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Oprah says God behind success of show
Oprah Winfrey, seen in this file photo, told her audience in her final show that God had led her life, even when she didn't realize it.
May 25th, 2011
07:13 PM ET

Oprah says God behind success of show

By Steve Almasy, CNN

(CNN) - Oprah Winfrey closed her sentimental final show with the words, "I won’t say goodbye, I’ll just say until we meet again."

Then, after a subtle pause, she added, "To God be the glory.”

With her work done, she walked through the audience and left the set of her talk show. During the show's 25-year run, she interviewed more than 30,000 people and won more than 40 Emmys. The credits rolled as she walked the hallways of the Harpo complex, saying goodbye to her staff.

She has been one of the most influential people in America, if not the world. Commentators looked at the power she held over her audience, and some people even likened her viewers to members of a cult.

Winfrey professed her faith and her belief in God, but over the course of the show, some observers saw her more as a spiritual person than a Christian.

In her last show, Winfrey took several minutes to speak to her belief that God - and her staff - were behind the show's success.

"People often ask me what is the secret to the success of the show," she said. "How have we lasted 25 years. I non-jokingly say, my team - and Jesus."

It was a remark that drew applause from the studio audience but also may make Christian commentators take notice.

Kathryn Lofton, who has watched more than 2,500 episodes of the show, said she had recorded the finale and would watch it later tonight. But her friends were texting her about the episode.

Lofton, a professor of U.S. religious history at Yale University and the author of "Oprah: The Gospel of an Icon," was intrigued that Winfrey had mentioned Jesus, since she had used his name sparingly on air.

"Early on (in her career) she was more comfortable in saying that but over time began to use this more universal language of 'spirit,'" said Lofton, who wrote about Oprah's final show for CNN's Belief Blog.

Lofton says Winfrey wants to be viewed as someone who "translates and understands herself as a Christian woman" but reflects a modern attitude about religion and religious institutions.

And that has angered a few folks.

In 2008, Winfrey endorsed the book "A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose," helping it sell more than 3.5 million copies after the talk-show host selected it for her book club. Winfrey and the book's author, Eckhart Tolle, took part in a webinar in which she angered some Christians by saying that Jesus didn't come to die on the cross.

"It really was about him coming to show us how to do it, how to be, to show us the Christ-consciousness that he had and that that consciousness abides with all of us," she told the audience.

One viewer even asked the question on the Oprah.com message boards: Is Oprah a Christian?

Pistis07 wrote: "I was surprised because I had always thought she was a Christian but after flicking through her website and watching clips of more shows where she seems to be promoting a type of New Age religion and books from 'New Age spiritualists,' I really doubt that she is a Christian in the way Jesus explained and most Christians understand. Or perhaps she's just confused about the nature of God."

It was an issue her critics seized on. They said she wasn't promoting the God of the Bible but instead was indoctrinating her audience into a New Age spiritualism.

Authors Josh McDowell and Dave Sterrett say as much in their book, "'O' God: A Dialogue on Truth and Oprah's Spirituality." Sterrett told Crosswalk.com in October 2009 that Winfrey "reflects the common American practice of choosing whatever beliefs seem most attractive and leaving the rest."

Her message in the final years of her show was that the truth of life was within the individual, several commentators have said.

"Christians aren't people who have gotten in touch with their inner selves, but those who actually have Christ living inside of them through the Holy Spirit," McDowell told Crosswalk.

What Winfrey tried to get across is her belief that there wasn't just one right way to be connected to God, Lofton argues.

"The only right way is the way that she herself articulates and embodies, which is multiplicity," she said. "You can be many things. There are many paths to God, she says. It's that multiplicity which very much marks contemporary religious life."

Winfrey wanted to make sure that everyone knew she wasn't being ambiguous about her faith. In her final show, she spoke of how God has always been there, a voice whispering. And that her faith, while it might seem different than the one taught in religious institutions, was at its roots the same: It all centers on one thing.

"Nothing but the hand of God has made this possible for me," she said. "For all of you who get riled up when I mention God and you want to know which God I'm talking about, I'm talking about the same one you're talking about. I'm talking about the Alpha and the Omega. The omniscient. The omnipresent. The ultimate consciousness. The source, the force, the all of everything there is. The one and only, G-O-D. That's the one I'm talkin' about."

