The Cult Of Benny Hinn
Benny Hinn is certainly a trendsetter in the New Wave movement. Before we learn about some of his teachings, lets remember the importance of truth. The Bible states, "For truth is fallen in the street..." (Isaiah 59:14b). Probably, no Biblical statement could more accurately describe our present religious world. Truth has become relative. It means different things to different people, even within the ranks of what we call Biblical Christianity. I don't mean differences in non-essentials, but almost every fundamental doctrine is now under siege as preachers scramble the Holy Words. One thing to remember -- you cannot sanctify false doctrines by the multiple use of Jesus' name or by the presence of miracles.
Biblical confusion is a powerful tool which prepares the people to blindly follow religious leaders. It's impossible to create a new religious stream without introducing new theological ideas that depart from the mainstream. There are several elements to the beginning of a new and novel religious movement, Biblical confusion being the first. There must be an extremely strong and personable leader with enough charisma to titillate the crowds. The people are warned not to question this "man of God" because of the "anointing" on his life. They will always give the people an emotional charge to keep them on a high. He or she promises the people much for their loyalty and support, and they always teach enough of the old truths to add legitimacy to themselves.
As the group becomes big and powerful the very element of success makes it almost impossible for people to leave. There is a mesmerizing effect to the sound, and sensation which characterizes this strong New Wave religious movement. As P.T.L. rose in financial glory and television success, the very best of religious leaders and Christians were swooned into support. People forsook old fashioned standards of godliness and separation from the world and poured their life's earnings into that ministry. When someone pointed out "question mark", that individual was almost crucified by their friends. Many major ministries will never recover from the paralysis of the P.T.L. syndrome. We don't have P.T.L. anymore, but we do have many similar kingdoms that continue to conduct made-for-television religion.
The Kingdom of Jesus Christ never uses titillation to call men and women to this faith. The very foundation of Biblical Christianity is conviction of sin and a call to experience the Holiness of God.
The Good News of the Gospel is simple, we are sinners, but God has given His Son as our sacrifice. By His blood we are forgiven, made whole, and called to follow in His footsteps of godly and Holy Spirit filled living. We are no long condemned with the world, but called to be His family.
He gives us great joy, but it's not the world's kind of joy. Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." (St. John 14:27). Please notice that He said His peace was not the world's kind of peace. It's not the fleshly, carnal, love of pleasure, love of things, love of applause, love of a big time; but a godly peace and joy that flows from a right relationship with God and men. It's joy of the Holy Word, joy of winning souls and just plain joy from a clean and pure heart. A person that knows God through Jesus Christ will not need the experiences of a religious junkie.
The Cult Of Benny Hinn?
What Benny Hinn's Ministries represent is your decision to make but it's important for you to know the facts before you make that decision. Let's examine his teachings. The ultimate base of examination is the Holy Scripture. If a man's doctrines depart from the clear truth of Scripture, that settles the question. All of the following quotes from Benny Hinn's sermons have been transcribed from audio messages by the credible ministries of the Christian Research Institute or the Media Spotlight, A Biblical Analysis of Religion and Secular Media. Both addresses are listed at the conclusion of this article.
Teachings Of Benny Hinn
Let's examine his actual words and then look at the Scripture for the Biblical facts on each subject. May I ask that you be very careful in reading his words so there is no misunderstanding.
The Subject Of God ... :
"God, the Father is a person, God the Son is a person, God the Holy Ghost is a person, but each one of them is a triune being by himself. If I can shock you and maybe I should, there are nine of them.... God the Father is a person with his own personal spirit, with his own personal soul, and his own personal spirit body. You say, ."I never heard of that." Well do you think you're in this church to hear things you've heard for the last fifty years? You can't argue with the Word can you? It's all in the Word. " (- Benny Hinn)
Benny Hinn has since acknowledged this false teaching and apparently does not teach it any longer. But, how could such a lapse occur to begin with? It says something about him and his ministry that must be admitted. No subject is of greater importance to the Christian church than the personhood of God. God is one, represented in the person of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. The beloved disciple John wrote by the Holy Ghost, "There are three that bear record in Heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. " (I John 5:7). The Scripture testifies of the Trinity of God in perfect unity throughout Holy Writ. To speak of God the Father (The Son of God and the Holy Ghost) having a personal spirit, a personal soul, and a personal body is completely contrary to the Word of God. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ, so how could the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit all three have their own personal spirit, spirit body, and soul. We see right at the beginning that the paranormal or psychic ideas are influencing the doctrines Rev. Hinn teaches.
