The following is an excellent article sent to me by someone who wishes to remain anonymous. It makes some very astute observations concerning how ministries such as Jimmy Swaggart Ministries operate and deceive. I would highly recommend you take the time to read this accurate and timely article.
Step on up, grab that microphone, and look right into the camera. There’s an audience in the palm of your hand, waiting to see what you’ll create for them today. It’s all up to you – speak the words, paint your illusion, and see what happens!
Do you need to look spiritual? Then raise your hands and close your eyes. Put on your holy frown, muster those tears, and the audience will be all yours. Don’t worry, it won’t take but an hour or two.
Do things in your past get in the way? Then speak them out of existence! Say the right words and “Abracadabra”! Divorces never happened. People never even crossed your path. They can all turn into nothing but rumors if you wish to make it so.
Do you need money? Find something to convince the audience you need, and they will help you buy it. Choose something different every time and make sure all the other actors know what it is. Many people will believe you and you will get lots of money. “Abracadabra!” The Aramaic phrase “avra kehdabra” means “I will create as I speak”. Today we simply say “Abracadabra”. Like all other stage magicians, ministries today use its powers to create illusions and achieve special goals – money.
An illusion is a “deceptive appearance or impression”. Since they are “deceptive”, illusions always require lies. Anyone who creates illusions is by trade a liar. That includes many ministries and pastors. An illusionist either adds or subtracts in order to change what something is to make it appear to be something it is not. He creates images which tell a lie, and thus he lies. His goal is not to glorify God in truth, but to glorify himself by illusion. Using that which is founded on lies, illusionists work hand in hand with the Father of Lies, Satan.
In times past, it was not so easy to create the illusion of being a minister of the Gospel. Before technology tantalized, money mesmerized, and broadcasting sanitized, everyone pretty much knew everyone else the way they really were. The pastors had nowhere to hide, neither did they try to. You ran into them often. You might have him over to your house for dinner, or you might just run into him in the parking lot – obviously before the days of the secluded Royal Pastor parking lots. Pastors were available to get to know just like anyone else. Their job title actually implied that about them.
Can you imagine a sheep herder leading a herd of sheep by television? Can you see a parent raising his children over television? The Lord intends pastors to be around the people they are responsible for. People are supposed to notice if these men love people or not, or if they really love God or not. People are supposed to see if they govern their home in holiness and fear of the Lord – or not. The Word of God requires that we observe these things. People need to see if they behave chastely around members of the opposite sex, or if they take time to fellowship compassionately with the less “desirable” people.
It was considered normal that you would watch a true man of God and assess how he lived his life. You could learn humility from him, watching him serve people and even wash their feet – just like the Master whom he claimed to represent. You actually knew for sure if your pastor was married or not. It wasn’t rocket science back then, but no one was ever reprimanded for asking. You observed him often with his spouse if he had one. You watched to see if their marriage reflected the Holy Spirit by loving and Godly interactions with each other. People were touched by them both – day in and day out, on the pulpit and off the pulpit. Such was the calling that the Lord placed on both the leader and his spouse – both called to minister and both called to serve. The Lord called her a “helpmeet” or helper, and that is the reason why.
People in those “olden times” knew that the Word of God instructed them to take note of their leaders. They knew that issues of personality, character, and marital life were of great importance to the Lord in regards to spiritual leadership. Godly people knew that the Lord had made it their business – not only to detect if a man was truly from God, but to help protect the Godly character he had.
All throughout scriptures we see how great men of God lost their walk with Him due to various lusts of the flesh. A Godly leader has always stood as strategic prey for the devil. Therefore no man or woman of God, leader or not, is outside the realm of other Godly people – those whose corrective eyes and ears the Lord might use someday for that leader’s own good. It is therefore extremely dangerous for all involved if a leader reaches the point where he is unreachable or uncorrectable. For this reason, the leaders used to know that the Lord held them personally and highly accountable. They knew that they were responsible in a public way for what they said and did. And besides, it was a stated part of their “job description”. They realized that having someone ask a sincere question about their life was encouraged by the Lord. They would never have dared to rebuke someone for merely asking. They would never have had the foolishness to say that it wasn’t anybody’s business, leave alone that God told him so.
If something like that had happened in times past, the elders would call it “rebellion” and immediately address it as such. First, they would assess that minister’s spiritual condition to represent the Lord so deceptively. Second, they would no doubt investigate what he was trying to hide. Though increasingly rare today, back then churches actually had elders. The true believers acknowledged one and only one true Head – the person Jesus Christ. No single man or woman ever got away with calling all the shots.