- Producer/Writer

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • God • Jesus • TV

soundoff (675 Responses)
  1. Henriette

    This mediocre daytime talent proves that anything is possible if properly marketed. And the whole Stedman business is too silly for words. Only Oprah's sheltered and easily snookered audience of bored white middle-class housewives wouldn't see that she is a lesbian. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but she should have been honest enough to come out long ago; it's not as if she wasn't financially solvent and feared unemployment. And another thing... how can you have contol over half a billion dollars (or more) and, from all appearances, live on Doritos, pork rinds and Skittles? Don't tell me I hate Oprah; I don't. But I see her as a very, very ordinary woman with the same problems her rube audience has.

    May 26, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
  2. f

    God did not help Oprah get rich and famous. The Devil did.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
  3. Sybaris

    It's funny how people who are "successful" attribute the outcome to their God.

    Muslims who are as succesful as Oprah attribute their success to Allah

    Ancient Athenians who, on a proportionally adjusted scale, that were as successful as Oprah attributed their success to Zeus.

    Ancient Egyptians who, on a proportionally adjusted scale, that were as successful as Oprah attributed their success to
    Ra

    See the pattern?

    You might as well say Jiminy Cricket is behind your success.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
    • Shanna

      Love it!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
    • steveo

      But.......the bible is fact!

      /sarcasm off

      May 26, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • Sandee

      Do a little research on your own. The rest of those (little g) gods are wooden, metal, rock, etc. Each was created and design by man's own hands. Oprah is right the only eternal and everlasting God not formed by human has put her where she is. We live in a country where race is still an issue even with a African-Ameican President. Yet, you are cynicial about God's power.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • f

      Just because God, Jesus and Heaven are real and I believe in all of it, doesn't mean I expect success from God. God gives you the brains and body to do something with on this Earth. Some people become homeless street junkies, while some become top doctors and scientists who can help save these "suffering " people with the medicines and treaments they think up. Succesful people did not "evolve" better than others, they just used what God gave them and kept the devil out of their lives. And, yes, God loves you and has a place for you, even though you do not yet believe.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
    • Saundra

      Those that give credit to a higher being than themselves are wise enough to know that they (being human) are frail and will often stumble without the support of God. You could learn something from those successful people instead or scorning their belief. God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are real work with us whether or not we believe in them. Our belief just makes their work easier.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • Colin

      Sandee, I think you kind missed the point – or went to lengths to prove it – I'm not sure which. You are a garden variety example of what Sybaris is talking about. You believe in your own god and disdain all others, blissfully ignorant of the fact that your ows silly Christian superst-ition is no different from theirs.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:06 pm |
  4. Saundra

    Oprah brought spirituality and Christian beliefs to many whom had never been introduced to the religion. It is up to local Christian groups to take things a step farther and feed that faith by continuing to promote Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life. This bickering between Christians concerning if Oprah is a Christian or not is just a distraction to us. No matter what we believe about her (a human being) we must be willing to show our faith in Jesus thru our words and deeds just as she has and even more so to counter balance any of her contradictary messages. Let us not be distracted with minor differences of opinions but use this forum to promote Christianity to the masses.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • marsmotel

      Haven't the Christians killed enough people in the name of god, and yet, you want to spread your lies to the rest of the masses. You have used almost all your 7 sins in your post. And don't forget the "Thou shall not kill" commandment. I guess that does not pertain to the Catholic chuch as they have killed more people than cancer. The insanity must come to an end.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Sandee

      AMEN!!!

      May 26, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
    • f

      @marsmotel – you are a bittter, disillusioned, frightening person. Seek professional help.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • marsmotel

      How so? The definition of insanity is: doing something over and over and expecting different results. So you pray and nothing happens and you still do it. Insane. You believe in imaginary people. Insane. Most people who believe in imaginary people are locked away in asylums. So how do I need help? It sure seems that you might need the most help. Stop believing in all your lies that were force-fed down your throat. Did you ever think to yourself that god might not be real or you that tunnel minded to think freely?

