“Sow A Seed” Manipulation [False ‘Apostle’ Sylvia W. Cunningham]

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Before I get into the main topic of the article, I’d like to make two things clear:

Number 1. I firmly believe in, teach, and regularly practice New Covenant giving.

A simple definition of New Covenant giving is giving like Jesus.

This means ministering to people free of charge and meeting urgent needs (e.g., food, clothing, shelter, evangelism/mission work, visiting the sick and imprisoned, medical care, transportation, educational needs, and helping fellow Christians who are suffering persecution).

I believe that generous giving should come naturally for Christians, because we have received God’s generous free gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

The greatest act of giving was Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross. In it, God demonstrated His love, mercy, grace, and generosity towards us. I believe that this should be the centerpiece from which our giving flows in the New Covenant.

“We know what real love is because Jesus gave up His life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion–how can God’s love be in that person? Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.” (1 John 3:16-18)

I felt the need to state my position on giving, because some professing Christians will judge your motives and assume that if you speak against “sow a seed” manipulation, then you must be “stingy, selfish, greedy” and “you don’t believe in giving.” Well, that isn’t true. I believe in giving and I encourage God’s people to be generous.

My goal is not to persuade anyone NOT to give. My goal is to urge professing Christians to use discernment and recognize when they are being persuaded to give through manipulation and false teaching.

Many professing Christians seem to believe that as long as they give money to a “church” or “ministry,” then that’s all that matters and they have done their service unto God.

They don’t use discernment and inspect the teachings and methods that are used to raise funds. All it takes is a Bible quote and an emotional plea, and like well-programmed robots, they automatically and unquestioningly fork over cash.

Professing Christians are more skeptical and wary of people who ask them for money outside of church. But when it comes to giving to a “church” or “ministry,” they tend to set aside their common sense and logic, and ignore all of the warnings in Scripture about false shepherds making merchandise of men.

There is a reason why Jesus told us to be as wise as serpents and as gentle as doves. It is because we are like sheep in the midst of wolves.

The people of God need to be more careful and discerning when anyone asks us for money, whether it’s someone outside of the church or someone with the title “pastor, bishop, apostle, prophet, evangelist, minister, reverend, etc.”

It is important that we give. But it’s also important that we give according to the truth of God’s word, not manipulation and false teaching.

God is big on giving — and He’s also big on TRUTH. Do a Bible search on the word “truth”, and see how many times it appears in Scripture. The results will show you that truth is of utmost importance to God. Is the truth important to you? Do you have a love for the truth?

Jesus said that He is the Truth (John 14:6). He said that those who worship the Father must worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:24).

In John 8:31-32, Jesus said that if we abide in His word, then we will know the truth and the truth will set us free.

Truth and freedom go hand in hand.

Galatians 5:1 says that it was for freedom that Christ set us free. If someone is manipulating you to give them money based on a lie, then they are putting you back in spiritual shackles and infringing on your freedom in Christ.

God wants us to give freely — not in response to manipulation, intimidation, threats, scare tactics, or greed.  

When we give freely and cheerfully according to the truth of God’s word, it glorifies our Father in Heaven, builds up the body of Christ, displays Jesus to the world, and reaps a bountiful harvest. This is the type of giving I support.

But I do not support the type of “giving” that is based on false teaching, manipulation, and misleading people. No born-again Christian in their right mind should support that.

Number 2. This article is not an “attack” on Sylvia W. Cunningham. She is not being “bashed” “slandered” or “persecuted by the devil.” She is being held accountable to the truth of God’s word.

Ms. Cunningham has a public platform. And when a religious leader manipulates people publicly, they will be addressed publicly. A public platform brings public scrutiny.

Many religious leaders seem not to understand this. They think that they can say and do whatever they please with no accountability, and that anyone who addresses their error is “attacking” them.

Oh, they love to talk about others being “accountable” to them, but when the tables are turned and they are the ones being held accountable for sinful conduct and false teaching — all of a sudden they play the victim and claim that they are being “persecuted by the devil.”

They claim to be so anointed, spiritually mature, and humble. But when people admonish them and reprove their errors, they become extremely prideful, angry, and childish. Honestly, I find this sort of behavior shameful for people who claim to be Christian leaders.

Being corrected on Facebook is not persecution in the slightest. Persecution is suffering for righteousness sake — not being reproved for teaching error.

Christians overseas are suffering real persecution, while religious leaders in America claim that the “devil is attacking them” because someone corrected something that they said on Facebook.

As children of God, we must learn the difference between persecution and correction, and learn how to accept both.

Moving onto the main topic of the article. . . .

Sylvia W. Cunningham is the founder of Ecclesia Worship Center located in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

ef5c9c_4e56ca4647384918b7c294f70bc06495.jpg_1024On August 5, 2014, Ms. Cunningham posted a status on her Facebook page stating that one of her supporters came to Ecclesia Worship Center two weeks ago and made a donation, and now, this supporter’s settlement check is on the way. See the screenshot below.

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Ms. Cunningham’s post suggests that this person’s settlement check is on the way because she “sowed a seed on the altar.”

At first glance, this would seem to confirm or prove the seed-faith teaching that if you “sow a seed” (give money) to a “church” or “ministry,” then God will be so pleased that He showers you with financial blessings.

People who don’t pay close attention may find Ms. Cunningham’s post convincing and be persuaded to “sow a seed” into her religious organization — hoping that they too, will receive a financial miracle. Well, not so fast. . . .

I am glad that this person’s settlement check is on the way. However, it is misleading for Ms. Cunningham to suggest that this person’s settlement check is on the way because she made a donation to Ecclesia Worship Center. Why is that?

If you look at the comments in the screenshot, on August 7 the supporter posted an image which shows a portion of the letter.

The letter shows that the settlement amount of $6,097.52 was previously agreed upon by the insured and the claimant. Therefore, the settlement was already on the way, and this is not an example of someone “reaping a financial miracle” because they “sowed a seed.”

Even if the claimant never gave one penny to Ecclesia Worship Center, she still would have receive a settlement check of $6,097.52 because it was already agreed upon by the insurer.

Sylvia W. Cunningham is not the only religious leader who has falsely claimed that someone received “miracle money” or some other miracle as a result of “sowing a seed” into a religious organization.

