Okay. It’s really late and I’ve gotta go to bed, but I was recently made aware (you know who you are…jerk…) of some of the most insane news I’ve heard in a while. I’ll reserve comment to the end and let the horses’ mouth speak:
(Full text on Facebook = “I just recorded five wonderful TV shows with Benny Hinn on Jesus in the OT, repentance, holiness, the fear of the Lord, and hyper-grace. They’re scheduled to air the week of January 13th, so watch them and then share your thoughts.”)
That was followed up with:
(Full Text on Facebook = “Thanks, friends, for sharing your thoughts and concerns re: my appearing on the Benny Hinn show. While I’m quite aware that some of you feel he is the ultimate false teacher and charlatan while others believe him to be a wonderful man of God, I have actually not monitored his ministry over the years. When I received the invitation to appear on the show, I felt I was to take it and exalt Jesus the Messiah and expose hyper-grace (and exalt true grace) to millions of viewers. And since Pastor Hinn seems very desirous of further interaction with me, I would encourage those of you who have grave concerns about his ministry to pray that God would use me to be a blessing in his life.”)
To make a long story short, there was a flood of concern that came in from everywhere. Hundreds upon hundreds of tweets and comments in the space of maybe 2 or 3 hours.
(Full text on Facebook = “Let’s just say that Benny Hinn was as bad as some of you say. Why shouldn’t I reach his audience with gospel truth for five days, even if it means some people will be upset with me? [Just more food for discussion!]”)
Michael Brown closed off his night with this Tweet:
(Full text on Facebook = “I know it’s late, but for those of you who are still up, here’s a quick question (meant honestly): How many of you are fine with my friendship with men like Mike Bickle, Lou Engle, and Reinhard Bonnke [whom I believe to be true men of God], and my involvement in and endorsement of the Brownsville Revival [which I believe to be a wonderful move of the Spirit], but you’re just concerned about my appearing on Benny Hinn’s TV show?”)
Now, instead of joining the gaggle of ἰδιώτης (to use a biblical term) that are on Facebook, I thought I would offer a quick response to Dr. Brown’s two actual questions (His questions are in bold and my responses are in italics).
1. Why shouldn’t I reach his audience with gospel truth for five days, even if it means some people will be upset with me?
– Well, because if Benny Hinn is a false teacher, and there’s no doubt about that:
(a) the Bible explicitly forbids it in places like 2 Timothy 2:16-19 (the charge of avoiding the irreverent babble that leads people into ungodliness/upsets their faith comes with 2 names, insinuating that the way to avoid irreverent babble is to avoid the irreverent babblers, a suggestion further implied by the quote to depart from iniquity in vs. 19) and 2 Timothy 3:5 (which is set in 3:1-9 for those who will inevitably complain).
(b) It’s insinuated in passages like 1 Timothy 1:18-20 (i.e. if Benny Hinn makes a shipwreck of people’s faith, promoting or giving credibility to Benny Hinn is tantamount to aiding and abetting Satan), 2 Peter 2:2-3, 19-22 (i.e. if Benny Hinn promotes blasphemy or enslaves people to a false gospel that only increases their damnation, promoting or giving credibility to Benny Hinn is tantamount to aiding and abetting Satan), or Titus 1:19-11 (The job of an elder in the church is, according to 1:11, to literally “muzzle” false teachers; to not give them any voice or platform because they destroy families. This basically renders null and void much of the positive defending of the family Dr. Brown does with his excellent work against the homosexual agenda. Who cares if Dr. Brown stops the homosexuals from destroying the family if he then sends families over to Benny Hinn in to finish what the homosexuals started?).
(c) Also, if he’s still unrepentant of his sexual sin, the Bible forbids treating him like a brother (1 Cor. 5:9-13). In case anyone missed his whole divorce scandal, he used to be “friends” with Paula White…with the kind of friendship that Benny called “dating” and involved sneaking off to a hotel in Rome together and results in Benny Hinn’s wife divorcing him…but Benny said it was because he was busy and his wife was on drugs. Oh wait. Benny never repented for anything having to do with his divorce or sneaking off with Paula White and claimed to be as pure as the driven snow. Now many people would point to his public remarriage to his wife, (praise the Lord!) but getting remarried is not repentance. Others would point to his statements about his marital issues and such, but admitting to difficulty is not repentance.
