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An Expose on T.B. Joshua of The Synagogue, Church Of All NationsWritten by
by Sandy Simpson
There has been a lot of talk about T.B. Joshua from Nigeria lately. I have written to him asking for two items: (1) a copy of his doctrinal statement and (2) independent HIV tests from BEFORE those he claims he has healed were allegedly healed proving they had AIDS to begin with. On his The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations web site he makes claims of AIDS healings but provides only testimonials and pictures of people holding up what are supposed to be HIV tests taken, in some cases, before and after the fact. Most people will readily realize that testimonials and HIV tests shown in photographs do not constitute proof. HIV tests from before their visit to The Synagogue should be provided independently of The Synagogue to verify any alleged healings. That spectacular things are being seen at his church and on video seem to be without doubt. But let's not forget that many of the "miracles" we see could also be faked. If these are indeed true miracles, we still need to investigate the source. It is important to remember that Satan is capable of both healing (Rev. 13:14) and making people sick (Job 2:7). I have suspected for a long time that occult healings can sometimes be the result of the enemy lifting sickness or disease that was a result of his inflicting sickness and disease in the first place. Why would he do that? Simply to prop up his false prophets and false healers and to deceive people! We also need to be aware of the fact that a house swept clean without true repentance and belief in Jesus Christ is a house that is open to further demonic episodes (Matt. 12:43-45). That's why it's always important to check back on those who claim to be healed and see if they are still healed at a later date.
But, most importantly, it's imperative to test the spirits, judge and compare the doctrinal teachings and beliefs presented by T.B. Joshua with the Word of God. On that basis alone you will discover that this man is teaching heresy -- laying error alongside truth. Christians should avoid any man who is using occult techniques in the name of Jesus Christ.
I will now comment on questions and answers given by T.B Joshua in a book called Pastor W.F. Kumuyi and Prophet T.B. Joshua: Are both messengers of God? by Isaac B. Agbaje and Abieye Kalu. His quotes are very enlightening and should be enough for any true believer to stay far away from this modern day showman who mixes Christianity with paganism in a very enticing manner.
Q: Why he doesn't criticize other men of God?
A:"Despite the fact that many fellow ministers of God daily blaspheme against me, I refrain from retaliating, because I know the grave consequences of criticizing an anointed man of God ... For instance, if you are a minister of God, but deliberately go out of your way to blaspheme against another man of God, whom you knew is a true man of God, you have lost (one) or two of your spiritual powers to the colleague you blasphemed against unjustifiably."
Where exactly does he get this from the Word of God? There is absolutely nothing in the Word about people losing "spiritual powers" to someone they rebuke. In fact the Bible encourages us to rebuke those who are teaching falsely so that they may repent and come back to sound doctrine (Tit. 1:13). You cannot "blaspheme" men, you can only "blaspheme" God. Who does He think he is ... God? The big question is: Will T.B. Joshua repent of his false doctrines and witchcraft and be saved?
Q: Those who claimed they gave him power.
A: "One thing that I know for sure about human beings is that if they gave you power or used their position to promote you to an exalted position and you start behaving arrogantly, they will immediately take back the power(s) they gave you or demote you before you know it. I hereby challenge those who claimed they gave me powers to heal and deliver people to withdraw their powers henceforth and render me powerless. Let them nullify my powers if they are the true source."
"How my detractors should come to think and believe that a man of 36 years can be doing what God has been using me to do with evil powers among millions of Nigerians without another person being able to do the same things beats my imagination."
"Ordinarily, people should have realized that it is God who is using me to do all these unprecedented miracle, signs and wonders in the lives of His people."
Notice the egotism of T.B. Joshua. He claims he is the only person able to do these kinds of miracles. He needs to get informed about people like Sai Baba and other occult fakirs from books by people like Kurt Koch before he starts claiming his miracles are superior to anyone else's. I haven't seen him plant a mango seed in a pot, have it grow to a tree which bears mangos, then offer them to the crowd to eat as is detailed in Occult ABC by Koch. This is what fakirs in India have been able to do. I haven't seen him raise anyone from the dead. I haven't seen him have lights circling around his head like William Branham. T.B. Joshua has a long way to go to compete with occult false Christians that came before him, and a really long way to go to compete with the occult world. He is also alleging that people can give their powers to another person. The only possible reference to this in the Bible would be when Elijah's mantle was left for Elisha. But Elijah clearly could not give Elisha any "double portion" of his spirit which was only the Lord's to give. The concept of giving powers or an anointing to another person is strictly occult and forbidden by Scripture.
Q: T.B.J. challenges the Government.
A: "If the government wants to know who are the true men of God in Nigeria today, they should invite all the notable Pastors, Evangelists and General Overseers to the Tafawa Balewa Square and give each man of God just ten minutes to minister to and pray for the people. Then with the miracles, signs and wonders that confirm the ministration of each man of God, the government will know who are the genuine men of God, and those who are serving mammon."
