Chad’s Chat

BENNY HINN AND THE GOSPEL OF PROSPERITY: THIS TRUTH MUST BE SWEET“I’m sorry to say that prosperity has gone a little crazy and I’m correcting my own theology and you need to all know it. Because when I read the Bible now, I don’t see the Bible in the same eyes I saw 20 years ago”.
– Pastor Benny Hinn. September, 2019 -I grew up listening to pastor Benny Hinn. You see, my father, mother and siblings were members of the Methodist church before we all left and became members of what Nigerians now call “Pentecostal church”. This was in 1992 – and back then, it was uncommon to see pastors and reverends (now called papas and mamas by their members) asking members to SOW seeds of blessings (usually with money) – ‘seeds’ that would open the doors of heaven to them and their families.But in many of today’s Pentecostal churches (and boy, there are so many: one in every Nigerian street) sowing of seeds at every church service is now a common feature. Although I believe in seed sowing, because it is scriptural (can be found in the Bible) I am yet to understand how members of these churches would walk down to the pulpit, while the pastor is still preaching, to go drop money in the believe that they are KEYING INTO THE WORD! I’ve always asked and wondered: what is wrong in keying into the word with a simple “Amen”? Eh? Today’s pastors would be preaching and like athletes, you’d see members outrunning themselves to the pulpit with money to go KEY INTO THE WORD, with their “Amen” in tow.As I see this happen in almost all Pentecostal churches (some Orthodox churches with young leaders have also joined the moving caravan) in Nigeria, I wonder if God is no longer in the business of answering the prayers of those who do not have the money to KEY INTO THE WORD of their pastors and reverends. I wonder if one has to give God money before He can bless us with good health, good jobs, good marriages, money and children. To my natural (because ‘diehard’ pentecostals would say i am not in the spirit, and i agree) mind, it seemed like one has to BRIBE GOD with money before He can release His blessings and answer our prayers.It was then soothing to see that Pastor Benny Hinn, an Israeli based in the USA and one of the most respected Pentecostal pastors in the world, has come out to “pour sand sand in the garri” of Nigerian pastors; those who are specialists in always asking their members to sow into the Kingdom, mainly through money and financial pledges/commitments. In the video pastor Benny Hinn released (meanwhile he has made millions of dollars from preaching prosperity), he said: “I think it’s an offense to the Lord, it’s an offense to say give $1,000. I think it’s an offense to the Holy Spirit to place a price on the Gospel. I’m done with it. I will never again ask you to give $1,000 or whatever amount, because I think the Holy Ghost is just fed up with it”.Pastors, the fed up with this is not only the Holy Spirit but also the poor and longsuffering masses of Nigeria who give their last bucks to churches that build schools their children/wards cannot attend and buy jets they can never fly in. The fed up include members of churches who feel pressured to KEY INTO THE WORD with their last N1000 and then walk home after service while their young sweet talking pastor/reverend, his wife and children drive home in the latest SUV. Who remembered what Fela Kuti said in a song; “pastor house na him dey fine pass!” Indeed, these prosperity pastors, including Pastor Benny Hinn, live in houses and mansions their members can only live in when they die and make heaven.There are pastors in Nigeria who still preach about the old rugged cross and those ones are usually not as flamboyant and rich as their prosperity counterparts because the salvation gospel is never a best seller with Nigerians, while prosperity gospel is! The average Nigerian would readily sow and key into the Word with money so that he or she would breakthrough “on all sides” but would not surrender his/her life to Christ. Pastor Benny Hinn’s message is apt and timely – and we hope that gullible Christians, particularly pentecostals, would learn to depend on God for blessings and not the words of men who often want to chop their money. I commend Pastor Benny Hinn for this bold move but I implore him to also give back some of the millions he has gathered over the years from this deceit to those he got them from; many of whom needs it badly. This way, his repentance and deliverance shall be complete – in Jesus name.© Chad Otsapa

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