Posts Tagged ‘Jimmy Swaggart’

This post isn’t just about the false prosperity gospel, it’s about the other lies perpetuated in today’s apostate mainstream church, that’s built on the same LIE AND DECEPTION based on the Old Testament defunct “tithe” they continue and MUST MAINTAIN to keep their Nicolaitan system intact and operational. Without the illegal “tithe”, “seed faith” offerings this old leaky ship would sink to the bottom of the ocean where it belongs.

 

http://www.letusreason.org/doct54.htm

“Those who hold the position of tithing for the church are confused of its purpose and history. No Christian should be coerced into giving a set amount to receive God’s blessings. The simple reason is that it removes them from walking in grace and puts them under the law. The Pharisees tithed and watched what people gave, and they continued to tithe as the church was birthed. The church did not tithe.

“Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.”(1 Cor. 16:1-2). Notice Paul says the collection for the saints. This is not necessarily a weekly tithe but appears to be a collection for others in need. Those saints in other areas that were in need of financial help, from one church to another. “A contribution made by the rich for the relief of the poor (from Adam Clarke’s Commentary). “A contribution, or collection of money for a charitable purpose (from Barnes’ Notes).

And what of the commands of helping the poor? Instead, we only hear about robbing God if we do not tithe. You are still sinning if you have something to give, and are selfish towards those in need. God would rather see people serve and participate willingly then be under compulsion to give large amounts of money to others to do the work. “Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life. (1 Tim. 6:18-19; Gal.5:13) Numerous needs go unmet inside our churches. We need to give to brethren who are in need, not just give to big ministries so they can become bigger. They are not the only ones who do God’s work.

The principle of tithing in the Old Testament was to benefit those in need as well: Deuteronomy 26:12: “When thou hast made an end of tithing all the tithes of thine increase the third year, which is the year of tithing, and hast given it unto the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that they may eat within thy gates, and be filled.” Deut. 14:27-28: ”You shall not forsake the Levite who is within your gates, for he has no part nor inheritance with you. ”At the end of every third year you shall bring out the tithe of your produce of that year and store it up within your gates.” Have you seen any ministry that insists on tithing do this? Why not, it is part of the tithing law.

Are you listening to the “TV evangelist” telling you to sow your seed for your need? Promises, promises…
Paul writes, “For there are many unruly, vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucere’s sake” (Titus 1:10-11).

The most ingenious, imaginative ways were invented for gaining money. Tetzel was sent to the people to help raise funds to build Peters Basilica by bringing the law of indulgences to the people and it is no different today. Only then, the Roman Catholics did not have the Bible in their native languages to read; today we have no excuse as Protestants. The words of Hosea continue to echo to us today, (4:6) “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge.” Bible knowledge is he is referring to.

New Testament believers are never commanded to tithe but to give (the amount is between you and the Lord). Consider the story of Ananias and Sapphira that has been used and abused in so many ways– Acts 5:1-4: “But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession. And he kept back part of the proceeds, his wife also being aware of it, and brought a certain part and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? “While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”

This was not about tithes but a freewill promise they made and they did not keep their word. This does not mean as some claim every time you intentionally lie you will be judged so you must keep your vows (though we should have no intention of doing so); not if you were manipulated by lies into keeping the vow.

Consider what Paul wrote to Timothy the young pastor of Ephesus, “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness” (1 Timothy 6:6-11). If someone is always talking about mammon, then they are not serving God. You cannot have two masters.

New Covenant Principles

The guideline for our giving to God and His work is found in 2 Corinthians 9:6-7: “Now this I say, he who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly.

; and he who sows bountifully shall also reap bountifully. Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver.” Grace means freedom- law means obligation. We should give back to God as he prospered us, as we purpose in our hearts.

The epistles are the teachings for the church. They contain numerous instructions, corrections and rebukes. Not one of these letters have tithing taught or practiced for the Church–The tithe is not mentioned as an obligation. Tithing is mentioned in the book of Hebrews which was written to Jewish believers in the Messiah, not to Gentile churches. The word “tithes” is found four times in Hebrews chapter 7, more than all the epistles combined. (Heb.7:5, 7:16, and 7:18.) The New Testament focuses on our High Priests ministry of Jesus Christ of whom Melchizedek was pre-figured in type (Heb. 7:2, 4, 5-9). Abraham’s tithe in Hebrews 7 is mentioned to explain the greater priesthood of Christ, it is not teaching the practice of tithing to the Church.

