...And God Said
by Norma Sherry
It would appear that the messages Pat Robertson has been hearing from God are not from God at all, but a cruel, conniving imposter.
It 's sad, but true. But, he 's in very good company. For instance, my 4-year-old neighbor predicted that if she kissed a raindrop she 'd become a fairy princess. Clearly, she 's no prophet, either.
There have been many self-proclaimed prophets in our history.
In the year 960 A.D., European scholar, Bernard of Thuringia, confidently announced that the world would only exist for thirty-two more days. John Toledo, in 1179, predicted the demise of the world based on the alignment of the planets.
The Flagallents, who would viciously beat themselves in bloody repentance, announced that the end of the world could be delayed no longer in 1349; in 1603, Govan Domenico Campanella, prophesized the Earth would collide with the sun.
Christopher Columbus, of bold New World fame, configured that the world was created in 5343 B.C., that 7,000 years hence would be 1658. Therefore, he forewarned the end was near. Columbus popularized his calculations in, "The Book of Prophesies ", which he published in 1505.
Pentecostal Reverend John Mason had a vision of Christ in 1694, which prompted his revelation that the Second Coming of Christ would take place on the Pentecost of that year, in his rectory in Water Strafford, Buckinghamshire. 1736 brought a British theologian who predicted a flood likened to Noah 's ...and the band played on.
There is no shortage of God-fearing men and women who commune with God and as such, are privy to His private utterances.
The founder of the Mormon Church, Joseph Smith, said a meeting of the Mormon religious leaders was called because God had commanded it. At that same meeting, in February 1835, Smith also proclaimed that Jesus would return within fifty-six years.
The Watchtower Society has been quite prolific in their predictions for Armageddon: 1914, 1915, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, 1975, and 1994, were some of their dates. Their current portent is 6,000 years after the creation of Eve. The question; however, remains, when was that?
Today 's preachers rarely dabble in such folly. Nay, their assertions are harangues intended to incite and divide. Their pulpit is used to bully and harass. The notion of love and brotherhood are far removed from their public pronunciations.
Lest you think I categorize all men and women of God as such, let me please proclaim that is not so. I am writing of those few whose congregation 's are in the multitudes. The tele-evangelist 's who demonstrate miracles on television with a wave of their hand or a touch on the head - to those who proclaim to do God 's work as they don their six-thousand dollar Armani suits, board their private jets, and flaunt their superiority while they sit upon their golden-gilded chairs in front of the cameras of their church-owned television stations.
The Pat Robertson 's, the Jerry Falwell 's, The Benny Hinn 's, and who can forget past evangelist 's Jimmy Swaggart, and Jimmy and Tammy Faye Bakker.
They preach to their minions ' half-truths, falsities, and destructive examples that inflate egos, separate people of differing beliefs and life-styles, and they do so with a high and mighty commanding declaration that their mutterings are the truths that their congregation was heretofore denied.
When Rev. Falwell said, "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen,'" before a 700-Club television audience, was he acting pastoral? Was he walking in the shadow of Christ? Or was he preaching separatism, bigotry, and filling his congregation with hatred?
In an earlier preaching, the good reverend told his flock that the cause of 9/11 was "the throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked." In a prayer before his television congregants, he reinforced his position by proclaiming that the ills of our country are a direct result of "taking the Bible away from schools " and "forbidding little children from praying ".
In 1980, to a throng at a Jesus rally, Pat Robertson shouted, "We have enough votes to run the country. And when the people say, 'We've had enough, ' we are going to take over. " In a fund-raising letter to his constituency, Rev. Robertson wrote, "We at the Christian Coalition are raising an army who cares. We are training people to be effective -- to be elected to school boards, to city councils, to state legislatures, and to key positions in political parties.... By the end of this decade, if we work and give and organize and train, The Christian Coalition will be the most powerful political organization in America . " Now, that was prophetic.
Today, as we find ourselves shaking our heads and our hearts are beating an unfamiliar rhythm over the demise of the separation of church and state, we should remember, we were warned. As far back as 1993, Rev. Robertson, said, "There is no such thing as separation of church and state in the Constitution. It is a lie of the Left and we are not going to take it anymore. "
Rev. Robertson from his on-high pulpit has preached on every important topic facing our country and our citizens; his opinions on the Supreme Court and the court system in general borders on lawlessness and irresponsibility. He has instructed his followers, "Why should you and I be bound because of the ineptitude, if you will, or the skill of one or more defense lawyers, or the plaintiffs in any particular lawsuit? "
And, of course, the Lord spake upon his Holiness, the good Reverend Robertson telling him, "George Bush will win in a walk ", referring to our upcoming presidential election. What a man he must be for God Almighty to speak unto him and to him alone.