Many other Word-Faith leaders have made similar claims that someone gave money to their organization, and in response, received financial miracles, healing miracles, and other miracles.

These false testimonies create false hope and are used to manipulate people to fork over cash, increase donations, and increase the personal wealth of false teachers and false prophets in the church. This is misleading, dishonest, and manipulative.

“Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves. You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. . .” (Matthew 7:15-16a)

“But there were also false prophets in Israel, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will cleverly teach destructive heresies and even deny the Master who bought them. In this way, they will bring sudden destruction on themselves. Many will follow their evil teaching and shameful immorality. And because of these teachers, the way of truth will be slandered. In their greed they will make up clever lies to get hold of your money. But God condemned them long ago, and their destruction will not be delayed.” (2 Peter 2:1-3)

The Truth About “Sowing A Seed”

A lot of this chatter about “sowing a seed” comes from the Word-Faith doctrine called seed-faith giving.

Some professing Christians would say that “seed-faith giving is a Biblical teaching based on the spiritual law or principle of sowing and reaping.” But the truth is that it’s a mixture of truth and error, which makes it a religious deception.

While it is true that God is pleased by our faith and obedience, it isn’t true that we must fork over cash to a “church” or “ministry” in order to get God to bless us or move on our behalf.

While it is true that generous giving reaps blessings, it isn’t true that these blessings will always be material (money, good health, houses, cars, etc). Nor is it true that these blessings will always be received in the here and now. There are eternal rewards that we will not receive until the world to come.

Paul the apostle said that God has good things in store for us that we cannot even imagine. Seed-faith giving takes the focus off of the eternal, and places the focus on temporal earthly things.

Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.” (Colossians 3:1-2)

Seed-faith giving teaches that “if you have a need, then sow a seed” — the ‘seed’ being your money. The message is, if you want God to bless you or move on your behalf, then you need to pay up.

This teaching does not come from God and the Holy Scriptures, but from the late Oral Roberts, a popular Word-Faith leader.

This “sow a seed” scam has raised an obscene amount of money and quickly spread like cancer throughout the church world.

Even religious leaders who would not describe themselves as Word-Faith teach seed-faith giving because it such an effective way to rake in loads of cash.

One of the problems with seed-faith giving is that it is based on Word-Faith heresy.

Word-Faith heresy teaches that God wants us to be wealthy, healthy, and happy, and if we think positive, speak positive, and most importantly, give LOTS of money to Word of Faith leaders — God will be so pleased that He blesses us and makes us rich. If you believe this false ‘gospel’ and you do not understand what is wrong with it, I encourage you to watch A Call For Discernment by Justin Peters.

Word-Faith leaders claim that if you want to receive this prosperity from God, then you need to give them your money as a “seed.” It is a very slick way of leeching free money from unsuspecting people under a false pretense of “sowing into the kingdom.”

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Jesus Never Defined Seed As Money

In every Scripture where Jesus used the word “seed”, He never ever defined it as money. Yet many religious leaders speak of ‘seed’ primarily as money. This is a problem.

In Luke chapter 8, Jesus taught a parable about a farmer who went out to plant his seed. But the seed wasn’t money — the seed was the word of God.

This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is God’s word.” (Luke 8:11)

In Matthew 13:24-30, Jesus taught the parable of the wheat and the weeds. In verses 36-43, He explained the meaning of this parable and He defined the good seed as the people of the Kingdom– not money.

Jesus replied, “The Son of Man is the farmer who plants the good seed. The field is the world, and the good seed represents the people of the Kingdom. The weeds are the people who belong to the evil one.”

In 1 Corinthians 3:6-7, the seed was the Gospel message, the word of God — not money.

I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow.”

1 Peter 1:23 the “imperishable seed” is the word of God — not money.

“For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.

2 Corinthians 9 & Seed

In 2 Corinthians 9, Paul used the word “seed” in reference to material assistance.

Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop.” (2 Corinthians 9:6)

It’s important to note that Paul didn’t tell the saints at Corinth to “sow into his ministry.” The collection wasn’t for him. It was for poor persecuted Christians in Jerusalem. NONE of the offering was spent on operating costs and luxuries. ALL of it went to Believers who were in urgent need.

Seed-Faith Giving Encourages People To Give Out Of Selfish Motives

When we give, the most important thing is not how much we give, but WHY we give. In other words, our motives. God is not looking at the amount, but at our heart.

Our giving should be motivated by love, grace, mercy, faith, and a desire to glorify our heavenly Father. But seed-faith giving encourages people to give out of selfish motives — in order to get something for themselves.

When Jesus said Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.” He was not talking about money and implying that if we give money to a religious organization, God will make us rich and wealthy.

If you read the entire chapter, Jesus was talking about how we treat others and being compassionate just as our heavenly Father is compassionate. The way that we treat others will be measured back to us. If we don’t forgive others, then God won’t forgive us. But if we’re merciful, God will show us mercy. “The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.” (Luke 6:38)

Word-Faith leaders have taken a passage about showing compassion to others, and twisted it into a false teaching about giving THEM money in exchange for earthly riches, good health, a happy marriage, etc.

The Seed-Faith Heresy Contradicts The Gospel Message

The Gospel message teaches that God saved us by grace through faith — we didn’t earn it. It was a free gift of God’s love and grace. Grace means unmerited favor and unearned blessings.

The seed-faith heresy turns the Gospel message of grace on its head by teaching people that they have to “pay up” to buy God’s favor.

Christian giving should reflect the Gospel message of grace. But it isn’t grace when money is given out of selfish motives.

A gift is something given voluntarily without payment in return.” If you donate money hoping to earn a blessing from God, your donation is not a gift. A gift is given voluntarily, freely, and without any strings attached or an expectation to receive something in exchange.

Let’s say for example that it’s your friend’s birthday and you buy them a gift. Do you expect them to give you money in exchange for their birthday gift? Does the gift have strings attached and you expect them to do a favor for you in exchange? Of course not. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be a gift — it would be a business transaction or an attempt to manipulate your friend into giving you want you want. This is not how God operates and this is not how God wants us to operate.

