Question:   On your Statement of Faith, you say that you reject the prosperity
gospel.  Why? God wants us to be prosperous.

Answer:  The Bible tells us in 1Timothy 6:10, "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."

I have to be careful how I answer this question. God is not against prosperity. There
are many verses in the Bible that tell us that God wants us to prosper. Certainly,
God has blessed His children and we do not lack any good thing. In the free world,
one who works hard will receive the fruits of his labors. You will reap what you sow.
This applies to the saved and unsaved. If you work hard and excel above the others,
you are promoted in the work place. If you have special skills, you are always
needed. If you pray, the Lord will certainly help you to be the best worker you can
possibly be. He can enable you to do things you never thought possible. With God,
all things are possible.

Matt 6:7-8
But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for
they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.  Be not ye
there-fore like unto them:
for your Father knoweth what things ye have need
of, before ye ask him

Phil 4:19  But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in
glory by Christ Jesus.

The problem with the Prosperity Gospel teaching is the coveting of extreme luxuries;
the outlandish promises of enormous wealth. "Give to our ministry and you will get
whatever your heart desires." These kind of cheap gimmicky "Gimme your best
offering" sermons are not scriptural. God is not going to give a Mercedes Benz to the
man who gives a $1000.00.  The Bible says in Psalms 62:10;
"if riches increase, set
not your heart upon them."

Jer 9:23-24 Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,
neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his
riches:   But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and
knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment,
and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

The Bible says in Psalm 37:25, "I have been young, and now am old; yet have
I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread."
God always
blesses us in so many ways. If one door closes, He always opens another door for
us and though at the moment of a crisis (such a losing a job), one may not
understand why, God allowed it for a reason and we need to just trust Him. He
always opens up a better door because He knows what is best for us. We have to
be willing to walk through the door that He opens. Sometimes, it means getting out
of the comfort zone and to step out in faith, trusting the Lord that He has our lives
in His hands.  Sometimes, it means leaving one city or state and going to another.

When I view TV news programs reporting on how people have lost their jobs and
they sit home in despair for months on end; complaining that there is no work in
that city in which they live, I feel for them and pray for them. Though, sometimes,
I can't help but think, "Why not look for a job in another city?" If they had no
unemployment benefits, you better believe they would be searching in another city.
Sometimes, it is easier to complain than to get up out of the ashes.  Without the
Lord, one has no hope; but with God, the possibilities are endless. With the Lord's
help, one can have a better quality of life. Jesus can help anyone to get up out of
the ashes of despair. Jesus gives us new beginnings. We are more than conquerors
through HIM who loves us. In my marriage, we have moved three times and have
lived in three different states and the Lord has always lead us to greener pastures.
God has provided a much better job with much better pay and we give Him all the
praise for that. So if you are in need of prosperity, seek the Only ONE who gives
the prosperity. Look not to a preacher or a ministry, look to Jesus, the Author and
Finisher of our faith.

Psalm 34:8
O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that
trusteth in him.

If man shall not work, man shall not eat.  Christians should never be slothful. It is
not God's will for a Christian to be slothful. God wants to see us prosper in the work
place and we can serve Him by working diligently in whatever place He has placed
us in.

Prov 20:13
Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and
thou shalt be satisfied with bread.

Prov 21:17 He that loveth pleasure shall be a poor man: he that loveth wine
and oil shall not be rich.

Prov 18:9 He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great
waster. The desire of the slothful killeth him; for his hands refuse to labour.

Prov 26:14 As the door turneth upon his hinges, so doth the slothful upon his

Romans 12:11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;

Prov 12:11 He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that
followeth vain persons is void of understanding.

Prov 10:4 He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of
the diligent maketh rich.

God does cause his children to prosper. He wants us to prosper. When you look
at most of the homeless people who get saved in the Christian mission shelters, they
do not remain homeless for too long. God blesses them too and they become
successful in their endeavors because of what the Lord is doing in their lives. When
one gets saved, the change begins.  Those that hit rock bottom before Jesus
do not
at rock bottom after Jesus.

