In this video, the pastor is being interviewed on Good Morning America about his new book, Love Wins. In this interview the pastor is given an excellent opportunity to share the gospel to a national audience. Here are some of the things that he said.
The first question he is asked is about what is his response to being charged with heresy over his new book. His answer is that Christian history is very diverse and that Christ is big enough to cover the controversy. He seems to suggest that Christians have had many evolving views of the gospel over time.
The next question asks specially if people of other faiths are condemned to hell. The pastor does not give a straight answer to this question. He begins to answer the question by stating that he believes the primary aspect of God is love. He continues on and does not give an answer and unfortunately the reporter does not push him for one.
Later in the interview he twists what Jesus has said about “your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” He claims that Jesus wants us to create heaven on earth. When asked about those who are extreme sinners, he says we are all sinners and since we all sin we all are going to experience salvation. He says that sinners create a hell for themselves a hell on earth, and is not specific, but seems to suggest they do not suffer eternal punishment after death.
There are three problems with the gospel that this pastor is presenting. First he refuses to say that people of other faiths are wrong and we end up in hell. Secondly, his twists Jesus’ words and suggests that we create our own heaven and hell on earth. Finally, he says that because everyone has sinned, it is not fair for only some to receive grace.
The overarching problem is that he is advocating a judgmentless or Universalist gospel where God is all loving and would never want to punish someone. The pastor is narrowing in on God’s mercy and ignoring His judgment. He uses phrases and ideas that Christians accept as true, and tries to give them his own spin and meaning. He uses the Lord’s prayer to advocate creating heaven on earth. He uses the concept that all have sinned and that we should not throw the first stone to say that we all will receive grace since we all sin. It is clear from his interview that he does have a very selective and warped approach to Scripture, which can be worse than outright denying it as there is some truth mixed into what he is saying.