Has this type of challenge worked before? What happened shortly after Elijah prayed and God sent fire down from heaven to consume the altar and sacrifice on Mt. Carmel and the people declared that the Lord, He is God? They went back to their evil ways. In this time of the New Covenant after Christ's death and resurrection and ascension into heaven to be seated at the right hand of God, we are not preaching and leading people to God based on signs and wonders but by preaching the gospel message "because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile." (Rom. 1:16) Why is T.B. Joshua so concerned about his reputation of being known as a "man of God" and is not concerned about God's reputation enough to stop teaching false doctrine?
Q: Men of God who go about condemning him?
A: "Those ministers of God who go about condemning me rather than preaching the Gospel they are sent to preach, are doing themselves a great harm. The more they condemn me, the lesser their anointing become. Go round the country today and see what is happening. Those men of God who used to perform great signs and wonder have lost their anointing because of their blasphemies."
I wonder who made T.B. Joshua the arbiter of "the anointing"? I thought that was the Holy Spirit. Where in the Word does it state that those who rebuke false teachers like T.B. Joshua will have "less anointing"? Are not all Christians anointed equally by the Holy Spirit, and filled according to the works that God wants them to do in humility? Is the anointing we have in Jesus Christ not conditional on whether or not we obey the Lord in rebuking false doctrine, but instead on the whim of a man who obviously will no longer listen to reproof? T.B. Joshua has nothing whatsoever to say about who is anointed and who is not!
Q: To those critics who say he is using evil powers
A: "It is not possible for a single person to be working outstanding miracles, signs and wonders which millions of other Nigerians cannot do and for such a person to be an agent of satan. They - the God's generals - should combine forces and deliver such a satanic person or get rid of him."
Perhaps it's time for a true believer to deliver T.B. Joshua! The statement that a person cannot work miracles and be an agent of satan is ludicrous. Who does he think will empower the False Prophet? Who does he think enables witch doctors and shamans the world over to effect healings and miracles of all sorts? Certainly not God! What an ego to claim that he can do greater miracles than "millions of other Nigerians". This is egotism and pride, not humility. One of the fruits of the Spirit is humility.
Q: Whose interest does he serve?
A: "The fact that I don't collect money from the people God uses me to set free proves that I am working for the kingdom of God.
If I am working for satan and don't collect money from the people he enables me to heal, what then is my gain?"
First of all, is T.B. Joshua now condemning people like Benny Hinn and other TBN televangelists for collecting money? Are they then not working for the kingdom of God based on Joshua's criteria? In saying such a thing isn't he putting himself in danger of losing "one or two spiritual powers" by his own warped criteria? Collecting of money has nothing to do with whether one is working for God or satan. It is how that money is collected and for what purpose it is used that show whether or not it is being used for the kingdom of God. As to his last statement: "If I am working for satan and don't collect money from the people he enables me to heal, what then is my gain?" there are other benefits from making a name for yourself ... for instance, fame! What about gaining power and influence over people? There is much to gain outside of money if that is where the desires of the heart lie.
Q: The rumor that he claimed to be Jesus Christ
A: "I never claimed to be Jesus Christ. I can never claim to be Jesus. There is no amount of power I will have that I will claim to be Jesus Christ. I am an ordinary servant. Even if I have power to create human beings, I can never claim to be Jesus Christ.
Who am I? I sleep, I wake, I eat. This is a rumor!"
I'm glad he at least admits he is not Jesus Christ. But does the amount of power one has have anything to do with being Jesus Christ in reality? No man can be Jesus Christ because Jesus Christ is God, not because Jesus Christ has power. There is a difference.
Q: The allegation by his critics that he doesn't feed his congregation with the Word of God, but just give them healing.
A:"What is my mission then if I don't feed them with the Word of God? The Word is God, God is the Word. Miracles are just a means of gathering people for the Lord, so that they could be easily touched by the Holy Spirit and saved by Jesus Christ. My main mission is to save souls for Christ.
If I gather people without feeding them with the Word of God, then how do I achieve my mission? Miracles are just a means to an end, and not an end in itself."
"Therefore, everyone who received a miracle received it for the salvation of his or her soul."
Actually, the gospel is the means for Christ to gather people to Himself (John 12:32) not signs and wonders. Miracles are not the calling card to make people so they can be "easily touched" by the Holy Spirit. It is the message of the gospel that draws men to the foot of the cross in repentance. Our main mission on earth is not to "save souls for Christ". It is to preach the gospel (Mark 16:15) and make disciples of all nations (Mt. 28:19). Jesus Christ does the saving, we preach the message of good news and disciple those who Jesus saves and who His Spirit immediately indwells upon belief in Christ. Miracles are not the means whereby salvation is an end. Preaching of the gospel and faith (Eph. 2:8-9) on the part of the hearer accomplish that through the grace of Jesus Christ. Miracles don't save. Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. Apparently T.B. Joshua does not understand this concept. If not, this is a denial of a core doctrine of the Church.