If I’m right at all (and I honestly hope I’m not), then the person who will be upset with Dr. Brown will be Yahweh. I do believe Yahweh is the only person Dr. Brown need worry about, and it seems like Dr. Brown’s not terribly worried. If I can find scriptures that are relevant and helpful with 15 minutes on BibleGateway, Dr. Brown can too.
(It’s not hard to search for something on BibleGateway)
2. How many of you are fine with my friendship with men like Mike Bickle, Lou Engle, and Reinhard Bonnke (whom I believe to be true men of God), and my involvement in and endorsement of the Brownsville Revival (which I believe to be a wonderful move of the Spirit), but you’re just concerned about my appearing on Benny Hinn’s TV show?
– Well, the fact that you believe they’re men of God is a serious problem for me, but not for the reason you think. The Bible makes clear and discernible statements of fact that they get horribly wrong, with shocking regularity. 2 Timothy 2:15-16 says
“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness…”
Now the worker who has no need to be ashamed is one who rightly handles the word of truth. They accurately represent the scriptures and correctly interpret them. Mike Bickle, Lou Engle and Reinhard Bonnke simply do not do this. I’ve watched or listened to dozens of hours of their teaching and they’re grossly incompetent at handling the scriptures. That does not mean that they’re false teachers, but it does mean that they’re workers who should be ashamed of themselves (and not godly men that should be looked up to). Like thousands of people that I’ve met, I fear that you’ve fallen into the “nice guy = godly man” trap. Nice guys who pray a lot, or know lots of verses, or have a righteous agenda, aren’t necessarily godly men.
Secondly, the 2 Timothy 2:16 says, in juxtaposition to 2:15, that the unashamed worker should “avoid irreverent babble” (and vs. 17 names irreverent babblers to avoid). Instead of distancing yourself from people who are incompetent in the scriptures, you bring them close to your bosom. Benny Hinn is the latest addition to an alarming list of people that the Bible gives you good and repetitive reason to stay away from.
– As for Brownsville, you believe it was a “wonderful move of the Spirit”. So what? Honestly. Why are you a reliable judge of what is and what isn’t a move of the Spirit? I don’t believe that Brownsville was a “wonderful move of the Spirit” for a second, and I’ve watched a few dozen hours of Brownsville services in coming to that conclusion, so I may have a conclusion that is misinformed, but not based upon total ignorance. Who wins? Does not the Bible decide what’s a legitimate move of the Spirit and not Dr. Michael Brown?
– I’m concerned about you appearing on Benny Hinn’s TV show because Jesus tells you not to and you don’t seem to know your Bible well enough to be aware of that. That means that your claims of having discernment simply lack substance, somewhat like my claims of having the world’s greatest break-dancing dog.
And I’ve got one more thought, not related to answering his questions.
He seemed to try to claim that he was unaware of whether or not Benny Hinn is a false teacher with the line “I have actually not monitored his ministry over the years”.
I have to admit that I simply laughed out loud at that.
Dr. Brown claims to have been a Christian for decades.
Dr. Brown claims to have been in Charismatic circles for decades.
Dr. Brown claims to have been in Charismatic leadership for decades.
Dr. Brown claims to not know enough about Benny Hinn to know whether or not he’s a upstanding man of God?
I mean, come on! REALLY?
That’s like wasting an entire paycheck on McDonald’s fries, trying to eat them all in one sitting, and then responding to someones concern at your attempt of McSuicide with the line “What? Eating this much fries is unhealthy? Well, I’m not a nutritionist so I wouldn’t know…”
Would anyone believe that?
If Dr. Brown is attempting to claim that level of ignorance, I don’t really know what to say, except “do you like my break-dancing dog?”
Until Next Time,
Lyndon “Time for bed!” Unger
P.S. – This post is also on the Cripplegate, where I incorporated his recommendations on improving my McDonalds nutritionist analogy. Here’s my update:
That’s like constantly claiming to be a famous nutritionist (thanks to DJP for improving the analogy), wasting an entire paycheck on McDonald’s fries, trying to eat them all in one sitting, and then responding to someone’s concern at your attempt of McSuicide with the line “What? Eating this many McFries is unhealthy? Well, I haven’t done any studies of McDonalds food so I wouldn’t know…”