For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God's word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ. - 2Corinthians 2:17 (ESV)
"Bring it," he said. "You have done poked the wrong bear. You done pissed off the wrong hillbilly." - Dave Ramsey
Ahh yes, we all remember when Jesus declared to the Pharisees, "bring it."; don't we? When He told the teachers of law that they done pissed off the wrong Galilean? No? Me neither. We end this week with two odds and ends stories from Christendom that deserve mentioning but do not necessarily need to be detailed at great length as they speak for themselves. The first story is that former followers of Christian finance charlatan Dave Ramsey are collectively suing him for 150 million dollars. For those who may not have heard of Ramsey he is quite popular in apostate church circles as he is considered by the body of Christ to be our own private financial expert, much like Chick-fil-A is our own private fast-food chain. Should I say, was but more on that later as that is the second story. Ramsey has always appeared a bit shady, and the foundation of his financial advice is the tithing lie, which he fully supports. Ramsey always went much farther than that though and when he waded into the time share waters, he may have went in too deep.
For the uneducated, a timeshare is an investment scam. People sign up for large sums of money and end up holding virtually worthless shares of vacation property they do not use. There is often no way out of the timeshare agreement either. It can be stuck in your family as a dead source of investment that continues to drain money through exorbitant fees and the like. Ramsey actually railed quite often against the scheme that is timesharing. The problem is that he started to promote a different scheme for resolution to his followers. Ramsey would promote actively on his radio show a company known as the Timeshare Exit Team, who specialized in getting you out of these dead-end financial deals. The cost was significant because all the fraudsters knew people would pay to get out if their timeshares. Timeshare Exit Team usually collected in excess of $5000 per customer. The lawsuit alleges that customers referred by Ramsey paid in excess of 70 million dollars. They have received none of it back to date.
Once Ramsey started to promote the Timeshare Exit Team, sales exploded. The key feature Ramsey sold was that this company had a money back guarantee. It did not. In fact, one of the schemes the company used was after people had signed their contracts, they would be told to stop paying their timeshare fees and were given fake property deeds to convince them that they were free of their commitment. When people started to realize they had been cheated yet again, they demanded refunds and were either given excuses for why they would not receive their refund or calls went unanswered. Through the legal filings it was discovered that the founder of Timeshare Exit Team was rain gutter salesman prior with zero experience in the timeshare arena.
The lawsuit further alleges that Dave Ramsey was paid by the fraudulent company 30 million dollars over a six-year period that saw them collect over 200 million in fees. Through all this, Dave Ramsey has remained defiant against the very people he claims as brothers and sisters in Christ. In defense of the Timeshare Exit Team he gave the quote listed above. Seams like the right hillbilly has been poked. My only regret is they did not sue him for more. Dave Ramsey has made a career of lying to people about money. He has used God and greed comingled to motivate Christians to give beyond their abilities. What appears to have happened here though is simply beyond the pale. I know it may seem convoluted but let's streamline this. Dave Ramsey used his Christian radio show where he had groomed his Christian audience for years, to promote a fraudulent, fake and evil company to them. In return he was not paid 30 pieces of silver but rather 30 million dollars. His listeners? They lost everything. In some cases, money they probably couldn't afford to lose. Keep in mind this was not a failed investment. This was a company selling services they had no intention of ever providing. This is salacious enough until you remember that Dave Ramsey sells himself as a Christian! Yet as the key verse reminds us today, he is nothing more than a peddler of God's word.
Which brings us to the other story from this week that was left hanging out there - Chick-fil-A. Yes, God's chicken has apparently been asked to turn in their NAR Credentials because they dared to countermand the Republican Party, which controls the apostate church. What was the great sin of Chick-fil-A? Did they create a Muslim happy meal? Were they introducing a line of atheistic nuggets? Did they stop tithing correctly? No to all of these! They came out in support of racism, unfairness, and exclusion. Wait, I read that wrong. It was diversity, equity and inclusion. I kid you not. Here are the highlights from just one article: