MONEY AND CHURCH IN THE NOW…

CHURCH

Today is Sunday and many people attend the church of their choice.  Most churches are filled with mostly women.  I’m not really sure why.  A lot of “salesmen” typically cater…to women for one reason or another.   What I am sure about is that churches are BIG BUSINESS!  Not only that,  though I do attend church regularly, I find that there seems to be an issue in part with organized religion.

One of the major problems with organized religion is this money component that seems to be extremely prevalent.  I’ve heard of many pastors who not only preach but they also handle the purse strings at their church as well.  This leads to “absolute power” and… as I heard stated earlier in life:  ABSOLUTE POWER RUINS!  When I first heard this phrase, I really did not understand it.  As I grew older and exposed to various and sundry things, I certainly came upon the realization of what that phrase means.

When an individual has ABSOLUTE POWER it brings about corruption.  One would think that the church would be the last place that you would find corruption, yet that is not the case.  I think we all have seen news stories where preachers have been arrested for taking money from their congregation.  Recently a Delaware pastor, Eric Sapp was sentenced to 5 years probation  for stealing more than $56,000 from Grace Baptist Church. In Houston, an associate pastor, Russell Thompson, is charged with felony theft of $250,000.  In Cleveland, Pastor Merita White, was convicted of stealing $150,000 from a member of her congregation, Mattie Cunningham. There are more stories of this than I care to repeat.

Basically, organized religion often causes competition between different religions and it forces people to lose focus on the major theme set forth in the Bible.  That theme is LOVE. There are many who call some of these pastors PIMPS IN THE PULPIT because of their emphasis on dollars rather than biblical sense.

I am posting the top 10 list of the richest pastors in the world.  I think this list is from a year ago and I’m pretty sure that Joel Olsteen is in the top 10 but they do not have him on this list.  I think I saw somewhere that his net worth is estimated at $40 million dollars.  Am I saying that they are stealing from their congregations?  Most definitely not!  What I am saying is that the church of today is BIG BUSINESS and… everything you see, is not what you see.  I hope you see what I mean.

Top 10 Richest Pastors In The World

 

This is a list of the richest pastors worldwide.

  1. Bishop T. D Jakes: Bishop Jakes lives in a $1,700,000 mansion, he has been called America’s best preacher and has been featured on the cover of TIME magazine. He is a writer, preacher and movie producer. Thomas Dexter “T. D.” Jakes, Sr. is the bishop/chief pastor of The Potter’s House, a non-denominational American mega church, with 30,000 members, located in Dallas, Texas. T.D Jakes wears custom made suits and sports a diamond ring the size of a coin. This man of God has been endowed with a $150 million net worth.

td jakes

 

  1. Bishop David Oyedepo: Bishop David Oyedepo is a Nigerian Preacher, Christian Author, Founder and Presiding Bishop of Winners Chapel known as Living Faith Church World Wide. Has been hailed as the wealthiest preacher in Nigeria with a total net worth of $150 million and properties like 4 private jets and homes in the United States and England. After the foundation of the Living Faith Outreach Ministry in 1981, it has evolved to be one of the largest congregations in Africa and has a flourishing mission in Nairobi.

oy

3.  E A Adeboye: This messenger of God was listed in an African magazine, NEWSWEEK, as the most powerful man in Africa and one of the top 50 global power elites in 2008/2009, among others such as President Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy. Pastor Adeboye heads the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), something he has done for the last 28years.Amongst his posessions are private jets.

ea

4.  Benny Hinn: Israeli televangelist,Toufik Benedictus “Benny” Hinn has an estimated net worth of $42 million. He is best known for his regular “Miracle Crusades” – revival meeting/faith healing summits that are usually held in large stadiums in major cities, which are later broadcast worldwide on his television program, “This Is Your Day”. Hinn was born on December 3, 1952.

hinn

5.  Chris Oyakhilome: This is the man behind Believers’ Loveworld Ministries, a.k.a Christ Embassy.His church has an estimated net worth of $30 million – $50 million last year, the charismatic preacher was at the center of a $35 million money laundering case in which he was accused of siphoning funds from his church to foreign banks.

chris

6.  Creflo Dollar: American Bible teacher, pastor, and the founder of World Changers Church International, Creflo Dollar, has an estimated net worth of $27 million. As his name suggests, this preacher’s “manna” comes in form of the green buck.

creflo

7.  Kenneth Copeland: He runs Kenneth Copeland Ministries, was one of several televangelists whose finances were investigated from 2007 to 2011 by Republican Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa.

According to an article by the Associated Press that ran in 2008, “His ministry’s 1,500-acre campus, behind an iron gate a half-hour drive from Fort Worth includes a church, a private airstrip, a hangar for the ministry’s $17.5 million jet and other aircraft, and a $6 million church owned lakefront mansion.

