Gossiping, X-rated discussions and blatant disrespect for God, have become a norm for reality television. But now it has even reached the church. The TLC Network has launched a new reality TV show about the lives of five pastor’s wives in Atlanta called The Sisterhood. Based on the premiere episode and from the early marketing it appears that this show is attempting to fall into the same vein of other “Real Housewives” shows that have portrayed women as brash, worldly, backstabbers who have no concern for the Biblical role of a pastor’s wife or for the Word of God. This show and its sinful and offensive displays are yet another sign of the growing Apostasy in the church and mockery of the Christian faith.
The Biblical Role of Pastor’s Wife
In describing the character of a pastor’s wife, 1 Timothy 3:11 says: “Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.” In expounding on this verse, John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible said:
[Wives] must be as their husbands, “grave” in speech, gesture, and dress, of an honest report, a good behaviour, and chaste conversation; which will reflect honour and credit to their husbands: not slanderers; or accusers, and so act like devils, as the word is sometimes rendered; for should they act such a part, and accuse either the poor, or any of the members of the church wrongfully, or on any trifling occasion, as persons addicted to this vice are wont to do, it would be of bad consequence: and they also should be..” (source)
Let’s compare this admonition to the trailer for the show:
With a huge emphasis on fashion, being “fabulous” and drama, there was not much separating this trailer from the commercial for any of the “Housewives” reality TV shows. And not one of these women mentioned the name of Jesus Christ The Lord. This should be the first red flag.
The Bible goes into detail about what is appropriate behavior for women and men in the church. In discussing the character of older women in the church, it states:
But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: ..The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. – Titus 2:1-5.
Here are some of the show’s descriptions of the pastor’s wives, also known as “First Ladies” (a made-up title). Let us compare the Biblical standards for the character of a pastor’s wife against the show’s own bios of each First Lady (with our commentary interspersed).
Meet the First Ladies:
Domonique is anything but your typical preacher’s wife. She’s bold, she’s brash, and she’s unapologetically honest. After moving to Atlanta, she met and married Brian, an Evangelical pastor, and they had two daughters together. After years of growing The Good Life Ministry, the couple fell on hard times and were forced to close the church’s doors. They are now looking for new opportunities to fulfill their calling and Domonique is hoping to repair the damage that losing the church caused to her marriage.
Notice the marketing is that she is “anything but your typical preacher’s wife.” The idea of being a humble, meek, Godly woman is seen as passé and boring. Instead as is the case for many of the “Housewives” of reality television, Domonique is “bold, brash and unapologetically honest.” These traits more than any other are promoted time and time again for women on Reality TV. The idea that a woman should attack any person who is gossiping about them, “has issues” with them or is even looking at them the wrong way, has become a staple in reality television. This is the direction the world is going in, so why would a pastor’s wife want to be described in this fashion? Proverbs 31 is a chapter devoted to extolling the many wonderful characteristics of the Virtuous Godly Woman. Rather than being “brash”, argumentative and “unapologetically honest” a virtuous woman: “..openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”
When most people think of preacher’s wives, they think of demure ladies in big hats, conservative suits, and strands of pearls. So when people find out Tara is a First Lady, they usually do a double take. She’s fit and fabulous and her wardrobe leaves little to the imagination.
In discussing the dress for Christian women the Bible says: “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.” (1 Timothy 2:9-10). Gold and pearls were extreme luxury items at that time and thus the message is clear – A Christian woman should not dress in a seductive, flashy manner and should not show off the most expensive wares of the day. This show already is trying to cast that teaching in a negative light by saying that the common perception of preacher’s wives is in a conservative outfit, as if it is a bad thing. But this particular wife on The Sisterhood is “fit and fabulous and her wardrobe leaves little to the imagination”
This is another emphasis of reality TV today: an obsession with women’s appearances. On numerous “Housewives” shows, the women are constantly focused on their physical appearance, staying fit, clothes, shoes, the most expensive, designer handbags and everything that goes to the superficial aspect of who they are. And now The Sisterhood appears to be following suit as Tara is repeatedly referred to as having a “Barbie doll body”, is featured exercising in skimpy, flesh-revealing gym clothes, while the women in general wearing form fitting dresses in the trailer.
Christians sin and will continue to sin while they have a redeemed spirit housed in their earthly, sinful bodies. No born again Christian is walking in sinless perfection. This article is not attempting to make the point that no Christians ever do wrong. But what is the spirit behind a show that is promoting behavior that is the exact opposite of what the Bible preaches? It is one thing for a Christian woman to be in error by wearing a revealing outfit. It is another to be on a show that promotes all of the women dressing this way. Why would a pastor’s wife, who is truly living for God, even want to be associated with this kind of spirit for this program?