We give freely because we have received freely. We give to show others the love and grace of God. We give because we believe in the Son of God. We do not give because we are trying to receive something in exchange.

Seed-Faith Giving Portrays God as a business or a prostitute who performs favors in exchange for money

The teaching that “if you have a need, sow a seed” misrepresents God as a business or a prostitute.

A business will only provide goods and services if you pay them. A prostitute only performs favors in exchange for money. But God does not take care of us in exchange for money. He is not a business or a prostitute.

If you think that you have to fork over cash in order for God to bless you or give you favor, may I re-introduce you to the True and Living God, Jehovah Jireh — the Great Provider.

He is a gracious, merciful heavenly Father who provides for us and meets our needs because He loves us, not because we give Him anything.

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In Matthew 7:26, Jesus said “Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?”

In the surrounding context, the Lord was teaching us not to worry about whether our needs will be met, and to trust God to provide for us. Jesus pointed to the birds of the air as an example of how God provides. The birds of the air don’t sow any seeds, yet God provides for them.

Aren’t we more important than birds? Yes we are. But sadly, some of us have been taught that God won’t provide for us unless we “sow a seed.” This distorts who God is. If the Lord doesn’t require birds to “sow a seed” before He meets their need, then He most certainly won’t require His children to “sow a seed” before He meets our need. As we seek His Kingdom and His righteousness, He will take care of our needs because He loves us.

In John 10, Jesus said that He is the Good Shepherd who takes care of His flock and leads us to good pastures. Jesus did not say that we must “sow a seed” before He leads us to good pastures and gives us abundant life. We receive “life more abundantly” by grace through faith, not by our own works.

Even during the Old Covenant, when the children of Israel traveled through the wilderness God took care of their needs. He provided them with water, quail, manna, shelter, and kept their clothes from wearing out.

At this time, the children of Israel had not even tithed yet or given a firstfruit offering (they did not give their first tithe and their first firstfruit offering until after they entered the promised land). Yet God provided for them in the wilderness because of His mercy and kindness.

Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters; And you who have no money come, buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. “Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and delight yourself in abundance.” (Isaiah 55:1-2)

The book of Galatians speaks against the idea that we can earn God’s favor and blessings by doing religious works.

We do not give money to earn God’s favor or get Him to move on our behalf. We give because we love God and we love people. Giving is what we do because God has provided for us and we want to “pay it forward” by providing for others, not because we are trying to get God to provide for us.

God even provides for unrighteous people who don’t serve Him — that is how kind He is. He shines on the just and the unjust. If we think that we have to “sow a seed” to earn God’s kindness, then we do not understand who God is.

Oh how I pray and yearn for God’s people to know and embrace His love for us. It is not based on what we put in the offering plate. It is simply who He is. For God is love!

Seed-Faith Giving Leads People To Give Under Pressure

2 Corinthians 9:7 says “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.” 

God wants us to give cheerfully, not because we feel pressured to give.

But when a leader has trained you to think that “God won’t move on your behalf” “meet your need” or “release your blessings” unless you “sow a seed”, that puts you under a certain amount of pressure to give.

You feel like the Lord won’t answer your prayers and bless you unless you fork over some cash to a “church” or “ministry.”

Your desire to see God move in your life becomes tied to your ability to give money away. God doesn’t want us to give under this sort of pressure. We are not walking in our blood-bought freedom if we are under bondage and pressure to give money away so that God will meet our needs.

Next time a religious leader tells you to “sow a seed”, ask them to “sow a money seed” into your bank account and see what they say. If they refuse to sow financially into your life, then why are you sowing financially into theirs? Where is the reciprocity?

If they claim that they “sow spiritual things” into your life and you support them by “sowing money” into their “church” or “ministry” — direct them to the New Testament where Jesus and the apostles sowed spiritual things AND material things (food, clothing, money, etc) into people’s lives.

Leaders are suppose to lead by example, and not just by preaching at you. So if they are constantly telling you to sow material things into their “church” or “ministry,” but they are not sowing material things into your ministry and helping you in your time of need — they are actually using you to serve themselves instead of serving God by serving you.

Some of these leaders should have more than enough money by now. Some of them have six figures or seven figures in the bank. Why do they still “need” you to “sow a seed”? Who is in greater need? You or them? Who has more resources at their disposal? You or them?

If they have more money than you, then why are they asking you for money? Shouldn’t they be sowing into your life? Does it make sense for someone who has less to “sow a seed” into the “ministry” of someone who has more?

If seed-faith giving really works, then why don’t these leaders give away their entire savings? Theoretically, they would reap a greater amount in return, right? But we all know that they will never give away their entire savings, because they know that seed-faith giving isn’t true and there is no guarantee that you will become richer by giving money away.

The purpose of seed-faith giving isn’t to enrich those in the pews. It’s meant to enrich those in the pulpit who tell everyone else to “sow a seed” into their organization.

Instead of giving to false apostles who manipulate their supporters with false testimonies, give to those who are truly in need and support ministries that are honest, Biblically sound, and financially accountable.

You see, we are not like the many hucksters who preach for personal profit. We preach the word of God with sincerity and with Christ’s authority, knowing that God is watching us.” (2 Corinthians 2:17)

We reject all shameful deeds and underhanded methods. We don’t try to trick anyone or distort the word of God. We tell the truth before God, and all who are honest know this.” (2 Corinthians 4:2)

Andy Thompson, Founder Of World Overcomers Christian Church, MOCKS Members Who Request Financial Transparency

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Over the past few decades, the churchworld has been rocked by one financial scandal after another.

An internet search of the phrase “church financial abuse” brings up news headlines of embezzlement, fraud, exploitation, deceptive fund-raising tactics, money laundering, ponzi schemes, tax evasion, and lavish spending on frivolous and unnecessary projects and programs.

This is not to imply that most religious leaders are crooks — most Christians do not steal from their church. Nevertheless, financial corruption in the churchworld is a serious problem and warrants great concern.

According to the Status of Global Mission report from the Center for the Study of Global Christianity, professing Christians worldwide will commit more than $37 billion in church-related financial fraud during 2013. Meanwhile only $33 billion will be spent on mission work globally in 2013. This means that more money will be embezzled than spent on mission work.