Q: Whether he has ever traveled out of Nigeria before his call or not.
A: "I have never traveled outside Nigeria before I was called to God's work. By the grace of God, I'm doing what I'm doing because I'm a promised child. Anybody called a promised child will do what people in his time cannot do. After him many people may pick up from where he left off."
The question is: Who made what promise to whom and about whom? No evidence is given here about any promise, but even if there was some kind of prophecy announcing his birth, are we being led to believe that his birth is akin to the birth of Jesus or John the Baptist? If so, why does he make heretical statements? Did Jesus or John the Baptist teach heresy?
Q: Why members of The Synagogue greet one another: "Emmanuel"?
A: "My God is a universal God, so He knew the mission He has entrusted me with. In order to be able to identify my people, because He knew that they would spread all over the world, that is why He gave us that name, so anywhere people greet themselves by saying Emmanuel, they will be able to know that they are members of The Synagogue Church of All Nations.
'Emmanuel', simply means 'God is with us' (Matt 1:23, Isaiah 41:10, Romans 8:31). We also shout 'Emmanuel' to glorify God for His blessings and victories on our behalf."
Who is this "universal God"? What does he mean by this? Is He then a God who will save everyone arbitrarily without regard to the sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ to pay for our sins? This needs to be clarified. But the "Church of All Nations" title seems to indicate a universalist mentality. It also sounds a lot like the globalist church models by Maitreya and others. Here is a picture of TB Joshua that needs explanation.
UPDATE: Since I posted the above photograph, all elements of which were photographed in the Synagogue, that was clipped from a newspaper article in South Africa, I have since received confirmation of who wrote the article and where it was taken in an e-mail dated 5/11/01. "I am sure you have received the picture where you can see a quotation from the Quaran next to Jesus hanging on the Cross, with the words "There is no Deity but Allah". (I can send it if you want it). It is inside the Synagogue Church. In another e-mail I was informed about the author of the article. "... Prof Tom Gouws ... wrote an article in "Beeld", an Afrikaans newspaper in Johannesburg, in which he in fact EXPOSED Joshua and pointed out that his doctrine is as deceptive as those of Benny Hinn, Rick Joyner, and others! What the above photo shows is that The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations is an interfaith church. Also, lest we forget, the Quaran states that Allah has no son, therefore this display in the Synagogue cancels itself out. The Catholic crucifix alongside a wall hanging with a quote from the Quaran shows an incredible ignorance on the part of T.B. Joshua of both Islam and Christianity. It is true that there is only one God, but He is one God in Three Persons ... Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The "god" of Islam is a false God. The Quaran also states that "God has no son". That cancels out both the Son and the Father, as without a Son there is also no Father, and of course no Holy Spirit. The God of the Muslims and apparently T.B. Joshua is not Almighty God revealed in the Scriptures, not the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, not YHWH, not the only true living Triune God of Christianity. This denial of the Trinity is just one more proof that T.B. Joshua is a heretic.
The word "synagogue" in their church name brings to mind Rev. 2:9 and 3:9 where Christ talks about the "synagogue of satan". This was used in conjunction with Jews who claimed to be believers but were not because they were causing Gentile Christians to come back under the Law. First century Christians did go into the synagogues to witness but met in homes as believers. The false Jews continued worshiping in synagogues instead of being in fellowship with the Gentile believers. Jesus called these false Jews and their places of worship a "synagogue of satan". Anytime you add to salvation by adding requirements such as signs and wonders, interfaith and ecumenical unity, regulations (see the next question), rituals, circumcision, liturgies, works ... you become a synagogue of satan. I think they have aptly named their church organization based on what we know about T.B. Joshua.
Q: Why he is a vegetarian?
A: "I was not born a vegetarian. In fact, when God sent be on this mission, I realized that my work is tedious. I will refer to John 5:37: "And the Father who sent me hath borne witness to me, His Voice you have never heard, His form you have never seen."
"In a week I deliver contrary spirit carriers (Ogbanjes), witches and wizards (about 1000 of them). They are not ordinary human beings. Some are half human and half fish. So if you eat fish you can not deliver them."
First of all, no one is born a vegetarian. What a silly answer to a question not asked. We are all capable of eating and digesting all kinds of meat products. We know the Lord told Noah they could henceforth eat meat, and finally in the New Testament we are taught that eating meat is fine as long as it is not a stumbling block to others (1 Cor. 10:25-26). The last part of this answer shows clearly that T.B. Joshua is a shaman. The Bible says nothing about this, but this kind of secret information is evolutionary in concept and is witchcraft, pure and simple. It is also ridiculous and ludicrous.
Q: The source of his power?
A:"Jesus Christ is the source of my power. Without His support I will fall. He is my strength. He is my power. He is my sustainer. He is my all. Without Him, I am nothing. I cannot perform any miracle, sign or wonder without the support of Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit."