Everyone knew that Jesus Christ Himself was the final authority. Therefore the Lord created a way to utilize a man for leadership, while never allowing him to go “unchecked” by other believers. The Lord instructed believers to identify those with mature faith, and He called them “elders”. He intended to use them as “checks and balances”, assuring that the voice of the Holy Spirit would never be quenched or usurped by any single man or woman.
So what happened to that? There may be a few of those Biblical fellowships still around. But for the most part, they have been upstaged by a “new” model.This “new” model has changed things around a bit. First of all, the new model has replaced Jesus with a mere man. Jesus called him a “hireling”. Hirelings like to have their name used often in what they do and in the “ministries” they create. To identify them, just look for those ministries who say the man’s name more often than they do the name of Jesus. You’ll discover quickly who they are.
The hireling in turn has replaced true elders with his own “yes men”. They are loyal to the policies of their human leader and listen to his voice rather than the voice of the Holy Spirit. If any “yes man” does not defer to what that leader says – even if he knows it isn’t scriptural or true – he can no longer work for that leader. The hireling creates illusions. He is an illusionist. He ultimately wants power, sex, and money. Of course he doesn’t admit that publically since he wants people to think he is concerned for them. He has to create the illusion that he wants people to grow spiritually, so that is what he acts out on his stage. In actuality, he cares only for their financial growth and their financial loyalty to him.
The spiritual illusionist doesn’t really care about the hearts of people sitting in his pews; he simply wants them there. He uses them to perform properly for his TV show, and of course, expects their wallets to play their part as well. Those sitting in his pews are the extras in his show. It’s similar to a movie. The only difference between working for a movie director and working for a hireling is that for a movie director he pays his extras, but for the hireling his extras pay him. The hireling concerns himself entirely with performance. As he does his own, the hireling demands a specific performance from his supporting actors and actresses – the assistant pastors, musicians, and announcers on stage with him.
He also expects a specific performance from his stagehands – his cameramen, his ushers, and sound guys. Some of them he pays for their performance, but most of them, again, pay him. Like Charlton Heston and his classic performance of Moses, some of these hirelings are extremely talented. They know their parts and perform them well. In many cases they have mastered their art so skillfully, that they appear as though they literally believe and even passionately live by the words that they are saying. Yet the few who know them personally know differently. Only a few discriminately chosen people are allowed to actually live and work closely enough to see the illusionist’s “hidden” side, their “behind the curtain” side.
Furthermore, Jesus told us that certain difficult life situations will often occur for true believers. Jesus commanded that when those things happen, the true believer will respond like their Master and not like the world. In these types of situations Jesus described not only a command, but a literal test for authenticity.
These situations provide the opportunity to watch the fruits of the Holy Spirit manifest in an individual who truly loves Jesus. They also allow us to identify the absence of those fruits in people who only say they love Jesus but in reality do not. What kinds of situations was Jesus talking about? Situations like being despitefully used, harmed, lied about, stolen from, having all manner of evil spoken about and falsely accused. These are the situations that surely bring out the worst in anybody.
How does Jesus expect those who love Him to respond? Simply stated, in the face of gross wickedness against them, the true sheep must respond with love – by giving and blessing instead. So if that is the primary way to know if someone truly loves Jesus, then how in the world can anyone know what a person is really like when he or she is not on the stage, not on camera, and not creating their illusion? The answer is – without spending plenty of time personally with them when they are not being watched, there simply is no way to know except by discernment from the Holy Spirit.
Discernment is a rare and precious gift, and it can make the difference between Heaven and Hell for the few who have it. Even with all the bad things these hirelings stand for, we do have to give them credit for one thing – they have an extremely difficult and stressful job. Contrary to a movie maker whose product has a beginning and an end, these hirelings have an illusion they must maintain week after week. Keeping their audience spell-bound for such long periods of time requires plenty of creativity and considerable energy. Yet probably their greatest challenge is monitoring their stage and keeping it impeccably clean. The right amount of Truth getting into the hands of their audience could quickly unravel all their words, break all their spell, and make all the illusion disappear in a flash before everyone’s eyes.
Their stage is the world. Their illusion is created for the world, and is based entirely on the words they speak to the world. Abracadabra – “As they speak they create.” And every word that they have spoken which does not line up with Truth brings greater vulnerability to who they are and what they do. Any Truth contradicting their lies can jeopardize everything which they have worked so carefully to create. Truth therefore becomes their greatest enemy, and guarding against Truth becomes their highest priority. The illusionists must not allow any “unauthorized” person to perform on their stage. Only those who are tight-lipped, or better yet, naïve and unseeing of the Truth, can be trusted on the stage.
