In the first century of our era a few men and women evangelized the civilized world of their time. Did they do it with the RADIO? Did they do it with the TV? No, they just went from place to place and preached the GOOD NEWS, as Jesus told them to do! They did not need mass media or multimedia to fulfill the Great Comission, and neither do we!
I watch TV once in a blue moon, and I don't care about it. Someone in my family, though, receives signal from 3ABN, and every time I watched their programs I was disappointed. Such a waste of time! I can get in an hour two times as much Bible study and doctrine than I get in one whole day on 3ABN! And if I want music I used one of the many CDs that contain really good quality traditional and contemporary gospel music. I don't need to watch hours and hours of fluff and show, to admire and envy people dressed in expensive clothes walk on stilts around the stage and pretend to be spiritual! The role of the TV stations, whatever they may be, is nothing more than to entertain their audience, and this is what the TELEVANGELISTS do at 3ABN and everywhere else.
George Vandeman was a charming and amazing speaker on the screen, but how many know the struggles he had in his family while he was pretenting that everything was just PINK? I am tired of all this HYPOCRISY clad in fake and arrogant religious clothes! Men and women whose lives are in the tank and who are brokenhearted must play the role of saints to amuse people who have nothing better to do than to spend most of their time in front of the magic box!
Wikipedia has a very instructive article on TELEVANGELISM and its problems. All of us need to learn from its historical background and understand that such TV shows are doing much less good than it is claimed. On the contrary, a lot of sincere people have been driven away from God because of the disappointments they have had with the fake "men of God" who were after power and money. We will find out soon how much of the "Christian work" at 3ABN has been inspired by motives that have nothing with Christianity and Jesus.
Here are some EYE OPENERS for those who think that all is well on the "CHRISTIAN SHOWS:"
Televangelists are the subject of considerable controversy. Both their methods and theology have received widespread criticism from both church and secular sources. Many televangelists are featured on discernment websites run by Christians that are concerned about what they see as departures from sound Christian faith. The following are amongst the issues that have been raised:
Lack of accountability. Many televangelists exist outside of established churches. They have little or no oversight from denominational structures and many are accountable to no-one. In cases where their ministry is run by a board of directors, this is frequently made up of family members and other people who will not challenge the televangelist. Other televangelists, however, are members of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, an independent organisation which promotes high financial standards amongst Christian ministries.
Supernatural theology. Many televangelists hold charismatic or Pentecostal viewpoints, believing in spiritual gifts, divine healing, and other miracles. These subjects remain controversial within Christian thinking. In some instances, claims of miracles have been shown to be fraudulent.
Flamboyant lifestyles. Some televangelists have accumulated significant personal wealth from their ministries and own large properties, luxury cars, and even private jets. This is seen by critics to be contradictory to Christian principles. There is also frequent confusion between personal and ministry assets.
Financial emphasis. Televangelism requires substantial amounts of money to produce programs and purchase airtime on cable and satellite networks. Televangelists devote much time to fundraising activities. Products such as books, CDs, DVDs, and trinkets with supposedly miraculous powers, are aggressively promoted to viewers. Opponents regard such an emphasis as inappropriate and also question whether the money would be better used relieving poverty or employing traditional missionaries.
Personality cult. Traditional Christian teaching emphasises the following of Jesus and not a particular preacher, however televangelism tends to build a personality cult around the televangelist.
Health and wealth teaching. Many televangelists preach a prosperity gospel that promises material success to believers, subject to their generous donations to the “work of God”, which inevitably means the televangelist. This is regarded as a serious heresy by other Christians.
False prophecies. Numerous televangelists have issued false prophecies, for example Benny Hinn’s claim that Fidel Castro would die in the 1990s, or Pat Robertson's claim that the War in Iraq would end in 2006. Other televangelists have made false prophecies of the Second Coming.
False teaching. Televangelists frequently depart from or add to traditional Christian doctrines.
Entertainment focus. The style of televangelism seems to mirror that of the secular entertainment industry, with emphasis on celebrity, slick production, and aggressive marketing.
Disputed success. Televangelists claim to be reaching millions of people worldwide with the gospel and producing numerous converts to Christianity. However, such claims are difficult to verify independently. It has also been questioned whether non-believers actually watch Christian television.
Televangelists often strongly dispute these criticisms and say they are doing God's work. They cite declining attendance at traditional church services and the growth of global mass media as factors necessitating the use of television to fulfill the "Great Commission" in the 21st century.
I see in “God’s Work” done at 3ABN the same:
1. Lack of accountability
2. Supernatural theology
3. Flamboyant lifestyles
4. Financial emphasis
5. PERSONALITY CULT
6. Health and wealth teaching.
7. False prophecies
8. False teachings
9. Entertainment focus
10. Disputed success
How about the extraordinary SCANDALS that have involved the TELEVANGELIST from the beginning of these TV shows? Here is something else we need to look at:
CHRISTIAN TELEVANGELIST SCANDALS
Numerous televangelists have been at the center of well-publicised scandals, including financial, sexual, and religious.
Many televangelists promote the doctrine of divine healing and would claim that God can heal people through them. Christian views on this subject vary, and it is seen as pseudoscience and charlatanry by non-Christians. A number of claims of healing miracles made by televangelists have been exposed as fraud, for example in the case of Peter Popoff.
A series of scandals in the 1980s resulted in the fall from grace of some famous televangelists, such as Jim Bakker, who served a prison sentence for financial improprieties associated with his ministry, and Jimmy Swaggart, who made a famous tearful confession to a dalliance with a prostitute. They have continued preaching, nonetheless, even though their audiences may be a small fraction of what they were at the height of their popularity.
Controversial claims have also been made by some, as when Oral Roberts told his television audience in 1987 that he had to raise $8 million in donations or "God would call him home". He ended up raising $9.1 million.. Shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks, Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell said that it was divine retribution provoked by rampant sexual immorality. In 2005, Robertson announced on The 700 Club that Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez ought to be "taken out" by the US government. Many viewed this as a call for assassination. Later that year, in November, Robertson warned the town of Dover, Pennsylvania of a severe natural disaster following the defeat of the local school board for advocating intelligent design.
Brazil is also a country in which televangelists have found success, and some have faced accusations of improprieties. In 1992, Edir Macedo, a Brazilian televangelist and founder of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God was imprisoned for accusations of charlatanism, and spent some days in prison. More recently, in 2002, the Época magazine, controlled by Globo media group published two new articles making accusations at Igreja Renascer em Cristo. In 2006, Brazilian Justice blocked all goods of the Hernandes couple, leaders of the church because of accusations of money laundering, fraud and identity theft.
IMHO, Danny Shelton is going to be soon another embarrasing addition to the HALL OF SHAME of the once fallen and never recovered TELEVANGELISTS. I am looking forward to the day when,
"The pride of man will be humbled, and the loftiness of men will be abased; And the LORD alone will be exalted in that day" (Isaiah 2:17).