Benny Hinn's teachings about Jesus Christ are similar to Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland, but actually go to another level above Rev. Copeland. He says, "Ladies and gentlemen, the serpent is a symbol of satan. Jesus Christ knew the only way He would stop Satan is by becoming one in nature with him. "What did ' you say? What blasphemy is this? "No, you hear this! He did not take my sin, He became my sin. Sin is the nature of hell. Sin is what made Satan. You remember, he wasn't Satan till sin was found in him. Lucifer was perfect till Ezekiel says, sin was found in thee. It was sin that made Satan. Jesus said, "I'll be sin. I'll go to the lowest place. I'll go to the origin of it. I won't just take part of it. I'l1 be the totality of it. When Jesus became sin, sir, he took it from A-Z and said no more. Think about this. He became flesh that flesh might become like Him. He became death so dying man can live. He became sin so sinners can be righteous in Him. He became one with the nature of Satan so all those who had the nature of Satan can partake of the nature of God."
This subject is equally important with that of the nature of God. The New Agers are willing to accept that Jesus was one of the great masters. Almost all religions have Jesus sandwiched in between the other godlike illuminates. The pure Christian faith teaches that Jesus Christ is the eternal Word of God, divine in all His Person and could not have taken any nature that would defile His person. Even the Body of the Son of Man was sanctified before He was sent into the World. "Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest, because I said, I am the Son of God? " (St. John 10:36).
Jesus Christ did not become a sinner, but He did take our guilt as a vicarious sacrifice. Without question, He "became sin" by the act of substitution, not personal guilt. Paul said, "For He (God the Fa-ther) hath made Him (God the Son) to be sin for us (in our stead), who knew no sin. . ." (11 Corinthians 5:2 1 ). He did not "become sin from A to Z" as Hinn says. He did die as our substitute just as though He had been the guilty one, but he did not take the nature of Satan in the process. To be a substitute for someone is vastly different than taking their nature. Remember, He wasn't a substitute for Satan, anyway. He was a substitute for you and I because of Satan's rebellious act and deception and our bondage to sin.
The death of Christ was prefigured in the great sacrifices of the Old Testament temple. These great acts were given as a pattern for the coming Messiah and to cleanse the people once each year from their accumulated sins. Jesus Christ fulfilled all of that at His death. "It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself now to appear in the presence of God for us: Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many.- and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. " (Hebrews 9:22-28).
The whole teachings of Benny Hinn on this subject are deeply flawed and present a perfect foundation for a paranormal religious movement.
Rev. Hinn's idea of the "little god theology" is quite revealing. Instead of you and I being elevated, the Lord Jesus Christ is actually being demoted. "When you say I am saved what are you saying? You are saying I am a Christian. What does that word mean? It means, I'm anointed. You know what the word anointed means? It means Christ. When you say I'm a Christian, you are saying I am Mashiyach in Hebrew, I am a little messiah walking on earth, in other words. That's a shocking revelation! We are not, we are not, having, we don't have apart of him running around in our stomach feeling goose bumps. His spirit and our spirit man are one, united. There is no separation, it's impossible. The new creation is created after God in righteousness and true holiness. The new man is after God, like God, God-like, complete in Christ Jesus, the new creation is just like God. May I say it like this, you are a little god on earth running around."
Very few teachings have caused a greater flurry of emotion, pro and con, than this teaching of men becoming little gods. Hinn appears to give it a twist that the main proponents have not done. Hagin and Copeland (along with many others) have created a new world view among their followers with this whole idea. It has bred an arrogance and egotistical mindset with those adhering to this false teaching. Instead of humility and a contrite spirit (loved and blessed by the Lord), it has given us a whole class of professing believers who cannot be told anything. I have had people say to me, "I don't care what Paul the Apostle said or did." The very nature of this teaching is pride, haughtiness and every spirit of the Adamic nature.