Hebrews 7:5: “And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham.” (Heb. 7:9-10 Levi was in the loins of his father when Abraham met the priest of Salem.) Only the sons of Levi were to receive tithes. This means if we do not have a Levitical priesthood we have no right to ask for tithes as if they are obligated to the church. In other words, the Levitical priesthood was instituted with the tabernacle, and the Temple– not the church. God has given a new priesthood to the church– according to the order of Melchizedek. Again, what was given to this priesthood was a freewill offering of the spoils, not a portion of Abram’s income. For the writer of Hebrews says, 7:11-12: “Therefore, if perfection were through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need was there that another priest should rise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be called according to the order of Aaron? For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law.”

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Let me preface this post by saying I wasn’t saved when Jimmy Swaggart was in his hey day. In fact, I was only vaguely aware of the name. Shortly after my conversion, I remember standing in front of the TV watching this guy bawling into the TV cameras. My tender, newly saved heart was moved with emotion and sympathy for him.  Little did I know at the time, one of the biggest superstars and icons of  Christendom of that era, had just got gotten caught with his pants down, so to speak. Hence, the  national TV confessional, with tears streaming down his face, and the never to be forgotten words, “I have sinned”.

I had a Christian friend at that time who told me that she had been a devoted Jimmy Swaggart fan for years, but when he “fell from grace”, she thought if Jimmy Swaggart can fall, how could she possibly hope to make it?  (That right there is the real danger of making idols of mere men). But, as for me, Swaggart was never my style and I was put off by his on stage dramatizations.  I was spirit-filled, and had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, but I was not a “holy roller”. So, out of sight, out of mind, or so I thought…until a few days ago when  I came across a website which included an article about the reinvention of JSM, Jimmy Swaggart Ministries. I read with fascination, shock, and more than a little disgust at what I read.

Some Swaggart fans are going to howl about my posting this article and video. However, let me point out that my purpose is not to condemn but to inform, and let it go at that. However, people need to know that when the gospel of Jesus Christ, and the Cross of Jesus Christ becomes a slick selling point, and a business, it’s just plain wrong! If folks refuse to be informed, and instead put their fingers in their ears and go “hmmmm”, then they will have to deal with the consequences. 

For some background on this if you are unfamiliar with what happened to cause Jimmy Swaggart to “fall”, first watch the video, part one and part 2, then below, please read the powerful article I found on “Spiritwatch Unchained”, how Swaggart has resurrected himself in not a very ethical way by all appearances, with much evidence to back it up.

http://spiritwatchunchained.blogspot.com/2012/03/jimmy-swaggarts-message-of-cross.html

“In 1998, I wrote a post for an Internet bulletin board which became the most popular article on Spiritwatch Ministries’ website entitled “Why Jimmy Swaggart Still Needs To Repent.” I voiced my opinion of the sullied ministry of the legendary Pentecostal minister and stated that, in my opinion, for all of the supposed repentance he’s exhibited concerning “the error of his ways” Swaggart still has a lot to repent for and a lot to answer for.

Every month for years, as we check our stats, the article is always the most accessed of all we’ve written on the Spiritwatch site. There are apparently a lot of people who have questions about Swaggart’s influence and want an alternative view of it and the Spiritwatch Ministries article has given one such view to a lot of them. It’s always been a bit astonishing as to just how many of them have read this article. I’ve never quite understood why until, after a relatively recent lull in the ongoing spiritual warfare I’ve engaged in with the Remnant Fellowship cult for the past decade, I have had time to study Swaggart’s never-ending reinvention more closely.

I believed then as I do now that Swaggart’s greatest spiritual need is to publicly repent for the social and spiritual offenses that his moral failures, personal rebellion and mockery against Christian church authority has committed against the Christian Church, as well as the arrogantly elitist example his leadership currently exhibits that is undeniably divisive and borders on the cultic.