      May 26, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
    • Saundra

      marsmotel – you truly are insane to pit your unbelief against a living savior and the faith of millions. Jesus has survived and been preached to millions for more than two thousand years. Your disbelief doesn't bother Him or anyone else. We must lift up the name of Jesus so that many can be saved and have everlasting life thru their belief in Him. We all have to die one day but we don't have to perish. Don't let the acts of men or religion distract us from Jesus.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
    • f

      @marsmotel – God is real. I did not "evolve" from monkeys or amoeba. I was born in the image God created for all human beings. God is not invisible to those who believe. I see God in many things every day, mostly in the faces of my family. God gave you the brains to do something with your self and your soul on this Earth. I do not pray over and over and never get anything. Praying is not betting on a lottery ticket and losing every week. Praying is not for winning the lottery or getting a hit TV show like Oprah. You pray for guidance when needed and strength to carry on when needed and for help for others. But a self-centered 'earth-bound" person like yourself will sadly never see God. You only see yourself. How sad.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
    • f

      @Saundra – Before there was religion, there was God and Jesus. After the world ends one day (not on Oct. 21st) there will still be God and Jesus. Go Saundra ! !

      May 26, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
    • Steve

      Saundra and F have a loose wire, try reading Biology, Geology, Anthropology, History, varied biblical scholarship and you may actually get out of the "faith box" you placed yourselves in. You feel sorry for marsmotel? I feel sorry for you in that at least mars lives in reality while you will spend your life closed off and intolerant and think those of other viewpoints should be exterminated by your invisible friend due to their different philosophy (Gandhi included i guess). Read the gospels horizontally and you will startlingly realize that the gospels have plenty of contradictions, that much of the bible was written by iron age men and not a deity looking at the 21st century. If King David thought "the law" was perfect why not abide by it today? If Jesus is coming back on judgement day why did he state to people in his lifetime that some of them would not taste death before the son of man returns? Why say the inhabitants of Capernaum and two other cities who rejected "the message" would suffer a destruction worse than Sodom and Gommorrah when those inhabitants no longer exist? Does not make sense. Why was the apostle Paul acting as if the end was imminent just like many christians do today? Hmm could it be that it is all false..oh no that cannot be it..let us rationalize things instead and think that "this generation" always means us..when we was talking to his apostles he meant people two thousand years later not actually "this generation". Monotheism has been awful really, paganism was much more tolerant in aggregate but i guess this would not make us "the elected" few that will be in paradise while everyone else burns for eternity. We are in this together people, tolerance is the only way..not judgement day extermination.

      May 26, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  5. Ian

    Very Interesting...It touched my heart that Oprah is really speaking of true practical individual religion...I can totally relate. I love religion, but not the ones that are made for us and we blindly follow, but the one that we make our own because of experiences and how it works in our life. Who can criticize Oprah for making religion her own? Go Oprah!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
    • tee

      Love it! We seperate ourselves with religion, when we're all really saying the same thing using different words.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
  6. ColinO

    She sells herself short giving the credit to god. It was her personality, talent, and savvy business sense that made her successful. Not god.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • JamminCanadian

      Idiot, she communed with the Spirit for her decisions. Watch her show and try to open up your blinded eyes. (Another blind atheist...)

      May 26, 2011 at 1:05 pm |
    • f

      God had nothing to do with her. He does not meddle in the business of Hollywood. The Devil, however, is all over Hollywood. It is Sodom and Gomorrah in one city. Good riddance Oprah you condscending hag.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
  7. Joshua

    IceT: Sorry, but wrong... There is no scholarly work to show that the "city gate analogy" was intended. And as to your comment about "more difficult for the rich...", "impossible" means impossible. Not more difficult. And your comment of "virtues required for entrance into Heaven...?" You will never get into Heaven on any of your virtues. You get there by one means and one means only... Trusting Jesus.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
    • Thony

      Really? Is that a fact?

      May 26, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • Ab

      Indeed it is. "Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father except through me.'"

      May 26, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
  8. Shanna

    The rapture has occured because that narcisist Oprah has finally retiring. But don't worry Oprah is like revolving debt, she is always going to be there!