It’s rare that you’ll hear a first lady say, “I’m Dominican and I don’t play!” But Christina often makes it known that she’s a sassy Latina who you don’t want to mess with.… And, if that weren’t stressful enough, Christina and Anthony also have to wrangle their two challenging teenage daughters who are just as sassy as their mother.
The Bible says of the Virtuous woman: “She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.”(Proverbs 31:26-28). The Christian woman who enjoys speaking wisdom (which is Biblical doctrine) and kind words is not the kind of woman you will find on The Sisterhood. Instead expect a Pastor’s wife “you don’t want to mess with.” A staple of reality TV about women is that there must be endless arguments, screaming matches and actual physical fighting on a weekly basis, with one woman in particular leading the charge. And it seems clear this show is trying to market this particular wife as one of those women. The show even promotes that her daughters are “sassy” and need to be “wrangled.”
To no surprise, Christina’s husband, Anthony Murray is Pastor of Oasis of Life Church, which is a major promoter of the Prosperity Gospel heresy – that focuses on earthly wealth, material success and prosperity over teaching the Biblical Gospel which is the forgiveness of sins through faith in Jesus Christ to receive eternal blessings. In his sermons and appearances on Christian Network TBN (the biggest promoter of Name it and Claim it, Prosperity Gospel Heresy in the world), he reinforces the same message using very little Bible Scripture in his teachings.
The First episode, entitled “Thou Shalt Not Cross A First Lady” (it appears each episode’s title will be a spoof of the Ten Commandments), the worldliness and sinful rebellion was on full display:
The opening shot on the show focuses on Christina driving in her luxury SUV, wearing designer clothes, super high heels and tight pants as she declares that despite the stereotypes about pastor’s wives they can be “fabulous.” With her successful church, spacious home and designer fashion, Christina is the clear envy of her fellow First Ladies. And she glories in her worldly achievements. The Bible says with respect to material gain:
Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. – 1 John 2:15-17.
Rather than speak of sharing the Gospel with her congregation or souls being saved, Christina and the other ladies equate sprawling church facilities, luxury cars and palatial homes as success. The show embraces worldly principles over Biblical ones. This is a common theme in the Apostasy – the rise of the false Christian church that makes its own doctrine and abandons the Biblical Gospel.
The first episode, which centered on an interracial couple, Tara and her husband, moving to Atlanta to start a ministry and joining the First Ladies clique, the other women gossip about this couple behind their back repeatedly. The “Gossip Scene” is a staple of sinful “Real Housewives” shows. It is essential to stir up controversy that at least two women are featured gossiping about another leading to an inevitable conflict. In this case, Tara’s husband was “fired” from his Senior Pastor position at his church after 6 weeks and the First Ladies conclude from their gossip that it must be for nefarious reasons. Tara is then invited to social gatherings just for the purpose of obtaining more personal information about she and her husband’s situation.
Remember the Bible says an elder woman in the church is not to be a “slanderer”, yet these women do not hesitate, on camera, to gossip about this woman and her husband’s situation This despite the husband telling them why he was dismissed (his explanation was apparently not believed). The Bible is clear that gossip is a sin:
“Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer [gossip] among thy people..” – Leviticus 19:16.
“He that goeth about as a talebearer [gossip] revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips. – Proverbs 20:19.
In Romans 1:30, the Apostle Paul puts “backbiters”, those who talk about others negatively behind their backs in the same category as those who are “haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents..”
Despite these clear prohibitions, the pastor’s wives revel in gossip with each other. Christians will gossip and commit other sins, but after those sins the Holy Spirit convicts a believer to move them to repent and seek God’s forgiveness. Engaging in the blatant sin with no repentance is the sign of a reprobate and not a “real picture” of the Christian life.
Ivy, described as a “dutiful pastor’s wife”, receives a pair of handcuffs from her pastor husband, as an anniversary gift and the pastor then proceeds to describe his intentions for intimacy in X-rated, graphic detail. All on camera. As we have covered in detail in our article, Sex Sermons In The Church: Marketing God Through Lust, the new disturbing trend in the apostate church is for Pastors and their wives to discuss their own intimate relationship and have open discourse about sex is blasphemous and completely inappropriate for the Pastor or his wife.
