I have watched parts of the Drew Carey Show and found it using the typical sitcom themes of greed and illicit sex. I would not expect Drew Carey to speak for God. But the things he said to our nation’s leaders on May 4th at the 88th White House Correspondents’ Annual Association dinner were nothing short of astounding. The event at the Washington Hilton International Ballroom was attended by President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, Colin Powell, Donald Rumsfeld and many other military and cabinet officials. It also included famous Hollywood stars such as Walter Cronkite, Sally Field, Harrison Ford, Ozzy Osbourne and many others—all told 2,700 guests plus those who watched it live on C-SPAN.
This writer spent hours attempting to find a complete transcript or audio/video of Drew Carey’s “entertainment” monologue, but found only two partial transcripts covering his words about the Bible, plus numerous short articles which quoted a particular story from the speech. His website www.livedrew.com contained numerous of his other past recordings, but the file for this one was strangely missing. Assembling the information available, nearly everything Drew said was true, though possibly exaggerated. Of course, he used his comedian’s talent of making it sound funny. (Transcripts of comedians are generally not near as funny as the live delivery—presentation means a lot.) Also, this being a big party with important people, there was a great tendency to laugh when the “important people” laughed, and a tendency for the “important people” to laugh at the jokes, funny or true, because they want to “fit in” to modern “American culture”—especially when they are being watched by the press.
Near the beginning Drew said he and Dick Cheney both had heart surgery; the procedures were identical except for one small thing: “The doctors had left my heart in!” After this reference to Cheney’s heartlessness, he continued to look at the Vice President and say, “Boy, I’m glad you’re laughing, because I’ve got a family!”
Drew also made some jokes directed toward the military leaders in attendance—something about that we are not like other armies that want to kill everybody, we just come in to a nation and take over the oil, gas and other important economic resources.
Carey also made fun of new-age-like “holidays” such as Earth Day. He said he took the muffler off his car as part of his own personal celebration. He also spoke about polluting the air with his oversized, gas-guzzling S.U.V., but, “It’s O.K. because I got more American flags on it than the Presidential limousine”. This appears to be a reference to a lot of the bad decisions that are being made in government now that are simply being smoothed over with patriotic fervor.
During his routine, Drew made eight references to Ozzy Osbourne—a musician/TV-personality known for drug use, a foul mouth and occult weirdness. Ozzy once bit the head off of a live bat as part of a performance. So Drew compared Ozzy to President Bush: “First of all, they both love their families. They both partied a little too hard when they were younger. Half the time you can’t understand a word either one of them is saying. And neither one of them can make a move without their wife’s approval.” George Bush is a member of the Skull & Bones, a life-time Yale fraternity that is filled with occult weirdness.
Later in his speech, he began to talk about the Bible. It appears that he has recently begun reading it, and that he has also stopped attending traditional church—two good things. Here is what he said:
…I don’t like to watch the news. I mean I do, but I get so depressed watching the news. You know what I do when I watch the news though? I turn the news off, I get out my Bible, I turn to the Book of Revelation, and I start checking stuff off. (laughter) You know. Got it. Got it. Need it. (laughter) Got it. Got it. Need it. (more laughs) Red dragon. Seven horns. Ten crowns. Ozzy Osborne, America’s favorite TV dad. (Big laughs) Oh man. 20 million dollars, huh? (looking at Osborne, referring to his TV contract) You know that is barely gonna pay for your kids’ therapy. I don’t know why—that money’s gonna be down the drain.
Yea, you know, I read the Bible a lot. You know it’s crazy. We celebrate holidays here in the United States… and what I found out recently was that we celebrate holidays that have nothing to do with the Bible at all. Real famous holidays, like Christmas. Christmas is not in the Bible. The birth of Jesus is in the Bible, but not Christmas. The tree’s not in the Bible, the gifts are in there, but nowhere in there does it say, “Celebrate my birthday says Jesus.” It’s a Pagan holiday that the Romans invented that we just do. (quiet)
But, everywhere you go. I’ve seen this so many times. You see a big Nativity scene and there’s baby Jesus, the manger, sheep, shepherd, wise men, Mary, Joseph… and Santa Claus right in the middle! Like, who’s that, Mary’s Lamaze coach? (laughter)
Santa Claus has nothing to do with anything. Neither does the Easter Bunny. Easter’s another Pagan holiday that’s not in the Bible. Every Easter you don’t hear anything about Jesus on the cross (Drew spreads his arms like Jesus nailed to a tree). All you hear about is the Easter Bunny. Easter Bunny this and Easter Bunny that. (quiet) Why is it the Christian religion is the only one in the World that needs a mascot to sell its stuff? (laughter) You don’t see Jewish people off celebrating with the Passover kangaroo. (big laughs) There’s no Ramadan rooster. (huge laughter)
Halloween’s another big holiday—Satanic holiday. Nobody’s bothered by that for some reason. You know, “fun for the kiddies”. (laughter) I mean, when I was going to “church” they always told me Satan’s the most evil one, the one you have to watch out for. “Watch out for Satan!” Then, once a year, the whole country goes, “Hey, let’s party with this guy.” (big laughs) It’s ridiculous. (laughter)
There’s a Catholic church down my street that used to have Halloween parties every year. Of course, they don’t have them anymore ’cause they don’t want the “priests” handing out candies to the kids. (moans and groans from audience, some laughter) Don’t boo! Don’t boo! I have to, uh, I’m going to hand out a word of support to the Catholic church… (pause) “There’s no such thing as bad publicity”. (crowd roars)
The depth of what Drew Carey had to say was not covered by the press very much. One writer said Carey’s harshest joke of the evening was his comparison of Bush’s speaking style to a high-wire act. While Mr. Bush expends more effort balancing to “keep everyone happy” than he does telling the truth, many of Carey’s other “jokes” hit on far more serious problems. Some of the “Christian” articles about that evening were very critical of Bush for welcoming the irreverent Ozzy Osbourne, and also critical for letting Carey “make a mockery of the Bible”. The Christian press was right on the first point, wrong on the second. Carey’s Bible teaching was more accurate than some “Christian” sermons.
