McBrayer: Creflo Dollar gets his money’s worth
I’ve tried to stay out of this, but like the proverbial moth drawn to the flame, I can’t leave Creflo alone. The Creflo of whom I speak is Creflo A. Dollar, televangelist and pastor of the 30,000-member World Changers Church near Atlanta.
I have to say that Creflo has the best name for a televangelist in the history of the genre. Dollar! And dollars, it appears, are what Brother Creflo is most concerned with. His net worth exceeds $25 million. He owns an $8 million home in Atlanta, a $2.5 million Manhattan apartment, and various real estate holdings around the world.
No, what draws me to the scorching flame is his most recent fundraising effort. He needed a new airplane, so he asked his followers to help im purchase of a Gulfstream G650, a $65-million aviation marvel.
If the man thinks he needs a $65-million jet, I don’t care. But for me, this is a problem. Coercion has more to do with Creflo’s financial success than faith. Here is what Creflo said back in 2011 (when he was slumming around on a Gulfstream III). Preaching about what he would do — if he could — to those who did not put their tithes in the offering plate, he said:
“Red and blue lights would start going, the siren would go off, and a voice would go throughout the entire building, ‘Crook, crook, crook, crook!’ We’d line them up in the front and pass out Uzis and point them at all those non-tithing members … and at the count of three ‘Jesus-es’ we’d shoot them all dead … If we were not under the Blood of Jesus, I would certainly try it.”
At the end of all this tomfoolery, Creflo said, “The devil is (trying to) discredit me because I’m showing people, Jesus.” This one really stuck me in the heart (as if the Uzi-wielding firing squad did not). Because Jesus “had no place to lay his head.” Jesus said, “Do not store up treasures here on earth” and “Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and then you will have treasure in heaven” and “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.”
Regardless, Creflo ended up with his new jet. Well, eventually he will, as its assembly is backlogged until around 2018. Maybe, if Jesus comes back by then, Creflo will take the Lord for a ride in it, because he’s already taken everyone else for one.
Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, blogger, pastor and author of multiple books. Visit his website at ronniemcbrayer.net.