Kathie Lee Gifford is on the podcast today, and you’re going to love this conversation.
She creates a compelling case for the God of the Bible by merging the ancient with the modern, giving you some historical and cultural insights that will open your eyes—and your heart—to see God and the Bible as never before.
While the stories in the Bible are thousands of years old, they continue to offer life, hope, and direction for today. And in this BONUS podcast episode, you’ll be reminded of the Bible’s ever-present, life-transforming power.
Kathie Lee shares how God is the God of the how and when, the God of His Word, and the God who sees. And as she talks about her most recent book and film, she’ll show you how He’s also the God of the way!
Her book is titled, The God of the Way: A Journey into the Stories, People, and Faith That Changed the World Forever, and the film that follows is called, The Way, which isn’t your typical type of film.
It’s a set of oratorios that merges the ancient with the modern, bringing to life biblical stories with contemporary orchestral arrangements, powerful narration, and touching visuals. Over the course of 4 movements spanning 75 minutes, these pieces revolve around Kathie Lee as the narrator, a symphony orchestra, and a cast of musical stars singing tailor-made roles such as Nicole C. Mullen, Danny Gokey, Jimmie Allen, Larry Gatlin, and BeBe Winans.
Doesn’t it sound so good? Oh girl, I can’t wait to see it!
As you listen to Kathie Lee share about the book and the film, you’ll be just as excited as I am. She’s eager to teach anyone who will listen that the Bible is not obsolete, and I admire her dedication to preserving the truth that brings hope to this broken world.
Kathie Lee says, “Today’s culture tends to view the Bible as an ancient text that is no longer relevant, but my hope is that this film, with modern music and visual storytelling, will reignite the passion for truth in today’s culture and in a younger generation.”
You’ll hear Kathie Lee expose the true passion of her heart in this conversation. She’s on fire for God’s Word, and it’s inspiring.
But first—before you listen to the podcast—there’s one thing I want to mention…
In this podcast, Kathie Lee talks about the King James Version of the Bible, and her comments may raise some concerns. But if you’re one who reads the KJV, let me put your mind at ease:
Most textual critics for the past 250 years would say that no major doctrine is affected by the misfires in the King James Version. There are some really legit reasons that the KJV is not the most accurate translation, and it’s true that there are more accurate versions now due to finding later manuscripts. However, one can get saved by reading the KJV and one can get saved by reading the NIV, NASB, NLT, or any other in the alphabet soup of Bible translations! We are trusting God’s sovereignty here for the preservation of His Word and for His work in the hearts of those who read it.
So, don’t let this part of the conversation be a hang-up for you, and certainly don’t let it hinder you from reading your Bible. The bottom line is that you need the Bible, and so do I. We are to study God’s Word, but it’s also wise to become a student of what we are studying.
If you want to do further research on the King James Version, here’s a good article you can read as a starting point to explore this further.
Alright, sister! Let me introduce Kathie Lee—as if she really needs an introduction—and then let’s head on over to the podcast!
Meet Kathie Lee
Kathie Lee Gifford is the four-time Emmy award-winning former co-host of the fourth hour of Today. Prior to her time at NBC News, she served as the co-host of Live with Regis and Kathie Lee for 15 years. In 2015, she was inducted into the Broadcast and Cable Hall of Fame, and recently she was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Kathie Lee has starred in numerous television programs and movies in her 45-year career. In 2019, she made her directorial debut with The God Who Sees oratorio, shot in Israel and based on a song she co-wrote with Grammy-nominated Nicole C. Mullen. Over the past two years, she has written and directed three more oratorios entitled The Way. Gifford has authored five New York Times bestselling books, and I’m sure this latest one, The God of the Way, will be a best-seller also.
[Listen to the podcast using the player above, or read the transcript below. Then check out the links below for more helpful resources.]
More from Kathie Lee Gifford
- Visit Kathie Lee’s website
- The God of the Way: A Journey into the Stories, People, and Faith That Changed the World Forever
- The Way Movie
- The God Who Sees
- Follow Kathie Lee on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
Links Mentioned in This Episode
- Jennifer on the TODAY show with Kathie Lee & Hoda
- Dwell Bible App
- What is the King James Version (KJV)?
- Don’t miss an episode! Subscribe to the 4:13 Podcast here.
- Were you encouraged by this podcast? Reviews help the 4:13 Podcast reach more women with the “I can” message. Click here to leave a review on iTunes.
4:13 Podcast: [BONUS] Can I Really Know the God of the Bible? With Kathie Lee Gifford
Kathie Lee Gifford: My gut's on fire for the Word of God. Why? Because I'm actually learning it. I'm actually studying it in its flawless form. And I don't know if you know this, but the only two ancient languages in the entire world that are still in use today are Hebrew and Greek. They've never been changed, not one word, except colloquially. But not their basic language. That's because God has been preserving His Word.