An estimated $100 million is embezzled everyday, and church embezzlement increases at an annual rate of almost 6%. Researchers believe that church financial fraud will reach the $60 billion mark by 2025. This figure doesn’t include the 80% of all cases of church financial fraud that go unreported.

Churches Are Targets For Thieves

A church is suppose to be a loving spiritual family that learns together, worships God together, and reaches out into the community together. It is one of the most trusting environments where people believe the best of one another and their leaders.

For this reason, many Christians believe that financial fraud could never happen in their church. They do not believe that someone they trust and fellowship with would steal church funds for their own personal use, financially exploit them, or mismanage contributions. However, this very attitude that “it could never happen in my church” is what makes churches an easy target for thieves.

This is not to say that we should be cynical and suspicious of one another, or automatically assume that anyone who handles money in the church is a thief or financially irresponsible. We should be able to trust those who profess Christ, especially friends that we have known for years and worshiped with — but we ought to be mindful that even those who profess Christ can and do struggle with the lusts of the flesh and fall into temptation.

We also ought to be mindful of the many warnings in Scripture of those who would creep into the house of God unawares and make merchandise of the saints. We cannot afford to be naive, gullible, aloof, and oblivious to the reality of wolves in sheep’s clothing who sneak over the wall of the sheepfold to fleece unsuspecting Believers.

Indeed, one common factor in most church embezzlement crimes is that the thief was someone the congregation trusted. This should not surprise us, because in Scripture, those who stole from God’s people were often well-trusted individuals.

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Financial Corruption & Word Of Faith/Prosperity Theology

After much observation and research, I can only conclude that Word of Faith (WOF) theology (also called the “prosperity gospel”) promotes a false god, and not the True and Living God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It promotes another “faith” and not the faith that God entrusted once for all time to his holy people (Jude 1:3).

The false god of WOF theology “created the world by speaking words of faith.” This is utterly false and slanderous of the nature of the True God. The LORD of hosts does not need to “speak words of faith” because faith deals with believing in the unseen, and there is nothing unseen to God — He sees all and knows all. He simply wills what He desires, and it happens. He doesn’t need to believe in anyone or anything or exercise faith — He is the object of our faith.

The core concept of WOF theology is a false belief in the “faith-force” (or the force of faith). This concept branches off of the false belief that “god created the world by speaking words of faith.” It states that “since god created the world by speaking words of faith, then we too can create our own reality by speaking words of faith.”

This “faith-force” is not the same thing as the word “faith” in Scripture. Like all pseudo-christian cults, WOF theology uses terms from the Bible but defines them very differently — thus, it “sounds Scriptural” but has a totally different meaning opposite of Scripture.

When WOF leaders use the term “faith” they are not referring to the definition of faith in Hebrews 11:1. They are referring to an impersonal force or power that one can manipulate in order to create your own reality and become prosperous in every area of life (namely in the areas of health and wealth).

Genuine faith however, (the faith of Abraham and the patriarchs) is not an impersonal force or power that we can manipulate to create our own reality and manifest our own desires. Hebrews 11:1 says that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of THINGS NOT SEEN.” The phrase “things hoped for” isn’t referring to temporal material things such as perfect health and wealth, but eternal spiritual blessings such as redemption and living with God forever in the new earth and the new heavens.

There is a Scripture which says why do you hope for what you can see? Genuine faith is about hoping for things you cannot see. But the “faith-force” of WOF theology is about obtaining things that you CAN SEE (money, a big house, a nice car, perfect health, a successful business, etc). Do you see the difference?

Hebrews 11 lists saints who were noted for their faith. It says that they all died in faith and they did not receive God’s promises IN THIS PRESENT WORLD, but they saw them coming far in the future and were glad. Genuine faith is about trusting God for eternal spiritual blessings that cannot be seen nor received in this present fallen world, but received in the future world to come. This is very different from the WOF concept of “faith” which is about practicing various rituals (such as creative visualization, positive thinking, positive confession, and “seed-giving”) to manipulate a “faith-force” and obtain temporal things in this present life.

Many WOF supporters credit Kenneth E. Hagin as the “father” of WOF theology. But much of WOF theology actually traces back to a man named E.W. Kenyon (1867-1948). “By 1950 Hagin had started reading Kenyon’s books and adopting some of Kenyon’s teachings as his own. In later years Hagin published articles and books heavily indebted to Kenyon, in several instances clearly plagiarizing from his books.” (watchman.org, click here for the reference)

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E.W. Kenyon, one of the main religious influences of Kenneth E. Hagin, said that “. . . the cross has no salvation in it. It is a place of failure and defeat.” (Advanced Bible Course, p.279). He died in a coma due to a malignant tumor.

E.W. Kenyon’s influence on the theology of Kenneth E. Hagin should be of great concern to WOF supporters. Kenyon studied at the Emerson College of Oratory in Boston, which promoted occult New Thought metaphysics.

In a nutshell, New Thought metaphysics teaches that our mind/thoughts control everything, and that God is not necessarily a personal being, but an impersonal “mind” or “consciousness” which is activated by our thoughts and manifests them in the natural realm.

If man can control and create his own reality with his thoughts and God is simply the vehicle that materializes our thoughts, then in essence what you have is a Satanic belief-system that exalts man as his own “god” and demotes God to the level of an impersonal genie in a bottle. This is nothing but witchcraft and sorcery.

For a time, this occult philosophy was rightfully rejected as damnable heresy in the churchworld, but eventually, it was sprinkled with ‘Christianese’ overtones and introduced to the American Church as a “new revelation” to “claim the promises of God (for health and wealth) by thinking and speaking words of faith” and of course by sending LOTS of money to WOF leaders, which allegedly pleases God SO much that He will eventually make you rich too. And there you have WOF theology.

It was quickly embraced in American churchianity, because many in the pews and pulpits of America were already inundated by a mild form of the prosperity ‘gospel’ — the materialistic narcissistic “American dream.” So, to hear a ”new revelation” that ”God approves of our greed and carnal pursuits for temporal pleasures” seemed too good to be true. And that it is. It is a lie and a doctrine of demons. It is a false “abracadabra gospel” and it should be rejected by every Christian who aims to live by faith (GENUINE FAITH) in the Son of God, and not by a “faith-force” to obtain temporary things.