Hinn teaches that we are "god-like in Spirit, not in our flesh" which appears to be even worse than the former idea. Here is another description of this idea by Hinn. "They think we're saying we in flesh are God, we're not God in flesh. We are god-like in Spirit. We're complete in Christ in Spirit. Our Spirit man is god-like. It was birthed by God. It's a spirit being. That's what I'm talking about. [background voice says, 'So, those that would put that teaching down, want us to have a beginning and an end]. Yes! [background voice says, 'That's Satan isn't it?] Those that put us down are a bunch of morons. Glory to God! Glory to God!
His division of the human personality is dangerous. Man is a unified person and cannot experience something in the spirit without affecting his flesh or soul. If we are "born again", our entire personality is changed. We do not sin in the flesh without defiling our soul and spirit. Neither can we be god-like in spirit without being god-like in the flesh. The truth is we are saved by the action of the Holy Spirit upon our human spirit that puts God in charge of our whole life. Paul prayed that we be sanctified body, soul, and spirit and preserved blameless.
"And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. " (I Thessalonians 5:23).
Any doctrine that elevates man to become a prideful and arrogant creature does not come from the Word of God. God is calling us to humility and a broken spirit, not a spirit of pride. "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, 0 God, thou wilt not despise. " (Psalm 51:17).
Paul was careful to say, "For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. " (Philippians 3:3).
The Believer And A Spirit Man
Rev. Hinn puts great emphasis on this idea of a spirit-man in the Believer. Here, he indicates that this occurs when we are born again. If we receive a new Spirit man, then we are not really "born again" at all. It is rather a paranormal transformation. Benny Hinn says, "When you were born again God gave you this brand new being. This brand new being was created before the foundation of the World. Ephesians One declares that God literally chose us before the foundation of the world and there it talks about our spirit-man... Your spirit, ladies and gentlemen, is God-like,- he's God-like in every way ... The second this spirit-man comes into our being - pops into our bodies - we're born again. He's spirit; what's born of spirit is spirit. Say after me, "Within me is a God-man". Say it again, "Within me is a God-man". Now let's say even better than, that, let's say, "I am a God-man". When you say I am a God-man, you're not talking about your flesh or your soul; you're talking about your spirit-man." "Now, remember, everything Jesus did, He did so we can receive the opposite! What He gave up, He was saying, 'You are to receive what I gave up!' Now it's like this: I have His name on earth! Isn't that right? What is it to have the name of Jesus? It means to have His Office!... Paul the apostle said that Jesus is standing before the throne as the Son of Man. He called Him the "Man-Christ! " Now, you ready for some real revelation knowledge? Okay, now watch this. He laid aside His divine form. Now these are the seven steps from the glory to the cross. He laid aside His divine form! Why? so one day I would be clothed on with the divine form! "
This teaching appears to be so new as to leave one wondering where it came from. Read carefully, he is saying that when we are "born again", a spirit-man separate from ourselves, that God created before the foundation of the world, "pops into our body." Instead of the Holy Spirit renewing our human spirit and uniting us into the body of Christ, we are said by him to receive this extra-terrestrial spirit-man that takes over our inner spirit. The use of the word extra-terrestrial is mine, but I think that's exactly what we are dealing with. The possibility of demon-activity is very real when you begin to suggest an extra spirit activity apart from the Holy Ghost.
Apostle Peter spoke by the Holy Ghost and clearly stated, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you. " (I Peter 1:23-25).
Jesus, Himself, said, "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit (Holy Spirit) he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. " (St. John 3:5b).
The activity in the soul of a repenting sinner is the work of the Holy
Spirit. To suggest anything else is contrary to the Word. Actually,
Hinn appears to be using this "spirit-man" idea to lay a foundation for
the "little gods" teaching. If God has created an extra spirit-man
that the believer receives, then we are changed into this new being, higher
than just being redeemed from sin.
He suggests that in other remarks by saying, "When Jesus came, He did not give us back Adam's office. He gave us His office. This is why angels to this day cannot rebuke Satan. Jude says, even Michael will not bring an accusation against the devil. Why? Because angels are lower today than Satan who holds the office of Adam. But we, as joint heirs with Christ in heavenly places, are higher than Adam [background voice says, "and angels and angels."] "So, today, angels cannot rebuke Satan, but we can, because we are on the same level as the Son on earth." "We're not God, we're the children of God. We're god-like in our Spirit man, not in our flesh. Thank God, our flesh will die and we are gonna have a new body. The Bible says, when we shall see Him our bodies shall be like Him, but our spirit man is already like Him."