Regarding our Constitution, Rev. Robertson said to his television ministry, " ...[it] is a marvelous document for self-government by the Christian people. But the minute you turn the document into the hands of non-Christian people and atheistic people they can use it to destroy the very foundation of our society. And that's what's been happening. "
This man of God, this preacher of the Word, has told his followers, "You say you're supposed to be nice to the Episcopalians and the Presbyterians and the Methodists and this, that, and the other thing. Nonsense. " In 1986, he told New York Magazine, " ...The termites are in charge now, and that is not the way it ought to be, and the time has arrived for a godly fumigation. "
In another fund-raising letter dated 1992, the reverend wrote, "The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians. "
He told his viewing audience that Planned Parenthood, "...is teaching kids to fornicate, teaching people to have adultery, every kind of bestiality, homosexuality, lesbianism -- everything that the Bible condemns. "
In his Christian love he instructed that we need to stop giving money to welfare mothers. He said, " ...if they'll stop paying them, they'll stop having babies. It's that simple. It's not heartless, it's not cruel, it's an intelligent use of money. " In that same tone of compassion, he made this comparison: "Many of those people involved with Adolph Hitler were Satanists, many of them were homosexuals -- the two things seem to go together. "
His exclusive right of non-cult distinction leaves out any non-Christian: " ...A cult is any group that has a form of godliness, but does not recognize Jesus Christ as the unique son of God.... One test of a cult is that it often does not strictly teach that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God who Himself is God manifested in the flesh.... "
The Reverend Jerry Falwell fares no better. On a myriad of topics his intolerance and bigotry are glaring:
"If you're not a born-again Christian, you're a failure as a human being. "
"I hope I live to see the day when, as in the early days of our country, we won't have any public schools. The churches will have taken them over again and Christians will be running them. What a happy day that will be! "
"AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals; it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals. "
"The idea that religion and politics don't mix was invented by the Devil to keep Christians from running their own country. "
"There is no separation of church and state. Modern U.S. Supreme Courts have raped the Constitution and raped the Christian faith and raped the churches by misinterpreting what the Founders had in mind in the First Amendment to the Constitution. "
"The Jews are returning to their land of unbelief. They are spiritually blind and desperately in need of their Messiah and Savior. "
My favorite, if one can justly refer to anything Jerry Falwell says, as a favorite, was a remark he said on Crossfire in 1997, "Grown men should not be having sex with prostitutes unless they are married to them. "
And, probably one of his most despicable remarks was, "AIDS is the wrath of a just God against homosexuals. To oppose it would be like an Israelite jumping in the Red Sea to save one of Pharaoh 's charioteers. "
The undeniable king of prophesy; however, is Benny Hinn. He 's the preacher and healer that's on television in the wee hours of the night. If you 're a troubled sleeper, you 've seen him. On April 2, 2000 , on a TBN Praise-a-thon, he said, "Now hear this - I'm prophesying this: Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is about to appear physically in some churches and some meetings and to many of His people, for one reason - to tell you He's about to show up."
On January 1st, 1990 , the self-proclaimed oracle, shared not one, but two divinations:
"The Lord also tells me to tell you in the mid-90's, about '94, '95, no later than that; God will destroy the homosexual community of America . [Round of applause] But He will not destroy it with what many minds have thought Him to be. He will destroy it with fire. And many will turn and be saved, and many will rebel and be destroyed. "
His second foretelling was, "The Spirit tells me Fidel Castro will die in the '90s. " He elucidates that it will be a very horrible death!
Benny Hinn 's proclamations are so extravagant, so unbelievable, yet hordes of followers assemble to hear him in churches, stadiums, and fields in lands all over the world. According to Hinn, he has been in the presence of the Archangel Michael and he has seen the dead raised; sickness, he says, comes from individuals attacking preachers; and he 's been covered in gold dust as a result of his prayers.
Lastly, Hinn claims he "is a 'little messiah ' walking on earth. "
These are not my words. I haven 't edited one single syllable. The proclamations should speak for themselves. If these are true, God-fearing men, leaders of men, women, and children, and their word is taken as gospel, then our fears are not fearful enough. For in these words of these supposedly good men, righteous men, freedom-loving men, are the words of hate, and slander, and disgust - vile, depraved, and immoral rantings reminiscent of words spoken as truth not so very long ago in lands not so far away.
With a million Jerry Falwell television crusaders in over 168 markets, Trinity Network nearing a million viewers, Adventist Communication Network (ACN), the fastest growing network with eight-million church members, and TBN, CBN in contributions alone, The Worldwide Church of God rakes in $75-million in contributions, Oral Roberts Evangelistic Association, $60-million, Pat Robertson 's 700 Club on CBN, $58-million, Jerry Falwell 's Old Time Gospel Hour, $48-million and calculate a growth of no less than 25% a year, there 's no denying there is big money in TV evangelism.
Pray tell, is it prophesy, as in portending the future, or is it profit, as in lining one 's pocket? The truth rests in the biblical defining of prophesy ...
© Norma Sherry 2004
Norma Sherry is co-founder of www.TogetherForeverChanging.org, an organization devoted to educating, stimulating, and igniting personal responsibility particularly with regards to our diminishing civil liberties. She is also an award-winning writer/producer and host of upcoming television program, The Norma Sherry Show on WQXT TV.
Email Norma: firstname.lastname@example.org