One last point that several writers noted: Near the end, Drew spoke as if he were admonishing children: “Don’t treat celebrities like they’re heroes.” And this was to a room full of people, many of whom regard themselves, and each other, as heroes! What a wonderful thing to have the truth spoken!
It is not easy to know what motivated Drew Carey to give this kind of comic routine. Was this message his idea or did God somehow give it to him? Maybe through someone else? Did he learn these things about the Bible by reading the Bible, or by reading someone’s writing about the Bible? Will Drew change his life in the future, or will he continue with his more typical dirty-joke routines?
We must remember that God made Jonah speak to a people to whom he did not want to speak. God spoke through Baalam, a man who would have gladly cursed God’s chosen people if God would let him. God even spoke through Baalam’s donkey. In the New Testament, God made the corrupt High Priest speak the very words he wanted said, even though he condemned Jesus to die (John 11:49–51). Similarly, the Roman governor Pilate had Christ crucified to please the Jewish leaders, but then placed the accurate sign “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews” over Him in spite of those same leader’s objections (John 19:19–22). God can accomplish His work through whomever He wills.
The plan is to e-mail this article to Drew Carey and see if he will explain why he said what he said. But even if he never replies, it is important that what he said was said.
It is only fair to ask the question, “How many people took Carey’s message to heart, and how many just dismissed it as a series of jokes?” We can ask a similar question about all of the messages delivered by Church of God groups: “How many people actually took our messages to heart, and how many people dismissed them as another preacher looking for members and money?” Of course, we always realized that most people who listened would not heed our message, but we felt they were being “warned”, nevertheless. We also realize that the Spirit of God works with a few people and they hear and change their life. Is Carey’s message any different? Most will not think about it deeply, but will there be some who will say, “He’s right; our country is corrupt and our churches teach a lot of things that are not in the Bible.” And will God work with them and cause them to do something about it?
It would be a mistake for any of us to claim to know exactly how God is working with each and every person on earth. That is complex beyond our understanding. But it does not stop us from thinking about the difference between these two different means of communication. Carey is just one of thousands of famous people whom God could use to deliver a message. In short, he is a famous person, with access to leaders, with a true message, but no extensive religious background. We will refer to this type of messenger as a “famous person”, below.
How does the “famous person” witness compare with a typical Church of God witness. The “famous person” obviously has better access to leaders. Most leaders would not be embarrassed to be seen listening to another famous person. Also, if the famous person is not a religious figure, it may be fairly easy to ignore the message or pretend that it is not of significance. If someone does listen to a famous person’s message, they are then confronted with a dilemma: What do they do about it? Drew Carey, or most other famous people, do not have a “church to join”. If God has simply given them something to say, they may not have much of any additional Bible knowledge or advice to give. The convicted listener can go to God and the Bible, and learn that way, and that is wonderful. But if the listener finds the New Testament example of believers working together in local assemblies (“churches”), he or she may attempt to find the church—maybe in their local yellow pages. They will probably be woefully disappointed at all the groups calling themselves “churches”—seeing how different they are from the Bible description of a church.
That is where the Church of God groups should come in. We should be patterning our church services on the Bible as much as possible, rather than our tradition. We should be ready to deal with people from a different background—be patient with them if they do not understand about unclean meats, the trinity and other doctrines that they may not have had time to study. We should be willing to answer the questions that they have, not try to send them through the doctrines that we think are most important. We should have good literature available for them to read if they want it, but not force it upon them.
Church of God groups would need a lot of money or miraculous intervention to get the attention of national or world leaders. God may well do this in the future, and such a witness will be clearly serious—not to be laughed off as a joke. But if God uses the “famous person” to deliver His message, we should be ready to receive and help those who might hear, even though they begin seeking God from some other source. We should be ready to fit into whatever God does—never having the audacious idea that He “has to use us” for His work. — NSE