The illusionist must watch carefully all actors and actresses, all stagehands, and even all the extras, lest any of them compromise the illusion by presenting Truth. Moreover the public parts of the stage – the parts which the illusionists do not own – require intense monitoring. Anyone with a public voice and access to the Truth is like inoperable cancer to the illusionists. The people he owns he can easily control. But the other people he can only try to control, and sometimes his attempts get pretty nasty.Unfortunately for these illusionists, there are also times when actual believers come to join their “ministry”. Those true believers are nothing but headaches. They pose great threat to the illusionists, and the illusionists have to watch them like hawks.
True believers and what they stand for are totally opposite of what the illusionists believe and what they stand for. True believers stand for the Truth for they have been set free by it. The illusionists despise the Truth, because they know it would expose and destroy everything they do. John 3:20 and 21 tells us that “Everyone who does wrong hates the Light and will not come to the Light – he doesn’t want his works to be seen in the light. But anyone who lives in the Truth comes to the Light so that his works may be seen to have been done in God.” Sometimes true believers can be watered down or “scared down”. Although they see deception and lies around them, many of them do not dare risk themselves by “standing up”.
Some of them may stand up at first, but after getting severely chastened or shunned, they learn never to stand up for Truth again. The true believers who are staunch in faith and unwilling to compromise are a different matter. I call them “the faithful ones”. They remain faithful to the Lord and faithful to the Truth regardless of the cost. If such people unknowingly join an illusionist ministry, they will never experience any respect or welcome there. As soon as those faithful ones are identified for who they are, the illusionists immediately go to work on them. The illusionists must move carefully and quickly, before any of their lies and secrets are discovered and exposed. The illusionists first harass the faithful ones, hoping they will leave on their own. If that takes too long, the illusionists then work their lies and tricks to create illusions about them. They spin cunning excuses that would appear to be just cause for removing them. Either way, given enough time, half truths, and trickery, the “faithful ones” – to be sure – will eventually be cast to the streets like dogs, and like the many who have gone before them.
Abracadabra – “Say the words and create whatever you wish”. Yes, even the vilest of people can become saints for an hour or two, given the right skills and – most assuredly – absolute control over their stage.
In 1965 a man named Stanley Frodsham gave a startling prophecy concerning the last days. Much of it concerns spiritual leaders and how the Godly ones will turn away from the Lord. He gives serious warning concerning them. Here are a few segments from that prophecy. “Take heed to yourselves lest ye be puffed up and think that you have arrived. Listen to the messengers, but do not hold man’s persons in admiration. For many whom I shall anoint mightily with signs and miracles shall become lifted up and shall fall by the wayside. I do not do this willingly; I have made provision that they might stand. I call many into this ministry and equip them, but remember that many shall fall. They shall be like bright lights, and the people shall delight in them. But they shall be taken over by deceiving spirits, and shall lead many of My people astray.” ***** “Be not deceived, for the deceiver will first work to gain the hearts of many and then shall bring forth his insidious doctrines. You cannot discern those who are of Me and those who are not of Me when they start to preach. ***** The minister of righteousness shall be on this wise: his life shall agree with the Word, and his lips shall give forth that which is wholly true, and it will be no mixture. When the mixture appears, then you will know he is not a minister of righteousness. The deceivers speak first the truth and then error to cover their own sins, which they love. (The entire prophecy can be found various places on the internet, including http://truthinscripture.com/2010/12/28/stanley-frodsham-1965-prophecy/ )
Believers have been fully warned. In this last hour, the actors and actresses have come in great numbers and do their craft as well trained and well disguised agents of darkness. Many dark agents speak the part, sing the part, worship the part, cry the part. They “Hallelujah!” the part, “happy frown” the part, “Worship Him, people!” the part, even “shake their holy head ‘no’” the part. They do it all with apparent authenticity and admittedly polished skill. Yet all the while, after each stage show, many of these same people return to their lives of unrepentant fornication, deceit, drunkenness, coveting, lies, adultery, sorcery, faithlessness, and sometimes even murder.
The devil is desperate to get as many souls as he can. Until you have the privilege of living or working with them “behind stage”, beware of all who lead souls and claim to be of Jesus. Do not be impressed by a stage or TV camera. Remember that acting is an art. If someone is good enough at it and has the stage he needs, he can convince almost anybody of almost anything,. Do not look at a man’s past as surety for who he is now. Without truly testing a man’s fruits, we do not really know what resides in him. The Word of God will not return void, regardless of who speaks it. Even an atheist can read the Bible aloud and someone get saved in its hearing.
As Stanley Frodsham forewarned, many of those who in the past loved Jesus and preached the Truth with great anointing, will in the last days be seduced by their own lust and turn away from the Truth.
Do not follow man. Invite Jesus into your heart and life. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you instead, and He will. Do not get your truth from man. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth using the Word of God, and He will.
“If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” Matthew 5.14