So Jesus Christ is T.B. Joshua's "support" team? If Joshua were truly a believer he would admit that nothing he does comes from him AT ALL but only from Jesus Christ. But since Joshua is clearly a shaman Jesus Christ becomes a supporter propping up Joshua's ministry.
Q: The Mission of the Synagogue Church of All Nations?
A: "The Synagogue I know in Nigeria, which God established and founded and instructed me to oversee, can be adjudged clearly through the works of healing, deliverances and blessings as "The Synagogue of God" going by testimonies of people from other churches, places and societies, home and abroad, who are living beneficiaries of the grace of God which abides and abounds for ever."
Is there such a thing as a "synagogue of God" today? Is not the temple of the Holy Spirit today (1) the body of Christ, the Church (1 Cor. 12:13, Eph. 4:4) and (2) the individual believer (1 Cor. 3:16, 6:19)? When you see Scripture twisting like this it should make you suspicious that the source may be demonic, as adding or subtracting from the Word is one of the enemy's major ploys.
A: Why his power couldn't have come from satan.
"If my power is from satan, it will be impossible for me to be continually and consistently working against satan, because satan is the source of AIDS, cancer and other deadly diseases which God has been using me to deliver people from.
If satan is the source of my power, I cannot be working against him, because that will contradict what Jesus Christ said in the Bible that you cannot drive out demons by evil spirit."
I would challenge the false assumption made here that satan is the source of ALL these diseases. The Bible is clear that sin (Rom. 6:23) caused a curse (Gen. 3:17) of disease and death to become a fact of life on earth. The enemy tempted Eve to sin, but it was Adam and Eve who sinned. That sin brought about death and decay (Rom. 8:21). Also, why would T.B. Joshua be working against satan if what he is doing is teaching false doctrine which only benefits satan? Signs and wonders do not prove that it is God that is working. The proof is in the teachings, both explicitly and implicitly, of people who claim to be miracle workers for God. To claim that something is of God by subjective means and erroneous arguments is to denigrate the truth of the Word. Evil spirits can depart or hide themselves when commanded to leave, even by Christians (Mark 9:29). If satan can accomplish his purpose of deceiving, even possibly the elect, by shuffling demon personnel around from place to place, why would he hesitate even one moment to do so? Satan is not going to PERMANENTLY command his demons to leave a person because that is against his purposes, but there is nothing stopping satan from shuffling them around (Luke 11:26).
Q: Men of God who are money conscious.
A: "A man of God who places emphasis on money or collects money from the people he heals or delivers will soon fall from grace to grass. Another thing is that when a prophet of God forms the habit of extorting money from those whom God healed through him or her, he or she becomes a partaker of their sicknesses, problems and tribulations."
This is a real indictment against many people who are traveling to Nigeria to get the "anointing" from this guy including John Arnott of the Toronto "Blessing" who I am told has already been there. If the statement that these people should "fall from grace to grass" is true, we should have seen practically every televangelist fall into "grass" a long time ago. Wouldn't it be a kick to see someone like Paul and Jan Crouch grazing in a field like Nebuchadnezzar? But as we know the wicked sometimes prosper (Jer. 12:1) and frankly they are all flourishing right now. Why? I believe these false prophets and healers are a judgment of God on those who call themselves believers in Christ. The question is: Who loves the truth of the Word of God? Here again we see another shamanic connection made by Joshua between taking money and getting sick and having problems and tribulations. I don't see the money preachers today coming under this judgment but they seem to be healthy and running all over the globe to raise more and more money for satellites and private jets. The Bible places no such curse on people who love money, only that they will end up worshipping the god of mammon instead of the true God and be damned in eternity (Luke 16:13).
Q: The secret of his success?
A: "My critics and persecutors have made me to move closer to God, and to rely on Him absolutely. I know I have so many enemies and persecutors; hence I make God my shelter and Jesus Christ my only friend. As for worldly friends, I have none, because I know that sooner than later, they will disappoint me. I always strive to do the will of God, obey Him and follow His directions to the letter. This is why my divine power increases daily.
I thank God for my enemies and persecutors, without them, I would not have come this far."
We are not to abandon the fellowship of the body of Christ (Acts 2:42, Heb. 10:25), yet we have here a man who has no friends by his own admission. That is not a Christian witness at all! Also notice that he talks about "my divine power". Is Joshua then "divine"? Is it truly his divine power? Should he not rather say that the power and glory belongs to Jesus Christ?
Q: Miracles and Faith?
A: "Many people clap their hands and applaud energetically when they witness a miracle. But it takes faith and divine intervention to say to the cripple: Rise up and walk in Jesus name."
This is a true statement. But are these miracles of God or miracles of satan? All kinds of people use Jesus' name these days but many will end up this way: "Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'" (Matt. 7:22-23)
Q: God's power and satan's power.
A: "The power of God is used to glorify God and the power of satan to glorify satan."