The article later added that while Copeland has not released up-to-date salary statements, “the church disclosed in a property-tax exemption application that his wages were $364,577 in 1995; Copeland’s wife, Gloria, earned $292,593. It’s not clear whether those figures include other earnings, such as special offerings for guest preaching or book royalties.”

copeland

  1. Billy Graham: American evangelical Christian evangelist, William Franklin “Billy” Graham, Jr., has a net worth of $25 million. The Southern Baptist evangelist rose to celebrity status as his sermons started getting broadcast on radio and television. Graham was born on a dairy farm near Charlotte, North Carolina in 1918, he has conducted many evangelistic crusades since 1948. He is now a world renowned televangelist raking in millions of dollars.

billy

9.  Matthew Ashimolowo: Ashimolowo, the owner of Kingsway International Christian Centre (KICC) gets an annual income of $200,000. Having his humble beginnings as a priest in Foursquare Gospel Church, a Nigerian church that sent Ashimolowo to open a satellite branch in London. Pastor Matthew had other ideas and decided to set up his own church instead. Today, his Kingsway International Christian Center is reportedly the largest Pentecostal church in the whole of the United Kingdom.

Matthew Ashimolowo

10.  Temitope Joshua: Synagogue Church Of All Nations (SCOAN) has an estimated net worth: $10 million – $15 million Nigeria’s most controversial clergyman is also one of its richest and most philanthropic. T.B Joshua heads the Synagogue Church of all Nations (SCOAN), a congregation he founded in 1987, which accommodates over 15,000 worshippers on Sundays.

Temitope Joshua

 

 

 

 

 

MID-WEEK INSPIRATION

Loyal reader Sandi sent me today’s scripture from Joel and Victoria Olsten. When I read it I immediately thought of the song by Yolanda Adams – The Battle Is Not Yours. Often, too often we try to fight the battle (whatever you’re going through) alone. The thing that we need to realize is that we already have an adversary who is already at work on our behalf. I’m posting this today in hopes that it will give peace to someone who is being challenged in this area. Hopefully you’ll find peace in knowing that GOD has your back. Rely on Him!

Hold Your Peace
“The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace and remain at rest.”
(Exodus 14:14, AMP)
TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
One time in scripture when the Israelites were facing an impossible situation, God told them, “Hold your peace. Remain at rest, and I will fight your battles.” Notice there was a condition, something the Israelites had to do. They were told, “Hold your peace.” It’s the same for us today. A command like that indicates that something is trying to take your peace away: thoughts of worry, fear or anxiety. You might think, “What if it doesn’t happen? What am I going to do?” If you will just stay in peace, the Creator of the universe, the Most High God, will go to work on your behalf.

Remember, nothing can stand against our God. He has all power. He stopped the sun for Joshua. He closed the mouths of hungry lions for Daniel. Whatever you face in life, God promises He will fight your battles. Trust Him, remain at rest and hold your peace!
A PRAYER FOR TODAY

Father, today I put my trust and hope in You. I choose to hold my peace knowing that You will fight my battles. Thank You for working all things out for my good in Jesus’ name. Amen.

— Joel & Victoria Osteen

LET GO & LET GOD…

This is so poignant. Oftentimes when I’m searching for something to post, it will just fall right in my lap. Such is the case with this particular post. I went into one of my email accounts and noticed that my baby sister had sent me this video with the song by Dwayne Woods, “Let Go & Let God”. This is one of the songs that I love and have sung over and over again in my head and heart. The next email was from my oldest sister. She had sent me the WORD of The Day from Joel & Victoria Olsten. If you really take a look at the message in each, they go hand in hand. My sisters live in two separate cities and are going to be surprised that they collectively helped to drive home the message that someone is meant to see today. Enjoy your day and BE BLESSED.

The End of Your Drought

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE

“You, O God, sent a plentiful rain…”
(Psalm 68:9, NKJV)
TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
Every person goes through times of drought, or dry seasons, when we don’t see the changes we hoped for. We’ve got big dreams, we’re standing on God’s promises, but things stay the same. It’s dry and barren. Maybe you are blessed in one area and in a drought in another. It’s easy to think, “This is the way it’s always going to be. I’ll always have this struggle.” No, in 2014 that drought is coming to an end. Any area of brokenness, dryness, loneliness, every empty place, if you will stay in faith, God is going to rain down favor, healing, and restoration.

We declare that this year, you are going to see an abundance of rain! Every drought is only temporary. That dry season is not going to last forever. Struggle and lack is not your destiny. It’s temporary. Rain is headed your way! Declare it by faith, “Father, thank You that the drought is ending and the rain is coming; and in 2014, I will see an abundance of Your goodness in my life!”

A PRAYER FOR TODAY

Father, thank You for Your refreshing rain on the dry places in my life. Thank You for raining down provision, blessing, hope, wisdom, joy and peace. Give me strength to stand strong in You as Your plan unfolds for my life in Jesus’ name. Amen.

— Joel & Victoria Osteen