Are Christians held to an unfair higher standard?
Bestselling author and TV pundit Bill O’Reilly has been ridiculed, criticized and openly mocked after writing a Christian book. What’s going on?
Howard Gensler, a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, quipped that if “the Almighty had come to O’Reilly in a dream, telling him to write the book Killing Jesus, God might have come up with a more original title.” After all, it is the third of a series of books with very similar names.
“Stephen Colbert’s takedown of Bill O’Reilly’s Killing Jesus is one of the most scathing and hilarious criticisms of the book yet,” writes media critic Teri Schwartz.
On “The Colbert Report,” the comedian host pretended to defend O’Reilly, calling him his mentor. “As a Catholic, Bill believes in the Trinity,” Colbert joked, treading awfully close to blasphemy. “In this case, the father, the son and the holy ghostwriter.”
“Bill knows he is simply God’s humble servant,” Colbert told his audience, showing a media clip where O’Reilly said he is simply one of many who have been blessed by God. Colbert went on to joke that the Almighty actually came to him first with the idea for Killing Jesus, but that Colbert declined. He then told his audience that he actually was the one who whispered the idea into O’Reilly’s ear at night.
What about O’Reilly’s claim on “60 Minutes” of extraordinary insights, particularly a claim that Jesus would have been unable to speak while on the cross – which contradicts the biblical account? Colbert noted: “This is O’Reilly claiming that his book about God is more factually accurate than God’s book about God.”
“The Holy Spirit may have inspired Killing Jesus,” quipped theologian Candida Moss, in a special column on CNN’s website, “but he didn’t fact-check it.”