Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday has the internet buzzing after guest Rob Bell told Oprah that Christian churches are “moments away” from accepting same-sex marriage. On her own site, Facebook pages affiliated with her network and shows, and Christian blogs and news sites, Oprah is getting heated feedback from Christians who say the church will never accept LGBTQ rights or lifestyles.
Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday featured guests Rob and Kristen Bell, who spoke about relationships and love. Rob Bell is a pastor and author, and during the episode, he told Oprah that the church is on its way to approving of same-sex marriages.
(It’s worth noting that not only have many churches already moved to embrace their LGBTQ members, but churches in North Carolina, according to the Charlotte Observer, actually sued the state for the right to perform same-sex marriages, saying that denying them the right to treat all members equally was a violation of the right to practice their religious beliefs.)
A number of Oprah’s viewers disagree, though. On her own site’s comments, the response was overwhelmingly negative.
“pretty much done with oprah.”
“The Lord our God calls homosexuality an abomination. Mr Bell needs to read the Bible, again. Real Christians will never accept gay marriage or sexual immorality”
“Just so you know, the Christian Body will not agree with this. What the Lord has described marriage is this, and ma’am that will never change. ONE MAN – ONE WOMAN. It does not change my love for anyone, neither will it dilute what the infallible word of God says sin is.”
On Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday Facebook page, comments were similar.
“I liked what they were saying until Rob spoke about God being ok with same sex relationships! God loves the sinner not the sin.”
“I enjoyed this episode till Rob gave the impression and maybe I’m wrong that we ought to get over or disregard what was written or accounts taken of 2000.years ago.”
Christian blogger Matt Moore also addressed the issue, saying that Rob Bell and Oprah Winfrey “don’t speak on behalf of the true church.”
“Christ’s Church is not on the verge of embracing gay marriage, and it never will be. Now, there may be a multitude of religious institutions that call themselves churches that are on the verge of embracing gay marriage. Actually, there already are a multitude of institutions that call themselves churches and embrace gay marriage.”
After disputing that any church that accepts LGBTQ members and their marriages is actually part of “the true church,” Moore goes on to suggest that readers pray for Oprah Winfrey and Rob Bell to change their views.
“The things that Rob Bell and Oprah Winfrey and the likes of them are saying regarding same-sex marriage do not, to any degree, represent the true Body of Christ. But let’s pray for them so that might change.”
Christian News Network also covered the episode, and also seemed to dispute Bell’s credentials, placing the word “pastor” in quotation marks (as well as the word “marriage”) and closing with a dissenting quote from Pastor Eric Ludy.
“Plain and simple, Rob Bell’s teachings are not true to the words of Scripture. They are a sly attempt at blending the philosophies of our post-modern age with the vernacular of pop-Christianity. The end product is highly dangerous to the human soul because it is the forging of a golden calf god—a god of our culture’s making—and certainly not the God of the Bible.””
It isn’t just Oprah who’s getting feedback — on Rob Bell’s Facebook page, he’s called a false prophet, a charlatan, and, in one notable example, an abomination.
“You are an abomination and will be held to a higher standard when you meet our God. You have turned your back on God and now worship the dollar more. If you condone homosexuality lifestyles I pray you will be convicted for refusing the Bible and its teaching.”
“Oh great, another charlatan false teacher. Rob Bell making an appearance on Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday. Oprah is NOT a Christian, she is into new age philosophy.”
Neither Oprah Winfrey nor her network have responded to the criticism, moving on instead to advertise next week’s episode with Amy Purdy.
[Photo by Scott Gries/Getty Images]