We are just (3) dudes that love Jesus and the church. Please don’t mistake our views shared on this blog as views that are necessarily congruent with our church’s views.
So Toby Morrell and I (Joey) were watching the Clemson Tigers destroy the Ga. Tech Yellow jackets last night, and as always, talked about everything. I’m sure my wife, Pricilla, loves when Toby comes over because there’s some one else in the house that just does not stop talking. Pricilla is way sweeter to listen to though.
The topic came up of (you guessed it) Steven Furtick’s house. For those of you that do not know who Furtick is, this guy started a church 8 years ago and today, and there’s currently 14,000 attenders and one huge celebrity leader named Steven Furtick. Pastor Furtick has spoken at my church, addressed our staff numerous times and I love the guy. Great, dynamic, charismatic speaker that can make the vegan put down some ribs.
To be sure, I don’t agree with everything Pastor Furtick says in general but I haven’t found one person on this earth who I agreed with on everything. Which leads to my discussion with Toby.
You see, Pastor Furtick is building a 1.7 million dollar, 16,000 square foot house. Read more here.
Toby basically stood his ground throughout the conversation that there’s no way of slicing this thing. Pastor Furtick is in the wrong. For a myriad of reasons: he needs to be above reproach, he doesn’t need that house, its excessive, it’s a bad example to his flock (and the world), etc.
I’m not going to argue against the fact that Furtick is probably and likely making an unwise decision, but I stand on the fact that one cannot make a black/white, right/wrong, moral/immoral issue out of this. Only God can do that because only God knows His little boy, Stevie’s, heart.
He needs to be above reproach. Many people say the same thing about us, concerning this blog.
He doesn’t need that house. I don’t need my 1500 square foot house or the computer that I’m typing on.
It’s excessive. Anyone from Ghana Africa would probably say the same thing about the majority of our readers’ (yeah, you) houses.
It’s a bad example to his flock. Don’t even get me started on all the times I’m a bad example to my flock. I TRY not to be, but often unsuccessful.
We as Christians need to be able to talk about these sorts of issues and we need to be motivated by love and not mean-spirited criticism. We need to remember our planks and all along proclaim that Jesus is the savior of the world. Last time I checked, everyone needs this Savior. With that settled, let’s talk about this. As the universal church, we have to.
Here are some questions i want to leave you and Toby with. We really want to hear what you think.
Could God have told Pastor Furtick to build this house, maybe having a greater purpose in mind for it? What if He later asks Pastor Furtick to give it away so it can be used for huge non-profit headquarters?
What if this brother of ours is giving 75% of all his money away to the poor and still has the excess to build this house?
What if three members of his church gave him $500,000 each and implored him to build this?
I personally don’t think this is a wise move on Pastor Furtick’s part. I could also be speculating, but had he sought more counsel, maybe he wouldn’t have built a mini disney world?
I just don’t think one can make a definitive stance on this being a wrong–or sinful–thing. It’s a heart issue and we don’t know his heart.
What say you? We love Steven Furtick by the way and would prefer loving (iron sharpens iron) responses.
Tony Responds. I MEAN, TOBY!
I agree with everything Joey says here. I also want to clarify that I think God is using Steven Furtick and Elevation Church to do amazing things. The dude had been given a gift and we thank God He’s using it to share the Gospel. With that said, a 1.7 million home is excessive. I think if you took out the million and just used 700,000, you’d still have a killer house for God’s glory. I also agree that I’m a hypocrite, and that I don’t need what I have.
I’m typing this on an Iphone from my very comfortable, climate-controlled apartment. I’m not about the poverty Gospel (we should all be poor like Jesus, for the glory of God) anymore than I am the prosperity Gospel (God intends for us all to be rich, because of the cross of Jesus). Both are dangerous. My point is that this house is too much. We should be able to ask this “what if,” just as much as the, “what if God is going to use this house for greater purposes,” right? I am all about working hard and enjoying the benefits of that hard work, but there’s a reason everyone is talking about this house. It clearly borderlines “too much.” Otherwise, no one would be talking about it.
I also think we hide our own finances from each other because somehow, we see it as personal and something that shouldn’t be known to others. I think some things can and should be private, but we all need to be at least a little more open about our own finances.
Lastly, i would say this is a good topic for me personally and does cause conviction in my heart concerning the little bit of wealth I have. I truly believe Americans are about the richest people that have ever lived. Even the poor in this country are wealthy when considering people throughout the history of the world.
Lastly, it’s just good for us to at the very least question the purpose of our excess, right? Do we own things or do they own us?
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