"God draws straight lines with crooked sticks."

- Joni Eareckson Tada
Oh Barf!

The 50 Most Influential Christians in America

As the Monk remarked recently: When will American Christians realize that "leaders" aren't appointed by God through book or album sales?

Good question.

(HT: BHT/Justin Taylor)

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Comments on "Oh Barf!":
1. Daniel - 01/16/2006 3:03 pm CST

There are a FEW people I really respect on that list but, for the most part, it's the TBN All-Star Review.

2. De - 01/16/2006 4:12 pm CST

*whimper*

3. Clay - 01/16/2006 4:12 pm CST

The list recognizes some wonderful men and women of God. However, it sounds to me like they chose the word "influential" because it sounded a lot better than "popular." The real title of the list should be: "The 50 Favorite Christians and Best Known Names Suggested by Readers of Church Report Magazine Whoever They May Be." If they'd have just practiced a little "truth in labeling" then we wouldn't be having this conversation.

4. Joey - 01/16/2006 4:14 pm CST

Um...Dr. Phil is a Christian? I sure wouldn't know it from all his shows. I don't think he's ever mentioned Christ any of the few times I've seen him on TV.

And does it bother anybody else when someone plasters their own name all over the place? Take for example, #7, Joyce Meyer, of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Now I'm not saying she's a bad person or anything, but uh...shouldn't the name of her ministry serve to glorify God, not herself? And there are numerous other examples...but whatever, that's just my two cents.

5. Quaid - 01/16/2006 4:58 pm CST

I'm not sure I follow. What Christians would make your top 10 and why? Agree or disagree with their theology or how they conduct themselves, this list seems to me like a decent organization of the most influential out there when it comes to Christianity.

6. Ellen - 01/16/2006 5:04 pm CST

Just a note - can you deny the Trinity and be a Christian?

7. Religious priorities at Bene Diction Blo - 01/16/2006 5:18 pm CST

[...] From The Thinklings - The 50 most influential Christians in America. [...]

8. Jordan - 01/16/2006 7:22 pm CST

I'm really glad to see Erwin McManus on there, his books have radically challenged me in my spiritual walk. However, I'm not sure why I'm glad he's on here, because I'm not sure I'd want to be on a list like this. And I'd wager some mega-money that he doesn't want to be on this list. Whatever happened to not letting your left hand know what your right hand is doing when serving others?

9. Thirsty Bear - 01/17/2006 1:23 am CST

There are some very respectable folks on the list. Beth Moore was our Bible Study Teacher for awhile when my wife and I attended her class. Piper...what an influence on college campuses! Surprised Giglio didn't make the list.

BUT...the list is for the most influential...take that for what it's worth. Not much looking at the list...Dr. Phil? Sean H.? TBN Who's Who?

10. blestwithsons - 01/17/2006 2:33 am CST

Not having tv - I don't watch Dr Phil anymore... He is a professing Christian - I forget of what variety (by which I mean denomination and theological persuasion). He seems to be a very moral and family oriented man - but obviously he doesn't bring up new life in Christ as part of his counsel on the show. That was actually the one thing that really frustrated me when I used to watch. There were some people on there whose problems were so big - nothing was going to fix it but Jesus. Sometimes a little common sense will do it to fix a relationship issue or whatever - but ultimately we all need new hearts, yes?

11. Thor - 01/17/2006 3:46 am CST

Ellen:

Ouch! No, really, that's a great question! Punt that and you loose everything else. Nice observation.

Joey:

I didn't either.

TCR said in their introduction that the nominations were compiled from "Christians across America and around the world". That explains a lot. I know that I don't speak for everyone here, and there are some good names on the list, but this just shows the lack of Biblical discernment which pervades Christianity in general.

This list looks a lot like the shelves at our church bookstore. Hmm...

12. Thirsty Bear - 01/17/2006 4:07 am CST

Thor...

email me..I need to chat with you offline. Please.

13. Ellen - 01/17/2006 4:42 am CST

Ouch! No, really, that's a great question! Punt that and you loose everything else. Nice observation.

I guess that unless you specify "orthodox" anything goes these days.

And because of goings on at my own church I'm looking more closely about the theology that a person represents.

Heresy (wrong teaching) can sneak up on you if you're not careful.

14. Thor - 01/17/2006 5:02 am CST

I guess that unless you specify "orthodox" anything goes these days.

It's the discerning of what's orthodox that's missing. As a pastor, I try and hammer this point home week after week. I'm not sure if our flocks are equipped to know what is orthodox and what is not. Moreover, church leadership, these days, seems more interested in being hip and overly "relevant", pushing the latest "Christian" fads down to their congregations, instead of being faithful to Scripture and theological accuracy. This kills me b/c our flocks are the ones that suffer.

BTW, Phil Johnson has some good comments on a related subject.

15. Thor - 01/17/2006 5:19 am CST

Um, Thirsty, where are you?

16. dbd - 01/17/2006 7:52 am CST

How funny--the men all look different, but the women are all bleached blondes with a ton of makeup on.

17. Ellen - 01/17/2006 8:25 am CST

It's the discerning of what's orthodox that's missing.

Right - my daughter was invited to attend Rob Bell's church; another girl from her small group wanted to visit (and this girl's mother is a small group leader!)

I made a homeschool assignment out of it and made her read an interview by Bell. She opted not to go.

I volunteered to teach a "comparative demonination" group for teens, but that probably won't happen - especially with the antics in the pulpit.

18. Thirsty Bear - 01/17/2006 10:12 am CST

Thor-

See you tomorrow AM?

19. Thor - 01/17/2006 11:42 am CST

Affirmative.

20. Fred (Thunder Geek) - 01/17/2006 12:28 pm CST

Man, that's kind of who's who of crappy theology. Well, except for Osteen, theology doesn't really apply to him.

The whole premise behind any sort of "The 50 Most ______ Christians" drives me crazy.

21. Kevin - 01/18/2006 1:48 am CST

Is this the "50 Most Influential Christians in America"? Or is it the "%0 Most Influential PEOPLE TO Christians in America"?

Sean Hannity? Conservative? - Yes ---- Christian? - ???

Dr. Phil? TV Personality? - Yes ---- Christian? - ???

~Kevin

22. Jason T. Christy - 01/18/2006 7:59 am CST

Thank you for commenting on The Church Report's 50 Most influential Christians in America. I think you will see, that even in your own small group here, opinions are mixed.

We are had over 150,000 nominations and tabulated every one them. I think someone picked up on the fact that having a media reach is helpful in determing who reaches the masses, ie books, tv, radio, etc...

I would invite you to post your comments on my site at the crblog which can be found at www.thechurchreport.com

For those critics, I would remind you that those who can- do and those who can't criticize.

There is a difference.

Best Regards,

Jason T. Christy
CEO, Christy Media, publishers of The Church Report and the CR Daily

23. Ellen - 01/18/2006 8:12 am CST

For those critics, I would remind you that those who can- do and those who can't criticize.

???

Translation? "if you are in the trenches, running your little heart out in a small church, trying to keep your congregation clinging to Christian orthodoxy...

you can't criticize those who are outside orthodoxy, but are making a lot of money and who are leading really *BIG* numbers of people astray.

24. Thor - 01/18/2006 10:43 am CST

Jason,

For those critics, I would remind you that those who can- do and those who can't criticize.

Um, I'm not sure I follow. Those who can do, those who can't...? I am afraid I don't understand.

I have always been suspect of these lists. They seem to only breed more confusion rather than clarity.

When will American Christians realize that "leaders" aren't appointed by God through book or album sales? -iMonk

Thanks for dropping by.

Comments are closed