March 15, 2006

No More Chef!

So Isaac Hayes has quit South Park because (ready for this one?) the show is insensitive toward religion.

I agree with Daniel Pulliam over at GetReligion -- has he really only just now noticed this??

How about this episode? Or what about this one? I guess they played nicely with religion, huh? (H/T to Andrew Sullivan for those references, btw.)

Even the folks at South Park noted the hypocrisy:

“In ten years and over 150 episodes of ‘South Park,’ Isaac never had a problem with the show making fun of Christians, Muslim[s], Mormons or Jews,” Stone said in a statement issued by the Comedy Central network. “He got a sudden case of religious sensitivity when it was his religion featured on the show.”
(from the Reuters story)
I don't like it when faith is used for comedic value, no matter whose faith it is. Usually when that happens, the religion in question is completely misrepresented, and trying to set the record straight simply shows that you don't get humor at all. I actually had this happen on an email list I subscribe to -- someone told a Baptist joke that I found a bit offensive, and I pointed out the inaccuracies. I was told I didn't have a sense of humor. Anyone who knows me can tell you THAT is untrue -- I just hate to see peoples' faith misrepresented just for cheap laughs.

So I can understand why Hayes left South Park. I just wish he'd have been a bit more consistent with his stand on mocking religion, or at least said he was mad because it was his religion this time.

Posted by: Warren Kelly at 05:34 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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March 01, 2006

Jerry Falwell and the Jerusalem Post

I found this piece in the Jerusalem Post thanks to Tim Ellesworth. As an LU graduate, I was concerned, so I headed over to jerryfalwell.com looking for an explanation. I didn't find one right away, but I did find an email link to send a comment to Dr. Falwell, which I did.

I got an answer:

A GRACIOUS CORRECTION OF THE JERUSALEM POST

By Jerry Falwell
March 1, 2006

Earlier today, reports began circulating across the globe that I have recently stated that Jews can go to heaven without being converted to Jesus Christ. This is categorically untrue.

These false reports originated from a March 1 Jerusalem Post front page column which said: "An evangelical pastor and an Orthodox rabbi, both from Texas, have apparently persuaded leading Baptist preacher Jerry Falwell that Jews can get to heaven without being converted to Christianity. Televangelist John Hagee and Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg, whose Cornerstone Church and Rodfei Sholom congregations are based in San Antonio, told The Jerusalem Post that Falwell had adopted Hagee's innovative belief in what Christians refer to as 'dual covenant' theology. This creed, which runs counter to mainstream evangelism, maintains that the Jewish people have a special relationship to God through the revelation at Sinai and therefore do not need 'to go through Christ or the Cross' to get to heaven."

While I am a strong supporter of the State of Israel and dearly love the Jewish people and believe them to be the chosen people of God, I continue to stand on the foundational biblical principle that all people - Baptists, Methodists, Pentecostals, Jews, Muslims, etc. - must believe in the Lord Jesus Christ in order to enter heaven.

Dr. Hagee called me today and said he never made these statements to the Jerusalem Post or to anyone else. He assured me that he would immediately contact the Jerusalem Post and request a correction. Before today, I had never heard of Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg or had any communications with him. I therefore am at a total loss as to why he would make such statements about me to the Post, if in fact he did.

ONE WAY TO HEAVEN

In this age of political correctness and diversity, the traditional evangelical belief that salvation is available only through faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ is often portrayed as closed-minded and bigoted. But if one is to believe in Jesus Christ, he must believe in His words: "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father but by Me" (John 14:6). I simply cannot alter my belief that Jesus is The Way to heaven, as He taught.

Again, I do not follow this teaching of "dual covenant" theology and I believe it runs counter to the Gospel.

I have been on record all 54 years of my ministry as being opposed to "dual covenant" theology. In fact, Dr. John Hagee has indicated to me, as recently as today, that he likewise does not accept "dual covenant" theology.

I want to reaffirm that I am a Zionist in terms of Israel's entitlement to its homeland. I continue to pray daily for the peace of Jerusalem, as the Bible instructs Christians to do. And I have dedicated my life and ministry to working for the peace of Israel. I dearly cherish the highly esteemed Jabotinsky Award which was given me in 1981 by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. I have led thousands of pilgrims through the Land Of Israel during my 31 tours over 36 years. I seriously believe that few Americans have invested more time and resources in the defense of Israel in this generation.

However, I simply cannot alter my deeply-held belief in the exclusivity of salvation through the Gospel of Christ for the sake of political or theological expediency.

Like the Apostle Paul, I pray daily for the salvation of everyone, including the Jewish people.

So Jerry Falwell hasn't forsaken the exclusivity of the Gospel.

Posted by: Warren Kelly at 03:27 PM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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