This is also true. That is why these miracles glorify satan because they lead people into false doctrines and occultism. No amount of the application of Jesus' name can cover the false doctrines that you have already seen in this article.
Q: Righteousness and God's blessing.
A: "You need to live a righteous life to enable you to claim your God-ordained blessing. Righteousness brings awareness of God's blessing while unrighteousness blocks your channel of blessing."
Are we saved on the basis of a righteous life? That is impossible. We are only saved by grace and nothing else. God is capable of prospering a sinner saved by grace as well as a wicked man. It's up to the Lord. As Christians our goal is not seeking after blessings as much as coming into a relationship with the Father based on the blood of Jesus Christ in which He takes care of our needs. Many people from many religions have lived as righteous a life as possible on this earth. But if they die without Christ they will be judged on the basis of that righteous life, and not one of them will stand up to the righteousness of God and His Law. I don't know about you but I put my faith in the substitutionary death and resurrection of Christ to provide me salvation, not in my righteous life to bring me blessings. I leave the blessings up to the judgment of God.
Q: The need to seek God first.
A: "First seek to know God, do His will and obey His commands. God is the source of all your worldly desires be it wealth, peace, happiness, good health and security. All you will ever need to live a successful life have been provided by God. The key to claim them is to seek first the kingdom of God."
T.B. Joshua is here hawking the Word-Faith party line. Is God really just our butler in the sky awaiting our every whim and desire for "wealth, peace, happiness, good health and security"? I think not! We are to be servants of God and bring Him the glory, taking up our cross (even unto death) and following Him. We may ask, seek and knock but we don't declare, summon and invoke! If a person is really seeking the kingdom of God (and His righteousness (Matt. 6:33)) he will seek the will of God as well which usually includes discipline from God to His children (Heb. 12:6). There is no secret Gnostic mystical "key" that causes God to rain down riches and health from on high. We are simply called to be faithful to God and allow Him to work out His purposes in our lives and the lives of those we minister to.
Q: Temptation and Destruction
A: "If you are not above temptation e.g, temptation of money, temptation of women, you are not above human destruction."
No one is "above temptation". We are all tempted (Matt. 26:41, James 1:13-15). Even Jesus was tempted (Matt. 4:1, Heb. 4:15). We are to pray that we are not led into temptation (Luke 11:4) but temptation will always be with us and God will make a way out of temptation and will not allow us to be tempted above what we are able (1 Cor. 10:13). The only way to rise above temptation is to not give into it and that can only be accomplished by submitting to Jesus Christ (James 4:7). Again we have another major doctrine being taught wrongly by T.B. Joshua.
Q: Uniqueness and Persecution.
A: "If you can do what thousands or millions of people around you cannot do, you need to watch your steps. People will persecute you. They will call you names. But if what you are doing, thousands around you can as well do it, then you will have no problem. You will have many friends. Nobody will be after you."
Is T.B. Joshua again claiming he is the only person who can do miracles? What an ego! So now having friends is contingent on us all being able to do miracles, eh? I thought friendship was based on love, but then I guess I am old fashioned.
Q: False Prophets and Ministers of God.
A:"The Bible says that satan will come as an angel of light and his agents as ministers of righteousness. (11 Cor. I 1: 14) Be careful you are not deceived by the eloquent preachers and evangelists who can quote every verses of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. They may be agents of satan in disguise (11 Cor. I I: 14)."
Notice the subtle shift from the truth in the first part to a put down of those who teach sound doctrine in the second part of his answer. This is exactly the laying of truth alongside error that Peter warned us about (2 Pet. 2:1). T.B. Joshua is indeed an angel of light to those he heals, but along with those healings of dubious origin come doctrines of demons that can shipwreck your faith! Don't ever belittle those who exegete the Word of God and proclaim the gospel and who memorize Scripture, T.B.!
Q: The cause of problems?
A: "The cause of problem is sin. When you don't go into sin you don't have problems. The more you go into sin the more problems you have. So sin is the food of satan, if you don't give satan food he will not be feasting on you."
Sin is not the food of satan, it is the result of the temptations of satan and his goal for every human being. Satan is a self-sufficient being that does not need our sin to survive. His rebellion against the Almighty God is enough to carry him along till the day of his destruction which was ordained from eternity past.
Q: Identifying False Miracle Workers and Genuine Ministers of God.
A: "I think we should leave that one to God who will separate the sheep from the goats at the appointed time. Though before God does the separation, there will be a lot of confusion but, He will do it at His own good time."
God will indeed separate the sheep from the goats, the wheat from the chaff. But we are to separate ourselves from heretics now (Rom. 16:17, Titus 3:10, 2 Cor. 6:17)! It is people like T.B. Joshua who are causing the confusion. There would be no confusion if we didn't have all these heretics running around confusing people.
Q: Living a fulfilled life?
A: "Spiritually speaking, every lack is hunger. Sickness, poverty and even death is hunger. And the permanent fulfillment of this hunger is an unconditional acceptance of Jesus Christ into your life. When Jesus lives in you, hunger, poverty and sickness will become thing of the past."