The Lord wants us to have food on the table and to feed our kids. The Lord wants
us to have shelter and heat in the house and clothes to wear. But NEEDS and wants
are two different things. If you want to be like the rich and have numerous
multi-million dollar homes and drive fancy $200,000 cars, is that God's will for your
life? To own symbols of status in this world? Read the following Bible verses:

Prov 30:8-9
Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor
riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and
say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my
God in vain.

Prov 23:4 Labour not to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom.

Prov 28:20 A faithful man shall abound with blessings: but he that maketh
haste to be rich shall not be innocent.

Prov 27:20 Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never

"Giving to Get Rich Luxury Items"

If you listen to the Prosperity Preachers, they will tell you that you will get these
rich things if you will only give to their ministry (and not to the local church.)
"Give $1000.00 and get $100,000 back."
LISTEN CAREFULLY:  the only people
who ever get those million dollar homes and fancy cars by viewers giving are
the preachers preaching this filthy lucre nonsense and receiving the offerings
from Christians who "give to get." It's all about greed.

Our motive for giving should never be because we want to have the Rolls Royce.
That is anti-biblical! Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.  The
only people getting a return from this kind of preaching are the preachers themselves
and their families. See links below and read the astonishing facts on various
"Prosperity" preachers and ministries.

Prov 13:7
There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that
maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches.

God forbid that we Christians should throw away our hard earned money on a
ministry who wastes the money of God's people! Many preachers
are living VERY
high on the hog because poor souls have given their last dollar
in the hopes of
grasping the brass ring. This is sad indeed.  These preachers live in multi-million
dollar homes in gated communities, posh golf course communities, with lavish
lifestyles, with their wives shopping mostly in Dior and Chanel boutiques, wearing
mostly designer gold/diamond watches and owning Learjets and yachts-- While the
dollars keep rolling in and in and in,  some poor soul believes the hellish doctrine that
these preachers are preaching and this poor soul believes that someday, he too will
have a Rolls Royce. Well, the only way this soul will have it is if he too gets on TV
and starts scamming people out of their hard earned cash! If he were to do that, he
would not be a Christian. Because how can one take money from people who give
to the Lord's work and reward themselves with the luxuries of this world? So called
preachers giving themselves raises and investing "Gospel" money into the stock
market for their own personal gain?

You put Christian TV on and some lady in a blonde wig is crying in front of the
cameras saying "Please give...we need this money... Your best check possible...
you will get 100 fold back...just give..." and meanwhile people are giving and this
same crying lady
makes more money in a day than the givers make in a month.

I am being harsh but some of you out there are still into the "get rich quick" mentality
of the prosperity gospel.
Rule of thumb in this country: You only get money by
going out and earning it.
Unless one of your relatives already did the work for you
and you inherit it or you win the sweepstakes, you need to get up and go to work.
God blesses the diligent man who works. God will supply your NEEDS. You may
need a car. God will bless you with one. You don't need the fancy Mercedes. You
may want it but you don't need it. That is a luxury car and
not a necessity for you.

Matt 19:24
And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the
eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

1Tim 6:9 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.

We are supposed to give unto the Lord.

We are to give unto the Lord's work. God knows our hearts and when we support a
ministry, it is because we want to see the Gospel preached and souls saved, the
homeless fed and sheltered, children clothed and educated, missionaries sponsored
and lives touched with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If that ministry is misappropriating
funds, it is time to pull the plug and put our money into a place worthy to be called
Christian. Pray about supporting ministries such as Pacific Garden Mission. Such
organizations are making a difference. What about your local Christian Mission?
You might want to visit these mission services downtown and hear the testimonies
from the men and women of how Jesus has saved their souls. Support Christian
ministries that reach out to the homeless with the Good News that Jesus saves. There
are people in your own city that need to hear the Gospel and some may even be
homeless and in need of a hot meal.