    Yesterday, I had to watch the final show and I counted how many times she used the words "I and Me." I counted 123 times.
    She gave us advice on "living an authentic life" or "validating yourself" and all the pyscho-babble she preaches to people on her show. Just because she has a a billion dollars in the bank that doesn't make her a prophet, guru, or swammy.

    When her OWN channel fails I will know that Jesus is on his way and all will be good with the world.And may Satan take her, Dr. Phil, and Suzy Orman to the pits of hell where they belong. Bye Bye to Ms. Winfrey. You will not be missed in this household.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
    • IronRider

      Your a nut case, seriously seek some mental health.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:44 pm |
    • r00zster

      Wow...I'm not religious, but clearly Jesus is speaking through you in this case. lol

      May 26, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • Shanna

      Sorry if you think I need mental help, I am working that out with my therapist and medication. I'm just sayin' anyone who indulges in the religion of Oprah is being sold a materialist self rightous view. So maybe you misinterpreted what I was writing in this post. I got nothing against Christianity or Jesus, but I do have a problem worshipping false idols. That's all I'm saying...

      May 26, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Mimi

      Don’t you have some serious issues! I never watched Oprah but something tells me there’s more than you just not liking her ….you’re mad mad women! I feel sorry for you. Your cursing clearly shows an evil coming from the devil. Jesus taught in the Bible that when a man curses or uses profanity it is a sign of evil that was in that man’s heart.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
    • Kathy

      Why so much hate?

      May 26, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
  9. gwen

    what does it matter as longer as Oprah's relationship with Jesus is true. Why does it have to be defined by another Christian or someone who professes to be a "leader in Christianity." I think Jesus will accept and love Oprah regardless of anyone else's definition of her relationship with him. I also think he will love Oprah for all the things she has done regardless of any faults or sins and he will judge it on the state of her heart and soul. But hey, I'm just another Christian with my own relationship with Jesus, call it modern, traditional or whatever you like. !!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Sandee

      Thank you Gwen.....if this was fb I would click the like button.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:05 pm |
  10. hope

    Everyone needs to take a closer look at there Bible, God loves all people poor and rich!
    God never spake against those being rich as evil, money is good.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Karlotious

      except for those he condemned in Sodom and Gamora right?! Hahaha God is a hypocrite. All hail the flying spaghetti monsters

      May 26, 2011 at 12:55 pm |
    • Ab

      @Karlotious: God did not condemn the people of Sodom and Gomorrah for their prosperity. He condemned them for the sin that ran rampant in the cities. If you remember, when God told Abraham He would destroy these cities, Abraham asked Him if He would spare the city if Abraham managed to find 50 righteous men in the city. And God said He would. Then when Abraham couldn't find 50, he asked God if he found 40 righteous men, 30 righteous men, 20 righteous men, and so on. When Abraham could not find 10 righteous men, he asked God to warn Lot and his family. You see, God is not a hypocrite. He is a just and loving God. He will save those who ask for mercy.

      We are sinners. Everyone of us.. And that is where the gift of God comes in. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." The simplicity is beautiful. He loves the world, He loves the people in it.

      The problem with money is that it clouds our perception. It gives us the idea that we are the ones who got ourselves to the top of the ladder. "The love of money is the root of all evil." Money is not the problem. The love of it is.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • J.C.

      Yes, and notice how it was just "righteous men," not women or children. Your misogynistic invisible bearded man (or flying spaghetti monster) kills a city full of innocent children with fire and brimstone and the one woman who survives the massacre is turned into a pillar of salt for looking over her shoulder. Nice.

      If the He-Who-Can-Not-Be-Seen was able to wield such power and involve himself so directly in the lives of humans, why hasn't he done it in the last few hundred years? And don't give me earthquakes and tornadoes. Sillyness.

      Oprah will be worm food when she dies just like everyone else.

      May 26, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
    • Ab

      The word "men" implies all mankind. Not only males. We are "mankind." Lot had two daughters that were saved. I believe the sight Lot's wife saw was so horrifying that she was petrified. The Lord told none of them to look back to protect them from such a sight.

      I am not here to be right. I am here to speak truth. I am here in love.