It was not then – and is not now – my intent to focus upon what he secretly did with prostitutes from Louisiana to California. This point, however, is pathetically, entirely lost upon the authors of the “fan mail” we’ve received regarding the article for years. They are mostly anonymous, occasionally thoughtful but are all sincere expressions of feral rage over my opinion. To these people, I did nothing but dig up Swaggart’s moral failures in an outrageously scandalizing manner and made them the focus of the article. That wasn’t the case, but these Swaggart disciples simply wouldn’t see it in any other way. So they’ve spent a lot of bandwidth and time screaming about how unforgiving and ungracious it was to keep bringing up Swaggart’s “sin”, how ungodly and viscious it is to kick a man whom “God is using.”

What these sadly deluded folks utterly failed to realize is that my entire concern in this first article was about a matter far more primal, basic and serious: that Jimmy Swaggart Is STILL in need of repentance for an inner defilement that has become so much more subtle than ever.

Even after his moral failures and downfall, Jimmy kept on keeping on. It’s clear that during the past decade, Jimmy Swaggart Ministries (JSM) still struggled mightily just ahead of television station creditors, a critical media that had him pegged as just another cartoon of televangelism worthy only of a cheap laugh, and a church that had largely written him off as an embarrassing, hypocritical and judgmental maverick. The merchandising of his religious wares is as tenaciously pushed as is his continually rehashed campmeeting revivalism in his half empty Family Worship Center in Baton Rouge. Undaunted by his self-imposed isolation from Christendom, Swaggart pressed on to buy blocks of airtime where ever the TV markets offered an opportunity for his telecasts. He sold off tracts of land owned by JSM around its’ ministry headquarters to developers and rented properties to keep the bills paid. He sold his gospel music and Bible commentaries at unbelievable prices as “Spirit-inspired Biblical scholarship” to whomever would buy them. Whatever could be done for the sake of “the Work” that could move his own product line of teaching and his Gospel piano plunking was tirelessly pursued.

While my own ministerial labors in grappling with the deceptive cultism of Gwen Shamblin came to completely dominate my time the past decade, Swaggart stayed busy as well rebranding himself as a lonely voice in the wilderness who was one of the only sources of divine truth on the earth – in much the same way Shamblin views herself as an exclusive mouthpiece for God. With that kind of shrill and elitist posturing, most believers, including myself, had come to view him as a head with it’s chicken cut off, thrashing about in phantom life just before finally keeling over into the silence of a back alley somewhere. Still sounding every bit like a marginalized loose cannon on the fringes of the church, Swaggart’s voice seemed destined to fade into obscurity. No one, including myself, believed he’d ever rise again out of the morass he’d created for himself.

How wrong we all were.

To everyone’s surprise (excepting his faithful remnant who stood with him), Swaggart’s wobbly rise from the ashes of his self-inflicted funeral pyre has slowly taken an awkward flight. The light bills still get paid, the toll free phones are still manned and “Campmeeting” goes on. He continues to preach, to produce daily religious programs, some headed by his wife Frances, his son Donny and his grandson Gabriel, and to continue to seek allegiances with churches still open to his example. He has swapped out his three piece suits for a more business casual look and filled his soundstages with sets to contain panels of yes-men preachers and post production suites. The shilling of his publications, gospel music CD’s and teaching DVD’s is a never ending enterprise throughout his daily programming. A preacher with such gifting as he enjoys will never quite fully fade away. Swaggart’s suavely polished oratory and pulpiteering is an asset that had gained him an audience and a ministry empire across the Southeast and is now serving him again.

What has become clear is that Swaggart has based his ascent from obscurity upon one central conviction. This is what Swaggart calls the “Message of The Cross.” I finally found time to study Swaggart’s doctrine on this point and was shocked at what I found and stirred by the Word and Spirit of God to share what I found. You can find two new articles on Swaggart’s take on “the Cross” on the Strange Fires page of our site and how he has exploited Christian adoration of the cross of Christ to his own empire-building agenda. It is truly one of the most revolting things I’ve seen in a long time.

Click here to read them. We’ll need to hire more secretarial staff to probably handle the fan mail now. Well, you got to do what you got to do when it comes to standing for truth in an apostate age filled with false brethren and false teachers.”

Additional reading: http://deceptionbytes.com/jimmy-swaggart-ministries

 
 

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