Benny Hinn: Banned From Bombay?

by Steve Mitchell
GWM India
Power To Stand Ministries

Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus from Pune, India. I just wanted to report this in the form of a worldwide prayer request for all of you to take to heart and to the Lord in prayer as you log on to excellent sites like Moriel.

Indian churches are in a state of crisis and are in real need of prayer. The discernment level here among many pastors is staggeringly low and very few are taught good solid doctrine and, as a result, the churchgoers are ready to accept almost anyone coming from foreign shores no matter what kinds of wacky teachings or bizarre antics they import. TBN, The God Channel, and TBN ‘s Asian affiliate, Miracle Network are being used as tools of the enemy to sow evil seeds of Word-Faith, Third Wave, and church growth tactics to an all-too-willing audience of well-meaning and I believe genuinely seeking believers. The sad fact is that, due to cultural mores as well as the general tendency of the church worldwide to avoid the biblical command to judge rightly ( Matt. 7:1-6; Jn. 7:24; 1 Cor. 215; etc.),false teachings, false prophecies and downright heresies are being promoted and preached by many here in this country.

Enter America’s most catastrophically deluded false prophet, Benny Hinn! Yes, that’s right, Hinn was slated for his first-ever appearance in Mumbai in December where he was determined to bring his traveling circus tricks to what was being predicted to be a literal massive multitude of attendees (200,000+ conservative estimate) who want to be touched, blown on, and slain by this charlatan and his ministry cohorts. PRAISE THE LORD! This December advent was cancelled due to undisclosed problems with scheduling and rumors of being banned by city groups. But I also happen to believe in the power of prayers offered up by many here and elsewhere to hinder the onslaught of Hinn’s doctrine and deeds.

I want to praise the Lord for the video “Spirit of Truth or Error?” hosted by Let Us Reason Ministries featuring solid bible teaching and bold expose of Hinn’s false teachings as conducted by Mike Oppenheimer, Sandy Simpson, and Moriel’s own Jacob Prasch. These men are dear friends and vital assets to this missionary here in India. The video raised the exact same concerns as the Roman Catholics cited as their reasons for boycotting Hinn and, although I can’t prove it, there is some reason to believe that they have seen this video. I have showed and distributed several of these videos in protestant churches here and, to my surprise, found that they were being copied and passed along to many in other parts of India. I’m getting requests for more and will begin hosting seminars to show the video Lord willing. It is amazingly effective for many who have seen it and I recommend all to get a copy from Sandy’s site.

We Still need to PRAY! Hinn has been rescheduled for a second coming February 14-16th, 2004. It seems that a little time was bought to continue to minister here and warn people of his future appearances. Please pray for opportunities for me and a very few others who have stood against this thing publicly and are trying to have sit-downs with coordinators of this event. Please pray for wisdom and gentleness in dealing with these men who are promoting this. Trust me; India’s churches need a Hinn meeting like India needs more cows!

More Hinn News

New Life Fellowships of Mumbai is one of the largest and fastest growing charismatic churches in eastern India and has many church plants and affiliates scattered throughout the city and surrounding areas. The head pastor, S. Joseph, was hailed last year as being one of C. Peter Wagner’s personally-invited apostles in his International Coalition of Apostles and was received by many churches with standing applause as a specially anointed warrior for the Lord. They have done much to sponsor past visits and propagations of word-faith, televangelical teachings all over and were set to welcome Hinn and his crusaders in December.

Here’s a strange development from quite an unlikely source at first glance. The Roman Catholic churches in Mumbai banded together and effectively, amongst the Catholic parishioners at least, “banned” their people from attending or supporting Hinn and his ministry in any way.

In October 12th’s Sunday Mid Day newspaper, the headlines read: “Catholics warned against Benny Hinn’s City Meetings”. Heres some commentary from the article:

“Hinn, who claims to make contact with the dead, is a controversial figure in the west where he has been criticized for misinterpreting the Bible and prophesizing the appearance of Jesus at his gatherings. His claims of miraculous healing are also treated with skepticism.”

“Why the Catholic Church has warned its folk against Hinn: Hinn claims God appeared to him in Israel when he was to have supernatural powers.says that he has spoken to God.He once said that Jesus was about to make physical appearance at one of his prayer to have visions of that he made contact with the dead.”

“Father Pravin Fernandes: “He never talks of suffering. He talks about physical healing without talking about the spiritual part. He combines histrionics, hysteria and emotionalism to lead gullible believers astray.”

In addition to the Catholic churches, the Anglican Churches of North India, have also warned against their congregants attending Hinn’s scheduled meetings, although they haven’t forbidden them to go.

It’s clear to see several things from this issue.

It is interesting to see that even Roman Catholic clergy can see that Hinn is a scheister and raise valid concerns over his doctrine and practices, although many of these outraged priests also condone prayers to dead saints and would believe in apparitions and occurrences of a similar necromantic nature.

We can see that the Roman Church is worried about losing many of their followers to Hinn’s ministry: “The church fears that Catholics might flock to Hinn’s independent churches.”

The mere fact that both Protestants and Catholics alike revere this man at dangerous proportions bordering on and sometimes including worship of his anointing shows the widespread deception among the undiscerning. The climate here is difficult to be in as a missionary. In my witnessing to Hindus, Muslims, and Roman Catholics, I constantly have to clarify that, as a follower of Jesus Christ; I am not a Roman Catholic. Over here, among many, “Christian” is a label that applies to anyone who is not a Hindu or a Muslim and this muddiness is difficult. Combine this generalization with the ecumenical rubbish that has been emerging among many evangelicals, YWAM, and church growth movements where doctrine is not viewed as important, and you’ ve got a most challenging stew to wade through when contending for the true Christian faith and biblical apostolic and scriptural doctrine.

Gul Kriplani is a businessman, allegedly a “Christian”, who is involved in organizing the Benny Hinn show coming in February. He states in the article: “We love the Catholics, there is nothing between the Catholics and us.See, the Catholics believe in Jesus and so do the Protestants. I’m a part of the All India Christian Council, which also has Catholics in it. After all what is a church? It is a body of people, it is not denominations.”

This quote typifies the “cant we all just get along in one big happy dysfunctioning family” mentality that is so rampant here. Hinn has fans in every circle and, according to men like Kriplani, we just need to join hands and go down under whatever power he or the next assembly line heretical imitator brings to the church here. Like the Hindu Sai Baba, worshipped by many here said “The Lord of all of us is One.” And sadly this sentiment and patently false statement has crept into many churches (so-called) here as well.

Well, I must disagree and dissent vigorously with this dangerous doctrine, the doctrines of Roman Catholicism, and the doctrines of Benny Hinn. Many here have fallen for them and many here refuse to stand against them even if they don’t personally agree. Missionaries need to start really making strong stands and teaching their Indian brothers and sisters true doctrine and discernment between truth and error. Lines need to be drawn using the Word of God as our guide and the mouths of the false teachers must be stopped, although I am definitely persuaded by the teachings of my brother Jacob Prasch, that Hinn and any false teacher is, in addition to being a deception of the devil, also a sort of judgment from God to any who forsake the clear teachings of Christ and His Word. Pray for India and pray that Hinn doesn’t make it to Bombay in February. The church, the missionaries, nor the unsaved need what he is pushing. God help us!

In Christ Jesus,
Steven Mitchell
GateWay Ministries India

[email protected]

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