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June 27, 2007

Blessings for sale

Just to prove that it isn't just the Episcopal church that struggles with orthodoxy, the Washington Post's On Faith section features this story about the popularity of Pentecostalism in Africa. Where the people are dying from disease and starvation, the miracles and prosperity promised by sometimes unscrupulous preachers has an understandable attraction. And the prosperity promised to unscrupulous preachers has, perhaps, an equal attraction:

The pastor touches an old woman, she faints. Then out come the collection envelopes. Minimum is 100,000 Uganda shillings ($62.5), although the poor can give as little as 10,000 to receive a blessing...

Francis Adroa gave her car to a Ugandan church promising to cure her of HIV/AIDS. The miracle failed, she got sicker. And she's now a pedestrian.

Moses Malay heads a Ugandan organization helping what he calls victims of "pulpit fraud" after quitting a church whose pastor claimed divine powers.

"I saw people robbed and I participated. How do they do it? Simple. They instill hope, they nurture it, they reap."

Greedy preachers in fancy cars are one American export the African people could very well have done without.

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Dan Knight

Greedy preachers in fancy cars (& million dollar buildings) are one American export the American (& Canadian) people could very well have done without.
Hypocrites, all of them.
Their treasure is here on earth, pity them in heaven.


I read the article in question just this morning... and was appalled. Unfortunately, I was not surprised. Sad, isn't it? I am saddened that there are preachers who, though they may have at one time received a measure of anointing from God, they instead summon a false anointing (complete with surround sound, lights and weeping musicians) to fatten their coffers and buy themselves luxurious contraptions so they may enjoy "the good life" as I have heard one pastor boast. The Bible warns us that there will be false prophets and false miracles.

2 Peter 2: 17 "These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. 18 For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. 19 They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. 20 If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. 21 It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them..."

These men are slaves to avarice and show no hint of true godly compassion or love for God's people...

The good news is... for every one of these fauxpastors there are a thousand or more faithful out there in the heat and the mud and the cold suffering right along with the masses that they minister the love of Christ to every day, day in and day out, with little or no pay. These are the "Jesus with skin on" to multitudes, living out the very thing Jesus called us all to do - to humbly serve and love them who are made in His image FOR HIS GLORY. Even to their own hurt. They will receive a great reward indeed.

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