Torrence’s Talk With Bishop Carlton PearsonPublished by Torrence Glenn on Tuesday, August 3, 2010 at 12:30 am.
Recently I sat down with Bishop Carlton Pearson to discuss his new book “God Is Not a Christian, Nor a Jew, Muslim, Him…: God Dwells with Us, in Us, Around Us, as Us.” Now before you go off, hear me out. (I hate to be “defensive” but I know y’all!!)
If we’re unable to have rational and sometimes through provoking discussions on spirituality and religion with other folks, how truly effective can we be at communicating our faith to others. Sure, Bishop Pearson’s recent changes in doctrine (or evolution if you will) has caused quite a stir in the gospel and Christian community. And truthfully, if you grew up in the traditional church, some of what he now believes may not sit well with you. However, I’m not afraid of questions and when the opportunity to read Bishop Pearson’s book and talk to him presented itself to me, I decided to take the chance.
Let’s be honest, much of what we subscribe to is because of what we’ve been told. I remember growing up Pentecostal and having friends who were Baptist, Apostolic, AME, Methodist, etc. and although we all accepted each other as Christians, our individual churches had HUGELY fundamental differences on what it meant to be “saved.” Some of those differences absolutely and completely contradicted the other. (For example, I know some apostolic Pentecostals who believe that if you don’t get baptized in Jesus’ name specifically and speak in tongues you are not saved.) But generally, we accepted one another for the Christians we each proclaimed to be and didn’t condemn those who didn’t believe EXACTLY the way we did to hell. Sure, there may have been some heated discussion and even a few arguments, but at the end of it all, you respected the opinion and spiritual and scriptual INTERPRETATION of the other group.
So it’s in that spirit of having an open mind and respect for Bishop Pearson’s right to believe, think and interpret his faith as he sees fit that I read his book and conducted this interview. And I’ll admit right here and right now, some of it made a lot of sense to me, and I’ll also admit, some of it didn’t. But I think it’s safe to say that until our lives are over, we’ll be in a constant and consistent walk with God to further understand him and determine our PERSONAL relationship with God is.
So if you’ve never questioned anything you’ve read in the bible or heard in church, you probably won’t enjoy or appreciate this interview. If you think anybody who doesn’t believe exactly everything you do is going to hell, you probably won’t enjoy this interview. If you don’t find value in dialogue with people who think differently than you do, then you probably won’t like this interview. However, if you can, do me a favor and just watch and tell me what you think.