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November 30, 2009

TV Preachers: Everything BUT the Gospel?

Woman asks them how to receive Christ, but has a hard time getting a straight answer

Our friend Phil Cooke recently tipped us off to this story:

Mary Hutchinson of Inspired Direct, a direct mail and fundraising company for non-profits, churches, and ministries, conducted an interesting experiment recently. She sent a simple letter, under an assumed name, to dozens of TV ministries that claim to be about "winning the lost." She enclosed a $20 bill with each letter and asked "how to accept Jesus in my heart."

The good news: She got responses from 95 percent of the ministries. The bad? Less than 25 percent gave her a simple, direct answer to her question about how to become a Christian.

Hutchinson writes: "If we are really about evangelism, how could this be? The most impressive of all responses was a simple letter from a smaller ministry that walked me down the road to salvation. It was personal, direct and spoke to me from the heart. A few others had small books dedicated to doing that as well; they just presented it in a more formal manner. Another 20 percent sent me packages that contained a book, or a handful of books and DVDs, but none gave a direct answer to the most important question of all. In fact, one up-and-coming TV preacher sent me such a large package of "stuff" that it cost him $8.10 to mail it to me!"

Read Hutchinson's observations here.


I can believe this. Most of the time, what is being preached on television is not the gospel. It is all about wealth, power, and taking the easy way rather than about the saving grace of Christ and the narrow way.

It is sad that this is often the only view some people have of Christians.

A sad reality about many TV preachers who seem to devote 95 percent of their costly programming time to raising funds or tickling viewers' egos about personal empowerment. The gospel gets short-changed most of the time. May God have mercy and give true decernment to viewers not to continually fund these scams.