marriage.” Someone please put this essay in his hands.

1. God Bless America, Land of the Drones, via Wisconsin Christian News: The Story Behind the Song: God Bless America”

Ah, the behind-the-scenes story of the classic tune, “God Bless America.” Thanks for reminding us, Wisconsin Christian News! And just who wasn’t stirred by this song back in 1938, when Irving Berlin dusted it off from his archives and provided it as a gift to “it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings” Kate Smith?

Well…back in 1938, the U.S. population was 132 million, including more than 15 million non-Caucasians. So I’m guessing at least 10% of the population was puzzled by the lyric “let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free”—or at least might have wondered why folks like Jackie Robinson couldn’t yet play the infield for the Los Angeles Dodgers for another decade, even though Uncle Sam was hot to trot for those racist Nazis.

Let us all be grateful for a land so fair.

What a lyric. I agree. God bless Finland, Kazakhstan, Austria, Slovakia, Luxembourg, Malta, the Czech Republic, Norway, Hungary and Sweden!

That’s a wrap!

Please open your hymnals to No. 7.

While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer.

God Bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above.

From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, my home sweet home.

Progressives, the November Elections are—damn, you missed it. It’s too late. While we Progressives sat around drinking craft beer, more than one-third of our fellow fundamentalist countrymen rushed to the polls and elected the most idiotic group of human beings ever yet to rule a superpower.

But don’t worry. We’ll get another shot to right the Good Ship Civilization (subliminal hyperlink to Bernie 2016) on Tuesday, November 8, 2016. Hopefully our Little Blue Planet will still be alive and kicking by then. And hopefully we can all get off our Balaam’s asses this time and find a voting booth.

Arik Bjorn

Arik Bjorn lives in Columbia, South Carolina. He was the Democratic Party / Green Party fusion candidate for U.S. Congress in the 2nd Congressional District of South Carolina. Visit the archive for Arik’s campaign website, and check out his latest book, So I Ran for Congress. You can also follow his political activities on Twitter @Bjorn2RunSC and on Facebook. And be sure to check out more from Arik in his archives!


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