1 Timothy 6:20 says: “But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.” For a woman to hold up items like this on camera and talk about her intimacy with her husband is only promoting lust and inappropriate thoughts in the minds of the viewers. It shows no respect for God or His Word. Yet as is the case with “Real Housewives” franchises, there must be shock value and an over-emphasis on sexual immorality.
Christina, who is featured as the star of the program, because she and her husband are closest to having a mega church, had a vile discussion about sex with her two daughters who are not even high school Age. Her husband, the aforementioned Pastor Anthony Murray, not only condones their daughters fornication – he tells them “I know what God says about sex. But I also know reality”, conceding they will fornicate so that he opts to personally educate them on how to do so. This shows this pastor has absolutely no respect for the Word of God. The Bible is clear on fornication:
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. – Galatians 5:19-20.
Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. – 1 Corinthians 6:18.
For a pastor to just ignore God’s commands because of the “reality” that many teenagers are fornicating is giving more respect to Satan’s system of temptation than to God’s Holy Spirit’s ability to work in his daughters to maintain their purity. Christina’s pastor husband then teaches the young girls about fornication using a banana and a condom for yet another, graphic, X-rated, demonstration (B&E – This scene was so inappropriate and vulgar this writer fast forwarded through it). Proverbs 14:12 says: “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”Pastor Murray is more concerned about sexually-transmitted diseases than his daughters going to Hell, and thus justifies his “advice.” But he is completely out of line with the Word of God.
At the end of the talk Christina advises her daughters to inspect the bodies and private parts of their boyfriends they are sleeping with because, in her own words, “I can’t inspect weenies for you.”
Ephesians 5 says: “But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.”
What spirit is leading a pastor’s wife that would not only say this to her young daughter’s but be willing to say it on camera on national television? To be so filthy and inappropriate on TV and claim to be a Pastor of God is blasphemy. The allure of fame and riches has led this couple to compromise all sorts of basic moral values, much less Biblical commands. Reality TV always demands “shock value” to get big ratings, lure advertising money and ensure a second season. And this disgusting,blasphemous scene certainly achieved its goal.
As with all of the “Real Housewives” shows, there is always the inevitable “drama” that leads to a finale scene of either a shouting match, pushing and shoving or all out brawl among the women. In The Sisterhood premiere, it followed the same formula. Please note that what led to this fight was a discussion of Tara’s bi-racial children, in which Tara said that rather than raising her children to just see themselves as African American, she taught them to see themselves as Christians first, citing Psalm 139, which says that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made” and discusses God’s creation of life in the womb. It is her use of this Scripture, that sparks the conflict:
And the irony is that the conflict all stemmed from the fact that Tara, the new wife in town, used Scripture when speaking to the two pastors’ wives who were gossiping about her the entire show. Tara is told repeatedly that she not use Scripture when having conversations among the ladies, and just “be herself.” When Tara tried her best to explain that using Scripture is a natural part of who she is, she was verbally attacked by the women.
Tara defending herself says: “My call is to evangelize. And you can’t evangelize without the Scriptures,” to which Ivy replies, yelling in anger “Yes you can evangelize without the Scriptures!” Romans 1:16 says: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth…” The power of evangelizing comes from the Word of God, not from the creativity or techniques of the evangelist. This basic lack of understanding of the Gospel is just another reflection of how far from Bible-believing Christianity this show is.
The two antagonistic First Ladies show little to any concern or respect for the Scriptures. Why is it wrong for a Christian woman to use the Bible in conversation with other Christian women? Why would that make them so angry if a woman wants to use the Bible to explain why she raises her children to identify as Christians first and foremost? Do Ivy and Domonique even understand the Gospel? In the only mention of the Lord Jesus Christ in the entire hour, Ivy tries to claim that Jesus did not quote Scripture in conversation with others. First off, every word Jesus said in the Gospels is Scripture and The Word of God itself. But beyond that, in the Gospels, Jesus quoted 24 of the 27 books of the Old Testament a total of 84 times. In a prayer for His Disciples as well as all Christians to come in the future, Jesus said: “Sanctify them with thy truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:17). Christians are to embrace and love God’s Word. It should be a guide and a light to a Christian. And certainly not something to be angry about or take issue with.
More Heresy On The Way
Although not on the premiere there is one other First Lady who will be featured this season:
One look at DeLana singing on stage in her leather pants and spiked heels and you’ll definitely think she’s a rock star. But don’t let her rocker chick exterior fool you – she’s a First Lady through and through. DeLana and her husband Myles pastor the Worship with Wonders Church where music plays a big part in their ministry. They write their own music and perform original songs at every Sunday service. In addition to music, DeLana is passionate about helping children. She has two children of her own and often acts as a surrogate mother to young members of her congregation in need.