Jennifer Rothschild: The ancient stories from the Bible continue to offer life, hope, and direction for today. Merging the ancient with the modern, bestselling author Kathie Lee Gifford will create a compelling case for the God of the Bible. She's going to show you how God is the God of the how and the when. He's the God of His Word and the God who sees. And she'll give you some historical and cultural insights that will open your eyes and your heart to see God and His Word as never before. So, my friends, open your heart. Here we go.
K.C. Wright: Welcome to the 4:13 Podcast, where practical encouragement and biblical wisdom set you up to live the "I Can" life, because you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.
Now, welcome your host, Jennifer Rothschild.
Jennifer Rothschild: Hello, our people. This is going to be a great episode and I am so glad that you are here. That was K.C. Wright, my seeing eye guy. It is just two friends, one topic, and zero stress. So welcome to the stress-free zone. And it's good there's no stress because that way you will have plenty of room for joy, because that's what you're about to experience.
We've got a great conversation coming up with Kathie Lee Gifford. Cannot wait for you to hear it. You'll hear when I first begin my conversation with her that I mentioned being on the Today Show. That was several years ago. And let's be honest, between me, K.C., and our 4:13 family, Kathie Lee does not remember. But I remembered it. It was really fun. But I'll tell you what I remember most, K.C. You might even remember this. I call my husband my boyfriend.
K.C. Wright: Yes.
Jennifer Rothschild: And so Kathie Lee made some comment, "That's America's boyfriend."
K.C. Wright: Right.
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, Phil loved it. He's never lived it down. He thinks that's the best thing that ever happened to him. Anyway...
But we're going to talk a little bit -- that's how I'm going to begin the conversation with Kathie Lee. But then we're really going to talk about her new film, her new book. And for those of you who have seen her oratorio that she did with Nicole C. Mullen, oh, my gosh, "The God Who Sees," if you loved that, you are going to love this new film that is available to you now. And it's based on this new book, and so you're going to love it.
So, K.C., do you know a little bit about that movie, the film that she just did?
K.C. Wright: Oh, yeah. I've seen the preview, and chill bumps --
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
K.C. Wright: -- all the way down your arms. I mean, it's going to be powerful. And I love "The God Who Sees."
Jennifer Rothschild: Me too. Me too.
K.C. Wright: Yes. If you love "The God Who Sees," like us, you will love "The Way." So let me tell you about the film. It's a set of oratorios that merges the ancient with the modern, bringing to life biblical stories with contemporary, powerful narration and touching visuals over the course of four movements spanning 75 minutes.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's amazing.
K.C. Wright: These pieces revolve around Kathie Lee as the narrator, a symphony orchestra, and a cast of musical stars singing tailor-made roles such as Nicole C. Mullen --
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
K.C. Wright: -- oh, man, we love her -- Danny Gokey --
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
K.C. Wright: -- Jimmy Allen, Larry Gatlin, and Be Be Winans.
Jennifer Rothschild: Okay. Right?
K.C. Wright: Yeah.
Jennifer Rothschild: Now, this is why you need to see it. So here's the thing, our 4:13ers. We will get you to the film and all things Kathie Lee at the show notes. But we need to get to the conversation, so let's just introduce her, as if she needs it.
K.C. Wright: Yeah, seriously. She does not need me to introduce you to her, but I'll brag on Kathie Lee Gifford anyway. Kathie Lee Gifford is the four-time Emmy Award winning former co-host of the 4th Hour of Today. Prior to her time at NBC News, she served as the co-host of Live with Regis and Kathie Lee for 15 years. In 2015 she was inducted into the Broadcast and Cable Hall of Fame, and recently she was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's cool.
K.C. Wright: Kathie Lee has start in numerous television programs and movies in her 45-year career. She has written several musicals, including Broadway's "Scandalous," which received a Tony nomination for best actress in 2012. Gifford has authored five New York Times best-selling books, and I'm sure this latest one, you betcha, "The God of the Way," will be a best seller as well.
So settle in. Honestly, this is going to be one of the top 4:13 Podcasts for a long, long time. Two of my favorite people right now, Jennifer and Kathie Lee.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, Kathie Lee, you and I, we got to meet and spent a whopping four minutes together on the Today Show.
Kathie Lee Gifford: But it was memorable, I'm sure.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes. Right? But it was. It did mean a lot to me. It was a highlight of my life. And, of course, just in those four minutes, I felt like I had known you for years and --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Thank you. Thank you.