This is simply Word-Faith false doctrine. God never promised us that "hunger, poverty and sickness" would be a thing of the past in this life. He gave us eternal life and abundant life here, but that sometimes includes hunger, poverty and sickness. How can this man from Nigeria say such a thing to the poor people that come to his meetings? What a slap in the face! Wouldn't it lighten the load of many poor people in Africa if Joshua would stop handing them empty promises and allow the Lord to save them and do His work in their lives?
Q: The benefits of living according to God's will?
A: "God is the source of all blessings, both spiritual and material blessings. For you to continue to enjoy God's blessings, you must continually live according to His will and commands.
Remember, the moment you do anything in opposition to God's commands, you strain your fellowship with God, thereby blocking your channel of blessing."
Again we see clear Word-Faith false doctrines. I'm glad when I used to backslide into rebellion against God that He did not "block" His "channel of blessings" to me and reached out to me by the conviction of His Holy Spirit. What is more blessed than having God come after you when you are in sin? There is nothing in the Bible about any personal channel of blessing however. God is not some kind of giant television set in the sky. We are not going to "channel" our blessings from God either by any act of righteousness. God is sovereign. His grace is free and unmerited on our part. We are called to a life of righteousness, but not based on what we can get from God but on our relationship and love for Him. This Word-Faith stuff is completely humanistic -- man based. It is all "What can I get out of this deal". It's truly sickening!
Q: Why some Ministers of God have lost their anointing and become powerless.
A: "The majority of men of God have brought problems upon themselves because of their greed for the material things of life. Many have lost their anointing while some have been demoted spiritually, because of their lust for money and other worldly things of life.
Those who make it a habit to collect money from the people God used them to heal or deliver should know that this is a breach of Christ's command which says, "freely you are given and freely shall you give." Spiritual gifts are not for self-glorification, but for the glorification of God."
This is a good statement, with the exception of the underlined phrase. Are we supposed to apply some kind of man-centered business model to our Christianity whereby we can be "demoted" in spirituality? This is absurd. But the rest of the statement is an indictment against many of the preachers who are now flocking to Nigeria to see this guy. I would also like to know who has admitted that they lost their "anointing" because they fleeced the flock? I don't see anyone who this has happened to at this point. You can't lose the true anointing of the Holy Spirit unless you lose your faith in Him, and that can only happen once based on my reading of the Scriptures (Heb. 6:4-6). Is he then saying that those who have fleeced the flock are unregenerate and doomed to hell? Are they unregenerate or have they simply been demoted? You can't have it both ways. Either you have the Holy Spirit or you don't. A person can certainly shrink back from faith (Heb. 10:39) but I don't see anything in the Word about being "demoted spiritually". The lesson Jesus taught to the disciples in Mark 10:42-44 is not based on position and title but on function and aim. Those who would be leaders are supposed to be the servants of all. We don't operate by a worldly pyramidic model but we work together side by side in furtherance of the kingdom of God.
Q: The carnally-minded people?
A: "The carnally-minded people are the preys of this world. They are susceptible to all evil attacks. For the agents of satan, to catch and destroy the carnally-minded people is as easy as catching a fly.
The carnally-minded are the living dead among human beings, and they account for about 80% of the human population. They are the fornicators, the adulterers, the drunkards, the boastful, the mischievous and self-seeking people."
Where does he come up with an 80% figure for unregenerate human beings? Also, it seems to me that his boast of casting demons out of 1000 half-fish half-human witches and warlocks is quite a boast. I hope he has his facts straight or else he might as well join the 80%.
Q: Effective Faith.
A: "Faith means the Word of God mixed with God's Spirit. When you speak the Word of God and it is mixed with the Spirit of God, whatever you decrees comes to pass."
This is pure shamanism and Word-Faith delusion. It is true that Jesus Christ is the Logos, the living Word. Every word out of His mouth was the Word of God. But the Word of God is not mixed with God's Spirit, it is the Word spoken by the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity, not merely some force that can be mixed with anything. Only God can speak things into existence. If a prophet preaches the Word of God accurately then what he decrees will come to pass because it was already ordained by the Word of God. But people cannot just decide, based on some subjective experience, to declare something into existence. When you do that you open the door to demonic deception. This is faith in the force of faith, not faith in the person of Jesus Christ.
Q: True Born-again Christians?
A: "Whoever is born of God overcomes the world. A true born-again Christian is a river of life. Joy, goodness, love and peace flow from the one who has the Holy Spirit of God living in him or her."
This is true, although not stated exactly this way in the Word. We are not some kind of gnostic river, but the fruit of the Spirit will be readily evident in the life of a Christian because of the indwelling Holy Spirit. We cannot impart anything of ourselves but we can preach the gospel, pray for people to be healed and have compassion and mercy on those less fortunate. The problem with the reference to "a river" is that it is tied to the concept of the "River" movement and the transferable impartation, etc.