It would appear that every Christian would recognize this kind of teaching as aberrant to our faith. Hinn's effort to quote as proof text a Scripture in Ephesians One, fails miserably. Notice this Scripture. "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love. (Ephesians 1:4).
There is no basis at all in this Scripture for such a teaching. Such ideas are usually defended as being "words of knowledge" or a "word of prophecy." Paul's words to Timothy are clearly applicable. "For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jainbres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth - men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. " (11 Timothy 3:6-8).
Benny Hinn And The Word Of Knowledge
The doctrine of the Word of Knowledge is a big idea in the New Wave movement. Here is Rev. Hinn's idea on the subject:
"Man, I remember when God would give me words of knowledge back when I began in this ministry. I missed nine out of ten. Nobody knew it except me. 'Well, Benny Hinn', I thought, 'when the Holy Ghost' - saints, the Holy Ghost is using an imperfect vessel. Are you listening? We're not infallible. Or when you give a prophecy sometimes you can be way off, you have to be open enough to say I blew it. "Hooo! He blew it; he's a false prophet! " No, he just blew it. Just be cause you blow it - men of God blow it all the time. Paul blew it; Moses blew it; even Elijah blew it,- even Elisha blew it! They all blew it. Maybe not with prophecies, but they blew it in all kinds of things. Like Elijah goes and says, 'Lemme die! I wanna die! I wanna die!' That's a bad blow! Peter decides to withdraw himself from the Gentiles; he blew it bad! We all blow it, and if you don't, you're not human. Don't forget, the man who does not use the eraser is no good! The man with clean eraser - untouched - don't touch him. The man who does not know how to say, 'I blew it, [you] can't trust him. Did you hear that? So - but you see, when the gift begins - is this helping you? - when the gift begins it begins rough, but then as you keep going with it you just get better and better and cleaner and purer with it. So today with the word of knowledge - I'm just being open with - I rarely miss anymore. Why? Because I recognize how to operate in it. [Hinn snaps his fingers.] "
Nothing in Hinn's teaching is more dangerous than his supposed use of the "gifts of the Holy Ghost" without the absolute commitment to dependability. He says he missed it nine out of ten times while he was learning how to use these gifts. Now, he says, "I rarely miss anymore." The Holy Ghost does not play games and He never misses being perfectly right. Hinn is apparently suggesting that the gifts are learned rather than given by the Holy Ghost. This is never taught or even suggested in the Scripture.
Let's imagine that he prophesied to one hundred people to begin with and now ninety of them are living under a false prophecy, which they accepted as true. Are they not as important as this man who says, "Don't judge me, I'm just learning?" Now, he says, "I rarely miss it;" but how about the people whose lives are wrecked when he does. Are these just disposable people Hinn takes no regard for as he rises to greatness?
Mr. Hinn pronounces a quick judgment on those who question him. Here are his words, "All of us make mistakes; all of us are bound to error. But woe to the man, and woe to the [TV] station, and woe to the group that will expose the nakedness of the man of God to the world. You know, I'll tell you something. I'm not supposed to, but the Holy Ghost is upon me, and I think I need to. The day is coming when those that attack us will drop dead. You say, "What did you say?" I speak this under the anointing of the Spirit. Can I tell you something? Don't touch God's servants - it's deadly. You'd think we should do whatever we want with someone who's failed God? 'Touch not my anointing.' (- Benny Hinn)
Again, he is elevating himself above the Word of God. Paul said, "Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the others judge." (I Corinthians 14:29). Every prophecy given by anyone is subject to judgment by the proper leaders in the Body. This protects all of us from the immature and evil imaginations of undisciplined individuals in the church.
We could discuss the wild antics that Mr. Hinn calls the work of the Holy Spirit. One single thing should suffice. Any activity in the church body should be judged by the precedent of New Testament Scripture. When men blow on others to give them the Holy Spirit, we should ask, "Is this a Biblical method for receiving the Holy Ghost Baptism?" Every activity of the church should point to Jesus Christ and should be clearly patterned after the Holy Bible.
The coming of Jesus Christ and the appearing of the Antichrist are both at hand. The very elect are at risk as we witness the confusion in religious circles. Very few men are willing to publicly speak to the evidence of the New Wave movement. There are many trendsetters that appear to be teaching a new way that they call a "paradigm shift". We will look at Francis Frangipane in the next chapter.