Jennifer Rothschild: -- a lot of us who are listening right now feel like we know you. And so that's why I want to start with this question. Let's pretend we do not know you. All right?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Okay.
Jennifer Rothschild: Somebody just landed on Planet Earth and you're introducing yourself. So here's what I want you to do. I want you to give me some adjectives that describe you. So just basically, who is Kathie Lee Gifford?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, first and foremost, I'm just a child of God, like everybody else. That's what I am. I'm curious. I want to know people, I want to know what they're thinking. I want to read, I want to grow. I'm a student, I'm an artist. I do all kinds of things creatively because I am an artist. You know, whether it reveals itself in directing or writing or acting or singing or producing or whatever, it all comes from that same place of being a child of God. Because if we're made in the image of God, our Creator, then we are creators too. So that's what I am. I'm a co-creator with Jehovah Elohim in this world, that's all I am.
Jennifer Rothschild: I think that's plenty enough. That's a great answer. I love that.
Kathie Lee Gifford: It keeps me busy. It keeps me very busy.
Jennifer Rothschild: I'm sure it does. Well --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Off the streets and out of prison or rehab. So there you go.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, and as you said, you enjoy reading, you're a student, you're curious. And that reminds me of your book. Okay? So this is your second book that we're going to talk about that you've written with the rabbi, the first book --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Oh, yeah. It's the second one with him, but I think it's my 28th overall.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, because you really need to find something to do with your life, obviously.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, I had even forgotten I'd written my first one when I was 22 or something.
Jennifer Rothschild: You did?
Kathie Lee Gifford: I'd totally forgotten I had already -- yes. I just move on to the next thing.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, you do.
Kathie Lee Gifford: I didn't say I'm smart. I'm just busy.
Jennifer Rothschild: You're productive. There's a difference. You're productive.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Before people realize what a sham that I am, I've moved on to the next thing.
Jennifer Rothschild: Now, that is so not true.
But your first book with the Rabbi was "The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi," which was fantastic, by the way. I loved it.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Thank you. Yeah --
Jennifer Rothschild: So before we talk about --
Kathie Lee Gifford: -- that was a big surprise, a big surprise.
Jennifer Rothschild: It was to you, huh? It was a surprise?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yeah, very much so, mm-hmm.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, it was the first book you wrote with the Rabbi. And obviously this one is the second one. But I'm curious, like, how'd you meet him, and what caused you guys to begin to collaborate?
Kathie Lee Gifford: It's a very good question and it's -- I'm so grateful I did meet him. We have a mutual friend, and every time I'd see her, she goes, "You've got to meet the Rabbi." He had a church at the time out in Malibu, and she was going to his church, and she just loved him. She said, "Kathie, he's a Messianic Jew, just as you are. Loves Jesus, loves the Word of God, is one of the most incredible biblical scholars and biblical revealer of truth." That's what all I'm about, is finding out what the Bible actually says and then learning how we can apply it to our everyday lives. This so-called 5,000-year-old irrelevant, dead book the world looks at is actually still the greatest source for redemption and restoration and life of any other bit of literature that's ever, ever been written in the world. There's no question about it.
And so she said, "You've got to meet him." So he came to my studio -- where you did too -- in New York, and it was Christmastime -- which is my least favorite time of the year, especially in New York, because it's just full of a bunch of tourists who want to --
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, crowded.
Kathie Lee Gifford: -- see elves. They want -- they're just hook, line, and sinker into the Christmas story, which is the antithesis of the real Christmas story. And when you study the Scriptures the way I do, you know that Jesus was not born in December, he was not born in the stable, he was not -- all the things that we get wrong. And it turns out that the truth is -- well, I'll tell you -- I'll finish the story then. I didn't mean it to be this long. But she said, "He's in town. Will you have lunch with him?" And I said, "Yes, okay."
Take him to lunch and I'm in a bad mood. I just am. I cannot wait to get away from NBC and to get away from that culture of chaos there, even though it's full of people I love. I'm done. I'm done for the year, thank you. I don't want to talk about toys under the Christmas tree anymore. None of it means anything to me. And so I go to lunch with him, and I'm bemoaning my faith, and he looks at me and he goes, "Well, I'll give you a really great reason to love Christmas." Or December. And I said, "Okay. What's that?" I said, "I don't think so, but okay." And he said, "Actually," he said, "you know that every important thing that ever happened in Jesus' life happened on one of the great Jewish festivals." And I said, "Yes." And he goes, "Well, what is December Jewish festival? It's Hanukkah, the festival of lights." And he goes -- and I said, "Yes, of course." And I knew the story of the Maccabees and the oil and -- I knew all that from studying. But anyway, he said, "Kathie, I believe, and many Messianic rabbis believe, Jesus was conceived in December, born nine months later during the Festival of Sukkot in September, which is when the Jews celebrate God's provision for the Hebrews when they were in the wilderness for 40 years." And I went, "Oh, my gosh." He said, "Yes. Now think about it. 'I am the Light of the World. He who follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.'" And it's just like this bell went off on me. I went, "Yes, of course. And then he died on -- we know he died on Passover." And even I, who is a Jew, who studies this stuff, didn't realize that. And he was born in a cave, not a stable. We've westernized everything so we can wrap our minds and imaginations around it. But we're missing out on so much by not telling the real story. The real story is far more fascinating, far more joyful and exciting than one that Hollywood can make up.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. Isn't that what we do, though? Isn't that -- you know?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yes. We do it all the time.