Q: Why (do) Christians still have problems after accepting Christ?
A: "Some Christians still face serious problems after accepting Jesus Christ into their lives because they live like occasional Christians. They live for Christ today and tomorrow live for satan.
For any Christian to overcome always he or she must be a Christian always. A true Christian is not to do the will of God occasionally, but at all the time."
The problem is that we cannot do the will of God simply by our own effort (Rom. 7:19-25), which this statement implies. It is good and right to live in obedience to God, but we need God's help. This is not mentioned in his response. Without God's help we will never be able to do His will, and certainly not "all the time". For a Christian to overcome they must be more than merely "a Christian always" but must have faith (1 John 5:4).
Q: Making friends with the worldly people.
A: "Some people make many friends who will help them in times of trouble because they do not have Jesus to depend upon. If Jesus Christ is your friend, trouble will run from you."
While we live in this world trouble will always be with us (Ps. 91:15, 2 Cor. 1:4). Just because we have a relationship with Jesus Christ does not mean trouble will "run" from us. Jesus Christ will protect us and not allow us to be tempted above what we are able to bear, but trouble will be with us until the day when Christ comes again. It is amazing to me just how few teachings people like T.B. Joshua seem to get right. But then if a person has another spirit it would be understandable.
Q: Why he has no bank account.
A: "I don't save money in the bank because I am not thinking of failure. I believe the Grace of God in my life will continue to increase. The moment I start taking money to banks, then I'm thinking of failure. If you have faith in God to provide for your needs always, you don't bother to save money in the bank. Personally, I strongly believe that God will always provide for all my needs till the end of the mission He sent me to accomplish. So there is no need for me to start saving for the rainy day. Why should I keep money in the bank while millions around me are suffering - can't feed themselves and their families? There are millions of people around me who need financial help even to keep their bodies and souls together. I will definitely offend God if I don't help these people but choose to save my excess in the bank."
This is admirable. We'll keep watching and see how long this mood lasts. Probably not for long is my guess. But I admire his convictions to give money to the poor. I can only hope that continues. Just remember that Mother Theresa also gave her life to the poor, but her belief system was far afield from orthodoxy. What does it profit the poor to give them money without preaching the true gospel to them for the salvation of their souls? What does it profit a man to give his money to the poor having placed his faith in a different Jesus, a different gospel, a different Spirit?
Q: His unique divine personality.
A: "The divine person in me can do a million things simultaneously. I can appear to thousands people in their dreams in any part of the world to set them free of their sicknesses, problems and afflictions."
This resembles closely what Maitreya has claimed he will be able to do. Maitreya says that he will appear on TV on his "Day Of Declaration" and everyone will hear him in their head without him audibly speaking. This is why I can't help but think T.B. Joshua may be a good candidate for the False Prophet. And again we see the meglomaniacal dreams of this man! Can he document that he has done this? Most offensive in this statement is his claim of being able to do things by "the divine person in me". Why didn't he mention the Holy Spirit? Is T.B. Joshua divine now?
A: "Salvation is by God's grace. It is not for sale. You cannot buy the Kingdom of God with money."
This is true. But then he adds requirements of works to this statement both explicitly in statements above or implicitly by what he does.
Q: Destructive Journalism.
A: "Frankly speaking, the majority of Nigerian journalists are not helping Nigeria. For it is unpatriotic to run down what can uplift one's fatherland. The whites don't do this kind of thing. What is happening here in The Synagogue today is enough to make Nigeria greater than Mecca or Jerusalem.The signs and wonders that God is doing here can turn Nigeria into the greatest Holy Land or Tourist Centre in the world. Rather than our journalists to encourage these good things they prefer to publish negative things about the church. However, I am not saying that all the journalists are bad, many of them are good, objective and highly patriotic."
It is true that T.B. Joshua by reason of his demonic miracles has turned Nigeria into a Mecca. To compare Nigeria to Jerusalem, however, is ridiculous. Jerusalem is the center of Biblical prophecy for thousands of years, and for ages to come. T.B. Joshua is an egomaniac of mega proportions. He may well turn Nigeria into the latest destination for the spiritually confused. But like Brownsville and Toronto, Nigeria, too, will have it's day and then fade. This too will pass.
Q: Why he usually gives money to those God used him to heal free of charge?
A: "Love without charity is no love at all. These people badly need help as most of them had spent all the money they had to procure cure for their respective ailments before God directed them here for their bearings. After being healed of their various afflictions some need to eat nutritional food, some need money to settle their outstanding house rents while some who had lost their jobs need to be rehabilitated. As a man of God I cannot close my eyes to their suffering. I have to do the little I can to help them out."
This is admirable. Whether or not they have had true divine healing is a matter to test over the course of time. It is certain, however, that no Divine healing is coming from T.B. Joshua. If anyone is healed by God it is because God is merciful. On the basis of his heretical teachings, however, it seems far more likely that any "healings" are either snake oil or demonic healings.