Like some of the other women on the show, DeLana is actually pastor of her church along with her husband. This in itself contradicts God’s Word. 1 Timothy and the Book of Titus both list the qualifications for a pastor and state that he should be: “the husband of one wife.” Scripture is clear that a Christian pastor should be a man. But again, in this current age of Biblical compromise, where the world’s ideas on how church should be done are more important than what God says on a matter, it is perfectly fine for women to be “pastors” and their husbands happily go along.
Beloved reader, this is rebellion against The Lord. The Bible says: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Rather than being written for “that time period” all Scripture is doctrine for Christians for all time. And God’s standards for the various offices in a church has not changed. But the world has, and thus the Apostate churches that are giving into worldly lusts, will thus ignore Scripture that does not meet their view. The Lord said: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”( Isaiah 55:8-9). It is foolish to presume one “knows better” than God on matters of God’s Word. But in the world of pride, vanity and self-promotion that is Reality TV, there is no time to promote Christian humility and obedience.
DeLana Rutherford is also a promoter of Prosperity Gospel or Word of Faith doctrine, as well as a signs and wonders ministry in which she and her husband perform numerous ‘miracles’ at their Worship With Wonders Church. Here is Rutherford receiving a “prophetic word” during one of her services.
Astute readers will notice she sounds almost identical in her tone, cadence and speech to Word of Faith heretic “Pastor” Paula White (even the name of DeLana’s church, Worship With Wonders, sounds similar to White’s Without Walls Church). In addition, DeLana guarantees miracles for her congregation including healing people of cancer. Now there is nothing wrong with praying for healing for any sickness or illness and God can and will heal. But Christians cannot presume to know God’s will when it comes to our earthly state. There are no guarantees of prosperity in this world because this is not Christ’s Kingdom. Jesus said “my kingdom is not of this world.” Christians are merely passing through this world and the afflictions and trials faced in this life are only working to build up the faith and refine them for greater glory in Heaven before God.
In this brief clip, the husband and wife pastors call upon church members to give testimonies of financial blessings they received and the true nature of their doctrine is quickly revealed.
Notice that the first man says that as his pastor taught him: “if you don’t tithe, 100% of what you earn is under the curse. But if you tithe, 90% is blessed” (to which the crowd starts to applause). Where is this in Scripture? It is not there. There is no part of the Bible that ever says anything like this. But the Old testament tithe, which was food given to the Levite priests who worked in the temple (and were not permitted by God to earn a living) is used in a major way today to guilt and compel unwitting church attendees into thinking that they have to give money to their pastors in order to obtain financial blessings for themselves. Jesus Christ healed people of sickness. Jesus Christ removed demons from people. Jesus Christ raised the dead to life again. And never once was anyone asked to pay Him for these blessings. The Biblical Gospel is about faith in Jesus, not an action. The man in the video actually says that Pastor taught him that “we have to do something..” in order to get a blessing.
Jesus teaches us that we are to have faith:
And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. 23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. 24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?.. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
The Kingdom of God is salvation and His righteousness is Jesus Christ. So it is faith in Jesus that leads to blessings for believers, not any action of our own. A Christian is blessed because Jesus Christ earned the blessing through His shed blood on the cross, when He gave Himself as a ransom for their sins. And yet today, false teachers of the Word of God are misusing Old Testament Scriptures to push their congregations into believing that giving money is the “key” to unlocking God’s power in their lives. 2 Peter 2 says of these false preachers: “And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. “ Do not be deceived. Covetousness, desiring material gain, is at the heart of much false preaching. And a Reality TV show is a perfect opportunity to attain more wealth, success and promotion of the churches and ministries of all these women and their husbands.
Tune Out The Apostasy
Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. – Romans 16:17-18.
With the potential for big time TV salaries, mega-church ministries and fame, the women of The Sisterhood have shown in just one episode that they are more than willing to put Christianity in a horrible light. Instead of promoting Jesus Christ and the importance of salvation and escaping the punishment of hell and putting a spotlight on Christian living, The Sisterhood seems to be following the ways of the world, and taking the apostasy to Reality TV. Pray for these women repent of this blasphemy, go back to The Word of God and to embody the values for Christian women as God has stated them, not the “fabulous woman” of Reality TV. And rather than supporting the apostasy, share the Gospel and tune them out.