Jennifer Rothschild: We take the real thing and we simplify it and make it shallow and we miss out on the depth.
Kathie Lee Gifford: We think we can make it better and we ruin it.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
Kathie Lee Gifford: So I sat there mesmerized by him for three hours. So when I start -- I knew I had to write "The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi," because I was so angry that I had never been taught this stuff earlier in my life. Why didn't I know this stuff? Why didn't I know that Jesus wasn't a carpenter? That's what everybody believes. Bad translations of the Bible. So I was going through a very righteously indignant time and very angry righteously, not at people, but at why the Word of God is not taught in our culture. It was written by Middle Easterners for Middle Easterners, but it's been translated badly into English and every other language in the world.
So anyway, I knew the Lord wanted me to start to write this book about my sojourn in the Holy Land as a student of the Word and my frustrations about the way the world is and then all of a sudden how my mind and my heart is being renewed and my spirit is on fire again. My gut's on fire for the Word of God. Why? Because I'm actually learning it. I'm actually studying it in its flawless form.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
Kathie Lee Gifford: I don't know if you know this, but the only two ancient languages in the entire world that are still in use today are Hebrew and Greek. They've never been changed, not one word, except colloquially. But not their basic language. That's because God has been preserving His Word. Preserving it.
So anyway, I'm just enraptured and I start to write and I -- we part ways. He goes back to California, I go home. And I start writing this book. And after about 50 pages, I said to myself, Jennifer, I said, "You know what, Lord? I don't have a book, I have a pamphlet. I don't know enough. I've been studying all this time and I don't know enough to write a definitive book that can transform people's lives. But I do know somebody who can."
So I called up Jason. And literally all we'd ever had together, I think, before that time -- we've had many, many times of interaction and friendship since then. But I called him and I said, "Rabbi, will you co-write this book with me? I'm at a loss. I can only take this so far, and you're always saying, 'But there's more, there's more. It's deeper, it's deeper. You have no idea.'" Every letter in the Bible is significant because both Greek and Hebrew are alphanumeric languages, which means that their alphabets have -- the value of each letter has numeric value. And then that means -- then you start paying attention in the Bible to, oh, so there were twelve disciples. What's the meaning of that? Oh, David had five stones. Oh, Jesus changed six pots of wine -- of water into wine. Why? If it's mentioned in the Bible, it's significant.
Jennifer Rothschild: It all matters.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And we just read right over them because we've been taught in our Western world that numerology's evil. It's not numerology, it's God's Word that we're talking about. And it's not -- when we put our faith in the One who made the stars, we are not worshiping the stars. And they've made us all crazy about all this stuff and we're missing out. They tell us that Jews have the Old Testament, we have the New. No. Nothing could be a bigger lie.
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, no. All Scripture. No. Right.
Kathie Lee Gifford: It's one story.
Jennifer Rothschild: Right.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Anyway, I put all of my frustration into all of this and I called him and we wrote "Rock, Road, and Rabbi," which I thought maybe a thousand people would buy, because I just didn't sense in our world much curiosity spiritually, socially, politically. I mean, it was all getting nastier and nastier and nastier all the time. And I just thought, oh, Lord, nobody's going to buy this book. And I think we're going on about 700,000 people have bought it now. I say that in not a bragging way at all, because every bit of the money that I make from those books goes into my Rock, Road, and Rabbi Foundation to keep writing books like that, keep producing movies like "The Way." You know, trying desperately to find new ways to tell these ancient stories so that people will see them in a brand-new light.
And it's hard to change paradigms. You know, it's hard to change people's -- you know, what do you mean Jesus -- I'm going to write a song called "Don't Mess with My Manger." People don't want to know. They don't want to know that Jesus wasn't born in December and he wasn't born in a stable. They don't want to know that.