      Dear friend, how is there so much hate towards a God that you don't believe exists? Would you rather be forced to obey or have the choice? Love is not love unless it is a choice. You have to choose to love God. The very act of being shows God's existence. The earth proclaims the glory of God. When you see a painting or a drawing, you don't believe it came into being on its own do you? There is a painter or a drawer. And so the earth, too, needs a Creator. Creation needs a Creator. The good that is in the world, the moral code that is inside every human being proves God's existence.

      Perhaps God has been silent for all these years because we refuse to acknowledge His existence. We refuse to see His handiwork that is proclaimed in the heavens. Look at the stars, the trees, a blade of grass. He is there in a simple blade of grass. He has held His peace for a long time and has let man take over. Test Him. He says to. I think then you'll see.

      May 26, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  11. Bert

    In our heart of hearts we all know there is a God..... but the belief in Jesus as HIS son is the key to getting to God the Father. If anyone wants to know God, then look at Jesus. If you want to know Jesus, read the New Testament. Oprah seems to want God to be the Universal-God-Who-Fits-All-Wishes & Hopes.... without bothering to actually following Chris & what HE preached. No one an whte wash God to make him a one size fits all. Its more than God, its Jesus, its reconcilliation, its confession, its redemtpion, its forgiveness, its life changing inside and out. Just acknowledge God and lead others to believe we can say "its God" is shallow – its more than God, its ALL he did for us!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:35 pm |
    • Alverant

      Don't go projecting your inadequacies on all of us.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
    • Faithful2Christ

      Awesome, well put!!!!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:39 pm |
    • marsmotel

      How do you know? Were you there? Or are you going from a book of fiction that was written by rabbi's 3000 years ago. Please have God contact me since you are such good friends because his track record is not that hot down here on Earth.
      thank you

      May 26, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
    • f

      @marsmotel – Get professional help immediately. You are scaring me.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
    • marsmotel

      f- you are so weak-minded that you can't fathom the Universe, so you make up stuff to fill your fears. Free thinkers have the ability to understand rational thoughts and ideas. I am very afraid for you!

      May 26, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
    • Ab

      @marsmotel: Dearest friend, I see your many replies and wish I knew your life story. I do not wish to point out faults. I am as weak as anyone. You do not understand how much the God that you don't believe in loves you.

      May 26, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  12. NeedSun

    She would never have publicly expressed her belief in God prior to being a mega-star as that (unfortunately) would have been career suicide.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
    • Sybaris

      Really? Celebrities do it all the time.

      Oh OK, I get it, let's play the religious persecution card. Funny that Christians try that in a country that claims about 77% Christian affiliation.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
  13. David

    Jesus is Lord God of All Creation!! One day every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that He is Lord!!!!!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • Faithful2Christ

      AMEN, AMEN and AMEN!!!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
    • Daniel

      I met a homeless guy one. He was quite insistent that Jesus is not the lord of all creation.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • marsmotel

      People have been bowing before me for years! If you have to bow in front of someone, you have no dignity. Stop you nonsence with your flase dieties and lies.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
  14. Jack Tors

    Come on folks, stop giving this attention whooor what she wants. Have some self respect!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
    • jak

      It's always suspect when someone has to call a woman that name–it's simple misogyny and much envy onyour part.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
  15. IronRider

    I can not tell you how many youtube videos I have seen of people and even preachers calling her the anti-christ. People this day and age are really unwise and assume too much.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
  16. Wally Balloo

    Fer Chrissakes – oh, wait, that what she said!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
  17. maggie

    To CC,
    Jesus is not God Almighty.