1Tim 6:17-18
Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded,
nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to
enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing
to communicate;

Years ago, I knew a young man, Tony, who was Muslim. Being from Syria and
living here in the US, he observed something that plagued his heart. I still remember
vividly our conversation in that coffee shop where we were sitting.

He said, "Let me ask you something that bothers me very much. Maybe you can
help me understand. I come to this country. I have never seen so many Christian
churches in my life. Some are beautiful with stained glass and some are very large...
Beautiful There is one on just about every major street corner. Ok,
I go downtown and I see so many homeless people sleeping on the streets. Poor
people... no food or home or money. Now, let me ask you a question...didn't your
God, Jesus, say to help and feed the poor? He did say this, did He not?" I said,
"Yes, He did." Tony said; "then why don't these Christian churches do what Jesus
says to do?" I paused and said, "Tony, that is a very good question. I wonder the
same thing. I do not have an answer for you." He said, "What the Bible says, they
should do. If they believe, they should do. If Jesus told them to go and feed the
poor and help them, they should do it." I said, "well, I agree, but there are many
churches who do help the homeless and feed the poor and needy. Not all churches
are necessarily disobedient to what Jesus says in this regard. But I do agree with you
that if the Christian church, as a whole, was to truly do what it is supposed to do,
there would be less homeless on the streets."

Why is it that only some churches reach out to the homeless and not all?
Psalm 41:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> Blessed is he that
considereth the poor: the LORD will deliver him in time of trouble.

We are to give. If you are like most, your pastor, no doubt, preaches on tithing--
Most do and quite frequently. But tithing sermons should not take precedence over
the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If your pastor is preaching tithing week after week,
something is wrong. People should give out of their hearts. God loves a cheerful
giver. If the pastor sticks to preaching Jesus, all things will fall into place. The
problem becomes one of the heart. Where your treasure is, there will your heart be

Some pastors dream of a larger church. So instead of looking at renting a storefront
or a hotel meeting room, they want the BIG BUILDING. So the sermons that were
once great Gospel and Epistle sermons about Jesus and what He accomplished at the
cross, become sermons of "Give, give, give...because we need to pay for this new
building." And then the sermons become more watered down because the church
needs to be filled with more people and God forbid that the sermons would offend
the new parishioners..."We need them for tithing."  "Well, so-and-so has a HUGE
church and it is gorgeous and that is just the standard now. We need to build the
same kind. Even better."

You may wonder how I know so much about this subject? These are things that I
have heard in the churches that I have visited and attended over the past 23 years
that I have been saved. It is just standard talk among many pastors and churches
that we have encountered.
Their minds had become so jaded that they could
no longer remember the reason why they became pastors to begin with...souls!

Their ambitions were of becoming the best church in town, having the best music,
best choir, best pews, best building, best inoffensive sermons, and last but not least,
best tithers. The Gospel of Jesus was lost in the sermons. The people who loved the
Lord left that church seeking another church where the Gospel would be preached
and the Bible would be taught. More people filled the HUGE church where the
pastor, who once preached the Bible, now preaches cute "sermonettes". The church
grew with more and more people who did not care to be fed the Word of God and so
the story goes.

This is why the church, as a whole, is in the state it is in. We have BIG, fancy
churches... Many pastors busy fulfilling their own dreams that they have become
blinded to the truth that they are preaching another "jesus" and another gospel. We
have the homeless in the streets who need to hear about Jesus and we have ministers
out there who care about filling more pews with more faithful tithers.  Not all pastors
and preachers are like this. Thank God that there are some out there who still love
Jesus and preach the Word and that care about souls.

Rev 3:15
I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou
wert cold or hot.
Rev 3:16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will
spue thee out of my mouth.
Rev 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have
need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and
poor, and blind, and naked:
Rev 3:18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest
be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame
of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou
mayest see.
Rev 3:19  As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and
Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice,
and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with

Thank the Lord that there are still some pastors and preachers out there contending
for the faith and preaching the Gospel of the Jesus Christ. Sadly, quite a large
majority of the ones on TV are preaching "another jesus" and "another gospel" and
we need to be careful what ministries we support. God wants us to be prosperous
and He will bless our hard work.
But God's Word speaks nothing about a "get
rich quick" scheme. There is not one place in the Bible where it says you are
to give money to the Lord's work to acquire luxury items.