Jennifer Rothschild: Right.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Don't mess with my manager, baby. I'm happy with my -- so I had no hope for that book, but the Lord always shows me how wrong I am about everything.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, I think the power, though, Kathie Lee, was because you were a student, you know, you were really a curious student exploring. And I think that's what gave such strength. It resonated with us as readers, because we were exploring.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, Jeremiah said, "If you seek me, you will find me." If you seek My Word, My Truth, you will bump into it, you know. You can't miss it if you have a heart to see and a mind that's open to it. And I feel so bad -- when I say I get mad, I just -- I want God's children to be fed. Only time Jesus asked a question three times was of Peter. "Peter, do you love me?" "Yes, Lord." "Feed my sheep." He didn't mean just physical food. He said, "Teach them."
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes. Yes.
Kathie Lee Gifford: "Teach them."
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, that's what you are doing. And I love how God has transitioned you in this stage of your life and in your career. So when I think of your new book, "The God of The Way," you really do extol the character of God.
So it's in four different parts, and each part represents a character trait of God. So I'd love it if you would tell us which of the four traits of God that you used. And I know this is hard, but which is your favorite character trait of God?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, you know, actually, because my book is coming out two days earlier than the film that it's based on, people are a little confused about the book, and I try to help. I've been writing a new film called "The Way" for four years, ever since my friend Nicole C. Mullen and I wrote "The God Who Sees." With the response to that, people who were not even Christians, not believers, not anything, agnostics, were being deeply, deeply moved by it. And I thought this is the Lord showing me what I'm supposed to do. I'm supposed to keep telling these amazing epic stories from the Bible in a brand-new way, and put the Nashville Symphony Orchestra on it, take it to Israel, shoot it, so that people that would never pick up a Bible, would never go to a church, would never listen to a Billy Graham Crusade or a podcast by Max Lucado -- they're just not going to do it. But I get their attention because they know me from the secular world, and all of a sudden they're sitting there watching an eleven-and-a-half-minute movie all about Hagar and Ruth and David and Mary Magdalene, and they're captivated by the stories and they want more stories. They want things to be longer. And I was stunned by the reaction to that. So really, "The God of the Way," the new book, is the companion book to the film. Anyway, it's a dream to tell these old stories in new ways, because they're basically ripped from the headlines today. You know, how many of us have a wayward spouse? A wayward child? A wayward pastor? A wayward anything? We're all sheep, and so many of us go astray.
So the first oratorio is called "The God of the How and Way." And I wrote that -- I started writing it a long, long time ago. It was a song for a movie I was producing. The movie was never made. But the basis of the song was excellent. It was all about waiting on God's promises. So I wanted to write a whole oratorio on how long people have waited in the Bible for God's promises to come true, so that we living in the world today can be encouraged that it's -- even though it's been forever, it seems like, for God to keep his promises to us, he will. He is the God of the how and when that we -- he will not be moved by anything other than his own perfect will. So it's the story of Abraham and Sarah and Moses and Joshua, and then Mary, the mother of Jesus. You know, how long did we wait for the promised Messiah to come? And so that's the first one.
The second one is basically hosted by the amazing Danny Gokey, and it's called "The God of His Word." And it's how the Word became flesh and dwelt among us after God called the nation and the Messiah came forth. And it's all about how God's Word is perfect, it's flawless, and how Jesus became that perfect Word of God. Then he called his disciples and then he -- and what he did for women is just -- he was the most radical feminist that ever lived.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes. Yes.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And then it ends with his miracles and how he used miracles to get the big crowds, because they were all needy and they were under burdens, enormous burdens. But they came to hear and see this man who was raising people from the dead and healing lepers and all -- you know, Israel's a small country. Word got around. But once they got there, he'd see that -- they'd see the miracles, but he would teach them about the Kingdom of Heaven in a way they'd never been taught by the Pharisees and the Sadducees ever. And he loved them as individuals, and that's why there were so many women at the cross and at the tomb, and so few men. One man. One man at the cross, John. None of them at the tomb. Not till the women went back and said -- why?
Jennifer Rothschild: "Come on."
Kathie Lee Gifford: Because they had been shown the most love because they were unloved, unvalued, and unappreciated in that world at the time, first century A.D. And all of them, they're miserable. I want people to know the love of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit that is available to them. That's why I write these things. I could have retired, I could be in the south of France, I could be anywhere. I want to tell people that Jesus loves them, because they don't know it. And they don't know these stories that --
Jennifer Rothschild: That demonstrate it.