    WHILE on earth, Jesus was a human, although a perfect one because it was God who transferred the life-force of Jesus to the womb of Mary. (Matthew 1:18-25) But that is not how he began. He himself declared that he had "descended from heaven." (John 3:13) So it was only natural that he would later say to his followers: "What if you should see the Son of man [Jesus] ascend to where he was before?"—John 6:62, NJB.
    Thus, Jesus had an existence in heaven before coming to the earth. But was it as one of the persons in an almighty, eternal triune Godhead? No, for the Bible plainly states that in his prehuman existence, Jesus was a created spirit being, just as angels were spirit beings created by God. Neither the angels nor Jesus had existed before their creation.
    Jesus, in his prehuman existence, was "the first-born of all creation." (Colossians 1:15, NJB) He was "the beginning of God's creation." (Revelation 3:14, RS, Catholic edition). "Beginning" [Greek, ar•khe'] cannot rightly be interpreted to mean that Jesus was the 'beginner' of God's creation. In his Bible writings, John uses various forms of the Greek word ar•khe' more than 20 times, and these always have the common meaning of "beginning." Yes, Jesus was created by God as the beginning of God's invisible creations.
    Notice how closely those references to the origin of Jesus correlate with expressions uttered by the figurative "Wisdom" in the Bible book of Proverbs: "Yahweh created me, first-fruits of his fashioning, before the oldest of his works. Before the mountains were settled, before the hills, I came to birth; before he had made the earth, the countryside, and the first elements of the world." (Proverbs 8:12, 22, 25, 26, NJB) While the term "Wisdom" is used to personify the one whom God created, most scholars agree that it is actually a figure of speech for Jesus as a spirit creature prior to his human existence.
    As "Wisdom" in his prehuman existence, Jesus goes on to say that he was "by his [God's] side, a master craftsman." (Proverbs 8:30, JB) In harmony with this role as master craftsman, Colossians 1:16 says of Jesus that "through him God created everything in heaven and on earth."—Today's English Version (TEV).
    So it was by means of this master worker, his junior partner, as it were, that Almighty God created all other things. The Bible summarizes the matter this way: "For us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things . . . and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things." (Italics ours.)—1 Corinthians 8:6, RS, Catholic edition.
    It no doubt was to this master craftsman that God said: "Let us make man in our image." (Genesis 1:26) Some have claimed that the "us" and "our" in this expression indicate a Trinity. But if you were to say, 'Let us make something for ourselves,' no one would normally understand this to imply that several persons are combined as one inside of you. You simply mean that two or more individuals will work together on something. So, too, when God used "us" and "our," he was simply addressing another individual, his first spirit creation, the master craftsman, the prehuman Jesus.
    Could God Be Tempted?

    AT MATTHEW 4:1, Jesus is spoken of as being "tempted by the Devil." After showing Jesus "all the kingdoms of the world and their glory," Satan said: "All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me." (Matthew 4:8, 9) Satan was trying to cause Jesus to be disloyal to God.
    But what test of loyalty would that be if Jesus were God? Could God rebel against himself? No, but angels and humans could rebel against God and did. The temptation of Jesus would make sense only if he was, not God, but a separate individual who had his own free will, one who could have been disloyal had he chosen to be, such as an angel or a human.
    On the other hand, it is unimaginable that God could sin and be disloyal to himself. "Perfect is his activity . . . A God of faithfulness, . . . righteous and upright is he." (Deuteronomy 32:4) So if Jesus had been God, he could not have been tempted.—James 1:13.
    Not being God, Jesus could have been disloyal. But he remained faithful, saying: "Go away, Satan! For it is written, 'It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.'"—Matthew 4:10.
    How Much Was the Ransom?

    May 26, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • Alex

      well said maggie

      May 26, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • JamminCanadian

      You seem to be of one of those cults, what is it Jehova's witness, Morman?

      May 26, 2011 at 12:31 pm |
    • Steve (the real one)

      You cannot fail to believe in the divinity of Christ and be a Christian. If Christ is not God, you are not saved!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:35 pm |
    • NeedSun

      God, Jesus & the Holy Spirit are 3 separate divine beings yet one God. It is the foundation of Christian belief. No one gets to the Father except through Jesus. If you're not Christian, this is not something you would believe.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • humdaddy

      Spoken like a true Jehovah's Witness. Jesus was God and man. Jesus was the Word. John 1: 1 states: "In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the WORD WAS GOD!. The apostle Thomas acknowledged Jesus as "My Lord and my God! The only reason Jesus came to this earth was to DIE! He is the WAY, the TRUTH and the LIFE. No one gets to heaven but through HIM! We are saved by grace through faith, not by our works lest anyone should boast. I'm sorry but if you don't have a PERSONAL relationship with Jesus and put your faith completely in Him, YOU HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO CHANCE TO GET TO HEAVEN. The Bible is the innerrant, infalible word of God...NOT THE WATCHTOWER PUBLICATION or any other man made book. Oprah spreads new age lies that come from the pits of hell. She can't call herself a Christian and neither can you. All heavens and earth were creating by and through Jesus. He is DEITY, PERIOD! If you are a Witness, you need to leave that cult because if you don't, you will be sent straight to hell for denying Jesus as Lord!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • Steve

