Thursday, May 11, 2006


After doing the little thingy on Paul Crouch I was looking at TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network)...they get 25 million hits on their website each month, and broadcast almost all over the world, it is massive (next we will have an emergent channel I guess).
I appears that TBN is probably the biggest teacher in the church ever, reaching more christian homes than even their local pastor, nearly everywhere I go people watch the God Channels.

Is it good or bad then?

For me it is the single most devastating influence the church has ever known, the sad thing is that it will not stop, so for people who watch I Jesus for yourselves, and not through the TV.


Shieldsy said...

It has the power to be good or bad.

Whilst a lot of it is cheesy, I've heard some truly outstanding teaching that has really helped my Christian faith. Of course, that means it's also got the potential to propogate some really bad/false teaching as well. That's the risk ... and it was true with the discovery of the printing press as well.

Got to remember that via TV the gospel is going into nations that would normally never be open to anything Christian. I've heard on good authority (Canon Andrew White) that people all over the middle east watch the God channel. They aren't cursed with British cynicism so when they see Benny Hinn performing miracles in Jesus name, they want to know more about Jesus!

And whilst us Brits like to think that 'church' should be quiet & restrained & conservative ... watching a typical english church service on TV (even an 'emergent church' service) would be more boring than watching dry paint. In fact, even attending them in the flesh is often as interesting as watching dry paint.

There's a big cultural difference. Americans don't have a problem with showmanship & understand that good TV requires high production values. You can always tell the European progs coz they look like they've been filmed in someones garage (with the exception of Abundant Life).

I haven't even got a telly, but whenever I go to my mums house I enjoy tuning in for a few days. That's about as much as I can take though ... even top quality preaching gets a bit gets a bit monotonous when you have it 24/7.

Anonymous said...

Just a thought...
You don't like the way that Jacob Prasch is critical of other Christians, and he likes to warn others of being deceived but then here are you talking about Paul and Jan Crouch. I do agree with you about their ministry, but also agree with shieldsy who thinks that in some places the gospel wouldn't have got there otherwise.

Dave said...

My point is why do people rely on the God Channel? For some people it is there only fellowship and teaching, is this not dangerous?

My thing on Paul crouch was just a bit of fun, not the violent assault that people like Prasch make, I was also involved with word faith, it cost my family thousands of pounds.

Do you believe that Paul crouch is

he name that has been spoken about through centuries by angelic hosts

This is what Kim Clement said and what Paul thinks of himself, is that not concerning as he leads millions.

Shieldsy said...

I think that for a lot of people listening to some songs + hearing a sermon = church. That's the danger of God TV. I've seen the consequences of it in members of my family.

Of course church is about serving each other & the community, about being accountable to others, about getting along with people, about submitting to authority, about contributing to worship & a whole lot more besides. These are the things that you can never get from TV.

To be fair though, I regularly hear teachers on the God channel telling people that they need to belong to a church.

Got to admit, it's tempting to join the TV-church brigade though sometimes. No committees, no having to submit to your leaders when they are so obviously wrong(!), no having to resolve conflicts with people, no jobs to be done, and you can just turn off the preacher when he's being completely unhelpful & irrelevant. Best stop now before I talk myself into it!

John Lunt said...


I can't speak for anyone else, but I came to faith in Christ through TBN.

There's a lot of teaching on TBN now that I have a hard time dealing with, but I can hardly consider it a bad thing since I had a real encounter with Christ through this network.

I am convinced that God raised TBN up because the church has failed miserably. No church was coming to tell me about Jesus. They weren't beating down my doors. Christians weren't telling me about Jesus.

God will use what he has to use. I don't believe TBN is God's best choice, but I believe that God will use those available.

Are some of the teachings on TBN a problem? I would say so. But it's hard to distill everything down on the network.

They have teachings from across the spectrum -it's not all "name it and claim it." Though that probably is more the direction that Paul gravitates toward. But they have had programs over the years by at least two catholic priests.

They even have a channel in the middle east called the healing channel, because Muslims believe Jesus was a healer. It's reaching people the church hasn't been able to reach.

I don't watch it much anymore. God is taking me in different directions, but I do love the heart of Paul and Jan Crouch.

When hurricane Katrina hit, TBN bought a helicopter for a Christian ministry that needed it to get supplies into New Orleans.

