The TD Jakes Interview
He says he never feels so alive as when he’s in the pulpit. If you’ve ever heard him preach you’ll understand why.
TD Jakes‘ first church had 10 members and met in a storefront. Today his Potter’s House Church in Dallas, Texas, sees over 30,000 attend its services each week, with hundreds of thousands more watching via television. He even preaches via satellite into American prisons.
Jakes’ church has been praised for its service to the poor, the imprisoned, the drug addicted and abused, but critics worry about his mansions, tailored suits and, most importantly, whether his beliefs put him at odds with historic Christianity.
These concerns surfaced again recently after TD Jakes’ invitation to discuss his beliefs on James McDonald’s forum The Elelphant Room (transcript here). The event caused considerable trouble for McDonald and continues to cause ignificant discussion and debate.
I had an opportunity to interview TD Jakes in July 2010 during which I asked him about these areas of controversy. In this 30-minute Open House conversation we cover:
The Man and His Message
- Jakes’ formative experiences and the role his father’s death played in bringing him to faith and shaping his ministry today
- His call to be a pastor at 17 and the lessons learned ‘in obscurity’
- His move to Dallas to start Potter’s House Church and the role of ‘positioning’ and ‘timing’ in life
- The event that confirmed his core message of overcoming life’s obstacles
- How he can justify the jet, the clothes and the multimillion-dollar mansions
- His background in Oneness Pentecostalism and whether or not he now believes in the historic orthodox understanding of God as a Trinity
- Why he doesn’t speak up more on issues of justice for African Americans
TD Jakes was a gracious, humble and stimulating guest, full of quotable lines and aphorisms. He says he no longer feels the need to either prove himself or ‘feed the wolves’ who criticise him. But is he orthodox in his beliefs? Take a listen and let me know what you think.
It is worth noting that after the interview aired, a number of Oneness Pentecostals called in during talkback stating that this had been the clearest inidciation to date that TD Jakes no longer held to their beliefs.
Listen to the full interview below, or right click here and ‘save target’ to download
Question: Is love for God enough? How important is it to believe the right things in order to be a Christian? Share your comment now.