I will admit that I can count how many times I have tuned into the Oprah Winfrey Show on two hands. I’m not a real fan of talk shows in general but that said I AM a history buff and I’m especially a fan of pop culture so I decided to tune into the finale more for curiosity sake than anything else. I am well aware that Oprah is probably one of the ten most influential women in the world. Her talk show of twenty-five years has been watched by billions of people (mostly women) and I do not negate in the least her zealous pursuit in raising awareness to social issues such as child abuse, racial discrimination, poverty and family violence. One of the wealthiest women on the planet, Oprah has contributed millions to charity organizations. She believes in “paying it forward”, admitting that it is the “grace of God” that has brought her so far in life.
That said, yesterday as she spoke softly, reminiscing about her 25 years on television, to an audience perhaps in the millions, she had an opportunity to say “farewell” in a way that would have left her mark for eternity and she blew it. Yes, she said she had a faith, yes, she said the name “Jesus” but rather than share the gospel Truth with her listeners, she instead gave a weak, wishy-washy, watered down, “all roads lead to heaven” discourse choosing not to offend rather than choosing to save. She spoke of everyone having a “calling”, not a God-calling, just a “calling”. She spoke of everyone having a “light” within them, a “light” that could change the world if they would just let it “shine”. She said the god she prayed to was the same god that everyone prayed to. (Alluding to the fact that no matter what name we put to God He is one in the same.) That is false teaching.
Afterwards, Lisa Laflamme on CTV commented that Oprah sounded almost “evangelical” in her farewell message. By definition that would mean: Evangelical relating to, or being a Christian believing in the sole authority and inerrancy of the Bible, in salvation only through regeneration, and in a spiritually transformed personal life; seeking to convert people, especially to Christianity. Sorry, Lisa, but Oprah may have sounded evangelical but that’s as far as it went. Another news reporter last night said that it was the “Gospel according to Oprah”. Yep, that’s what it was, unfortunately it was a misleading and errant gospel.
When I turned off the T.V. and pondered Oprah’s farewell message I couldn’t help but ask myself what I would have done if I had been given the same opportunity as her. If I knew that was my final chance to say parting words to millions of loyal fans and followers, what words would I have chosen? It haunts me now. So many times I’ve blown it, refusing to share my faith with others because I didn’t have the courage or boldness to do so, or worse, because I didn’t want to offend. If nothing else, Oprah’s final farewell has given me pause to think about my parting words. I don’t want to miss the mark when I say “Good bye” some day.
Matthew 12:36-37 – “I tell you, on the day of judgment you will have to give an account for every careless word you utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Great post Lynn. It does sadden me to see a woman who grew up with “roots” in God that has slowly moved into her own self-made religion – one that professes “God” but denies the power thereof. The gospel according to Oprah will lead many straight to hell. What a difference she could make in the world if she recognized God for Who He IS.
To whom much is given, much will be required… We need to pray for her eyes to be enlightened to the real JESUS CHRIST. (Ephes. 1)
Great comments here Lynn:
1. Donald James Parker wrote: “…Oprah has been pushing a New Age/Christianity hybrid for a long time.”
2. Lynn Mosher wrote: “…I started talking back to the TV…”Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!” And I turned it off!”
3. Dwight Huffman wrote: “…Paul described this as a different gospel! He wasn’t impressed with it then and it is just as deadly today.
4. Tracy Krauss wrote: “I guess it’s no secret that Oprah follows a new age philosophy, so it’s not surprising.”
5. elainemcooper wrote: “Oprah has pushed her own “gospel” for quite awhile now. I used to admire her and still appreciate her good works. But rather than turning her audience’s eyes to Jesus, she basks in self-glory. How easy for any of us to fall into a trap of whitewashing the truth. May I always seek to please the Lord and direct other’s eyes to Him.”
Great post indeed Lynn. It is from the world of man that success comes to those who sell what the majority want to hear and has nothing to do about truth. Mark Twain once said, “A lie travels half way around the world while the truth is still putting on its boots.” We Christians know that Jesus Christ is the Truth, the Way and the Life. The Bible is God’s gift to us for the best life possible and life everlasting. Who could want for anything less?
Yes Lynn, we can only imagine such an opportunity to say parting words to millions of loyal fans, followers in Jesus Christ, and others who would otherwise never experience His love for us? Imagine people finding the only truth, peace, love, hope, joy and their heart’s desire for all things good and much more through Jesus Christ who gave His Life for our sins so that we could live fully into eternity with Him.
Yes, yet another opportunity missed from those who know not what they do while dancing to the tune of a different drummer.
Lynn, it is a very good post indeed. I hardly ever listen to Oprah, but know she appears to have a gospel of her own. She has given a stage to folks who should be ignored. She pushed a few “preachers” forward that should not have a stage at all as it misses the mark and deceives more people. I have appreciated Oprah for what I have heard she has done for charities, but I wish she would leave my Lord out of her promotions as the gospel she preaches is deadly to all who listen.
Oprah has pushed her own “gospel” for quite awhile now. I used to admire her and still appreciate her good works. But rather than turning her audience’s eyes to Jesus, she basks in self-glory. How easy for any of us to fall into a trap of whitewashing the truth. May I always seek to please the Lord and direct other’s eyes to Him. Thanks for a great post, Lynn.
I guess its no secret that Oprah follows a new age philosophy, so its not surprising .
You are right Lynn. It was so subtle and presented in such a feel good way that many might have just thought, “Isn’t that wonderful.” We have to weigh everything according to the scripture and not by how good it feels or seems.
Great post Lynn
I didn’t see the episode but have heard universalism before. We have our work cut out for us to communicate the gospel, love people and do this without abandoning Christ as the only way. Paul described this as a different gospel! He wasn’t impressed with it then and it is just as deadly today.
Thanks for the encouragement.
Amen, Lynn! I happened to turn on the program about ten minutes before it was over. I caught the middle of her speech. Whatever her comments were at that point, I don’t remember, but, as I sat on the couch, I started talking back to the TV…”Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!” And I turned it off! Great post!
Awesome post, Lynn!! Oprah has been pushing a New Age/Christianity hybrid for a long time.