Jesus said that every tree is known by its fruit (Matthew 7:15-20), and the fruit of WOF theology is a rotten crop of Biblically-illiterate religious leaders enriching themselves at the expense of millions of Biblically-illiterate pew-sitters — many of whom have been taught that “no one is allowed to question or critique the man of God” because “it’s wrong to judge God’s anointed, just pray and keep quiet!!” 

What we have are supposed “untouchable” false teachers ruling over religious ponzi schemes and multilevel marketing pyramids. While the worker bees at the bottom of the WOF pyramid scheme are told to just “have faith in God” for their breakthrough and continue to “sow a seed (money)” into the religious corporations of CEO’s, the CEO’s collect hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars in the here and now. The worker bees rarely notice that most of the money is trickling UP to the top of the hierarchy while they remain broke, in debt, and living from check to check.

It should come as no surprise to us, that such a diabolical movement is characterized by a lack of financial transparency and accountability. Why would those who financially prosper themselves “in the name of Jesus” via Scripture-twisting welcome any meaningful financial disclosure? They would expose themselves even further. Yet they unwittingly incriminate themselves by refusing to be financially transparent.

Take For Example Andy Thompson, The “Hip & Trendy” Founder & Top Leader of World Overcomers Christian Church (WOCC) in Durham, North Carolina.
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Andy Thompson is a diehard proponent of WOF theology. Like many other WOF leaders, he received “formal religious indoctrination training” at RHEMA Bible Training Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

On Sunday November 10, 2013, Thompson gave a message called “Seed Power” (click here to listen). This message was part of a series about money.

Thompson began in 1 Chronicles 29, the chapter where Solomon was crowned king, and king David and the children of Israel voluntarily contributed freewill gifts as materials for the construction of Solomon’s Temple.

“Using every resource at my command, I [king David] have gathered as much as I could for building the Temple of my God. Now there is enough gold, silver, bronze, iron, and wood, as well as great quantities of onyx, other precious stones, costly jewels, and all kinds of fine stone and marble. . . Now then, who will follow my example and give offerings to the Lord today? Then the family leaders, the leaders of the tribes of Israel, the generals and captains of the army, and the king’s administrative officers all gave willingly. . . The people rejoiced over the offerings, for they had given freely and wholeheartedly to the Lord, and King David was filled with joy.” (1 Chronicles 29:2, 5b-6, 9)

Without any expositional teaching on 1 Chronicles 29, Thompson leaped to 1 Corinthians 3:1-7 and linked it to the subject of money and his message title “Seed Power.”

What Is The Seed?

Another prominent WOF concept is “seed-faith giving” — the seed being money of course.

The idea behind seed-faith giving is that sending lots of money to WOF leaders and organizations “activates your faith” and “unlocks blessings in the spirit realm.”  WOF supporters are taught that if they want to please God and receive miraculous blessings, then they must “sow money seeds of faith” into the “ministries” of WOF leaders.

Once again, WOF theology uses a term from the Bible, but redefines it very differently. This grave error is rooted in greed, covetousness, and the love of money.

In 1 Corinthians 3:1-7, the word “seed” means the word of God (the Good News). Paul said that he planted the seed (the Gospel), Apollos watered it, but God made it grow and give new life to the saints at Corinth.

In 2 Corinthians 9:6-12, Paul mentioned seed again: “Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop. You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. As the Scriptures say, “They share freely and give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.” For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you. Yes, you will be enriched in every way so that you can always be generous. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will thank God. So two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God.”

The word “seed” in this passage is not referring to hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars being poured into salaries, luxury vehicles, huge houses, manicured lawns, bodyguards, personal jets, expensive hotel suites, and elaborate high-tech church-buildings.

If you read 2 Corinthians chapters 8-9 to get the entire context, it becomes clear that various assemblies took up an offering for poor persecuted saints in Jerusalem, hence the mention of bread (food).

The saints in Corinth and Macedonia freely and joyously contributed basic necessities, so that the saints in Jerusalem would be relieved and could continue to sow the word of God (the Good News).

Notice that there is no mention of tithing in Paul’s request for the poor saints in Jerusalem. He did not guilt-trip the Believers at Corinth, coerce them, condescend them, make any emotional pleas, or twist their arm with Malachi 3 (“you’re robbing God and cursed with a curse!”). He simply said:

Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have. Of course, I don’t mean your giving should make life easy for others and hard for yourselves. I only mean that there should be some equality. Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal. As the Scriptures say, “Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough.” (2 Corinthians 8:12-15)

The new commandment that Jesus gave us is to love one another as He loves us. He said that the world will know that we are His disciples by our love for one another — this means having an equality among us and sharing with one another to meet urgent needs. Not raising obscene amounts of money to financially support the fancy lifestyle of one or a few leaders AND their entire immediate family, and constructing state-of-the-art church-buildings with a cafe, a restaurant, cutting edge audio-visual equipment, etc.

In Luke 8:4-15, Christ taught a parable of the sower, and He defined the seed as the word of God: “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is God’s word. . . the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.”

In 1 Peter 1:23, the word “seed” is also defined as the word of God: “for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.”

Andy Thompson’s false parallels reveal that he does not understand what seed is according to the teaching of Christ.

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For example, Thompson likened God’s seed to a man’s seed (semen, sperm). Yet the apostles clearly stated that God’s seed is NOT like the seed of a man. For example, in 1 Peter 1:23, Peter said that we have been born again NOT from human seed which is perishable and corruptible, but from the imperishable and incorruptible living word of God.

Did you catch the distinction that Peter made between God’s seed and man’s seed? He said that man’s seed is perishable (subject to decay) and corruptible (subject to corruption). But God’s seed is imperishable (everlasting) and incorruptible (pure and incapable of being corrupted).

In John 3, Jesus spoke with a high-ranking religious Pharisee named Nicodemus. And Nicodemus, being a Jew, needed to understand that he could not enter the Kingdom of God merely because he descended from the physical seed of Abraham. Physical seed reproduces physical life. But God’s seed reproduces spiritual life. As Jesus told Nicodemus, “That which is born of the flesh is fleshly, and that which is born of the Spirit is spiritual.” (John 3:6)

John the apostle also made a distinction between God’s seed and man’s seed in John 1:12-13: “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”

As you can see, God’s seed and man’s seed are very different. Whereas man’s seed is carnal, God’s seed is spiritual.

