Is it possible that in a land of 320 million souls, I am the only one that sees how utterly disgusting, how thoroughly contemptible and unbelievably phony is the TV hit, “Extreme Makeover: The Home Edition?”
Nah, that’s not possible! With the exception of the people on the receiving end of the program’s “charity,” what is the explanation for its insane popularity?
Is it really possible for people to believe that the ridiculously posh, showy mansions erected within just seven short days, are done in the name of “love?” Of course it is! Otherwise, what would explain its enormous popularity?
Really, have we sunk so low in this country that we readily accept the notion that there are strings attached when we do something charitable for another? Is it okay for the giver of charity to gain from such giving? Obviously it is. It’s being done all the time in a country that zealously clutches Capitalism to its bosom as its lodestar.
Michael Moore had once said that Capitalism is nothing more than a system of propagandists that convinces humanity that what is actually bad for them is good. Michael is obviously a diplomat. My definition of capitalism is a system that enables those that have to capitalize on those that don’t.
Okay, so let’s see what God’s Holy Word, The Bible, has to say on the subject of love, charity, giving:
1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”
1Corinthians 13:3 “And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.”
God often uses the word charity to connote love, specifically, Agape love. The word profiteth refers here to one’s futility to gain entry into Heaven, not as we traditionally know and accept that term.
1Corinthians 13:4 “Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not;charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,”
Does not vaunt itself and is not puffed up? Ty Pennington struts about like a Peacock with his tail in full array, all puffed up, ever so busy attracting attention to himself. Worse yet, he has the whole crowd of participants, volunteers, construction people and the construction company moguls scurrying about in a frenzy! It’s a three ring circus!
What do people do in circuses? They run about with bright-colored clothing, jumping and carrying on, making all kinds of gyrations, noises and antics designed to attract attention to themselves. “And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.” Matthew 6:5
Here are God’s commands regarding charity and/or love:
John 15:13 “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
A similar citation is found in Romans 12:1 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
Do we really believe that Extreme Makeover is “acceptable unto God,” and is this what the LORD would consider a “reasonable service?”
Whenever we read the Bible, we should always keep God’s principles in mind:
1Corinthians 2:13 “Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.”
Matthew 13:34 “All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:” “A parable is an earthly message with a heavenly meaning,” per Harold Camping, Family Stations, Oakland, California.
Isaiah 28:10 “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:”
Get the picture? The Bible is spiritual. We should not literally interpret it. Therefore, when we read John 15:13, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends,” this does not necessarily command a literal giving up of one’s physical life, although, given some circumstances, it could.
Rather, spiritually, it connotes giving without regard to one’s self, without regard for one’s own personal gain. When people give with ulterior motives, looking to gain something in return, that is not true Biblical giving. It’s not giving at all. Rather, it’s simply a business transaction, done so in skillfully designed deception.
I’m reminded of my father-in-law’s funeral, my wife’s Dad, Willie. It took place in a “holler” in the bowels of the Southern West Virginia mountains. There were about 400 people at the church. People were sitting and standing everywhere!
Afterward, we all gathered at a very humble and modest home to share our respects to the family. Food was all over the place, brought to the house by families that didn’t have enough for their own mouths.
I remember one family in particular that brought a huge plate of the largest chicken breasts I have ever had the great pleasure of eating. It was scrumptious, down-home country fried chicken.
Others had told me that these were indeed very poor, impoverished people who barely had enough food for their own family, and their home was described as not much more than a chicken coop! Yet, they came and gave of themselves from their hearts. I will never forget this.
The following passages of God’s Word say a lot about the people who “give” on Extreme Makeover:
Mark 12:38 “And he said unto them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces.”
And again, Matthew 6:5 “And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.”
Matthew 5:46 “For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?”
As always, I believe God has made His point…
Please let me hear from you.