“The thing we kick against the most is the question of pain and suffering. We have naturally the idea that if we are happy and peaceful we are all right…Happiness is not a sign that we are right with God; happiness is a sign of satisfaction, that is all, and the majority of us can be satisfied on too low a level. Jesus Christ disturbs every kind of satisfaction that is less than delight in God. Every strand of sentimental satisfaction is an indication of how much farther we have to go before we understand the life of God, it is the satisfaction of a smug self-interest which God by circumstances and pain shocks us out of as we go in the discipline of life.”
Early on Saturday morning, a crowd began to gather just outside of Pastor Togba’s property. Some music was being played and I recognized a couple of what sounded like gospel tunes. It was not long before a crowd gathered to listen to something being said over a loudspeaker. I had been watching people stop to listen and I counted well over 200 before I stopped. With my curiosity getting the better of me, I decided to walk a little closer and see what was going on.
A man and his female were working up the crowd in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. After a number of songs and with absolutely no Bible in sight, the man began to speak to the crowds. Just like the huckster I had heard in the marketplace shortly after I arrived, this fellow seemed to have been trained in the same school of “How to Con People using God’s Name in Vain!”
Passing a bucket around, he cajoled the listeners by telling them that they were in great need of having a blessing from God. He continued by stating that they would always remain poor unless they honored God’s preacher first, he continued with his harangue by starting with an offer of $100 blessings. When that didn’t work, he worked his way down to $50, $20, $10, and finally $5 before resorting to pleading for Liberian dollars. However, he did warn the people that Liberian dollar blessings were not as powerful as blessings which come from giving US dollar bills.
Some of the women seemed to be upset, and I could not begin to imagine what the church leaders were thinking about what they had overheard. Twenty pairs of eyes followed me as I walked through their midst and off the veranda into the dusty African evening.
Walking along the edge of Pastor Togba’s property, I noticed that it was not five minutes before Mr. Maryland walked out the door with all his bags. They were loaded into the vehicle in almost complete silence and without a word of thanks to Pastor Togba, he and his friend pulled out of the driveway and headed in towards town.
The members of the little congregation remained on the veranda and at the front of the house as I considered what I should do next. More appropriately, I considered how I needed to handle what I believed was right to do in this particular situation. Walking back up to the porch, I hesitantly asked them to gather together.
Me: “First, I want to apologize for what you heard. It was not my intention for anybody to overhear my private conversation with Mr. Maryland. While I do not believe that I should apologize for what I said, I do apologize for giving offense in regards to how I spoke to your guest. Please forgive me for I realize that my approach was not the best and my desire should remain to be more like Christ even when something displeases me! I also want each of you to know that the Lord has changed my own heart for the country of Liberia, and that regardless of how a missionary or pastor from America feels that it does not make his actions right. He is a complete embarrassment and does not reflect the words and actions of all missionaries or pastors from America or England.”
“… We ask that everything we do would bring honor to you … and we just lift up especially Mayor Annise Parker. … Lord, we thank you just for raising her up and just for your goodness, your mercy in her life, and just for supernatural wisdom, Father. We honor her today and our other officials, and Lord, we count it a joy and honor to be here in your presence with all of our friends and we just thank you for this day. In Jesus name, amen.”
This is as mind boggling as the wolf who “blessed” an abortion mill, calling it “sacred ground.”
Ingrid Schlueter hits the nail on the head regarding Joel Osteen with this excerpt from her commentary:
We bring honor to God by asking Him to bless a woman who is living in conduct that He calls an “abomination”? Does Joel Osteen even possess a Bible?
As a follow-up to Unworthy 1’s post on the International House of Prayer (found here) I’ve decided to post the following eye-opening video I just discovered. The video is a news piece from CBN and is done in a favorable light (imagine that coming from false prophet Pat Robertson’s broadcasting network).
Not only does IHOP’s Mike Binkle have ties to Bob Jones, but in the beginning of the video the commentator claims that Binkle says that Christ’s return is dependent upon man.
If I had a nickle for every time one of these Charismatic Charlatans claimed that God was powerless or helpless to do what He wants, and He must rely on us for His will to be accomplished, I’d be a rich man.