We, as Christians, do not support a ministry to get more money back. This is the
wrong attitude of the heart to have.  We are to
give from the heart. We all need to
examine our hearts and motives and pray that the Lord will help us so that we will
not have a covetous heart.  We are to lay up our treasures in heaven. The Lord
Jesus said; "render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's and to God, the things
that are God's."  Pay your taxes, give to the ministry the Lord lays upon your heart.
Be a good worker in the work place and you will be rewarded.  
There is no, "get
rich quick" in the Bible but you reap what you sow is what the Bible says.

2Thess 3:10  For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if
any would not work, neither should he eat.
1Thess 4:11  And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and
to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;

1Tim 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.

Prov 30:8 Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor
riches; feed me with food convenient for me:

Prov 30:9 Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I
be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.

Copyright © 2004 Cobblestone Road Ministries
All Rights Reserved


Laying Up Treasures- Where Is Your Treasure? A MUST READ!
What Does The Bible Say?
The Heavy Burden of The Purpose Driven Life
The Frightening Future of "Christianity"
Church Apostasy...Living In The Last Days
Generational Curses for the Christian?
Did Jesus Suffer in Hell? The Bible says, "No!"
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Rhema Pastor Raised 1.4 million in donations
Creflo Dollar and his black Rolls-Royce, $5 million private jet, etc. etc
Seattle Times Expose of the money rolling in for  some TV Evangelists
Close to $5 Million dollar house for Paul and Jan


Megachurch pastor biggest beneficiary of charity he founded
Associated Press

LITHONIA, Ga. - Jesus wasn't broke, and leaders of churches shouldn't be either.

That's what Bishop Eddie Long, who heads Georgia's biggest church, has to say in defense of his grand
lifestyle, funded largely by the nonprofit religious charity he started in 1997.

According to tax records, Bishop Eddie Long Ministries, Inc. provided him with more than $3 million in
salary and benefits, including a $1.4 million 20-acre home and use of a $350,000 Bentley. Long also
received more than $1 million in salary, including $494,000 in 2000.

Long maintains the money came from royalties, speaking fees and several large donations - not from
members of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, where he became pastor in 1987. The charity stopped
operating in 2000.

During his 18-year tenure, New Birth has swelled from 300 members to 25,000. Long told the Atlanta
Journal-Constitution he heads an international corporation, not just a church.

"You've got to put me on a different scale than the little black preacher sitting over there that's supposed to
be just getting by because the people are suffering," he said.

Long's charity and his church were separate organizations, and his charity was incorporated as a nonprofit
religious corporation - not a church. He and his wife, Vanessa, were two of the charity's four board

The charity, which Long incorporated in New York in 1995, made $3.1 million in donations to others
between 1997 and 2000, according to tax records - compared to at least $3.07 million paid to Long during
the same period.

Nonprofits are exempt from paying state and federal income taxes if they meet certain criteria, but
executives' benefits may not be excessive according to federal law.

Churches must report to the IRS how much they pay employees, but those records are not public. The
charity's tax returns are public record.

Long's benefits were excessive, said Jeff Krehely, deputy director of the National Committee for
Responsive Philanthropy, a Washington-based group that promotes accountability in the philanthropic

"After reviewing the compensation packages of foundation executives, including those who have been
written up in the press as being excessive, I've never seen anything quite like what Long (was) getting,
when you include his salary, the house and the car," Krehely said.

Long's tax attorney, J. David Epstein, said the charity's compensation committee decided to use some of
the charity's assets to pay Long for his work at New Birth to make up for years when he was underpaid.

