Steven Furtick vs. Slavoj Zizek

Furtick cult

This past week word has permeated the evangelical world that Steven Furtick of Elevation church maybe drifting into cult territory with his church’s aim to indoctrinate both adults and children into following Furtick’s vision to the exclusion of any other possible influence. Many of the responses to the claims that Furtick has made about his unique power to be a visionary leader in the church are generally met with one of two responses: 1) The person who effectively agrees that yes, Furtick is some sort of visionary and we had all better give him the benefit of the doubt because he’s clearly seeing some kind of success thus far, or 2) Furtick is a charlatan because there is no such thing as the role of “visionary” among pastors and therefore this man is little more than a garden variety huckster and or narcissist who is faking it. I think that there is a third option here as well: Furtick may well have some kind of mystical experiences (whether from God, some other spirit or just straight up undiagnosed schizophrenia) but that doesn’t make him a good man or a wise leader. Watch here as Zizek dismantles a couple of notable mystics:

One’s inner life of prayer or meditation or devotion does not make one righteous. We can grant someone the authenticity of their visions while still holding them to account as ordinary human beings.