They have helped out Franklin Graham's Samaritan's purse in a number of critical situations like providing equipment and supplies to hospitals.

As a matter of fact Jan Crouch is currently spearheading the building of a hospital in Haiti, the most impovershed nation in the Western hemisphere. The building is almost completed and ready to be equipped.

Yes, there are problems with some of the teaching on TBN, but they have some big hearts in may ways.


John Lunt

Brian Robertson said...

Great debate, folks

Have you noticed that the TV church with its pluses and minuses asks for money. Big running costs mean big budgets and a lot of fundraising.

TV is not relational.

Hi Dave long time since we spoke.

I wish I had broadband in this but and ben in Rogart.

Bless you all

Shannon Byous said...

To say that TV gospel is going to nations that would normally never be open to anything Christian doesn't excuse the junk, pride or excessive wealth that goes out with the gospel. And it provides no relationship with the people. No personal love to them, nothing sacrificed to bring them the truth of Jesus - which to me seems curiously like their teaching on these channels sometimes - it is often minus the Cross.

Nuno Barreto said...

Yes, to say that the christian TV is reaching places we can't is not something good. Is actually something bad, since it is giving a wrong impression of what christianity is.

billy westwood said...
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Dave said...

Your conversion is amazing, so the Glory belongs to God alone, people.
Even Simon the Sorcerer was part of great events, but his motives ultimately were for power, he was called to repent, and not to continue in his quest for power (acts 8)

Sorry derek, but what has McClaren got to do with me or TBN, if he is preaching a different gospel then that is between him and God, but he is not telling people that they have to send him money, nor is he teaching things like the apostles and Jesus were wealthy men. The TBN guys do simply to make a platform for there own greed, twisting the scriptures and binding people up.

Not sure if I am a brit, I was born here and live here, but about 14 years ago I was born into another Kingdom with a different King, a king who shuns and rejects the power and greed of world and religious sytems.

I am sure S Byous will respond to your other point.


Shannon Byous said...


(1) You made my point for me. The sacrifices are being taken from others, the elderly and the poor who don't get anything but this stuff in their homes because the church is too busy building their million dollar + buildings and "ministries" and tv stations to actually spend time with them. Doesn't look like Paul & Jan have made much of a sacrifice, nor does it sound anything like the living Jesus I see reflecting His Father in the Bible or the apostles lives.

I meant that the people taking the money don't sacrifice much (except their dignity), but I will agree with you that they are taking the sacrifices of the poor and elderly to feed and promote themselves. That's not okay. It's wrong.

(2) Criticism is different from discernment and trying to keep "bad yeast" out of the body that infects the whole thing.

(3) I came to know Jesus by growing up in a Southern Baptist church. That doesn't mean the Baptists don't have the ability to bind people up in their own set of rule-keeping... believe me... it happens. So what if I met Jesus through that fog? He is bigger - but if that's the case and that makes it tolerable why did Jesus turn the money changer's tables over in the temple? Might as well just let them go. After all... somebody may have really heard God speak to them through the scriptures in one of their services. So what - we defend the very people that Jesus would have confronted in love. Love isn't always a soft thing. Often it is pointing out the truth and exposing things to the light so that there can be freedom and life brought by that exposure.

My how we defend what we do not know how to live without... and that is the beauty of religion at it's worst. A little bit of truth mixed with a lot of self-serving lies can divide the Body like nothing else... and while we defend and debate the lonely and the heartbroken and the abused and the elderly and the poor and the fatherless go on as they always have because we'd rather defend our doctrines than lay down our lives for one another.

billy westwood said...
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Dave said...

Derek why are you so defensive, you completely miss my 14 years issue. Go back and read it was to say I am not a brit...I AM NOT BRITISH...I belong to a different Kingdom. Whereas you are clearly still American and have some patriotic bias in your writing...

How can you say McClaren is more anti christ than the do you know this.

Why did I pick on TBN, well simply because there teaching reaches millions, including some I know who are being ripped off by these hirelings.
Why do you go about British Christians and Catholics???

So I must ask you this, have you ever heard of the Kingdom of God, or is your faith (as it seems) drawn along nationalistic boundaries.

BY the way Brian McClaren is American!!!!

billy westwood said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dave said...

What can I say to that Derek, clearly you must be right in all you say, feel free to expose who these much larger and ethnically and diverse group of "hirelings" are, thanks for the guarantee but I already have one.

For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord.


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