Texas Televangelist’s Large, Camel-Accommodating Needle Calls Famous Christian Parable Into Question
After recently coming under fire for not opening the doors of his church to the victims of Hurricane Harvey, wealthy Texas Televangelist Joel Osteen returned to his pulpit Sunday morning to deliver a sermon which has gone on to shake the basic tenets of the Christian faith to their foundations. Matthew 19:24, which reads “...it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God,” has traditionally been understood as a parable about the sinfulness of greed; however, the incredibly oversized sewing needle Osteen had on stage with him challenged this interpretation. The instrument’s eye was sizeable enough to allow for the passage of a camel, as was demonstrated live with the cooperation of the Houston Zoo. Though the animal was initially uncooperative, its handlers eventually succeeded in coaxing it to squeeze through the needle. Osteen provided his thoughts on the implications of this event:
“Now, there are some in the faith community who like to criticize me for having a few dollars, citing scripture sayin’ since camels can't go through eyes of needles, rich men can't enter the Lord's kingdom. Now I certainly ain't speaking ill of the Good Book, saying it's wrong. But ain't it sure as heck possible we’re reading the Good Book wrong? Look at this. That camel’s fitting through the eye of a needle pretty dang easily, so who’s to say it’s much more difficult for a rich man to get into heaven?”
Christian leaders around the world seem to be at a loss for words in response to the theological challenge of this extremely large needle. Sources say Osteen plans to continue his questioning of common Biblical interpretation this week by purchasing a Florida beach-front estate to test Matthew 7:24-27’s assertion that the house built on sand is of inferior construction to that built on rock.