Jesus nor the apostles likened God’s seed to man’s seed. They made a distinction between the two to show that God’s seed is totally different from man’s seed. Personally, I find it very concerning and disturbing when religious leaders attempt to parallel God’s seed to sperm or semen. Another WOF leader, Eddie Long, made a similar false parallel in a sermon from the 1990’s.

Does God’s Seed Operate Like The American Economic System?

Thompson made another false parallel by likening God’s seed to the American economic system.

And I quote, “seed power is in a sense, capitalism. Our American economic system is based on seed power. It’s based on the idea that I give you something small, and you give it back to me bigger. I give you a hundred dollars, and you give me back a thousand. I invest, and when you give it back to me, it’s more. . . . So when the Lord says ‘Yeah, what I want you to do is, is I want you to give me a seed. I want you to sow into the kingdom, and I’ll tell you what, you give me a seed and I’ll give it back to you bigger than how you gave it, that really shouldn’t be that difficult for us to understand because we operate in seed power all the time. . . So when the Lord says, what I want you to do is, is I want you to give to the work of the kingdom of god. I’ll tell you what, give and it shall be given unto you again pressed down, shaken together, and running over. . . Tell you what, if you pay your tithes and you give your offerings, what you’re doing is you’re giving to my house and I’ll give it back more to you. You give me something small, I’ll give you back something big. You give me a hundred dollars and I’ll give it back to you multiplied.”

This statement confirms that Thompson does indeed define the seed as money, in step with the WOF concept of “seed giving.” I already demonstrated from Scripture that the seed is the living word of God, not money which is a man-made perishable non-living object which has no value besides what men ascribe to it, cannot reproduce itself, and must be manipulated by man in order to make a profit.

Thompson’s statement demonstrates one of the problems with WOF theology — it portrays God as if He and His Kingdom operate according to the same carnal elementary principles as the stock market, the economic system, or a casino. Colossians 2:8 warns Believers to avoid false teachers who would take them in bondage to such teaching:

“See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.”

The American economic system does not operate based on the same power as God’s seed (the word of God), but based on corrupt monetary policy, fraudulent banking practices, greed, covetousness, fear, predatory lending, borrowing, debt, inflationism, selfish ambition, a lust for power, domination and control, self-preservation, and the global agenda of a few banking families that wish to stay in power by placing all nations in financial bondage to them, consolidating these nations, and internally managing and orchestrating the rise and fall of various markets.

Whereas God’s love propels the power of His seed or word, the false worship of the idol “mammon” is what propels the American economic system. God’s seed cannot be likened to the American economic system — the two are diametrically-opposed to one another. Jesus plainly stated that His Kingdom is not of this world and does not operate by the fleshly elementary principles of the world.

Indeed, when people invest in the stock market, they expect a greater return. The purpose of investing money in a corporation is to make more money. But should Believers think this way when it comes to the Kingdom of God? Here is what Jesus said “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. . . ” (Luke 6:35)

In this passage, Jesus is speaking about loving our enemies. And He said to do good unto them and give to them expecting nothing in return. How much more should we freely give to fellow Christians for the work of Christ without expecting anything in return? Should our giving be motivated by unconditional love for others and a desire to glorify God, or should it be motivated by a selfish desire to receive more money back? Did Jesus die on the Cross for our sins because He loved us and sought to glorify the Father? Or because He was seeking to prosper Himself?

“Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” (Philippians 2:4-5)

Another problem that I noticed in Thompson’s previous statement, and pay attention here. . . . In 1 Corinthians 3:1-7, the leaders were the givers, and the people were the receivers. The seed was sown by the leaders into people they evangelized and the people were the receivers of that seed. Andy turned the tables by putting himself and his corporation in the position of the receiver and putting his congregation in the position of the giver. Yet once again, the text is not about Believers “sowing money seeds” into leaders, but about leaders sowing God’s word into the people they evangelize.

Paul the apostle said that the parent should store up for the child and not the other way around. In other words, those who are elders (mature shepherds of Christ) are suppose to be SERVANTS who GIVE of themselves and pour into others — not religious panhandlers who take, take, TAKE from God’s flock.

Jesus said that it is more blessed to GIVE than to receive. Yet Andy taught an entire series where he and his corporation are the receiver and WOCC congregants are the givers. A real elder will not twist Scripture to persuade you to “sow money seeds” into his religious corporation, but rather, plants and waters the good seed (the word of God) into your heart.

Now Let’s Put Luke 6:38 Back In Context

In Luke 6:38 Jesus said: “Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”

Andy twisted this passage to imply that if you “sow a money seed” into his corporation, God will give you even more money in return. And I quote, “I’ll tell you what, give and it shall be given unto you again pressed down, shaken together, and running over. . . Tell you what, if you pay your tithes and you give your offerings, what you’re doing is you’re giving to my house and I’ll give it back more to you. You give me something small, I’ll give you back something big. You give me a hundred dollars and I’ll give it back to you multiplied.”

This is a common WOF misinterpretation. But if you read the entire chapter of Luke 6, you will see that Jesus was not referring to money when He said that “it shall be given unto you again pressed down, shaken together, and running over.” He was saying that if we love our enemies, return blessings for cursing, give generously, show mercy, condemn not, and forgive others — God will bless us in the same way that we bless others. In short, the grace and mercy we extend to others will be extended to us by God. If we use a generous standard, then God will use a generous standard with us. Those who forgive others will be forgiven by God. Those who show mercy will be shown mercy by God.

God can most certainly bless us financially, but our reward is not a financial return in exchange for loving our enemies or providing for the work of Christ. Our reward is spiritual treasures hidden in Christ Jesus high above the American economic system, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal.

WOCC members, for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.

“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:1-3)

Why Did Andy Scoff At Those Who Requested Financial Transparency?

In the same message “Seed Power,” Thompson said “. . .  there are questions that are asked all the time, and one of the commonly asked questions, I just was in a meeting with my advisory board, and uh, just this past weekend. The advisory board is made up of some members of the church that have been asked to be on this board that gives us some advice.

