Live Like Jesus?


I’m driving through downtown Atlanta yesterday afternoon and I see a billboard featuring Bishop Eddie Long.  Bishop Eddie is pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, a megachurch in Lithonia, GA (an ATL suburb).  Bishop Eddie was one of the six mega-pastors who were on the receiving end of Senator Chuck Grassley’s investigation into televangelists and their extravagant lifestyles (an investigation about which I have truly mixed emotions, by the way; that’s not the point of this post anyway).

Bishop Eddie makes nearly a cool million a year.  Bishop Eddie drives a $350K Bentley, and lives in a mansion with nine bathrooms on twenty acres.  Defending this (indefensible) lifestyle, Bishop Eddie told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 2005 that,

“I pastor a multimillion dollar congregation. You’ve got to put me on a different scale than the little black preacher sitting over there that’s supposed to be just getting by because the people are suffering.”

Uh-huh.

What makes this interesting is what the billboard said.  It read,

“Love Like Him, Live Like Him, Lead Like Him”

I assume Bishop Eddie means that we ought to love, live, and lead like Jesus.

And so I find myself wondering if anyone in his mega-congregation sees the irony…

And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.Luke 9:58


4 responses to “Live Like Jesus?”

  1. I don’t think they do; I think most of his congregation have gotten caught up in his wealth doctrine and they too want to be financially blessed. His teachings are sweet music to their ears; there just seems to be a certain mentality that is drawn to that.

    The ones I feel sorry for are the people who are sincerely deceived and give out of a desire to be obedient to God.

    I start to wonder, though, how sincerely deceived you can be when your rich, expensively dressed pastor is accused of financial wrong-doing, and you continue to give him money.

  2. Jesus grew up in a poor town, was not highly educated (by men), had learned a trade but wasn’t getting rich off it, wasn’t popular with the religious leaders, had no connections or clout among the political leaders. He lived at home until He left to begin His ministry, He and His disciples stayed with friends and family whenever they could; the little money they had for food and other necessities was not enough for Judas to get rich embezzling from – does anything about this resemble how this bishop lives?

    Isn’t Jesus’ ministry like the ones he looks down on, saying he’s “on a different scale”?

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