      I don't think she's mormon since they believe Christ is part of the godhead.
      I think she's JW. It can be difficult to discuss the bible with a JW since so many scriptures have been altered or are missing from their New World Translation of the Bible.
      I don't think you can call either organization a cult anymore than you can call Christ and his disciples/apostles a cult.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • Lisa

      Jesus, God, the Holy Spirit are all the same! Ever hear of The Trinity?

      May 26, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • Doug

      What about John 10:30 where Jesus says "I and the Father are one."

      May 26, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
    • Lin

      Maggie, YOU ARE SO WRONG! Jesus Christ is God. The sacrifice for mankind had to be sinless. No man is sinless but the God-man, Jesus Christ who is GOD IN THE FLESH! When we see God, we will see Jesus. He is the only God we will see with our eyes because the Father and Spirit do not have any form. And, they are all ONE, something that our human minds cannot comprehend. Take a look at Genesis 1:26 "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness." Who is God talking too? Not the angles, because angles are not creators, nor should be objects of worship. Angles are examples of worship. We see the Spirit in the beginning hovering over the waters and God (Jesus) in verse 26. Also, take a look at John 1:1-18 in the New Testament. These verses clearly prove that Jesus (the Word) is God the creator. Verse 14 states: "And the Word (Jesus/God/Creator)became flesh and dwelt among us." Maggie, you are deceived by twisted views of the bible. Be careful who's teaching you put yourself under. I hope that as you read the bible your heart and mind will clearly see the truth in God's word. Jesus Christ first came as a sacrifice and will return as Judge. A mere man CANNOT do that. God bless you Maggie.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • Nedu

      Maggie you are partially right,
      Here is a scripture I would like to add to the scriptures you mentioned, John 1:1-14. This scripture tells us that in the beginning, the Word was with God and the Word was God. The Word later became flesh and we know Him today as Jesus Christ. You fail to account for the impact of time in the person of Jesus Christ. Let me explain. If the Word who was God became the person we know today as Jesus Christ, we can say that the Word existed as God first. The Word existed before God created time. Now as time progressed, it came to a period when the Word needed to come into the world to save us from sin. The Word came into the world not as God but as the man named Jesus the Christ. What I am trying to say in these few words is the Word was God who became man and that man is Jesus Christ. Therefore, you are partially right. The greatness of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ is God the Word gave up being God to become the sinless man Jesus Christ. He did this to qualify to pay the ransom for our salvation. We could not pay our own way because we are all sinners. The bible tells us that the wages of sin is death, and the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus. As the books of Hebrews and Revelations tell us, Jesus Christ remains the High Priest of God’s Kingdom forever. A high priest position is a position assigned to a man not God. Therefore, He was God and now man forever for our benefit and to the glory of God our Father in heaven.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:52 pm |
  18. stephanie

    AMEN!!!!

    May 26, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
  19. Ashley

    I am relieved the Oprah show is over. I truly believe that the Oprah program and Oprah "culture" has been bad for American society.

    90 percent of the programming over the last 25 years has revolved around one of the following themes – victimization, consumerism, makeovers, women in bad marriages/bad mothers/abusive men and the women who are victimized by them, pseudo-science, pseudo-religion, pseudo-medicine. Give me a break. This is TRASH TV wrapped in Oprah do-goodism.

    The Favorite Things episodes made me gag with the corporate sponsorship and thousands of women hypervenilating over coffee makers and $300 shoes.