Kathie Lee Gifford: -- that proclaim his faithfulness.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, right.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And they don't know that he will be faithful to them now in their own desert experiences and their own brokenness and their own weariness of trusting in people who let them down, break their hearts, and cast them aside. God has so much better for his people and his children than that, but they don't know it. They don't know it, Jennifer.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, I think of -- you know, just as you were speaking of this new film, and even "The God Who Sees" -- which, by the way, is a waterproof mascara moment for anyone who has not seen it. Oh, my gosh. I don't know how many times I've heard it, and I cannot get through it without weeping. So I can't wait to see the film.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Everybody says that. Praise God. This is that on steroids, I'm telling you.
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, my gosh. Okay, everyone, two tubes of waterproof mascara for this.
But, you know, I think of Hagar, I think of the woman who's listening and she feels like Hagar. She's lost in the wilderness, you know, of doubt or fear.
Kathie Lee Gifford: She's invisible to the world.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes. And she might feel disenfranchised. And she even wonders, does God even see me? So what would you say to her right now as she waits in the wilderness?
Kathie Lee Gifford: She's no different from Hagar. Hagar was sex trafficked. Hagar was a single mother. And God, in his love and in his mercy, saw her desperate, and her son desperate. Left to die basically. Very little provision, very little water. It's one of Abraham and Sarah's worst episodes.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, amen to that.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And we all have our own worst episodes, don't we?
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, we do. And then there's grace. Thank you, Lord.
Kathie Lee Gifford: So I'm not judging them, I'm saying --
Jennifer Rothschild: No. It's grace, yeah.
Kathie Lee Gifford: But I love the Bible. It doesn't sugarcoat things. I mean, it's the real housewives of the Old Testament and the New Testament, it really is. God doesn't color correct. God doesn't run it through a -- what's it called? A portrait lens.
Jennifer Rothschild: No, no Instagram filters on this story.
Kathie Lee Gifford: No filters. It's just the truth, this is what happened.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, 'cause this is who we are.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And we're to learn from it and grow from it and see God's faithfulness in the midst of it, you know. So I would say that to her. I would say, "Oh, sweetie, first of all, people are praying for you that you don't even realize. People love you that you don't even know. And somewhere someone is lifting up a prayer to Jehovah Elohim, Jehovah El Roi, the God Who Sees, so that you will know and come to know that you are precious to him, precious exactly the way you are, no matter what you look like." Because we as women just -- oh, what this world has done to women about that. No matter what you look like, no matter where you've been, no matter what you've done, no matter what you're ashamed of, so much that you can't even speak of it, God already knows it. And he loves you with an all-consuming love, and he just wants you to know that he's waiting for you to cry out to him. He will meet you right at the end of that cry. You won't even get it out and he'll be there. He will be there for you.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, one of the things I know about you, Kathie, is over the years you've been so good about loving people well. Even people that may not agree with you, you've always exuded that grace and kindness. And these days, people tend to be very tribal. They avoid who they disagree with. Even believers do this. Yet Jesus --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yes, mostly they --
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, sadly, yes. But that's not who Jesus was. He came to seek and save those who were lost. He came to --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Seek and save.
Jennifer Rothschild: -- serve and not be served. So I would love your opinion, your encouragement, like, how would you encourage your fellow believers to live out Jesus' mission in this polarized world?
Kathie Lee Gifford: It's such a great question. First of all, stop trying to be God and judging people. Only God can judge.
And even -- it goes even further. Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." I'm so grateful it's Jesus that's holding the keys to the kingdom, you know.
Jennifer Rothschild: Amen. Amen.
Kathie Lee Gifford: The one who actually has nailed-scarred hands because he loved me so much. I'm going to put my faith in his hands, because he says he's got my name written on the palms. Those very palms, my name is there, your name is there. Anybody else's name in the rest of the world can be on there if they just seek him and ask. We have not because we ask not.
So I would tell Christians to stop it. Stop it right now. You are grieving the Holy Spirit when you cancel people because they don't worship the way you do, they don't look the way you do, they don't -- they believe in maybe the gifts of the Holy Spirit and you don't, therefore, they must be evil, that is not of God at all. In fact, it's of the pit of hell. Satan's greatest tool is to tear us apart by creating chaos amongst us.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
Kathie Lee Gifford: He is the god of chaos, with a little g. That's what he does. He's the father of all lies, and he wants to tell us, well, they're not as good as we are because we study this and we believe that and we read the King James version. Which, by the way, everybody, you can get mad at me all you want. I've studied this.
Jennifer Rothschild: Am I going to get emails for this? What you're about to say, am I about to get some emails?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yeah, you will --
Jennifer Rothschild: Okay. Well, then say it. I'm ready.
Kathie Lee Gifford: -- be mad at you? The King James version is perhaps the worst translation of Scripture ever. That's where the whole thing about Jesus being a carpenter came. Let me tell you what the word for what Jesus and Joseph did in the New Testament is.