"Bishop Long has never received the legal amount of compensation he is due by law," said Epstein, a
Philadelphia lawyer specializing in church law and producer of a video for pastors called "How to
Maximize Your Clergy Salary and Benefits Package."

Long used to receive a salary from New Birth, but now accepts "love offerings" from church members,
according to a church spokesman.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who chairs a Senate committee investigating lavish salaries of nonprofit
executives, expressed concern upon hearing about Long's situation.

"I'm worried that a few people are confusing the ringing of a church bell with the ringing of a cash
register," Grassley said in a statement to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "When I hear about leaders of
charities being provided a $300,000 Bentley to drive around in, my fear is that it's the taxpayers who
subsidize this charity who are really being taken for a ride."

Long says he represents a "paradigm shift" in the black church, and that any problems people have with his
charity stem from people's expectations that pastors should be poor. He said his congregation is inspired
by seeing its pastor do well.

"I'm not going to apologize for anything."





TD Jakes lives with wife Serita and their five children in a Dallas mansion, complete with an
indoor swimming pool and bowling alley.
His message and his skill in conveying that message in a
number of
ways has made him a role model for black evangelical ministers....And while some accuse Jakes of
being driven by the dollar and not the divine - his transportation stable consists of a

Mercedes-Benz, a Bentley, a BMW, a Lexus and a jet
- his socially compassionate ministry
receives mostly praise.

According to CNN:

Jakes and his wife Serita, who is known as "the first lady," (they have five children) live in a $1.7
pillared mansion on Dallas' scenic White Rock Lake next to an edifice once owned by oil
H.L. Hunt. He baptized former bad-boy athlete Deion (Neon) Sanders and befriended
him, along with a host of luminaries like Natalie Cole. He flies on charter planes or in first-class seats,
sups with a coterie in a room known as "the king's table," sports a large diamond ring and dresses
like the multimillionaire he is.



"Jesus was not poor...Jesus had a nice house!  John 1:38 says that Jesus turned to
those that were following him and said, 'Come with me.'   And they said, 'Where
dwells thou?'  He said, 'Come and see.'  And Jesus took that whole crowd home
with Him to stay in His house.  That meant it was a big house!  Jesus wore fine
clothes!  John 19:23 says, 'He had a seamless robe.'  Roman soldiers gambled for it
at the foot of the cross. It was a designer original!  It was valuable enough for them
to want it...And then there are Christians that have a poverty complex that says,
'Well, I feel guilty about having nice things.'  Jesus didn't!"
(John Hagee, Praise-A-Thon, Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), November 5, 2004)

Also see:
Headquarters: Costa Mesa, Calif.
Reach: The Crouches are owners of Trinity Broadcast Network, the world's largest Christian TV network.
TBN reaches millions of viewers on more than 5,000 TV stations and 33 international satellites around the
world. Wealth: The Crouches and their son Paul Crouch Jr. said they earned a total of $855,000 last year.
TBN's annual income exceeds $100 million a year, according to the Los Angeles Times. The ministry
provides the Crouches a $10 million, 80-acre, eight-home ranch near Dallas and two Land Rovers that the
Crouches drive. In 2001, the couple bought a $5 million oceanfront estate in Newport Beach, Calif.

Source: Seattle Times
Romans 16:18  For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but
their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts
of the simple.

Headquarters: Grapevine, Texas
Reach: Hinn's "This is Your Day" program is seen throughout the United States and in nearly 200
foreign countries.
Wealth: The ministry took in $60 million in 2001. A news story earlier this year in the Colorado
Springs Gazette said annual income now exceeds $90 million. Hinn told CNN in 1997 that he drew
an annual salary of $500,000 to $1 million a year. He has a $3.5 million home in the Los Angeles
area and drives an $80,000 Mercedes-Benz G500.
In the news: A "Dateline" segment on NBC examined five of Hinn's faith-healing "miracles,"
showing that none of the people was cured and that one woman with lung cancer died nine
months later.

Source: Seattle Times
God Wants Us To Prosper...
But There Are No
"Get Rich Quick" Schemes
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