For my worldview class, our teacher had us watch one hour of the Trinity Broadcasting Network. Surprisingly, I had never seen any of the shows on TBN. I say surprisingly because it is the most watched faith network on television. As with most Christian movies and television, I had a few presuppositions about the quality of the production and message, and was not disappointed.
What I first saw was a message high on emotionalism, low on scriptural context, with verses about giving scrolling across the bottom of the screen. The message itself would have been better if it was more about teaching on the blind beggars’ experience with Jesus and less about the prospect of giving to TBN and receiving a reward. Yes, it is good to give to ministries that help others, such as TBN’s second chance ministry, but was that message necessary?
TBN’s message to me today seemed to say, “give and you will be blessed by God. Are you getting what you want? By the way, our mission is to reach everyone on earth with the gospel.” Now, I do not think that there is anything wrong with wanting to reach the world with the gospel, in fact, I think that it is one of the best things Christians can strive for. However, I think that the Trinity Broadcasting Network could feature a little bit more meat in their channels. I watched a message on why I should give to TBN, the history of TBN, the prison ministry of TBN, and heard a couple testimonies about the power of TBN. TBN really likes itself. I am sure that everyone who works there also really likes Jesus too. I am sorry I do not know more about TBN, so my impression may be off quite a bit, but that is what I saw.
It does encourage me that there are people trying to reach the world through television. My only request is that those who do really bring hard theology into their messages, teach on apologetics, and encourage people to go out into the world to serve Christ.