Jennifer Rothschild: I'd love that.
Kathie Lee Gifford: The word in Greek is tekton, t-e-k-t-o-n. And if you look it up, it says, in Greek, "architect/builder." They just lived in England and started translating from Greek to English, Greek to English, without going to Israel and realizing that there was no buildable wood in Israel in First Century A.D.
Jennifer Rothschild: Interesting.
Kathie Lee Gifford: There were glorified bushes, that's all, all the trees. If you go and visit Israel now, beautiful trees. But you know why? Because after it became a nation in 1948, people began to rejoice and make the desert bloom. And they watered it and they planted trees. It's an oasis now, but it was a desert then. And if you took the trees away today, it would go right back to being the desert that it is.
So what was there and what did they build on? Rock. Jesus was a stonemason.
Jennifer Rothschild: Wow.
Kathie Lee Gifford: And if we're wrong about something as simple about what Jesus did for a living before he became a rabbi -- which means teacher -- we're wrong about so many other things. So many other things. I don't want to base my life, Jennifer, on lies or myths or bad translation. If I'm going to believe it and build my life on it and spend my whole life learning it and memorizing it and sharing it, it's got to be the original. It's got to be the authentic.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Just go to the truth. Jesus said, "I am the truth. Seek me."
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. Well, and, you know, Kathie Lee, if Satan can't stop the truth -- which he can't -- then at least he's going to water it down, complicate it, and confuse it. And so --
Kathie Lee Gifford: That's so well said.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's, I think, what has happened. And I'm grateful for your passion and your -- you are a soldier for the truth. You're guarding it, and I am so grateful for that.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Thank you.
Jennifer Rothschild: And I know as you studied Scripture in the original language within the cultural context of First Century Israel --
Kathie Lee Gifford: That is also so important, yes.
Jennifer Rothschild: It really is. Well, and as you've done that, though, I would think it's helped you even know Jesus in a different way. I guess this will be my last question, though. I could listen to you for hours.
Kathie Lee Gifford: We can do two of these. We can keep going if you want.
Jennifer Rothschild: We might need to.
Okay. Well, let me just ask you this question anyway, because I want to know this. Well, it might be a compound question. Okay, first part. What do you love most about Jesus? As you've gotten to know him through this Middle Eastern lens, what do you love most about Him? And then, what's the first thing you do when you get to heaven someday?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, the thing that I love most about Jesus is that he is the complete -- he is the face of God the Father. He is the incarnation of Jehovah God in human form, and God himself is shalom. People think shalom just means peace. It doesn't. That's not true. That's, again, a watered-down thing. Shalom is all the facets of God's character: his faithfulness, his kindness, his lovingkindness, his forgiveness, his joy, his celebration, his dignity and honor and grace and all things that we proclaim when we sing of his glory.
But Jesus -- ultimately what he is in total is love. Unbridled, unmerited grace, which is love. That's who he is. And I can't even talk about that with you without sobbing, because I know I don't deserve it, but he loves me anyway. And he loves everybody that's listening to us right now, Jennifer, people that just want to give up. I hear from people every day that say, "I just saw 'The God Who Sees.' I was going to kill myself today until I watched that and I realized that maybe God does see me." And I just want to represent that. I just want people to know.
And I know I get annoying and people go, "Shut up, Kathie Lee." I can't. Because if I had the cure for cancer, I would go to every single person in the world that has cancer and I would say, "Guess what? I have the best news. I've got good news. Take this. Take this and you won't have cancer anymore." That's what you would do. Any good, decent person would want to give somebody something that would heal them and make them whole. But I have the cure for the malignancy of the soul. I have it, and his name is Jesus. And if I don't offer that to people, I can't live with myself.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, you have offered it to people. And even when your words have not specifically spoken the invitation, your life has.
Kathie Lee Gifford: That's kind of you.
Jennifer Rothschild: As I mentioned earlier, with your generosity of spirit, you present the image, the love of Jesus, so beautifully. So someday --
Kathie Lee Gifford: That's kind to say. So you didn't see me this morning yelling at somebody. No, I'm only kidding. I didn't --
Jennifer Rothschild: We've all had our moments.
Kathie Lee Gifford: I didn't this morning, but the day is young.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's okay, there's still time, plenty of time for sin and repentance.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Thank you.
Jennifer Rothschild: But here's what I would be curious. So someday your body is going to pass from death to life --
Kathie Lee Gifford: That's the good news --
Jennifer Rothschild: Isn't it?
Kathie Lee Gifford: -- especially the older you get.