And we were talking about it, one of the things they were saying to me is pastor Andy you’re preaching on tithing and giving and that’s great. But if you could just talk about where the tithe goes and talk about where the offering goes and if you could really explain that people would really give. As much as tithing and giving offerings is important, but also giving the explanation will also help people to give and people will be giving because they will know really where the tithe goes. And maybe you should just break it down and explain to them where the tithe goes.

And I said, I hear ya’ll, I agree with you no doubt about it. And today I’m going to answer that question where does the tithe go. I’m going to break it down for you really quickly and just let you know where your tithes and your offerings actually goes.

But before I do that, let me just say this and I didn’t really say this in the advisory meeting, but I’m saying today, that I get that, but to some extent, it’s a double standard when it comes to the Kingdom. . .  especially if you’re an investor. So if you’re an investor and you think okay, well I’m gonna invest a 100 dollars or whatever into Apple, how much of computer software technology do you have to understand for you to invest your money?

As much as you want to invest, the greater thing you’re thinking about is what’s my return? . . . You’re a shareholder, you may want to say okay what exactly are they doing with the money, but if you’re really honest, you don’t really don’t care what they do with the money, as long as you get a return on your money. . . .You don’t really need to know that [about the product], as long as you get a return. . . as long as the return is great, hey you’re pretty alright about it, as long as the return as great. Sometimes when it comes to the Kingdom though, we got to understand every little nuance and every little thing gotta be broken down.”

So, a member of WOCC’s advisory board suggested to Andy that maybe if they disclosed to congregants how funds are allocated, then perhaps congregants would be more inclined to give. This is a good suggestion — especially at a time when public criticism and skepticism of the Church (especially leaders) is at an all-time high due to financial scandals, sexual scandals, and corrupt theology (especially WOF theology). It would be wise for any organization that professes Christ and collects money in name of God to have meaningful financial transparency and accountability.

And by meaningful financial transparency, I do not mean standing on stage and rushing through a list of ‘charitable works’ like Andy did in this message. But providing congregants with a financial statement showing how much money was collected and how it was spent, and having public open meetings where congregants can review and discuss how their contributions are distributed.

Congregants should know how much of each dollar goes towards salaries, utilities, property upkeep/maintenance, evangelism, financial assistance/benevolence, etc. They are adults contributing their hard earned money and should be treated as such — not belittled and pat on the head like babies who don’t need to know their parents finances. The Scriptures speak about being a good steward of our resources, and understanding that we are accountable to God for how we manage or mismanage what He blesses us with.

Andy taught an entire series devoted to mooching money from WOCC members, yet he had the audacity to tell them in a mocking snarky manner that they don’t need to know how their money is spent “as long as they get a return”?

This glib attitude about ‘money and ministry’ is contrary to the transparency and mutual accountability of the apostles. In 2 Corinthians 8, we see that the saints appointed Titus to accompany apostolic workers as they transported a gift to the poor saints in Jerusalem.

“He [Titus] was appointed by the churches to accompany us as we take the offering to Jerusalem—a service that glorifies the Lord and shows our eagerness to help.We are traveling together to guard against any criticism for the way we are handling this generous gift. We are careful to be honorable before the Lord, but we also want everyone else to see that we are honorable. (2 Corinthians 8:19-21)

The apostles were not required to be financially transparent and accountable by the Roman government. They voluntarily chose to handle contributions in a transparent manner to guard against criticism and show people that they had integrity. They did not want to bring reproach upon the name of Christ or the reputation of the Church by bringing speculation, suspicions, and accusations on themselves. This way, everyone would see that they are honorable, and their integrity would bring glory to God.

One of the qualifications for an elder is that he must be above reproach — and a leader cannot be above reproach if he is secretive about church finances and tells congregants that they don’t need to see how their money is spent “as long as they get a return.” As I carefully listened to “Seed Power,” it was clear to me that Andy is very sensitive and offended about congregants knowing exactly how their money is allocated. He pretty much threw a lightweight attitude on stage and tried to cover it up with humor. He brought reproach upon himself.

I personally know that there are WOCC congregants who don’t care about “getting a return” and sincerely want to know how funds are allocated on a financial statement. Andy really underestimated the intellect of his congregation — people are observing how he speaks to them and making mental notes. Not everyone sitting in the audience “just cares about the money.” Andy insulted WOCC members who desire meaningful financial disclosure.

Thompson claimed that people who invest in Apple don’t care about how Apple products work, they only care about their return. That is so not true, it’s ridiculous. Apple investors are generally informed and enthusiastic about Apple products. Just as those who invested in Google were pretty informed and enthusiastic about Google.

Here’s a little food for thought. . . both Apple and Google publish public quarterly financial statements and disclose the salaries of their CEO’s. It seems that religious corporations like WOCC are the only institutions that refuse to regularly and openly disclose their financial information to contributors. Should the world be more transparent than a so-called “Christian church”?

Not only that, but even if you weren’t an Apple shareholder, you’d still be able to view their financial statement and request more information about how their products and services work. And they wouldn’t respond with snarky statements like “you aren’t an investor, so you don’t need to know how our products work! Why do you need every little thing broken down!? You don’t need to know how the iphone works, all you need to know is that you’ll make a return!”

Scripture shows that we are responsible to spend our money wisely. God cares about why we give (our motives), who we give to, and the stated purpose of the need. He is not pleased when we give with impure motives, give in ignorance (lacking essential information), give to the rich (they don’t NEED money, poor people do), give out of pressure or guilt (God loves a CHEERFUL giver), “sound our trumpet” when we give to receive praise from men (give in secret and our Father will reward us openly), and give to false shepherds or any agenda that contradicts the will of God.

The notion that “God only cares that we give. We aren’t responsible for what leaders do with our money” is wholly unbiblical and negligent. Both the Old and New Testaments show that God hates it when His people squander their resources on false leaders who make merchandise of them. He considers it idolatry.

In the Kingdom of God, financial accountability is a 2-way street — the giver is just as accountable as the receiver.

Andy accused those who request financial transparency of having a “double standard when it comes to the Kingdom.” But in reality, he is the one with a double standard. He’s perfectly fine with staff keeping track of your ‘tithes’ and offerings, but he will not provide WOCC members with a financial statement. A double standard indeed. This is highly hypocritical, suspect, and questionable.

