A convention of Evangelical televangelists got together this weekend in Dallas, Texas, hosted jointly by Joel Osteen, Jim Bakker, and Kenneth Copeland.
The purpose of the convention was to figure out new ways to take their congregants’ money during a time of economic uncertainty, and, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My congregants are being real stingy,” said Kenneth Copeland, “They’re barely giving me any money at all! I used to get 10% of their income every week, a real Godly tithe I deserved! But now I’m lucky if those selfish jerks give me a measly 2%! If they keep stiffing me, I’m going to have to fire one of my breakfast waiters at my mansion. I can’t eat breakfast with only four waiters, I need all five! What if my toast gets cold? And I don’t want to start dipping into my net worth just because my congregants are worried about themselves. Give me liquid cash!”
Other televangelists agreed that times were rough.
“I’ve tried everything,” said a visibly exhausted Joel Osteen. “I threatened God’s wrath and several plagues if they didn’t continue to pay, I threatened to tell God to dig up all the seeds they’ve already planted with previous monetary gifts to my church, and I even tried to convince a young, pregnant woman that babies were expensive and she should just abort so she can save her money for tithing to me, but nothing will convince these self-absorbed peasants to give me their money!”
Jim Bakker’s presentation got weirdly honest.
“You know something?” asked Bakker rhetorically. “I’ve gotten a little reflective due to all my lawsuits, and I want to say that I for one am glad that Christianity is fake. The other day, I actually opened up my Bible. I don’t know what came over me, but I had to blow off the dust because it has probably been 25 years since the last time I looked in there. I found this amazing passage where Jesus gets upset with the money changers in the Temple, and starts overturning tables and causing a ruckus. I didn’t know Jesus had that kind of masculine rage in him. I had never heard this story before, and it really got me hot imagining Jesus all sweaty with his muscles glistening from throwing tables around. Maybe he had a whip, too, and started whipping the naughty money changers for being bad boys. I got so aroused spiritually. Well, long story short, after a trip to the bathroom to plant a seed of my own in the sink, it dawned on me that maybe we televangelists are just like those money changers. I don’t think Jesus would be happy with how rich we all are, and I just want to say that I’m glad this Christianity stuff is just a bunch of fluff written down by goat herders who had to be reminded not to bang animals or eat unsalted, unrefrigerated pork and seafood and whatnot. Can you imagine any of us seriously spending our lives passively praying to a silent and invisible God to make things magically better for us, and expecting good things to happen without actually doing any of the required work ourselves? You know? God didn’t just give us multi-million dollar mansions, and private jets, and our small armies of life-like, Japanese sex dolls. We worked hard to get where we are! You know how many hours of my life I toiled to convince fools they’d soon be rich if they gave me part of their paychecks? It was not easy or quick! Frankly, I earned my millions by myself, with no Heavenly assistance! It may not have been honest work, but it certainly was hard work! So, anyway, I thought that since I’ve been in the Bible business for 50 years, I might as well try to finally read it, and, let me tell you, this book is wild. Truly wild. I lost count of how many instances of incest there were in the first 40 pages alone! I can’t believe I’ve told so many people they’d solve all their problems just opening up anywhere in the Bible and reading from there for an hour or two! What if they opened up to the part where Lot’s daughters get him drunk, sleep with him, and get pregnant? How would that help anyone? I was truly astounded to learn what crazy stuff I’ve been subjecting these poor people to all this time! If we’re being honest, the Bible should probably be banned. It’s way more gross and corrupting than Harry Potter, or any of the other books we tell good Christian children to burn. It’s filled with violence, murder, and genocide! And can you imagine any one of us being satisfied with the answer ‘God works in mysterious ways’ when bad things continually happen to good people? It would piss me off if someone told me that! …I guess I’m feeling a little guilty. And all the circular, logical fallacies we have to repeat to our congregants because Christian theology doesn’t make very much sense when you stop and think about all the convoluted stuff about the Trinity, transubstantiation, theodicy, the ethical problem of Hell, predestination, free will, the Old Testament’s dystheism, and all the other scriptural incongruities and theological paradoxes. But I digress. I guess my tip for all you other televangelists hurting from dwindling church donations is to get into the survivalist market like me. I’m having great success selling old people a bunch of coronavirus-related products, buckets of beans, and fake cures. The FDA’s lawsuits over the cures have dipped into my profits a bit, but I always recover. It’s always easy to recover in our business!”
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(Picture a screenshot courtesy of this video. Kenneth Copeland literally looks like he could be Satan.)