Jennifer Rothschild: You'll be free someday in heaven. Frank's there, special people to you are there, Jesus is there. So you can answer this question however you want. You can be as spiritual as you want, you can -- whatever you want. But I want to know, what's the best thing that you're looking forward to doing or seeing or saying when you get to heaven?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, I always say people say all through their lives, "When I get to heaven, I'm going to ask him about this," right?
Jennifer Rothschild: Right.
Kathie Lee Gifford: I'm not going to ask him about anything. All will be revealed. There will be no question. We will be in his presence, and that will be enough. Enough. And we won't even think about asking him a question. We will throw ourselves at his feet, which are also nail scarred. We always talk about his hands. But his feet were too. And we will throw ourselves at those feet and thank him and glorify him and we'll say, "Okay, Jesus, what's next? We're here. Let's do it." Because our work will not be over, it will just be beginning.
Jennifer Rothschild: I don't think I've heard a sweeter answer. Thank you for that, Kathie Lee.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Thank you, Lord.
Jennifer Rothschild: I don't know that I've ever had trouble getting my composure back to end the podcast, so...
Kathie Lee Gifford: Come on, girl, you got it. You suck it up. Suck it up.
Jennifer Rothschild: I would just like to say that is a beautiful answer because it is so Christ centered.
Kathie Lee Gifford: It just dawned on me.
Jennifer Rothschild: You won't have any questions because he's the answer.
It reminds me, C.S. Lewis wrote a book called "Until We Have Faces." And at the very end, one of the last paragraphs in the book, this woman -- it's a myth retold. And so this woman is having this argument throughout the book with the gods, Why do you allow this? Why do you do this? Why do you do that?
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yes.
Jennifer Rothschild: Anyway, she gets to the end and she says basically to the Lord, "I see now, Lord, why you utter no answers, because you yourself are the answer."
Kathie Lee Gifford: Amen.
Jennifer Rothschild: And I think when you get to that point in heaven, like you just described --
Kathie Lee Gifford: Yeah. He's enough.
Jennifer Rothschild: -- what question is worthy of saying -- of asking to the one who is the way, the truth, and the life? None is the answer.
Kathie Lee, this has just been such an incredibly beautiful conversation.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Well, you're easy to talk to, Jennifer. You're doing exactly what God's called you to do, sweetheart.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, likewise.
Kathie Lee Gifford: May Lord bless you and your family and your work and your life, and may every breath you take be Holy Spirit infused.
Jennifer Rothschild: In the name of Jesus.
K.C. Wright: Wow. So, so good. Powerful.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
K.C. Wright: So interesting. That woman is on fire.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
K.C. Wright: You need to get her book and you need to see the film.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
K.C. Wright: Your life, I promise you this, will be better for it. So go to the show notes right now and we'll hook you up with both the movie and the book.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes, absolutely.
But you know what, K.C.? I need to say one quick thing. Because there's some of you, I get it, you got a little freaked out when you heard what she said about King James. Okay? So let me just add to that. Okay? Let me assure you that most textual critics for the past 250 years say that there are really no major doctrines that are affected by the misfires in the King James translation. Okay? Kathie Lee is right, there are some really legit reasons that the KJV is not the most accurate. Absolutely. There are definitely more accurate versions now because we've found more manuscripts. But here's the thing. A person can meet Christ reading the KJV and a person gets saved reading the NIV or the NASB or the NLT or any other of the alphabet soup of translations. Okay?
Here's the thing, our people. We are to study God's Word. But it's also very wise to become a student of what we are studying. So I'm going to have a link to a really good article about the King James version if you want to explore this further. But the bottom line is, our people, you need the Bible, I need the Bible, K.C. needs the Bible. We all need the Bible.
And so, of course, I've got to recommend once again my very favorite Bible app. It's called Dwell. And you can find it at 413podcast.com/dwell, and there you're able to get it for a discount. So you want to check it out because that way you can listen to the Word.
K.C. Wright: Well, our favorite people on this Blue Marble planet, I think our hearts are full. And according to my coffee cup -- it's empty -- so I guess it's time to go.
Jennifer Rothschild: It's time to go.
K.C. Wright: I know that I'm going to be listening to this podcast again, and I know that I'm going to be sharing it with lots of friends, because, come on, Jennifer and Kathie Lee. Hello?
Until next week, remember that no matter what you face, no matter how you feel, you can truly do all things through Christ who gives you supernatural strength. I can.
Jennifer Rothschild: I can.
Jennifer and K.C.: And you can.
Jennifer Rothschild: All right. Okay, we are done. I think I'm going to have a good cry and a cup of coffee. Well done. Thank you, Kathie Lee.
Kathie Lee Gifford: Don't judge me if I pour a glass of wine instead.
Jennifer Rothschild: No. I probably would do that too.
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