“God Doesn’t Need Your Money, But His House Does”?

Andy said that someone told him that God doesn’t need their money. And his response was that God doesn’t need your money, but His house does (referring to the church-building).

Are we under the Old Covenant or the New Covenant?

During the Old Covenant, Solomon built God a house, but God didn’t live there. God does not live in temples made with human hands.

Solomon’s Temple, which later became Herod’s Temple was destroyed in 70 A.D., because it was a den of thieves and Jesus pronounced it desolate. It only served a temporary purpose during the Old Covenant, because that Covenant revolved around 3 main components: the animal sacrifices, the priesthood, and the temple.

But after Christ came and fulfilled the Old Covenant law, He rendered it obsolete and established the New Covenant based on better promises. In Acts, God officiated disciples of Jesus as His temple by filling them with the Holy Spirit. Don’t you know that you are the temple of God and God’s Spirit lives in you?

You are the spiritual house and ekklesia (church) that Jesus is building. “And upon this rock (referring to Himself) I will build My Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:18)

The body of Christ (not the church-building down the street) is the house of God and the temple of God. The temples of man are earthly and permanently fixed in one place. Their lifeless idols sit in one spot in a shrine. But we serve the Living God who moves. . . and so He desires a temple that moves with Him. The Lord foreshadowed this during the Old Covenant, when He had the children of Israel construct a tent-like tabernacle that could move with His Spirit (the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night).

The body of Christ, unlike man’s “high places” dedicated to idols, moves with the Living God. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God. Where is our “place of worship”? Neither on this mountain, nor on that mountain, nor in Jerusalem. God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship in Spirit and in Truth.

The house or temple that God wants us to contribute to is His people! Don’t misinterpret me. I am not saying that it is wrong to take care of the utilities of a church-building or modest upkeep. What is wrong is pouring hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars into a temple made with man’s hands, rather than the true temple of God which is the Bride of Christ.

In Acts 2 and 4, the saints took up freewill offerings to meet urgent needs among them, not to fund 6-figure salaries and expensive building projects. Even during the Old Covenant, the materials for the construction of the tabernacle and Solomon’s Temple were collected from freewill offerings — never tithes. In Scripture, tithes were always food (animals and crops), never money. This is why you never see tithes used in Scripture to fund salaries and building projects. The tithe came from farmers and shepherds only, to feed Levites, widows, orphans, and the stranger. The modern practice of using “money tithes” to fund salaries and building projects is totally unbiblical.

Andy’s constant mention of the ‘tithe,’ referring to church leaders as “priests,” and calling the church-building “God’s house” demonstrates that he has an Old Covenant mentality. In the New Covenant, there is no more “tithe,” but grace-giving. The entire body of Christ is a royal priesthood, not just leaders (1 Peter 2:5, 9) and we are God’s house, not the church-building.

It is no wonder that Andy does not understand these basic truths of the Gospel, because he does not understand the Gospel itself. As much as WOF supporters like to believe they’re on the “cutting edge of new revelation” they are very much stuck in the shadows of the Old Covenant. They are intoxicated from drinking old tainted wine out of old wineskins. Until they turn to Jesus Christ and realize the beauty of the Good News (justification by faith, not health and wealth through the “faith-force”) they will continue to say that the old wine tastes better!

By His Own Measure, Andy Thompson Is Carnal & Immature

Earlier in the message, Andy quoted from 1 Corinthians 3, which says that when you boast in religious leaders and elevate one religious leader over another like some sort of church clique, you’re behaving carnal just like people of the world and still an infant on milk. Then later on in the message, he encouraged this very same competitive idolatrous behavior by boasting in the ‘charitable deeds’ of WOCC.

“I dare you. I double dog dare you. I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU! To find somebody doing more in communities than World Overcomers. Because nobody feeds the amount of people that we feed out of World Overcomers. I mean nobody. Not a church. Not a church feeds what we feed.”

Andy Thompson bragging

“Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:1-4)

Someone might be saying “Evelyn, you said that Andy should be financially transparent, but now you’re taking issue with him for publicly disclosing the charity work of WOCC.”

Folks, there is a huge difference between providing financial statements to congregants at public meetings, and yelling on TV in a prideful boastful manner “I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU TO FIND SOMEBODY doing more in communities than World Overcomers! Not a church feeds what we feed!” Where is God’s credit for providing the food, volunteers, and labor? Where is the glory to Jesus Christ in any of that? Where is the acknowledgement that without God, it couldn’t have been done?

The very same chapter that Andy read from says “The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work.” (1 Corinthians 3:8)

If WOCC is a part of the body of Christ, and thus, working for the same Lord in unison with other Churches, then why is Andy comparing what WOCC does to what any other church in the area does? Paul said that it is not wise to compare ourselves with one another, and that such cliquish competitive prideful behavior is carnal and infantile.

This all goes back to the WOF theology, which isn’t about building up the body of Christ in the unity of the Spirit, but about building the highest tower of babel into the heavens, and making a great name for one’s self. WOF leaders and corporations are very very competitive. This is why WOF congregants are constantly browbeat and worked like slaves to keep “sowing that money seed” to raise more money for a fancier bigger building, which will in turn warehouse more people, which translates into bigger offerings, and the vicious cycle continues.

Andy kept belittling his congregants and deeming them “carnal, worldly, and stuck on milk.” But maybe that’s because he treats them like carnal babes and feeds them watered down spoiled milk. When you talk down to congregants and treat them like juveniles, don’t be surprised when they don’t grow up. When you keep sowing elementary principles about money and ‘faith’ — don’t be surprised when your ‘seed’ brings forth a crop of stunted church-r-us-kids bottle-feeding in the high chair of WOF theology. Sometimes congregants are a reflection of their leader.

“So let us stop going over the basic teachings about Christ again and again. Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding. Surely we don’t need to start again with the fundamental importance of repenting from evil deeds and placing our faith in God. (Hebrews 6:1)

“You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food.For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right.Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to discern the difference between right and wrong.” (Hebrews 5:12-14)

He who has ears to hear, let him hear.