Q: His Disciples/Aides' Antecedents and Future.
A: "Some came because of one problem or the other while some came through God's call, but at the end of the day, it's not all of them that will be qualified. They will first serve as servants as Elisha served Elijah. Elisha went to Elijah to be his servant. From servant, if you are honest and obedient, it is left for God to choose you as a disciple. God will do the work of making you a disciple or a prophet, but my own is to train you as a servant of God."
Apparently this is a warning to let people know that T.B. Joshua is the boss, and if anyone wants his "anointing" they had better bow down and be trained under Joshua. I think this is what they call "lording it over them" in the Word (Mark 10:42-43).
Q: Judging Others?
A: "If you judge your fellow being now who will judge them on the day of judgment? Always remember that we see things not as they are but as we are."
This is ridiculous. God will judge in any case whether we judge or not. What T.B. Joshua ignores is that there are ways in which we ARE to judge. We are to judge what people teach (1 Cor. 10:15, Acts 17:11), judge between right and wrong morally (1 Cor. 5:11-13; Luke 12:57, 2 Pet. 3:17; John 7:24), and test the spirits (1 John 4:1). I hope everyone reading this article will test the spirit of T.B. Joshua and judge rightly! Also, if we are incapable of seeing things the way they are, then we are incapable of making any kind of decision or right judgment about anything in this world. Most importantly, we do not base our judgments as believers on our own ideas but on Scripture. Apparently T.B. Joshua judges everything by what he thinks and feels. If that is the case then he is the one who is truly "judgmental".
A: "Forgiveness is a special gift of God, no one can receive it except by faith."
I don't see this statement in the Bible. Grace is a gift from God. Forgiveness is certainly an attribute of the Spirit but it is also something we must do. Otherwise why would we pray the Disciple's Prayer and ask the Lord to "forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us." (Luke 11:4) This is a dangerous prayer if we are not forgiving others. Forgiveness is not something we receive so much as a reflection of the changes brought about by the indwelling Spirit.
A: "There is no school for anointing, it is purely by God's grace.
Glad to hear this. For once he got it right. Then why is he likening Nigeria to Mecca where people are coming to sit under his teaching and anointing, etc.? Nice answer but it is not consistent with the rest of what he is teaching.
Q: Need to be careful about what one says?
A: "Beware of what you say because what you say may influence others."
Nice saying. Now if he would just apply it to himself!
Q: On Miracles and Thanksgiving.
A: "The fact that God is using me to perform astounding miracles, signs and wonders does not mean that the other ministers of God are not anointed men of God or that their churches are not living churches. All fingers are not equal. If you have been lucky to receive your miracle here in The Synagogue Church, you are free to go back to your own church to give your thanksgiving to God, because the Body of Christ is one. All glory and praises belong to Jesus Christ who enables us to work miracles in His mighty name."
Which Jesus Christ is he is talking about? Is this the one that guarantees healing, wealth and prosperity? Is it the same one who made fish people? Is it the same one who is mixed together with His Word? This it is not the same Jesus Christ of the Bible.
For more information on T.B. Joshua, read this rebuttal of the article "Miracle Man"by Bill Candelas.
Perhaps T.B. Joshua ought to heed his own advice and keep God's commandments in His Word starting with these:
Titus 1:9 He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.
Titus 2:1 You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine.
T.B. Joshua is obviously not teaching sound doctrine. In fact he is clearly teachings false Word-Faith doctrines as well as straight occultism. The Bible has a few things to say about people like T.B. Joshua:
2 Tim. 4:3-4 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
2 Peter 2:1 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them--bringing swift destruction on themselves.
Matt. 24:23-36 At that time if anyone says to you, `Look, here is the Christ!' or, `There he is!' do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect--if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, `There he is, out in the desert,' do not go out; or, `Here he is, in the inner rooms,' do not believe it.
Addendum 5/29/00: Since the time this article was written we have received more information about TB Joshua from a credible source in South Africa. The T.B. in T.B. Joshua stands for Temitope Bolegun. We are still trying to find out if his name has any special meaning. He doesn't answer questions about his background or himself. There are rumors that he grew up as a Muslim and that he isolated himself for 16 years, before he started his church. Asked about this, he says one must look at his ministry/services to see who he is. We will continue to try to verify this information. He believes sin causes illness. If someone is healed and become ill again, it is because the person has sinned again. He has no church council, elders or deacons. He says this would limit the grace of God that works through him. If he has no accountability as set forth in the Scriputres, the grace of God is useless to him and others he teaches. He prays over handkerchiefs, photographs and other personal belongings and ask people to take it home with them. Also over little bags of water, which are hand out at the church. According to one of his workers, these bags can also heal people. There were also reports that Joshua refers to the water in the bags as the ''blood of Christ'' and that people must suck on it. The conclusion is that those who are true believers should stay far away from this man who is a wolf in sheep's clothing!
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