Pastor J.D. discusses whether a certain level of “Christian celebrity” can be helpful, or if it is always hurtful.
- I don’t think the idea of a Christian celebrity is categorically, across the board, a bad thing. It’s always been a part of Christianity in some way, even going back to the apostles. I think of men and women like Billy and Ruth Graham, Elisabeth Elliot, John Piper, and so many more who have taken their “Christian celebrity” and made tremendous impact on the kingdom. I think it’s wrong to seek celebrity, but sometimes God does raise up a man or woman for a particular task at a particular time, and they may become well known. In fact, some level of “Christian celebrity” is inescapable and inevitable.
- I do think it can be dangerous—both for the people that are lifting this person up and for the man or woman that is being lifted up. For Paul, in 1 Cor. 3, he recognizes that he and Apollos as two “celebrity Christians.” He says there is danger in relying on a particular person more than you do on God, and viewing them as the primary source of your spiritual growth can be devastating.
- It’s also dangerous for those of us in ministry. If in my quest to serve the body of Christ, my name becomes known, I should treat that as a necessary evil. But if I begin to thrive on that and feed off of it, that will always let me down.
God didn’t make us for the stage. He made us to be servants.
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