Friday, October 19, 2012

Carl Trueman "There is something terribly, horribly sleazy emerging in broadly reformed and evangelical quarters ... "

The recent events surrounding Dinesh D'Souza are surely a clarion call for all of us to examine ourselves: let him who thinks he stands, etc. etc. Yet, while the questions hanging over the matter regarding his marriage are worrying, I confess that I find equally disturbing the idea that there are Christian groups out there willing to pay Christian leaders salaries of $1,000,000 to head up Christian organisations and then fees of $10,000 and upwards for giving a single lecture. When my youngest son read the reports online, his initial reaction was not to the marriage issue but to the cash: "That's what really gets Christianity in this country a bad name." was his comment.

There is something terribly, horribly sleazy emerging in broadly reformed and evangelical quarters. As soon as your group, whether it be a conference or a coalition or a college, starts to be influenced in its choice of 'leader' or keynote speaker by the chosen one's ability to command serious media attention or simply fill that stadium, you have Corinthian Christianity and you are heading for disaster. When we are talking upper six and seven figure salaries for those involved in ostensibly Christian work, when figures like ten grand per lecture are bandied around and nobody seems to comment on it as something distasteful or downright inappropriate, we are heading into territory previously occupied by the televangelists and the prosperity hucksters. Given the fact that those with real influence seem adamant in their silence, their chummy farewells to each other and their forced public friendliness to all (except, natch, the occasional irrelevant whistleblower), I think we can expect that events of the last week - indeed, of the last year -- are only the beginning of what is to come.

At seventeen, my son seems to grasp something that has apparently been missed by so many of the great and the good.

Then there's this earlier post Trueman wrote:

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