    I DO give Oprah credit for the occasional wonderful reunion episode or "wildest dreams" type shows where she gave away scholarships, homes, etc. I always loved those shows and will miss them.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • f

      100% agreed ! ! I said almost the same thing on my post earlier today. She is a con artist of the greatest degree. She gave commands to the public disguised as "helpful advice". She didn't take her own advice; she is still fat. She talks about relationships and honesty and still could never get marreid. SHe is (I beleive) a closet lesbian and won't come out. Her audience for some very strange reason is mostly middle class white women. Most black women I have talked to /worked with over the years always thought she was a hack/con artist/liar, etc. etc. Now she involves God in her show?? I say "Yes, Thank God." Thank God she is leaving and I hope to never hear from her again.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • Shanna

      Well said Ashley! I remember many times when when she would have an "Oprah's Favorite Things" show with her $1000 Manolos and then the next day she would have Suzy Orman, who by the way filed for bankruptcy, giving advice on saving for the future. And what about DrPhil? That guy always preaches how we should treat people with dignity and respect, yet he treats his staff like crap, he doesn't pay his bills and he currently is being sued by Britney Spears for leaking private medical information about her and her own mental illness.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
  20. God don't like moneymakers

    Mark 10:25 – It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.

    May 26, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Patricksday

      What have you done today to help make the world a more incredible place? smiled at someone you passed, said something nice to someone? Or are you just one of the "Christians" in word but not in deed? Shame everyone and judge like Jesus didnt do.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • IceT

      The eye of the needle during the time that was written is not what it is today. The eye of the needle was the smaller entrance to a town for camels to enter through. It was small & the camels needed to crouch but it was not impossible as implied by todays "eye of the needle" understanding. Although I do agree with the concept of being more difficult for the rich since they tend to lose so many of the virtues required for entrance into heaven.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • DenverGrl

      Then there are a number of ministers out there that are in trouble. Not to mention the wealthy Christians that donate to the GOP.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
    • hope

      Your in correct my brother, read further in the Bible, But nothing is impossible with God!!!!

      May 26, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
    • MD

      God does not dislike people who make money...that's not true. And IceT, there is no reliable evidence that there was a "camel gate". It means what it says: people who have wealth to rely on and be distracted by will find it difficult to enter God's kingdom. Oprah isn't one of a few in this country who have wealth. She may be super-wealthy, but by the world's standards a great number, perhaps the majority, of US residents are wealthy.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Anne

      So, what about the bible verse that says those who have more will receive more and those who have less will receive less (it's not verbatim but that's the idea)? It's not about the money itself but the intention and consciousness behind the money. Oprah has given millions of dollars away to all kinds of causes, and she has continued to be blessed with more. She has been an example of how to give and help others. I am not a financially wealthy person, but I rejoice in her prosperity and the prosperity of others. Why would I condemn someone else of having something that I would want? When you do that, you condemn yourself.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
    • HUH

      DON'T PROOF TEXT THE BIBLE. Abraham, David and Solomon were super rich. Rich women supported Jesus' ministry.(Luke 8:1–3 ; Mark 15:40; 16:1) Lydia was rich Lydia (Acts 16:14–15, 40) so was Philemon and so on. Really read your Bible.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
    • Sam49

      What God does like is for us not to use our God given talents so that we can prosper and help those who are in need as we prosper. Moerover, God does not like lazy bums who blame others for their situation and do nothing to help others.

      May 26, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • Fundles

      Money is neither good or evil. It is the what we do with money that shows the real intentions of our hearts. There are rich people in the bible that did wonderful things with their money to help spread the word of god. Our society Idolizes money so much that I get put off by preachers who preach prosperity gospels. "Maybe I will pray to God so he will give me prosperity." Your intention isn't to love God, but pray to God so you can get money. Your true god is really money. I personally am trying to work on giving more of my money away to God, but my "want" to have things, is getting in my way and blurring my eyes of what is right.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:05 pm |
    • JamminCanadian

      The "eye of the needle" was an unnofficial opening in the wall of a city that could let people in late at night, instead of opening the official city gate. It was just large enough for a person but often way too small for camels. "Rich man" spoken of here is basically one that has his wealth trumping his devotion to God. For his own consciousness to exchange the value of the riches for the things of God, he can enter into the Kingdom of God.
      Remeber; it is the LOVE of money, that's the root of all evil, not money itself.

      May 26, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
    • Steve (the real one)

      Really? My Bible says it is the LOVE of money that is the root of all evil. Money is a tool and is neither good no evil. What can be good or evil is our att-itude towards it!

      May 26, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.