I see why some people are afraid of clowns. Jamal Harrison Bryant is a man who apparently has no respect for the Word of God and is willing to clown around, saying what the people want to hear. The Bible says it is God breathed (inspired), good for training in righteousness (2 Tim 3:16), a light unto our path (Ps 119:105). The preacher, the elder, the man with the responsibility to a flock as an under-shepherd, is warned to handle that Word carefully and with regard for the Author. (2 Peter 3:16) This guy stands before the congregation throwing around words like ‘ho and other “gritty”words.
I listened to the rest of the speech. If you think you have the stomach for it, here’s the link. And here is the loyalty comment. After listening, I refuse to call this abomination a sermon. It was, at best, a pathetic set of religious imaginings. The fact that he “wrote” this thing and actually fed it to the congregation demonstrates what has to be is total disregard for the people.
He began the speech talking about what men are looking for in church and that he believes we are urging men to be sanctified sissies. (Truth be told, I can’t say I really disagree with this statement).
To give you an idea of his lack of respect for the Word, Jamal takes us to Matthew 27:19 and weaves it into a twisted fantasy. That single verse reads:
While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent him a message,saying, “Have nothing to do with that righteous Man; for last night I suffered greatly in a dream because of Him.”
Jamal the begins to tell us that Pilate should have listened to his wife, a woman of God. Remember, Pilate’s wife was not a Christian, religious Jew, or a person in any way similar to Cornelius, the Roman Centurion who we see being baptized into the Body of Christ. She was not a Lydia. She was a pagan, a worshiper of false gods.
According to Jamal, if Pilate had listened to his wife, the idea of individual rights, women’s suffrage, voting, and a host of other rights would have been brought into reality a lot sooner. According to Jamal, if Pilate had listened to his wife, he wouldn’t have been fired as the governor of Palestine, he wouldn’t have been shuffled off into obscurity, he wouldn’t have ended up with nothing. Of course, neither the Bible nor history tells us what happened to Pilate. There are traditions, but nothing I would be willing to build a theology on. But he does.
For instance, according to Jamal, did you know that any man with no wife is running on grace? It doesn’t matter if this statement cheapens the entire concept and the character and infinite value of grace. Did you know that a man doesn’t get favor until the woman arrives? Do you even know what the heck that statement means with respect to Christianity? Or how about this – an anointed woman doesn’t just dream about a man, she dreams for her man. When you listen to your wife, you are listening to the voice of God. He says that when she is connected to you, she dreams about what she sees you accomplishing. Would you care to tell me where any of this is located within Scripture?
Of course, in all of this he addresses the men who are not faithful to their women, men who are running around with some other woman. He refers to those women, the other women, as a whores who have no loyalty to their man. But why would Jamal see the need to tell the men there at the Temple of Doom that the women they are fornicating with are not loyal? Is the lack of loyalty of the whores really the primary issue? Is having your wife “dream about what she sees you accomplishing” the goal here?
Once again Jamal pimps the women with imaginings that they can visualize success for their men, visualize faithfulness, persistence, and godliness. Once again he provides tainted food, guaranteed to do much more damage than good to the women. But I suspect an awful lot of the women there at the Empowerment Temple of Doom would have risen up in rebellion if he had focused on telling them to submit to their husband as their head, even as Christ is the head of the Church.
(A tip of the hat to Sidney W.)