The Heresy Hunter
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Mark Chironna - Man of God?
Television evangelist Mark Chironna is a frequent host of the Trinity Broadcasting Network’s (TBN)Praise the Lord program and has his own show on TBN called The Master’s Touch. He’s also the overseer of The Master’s Touch International Church in Orlando, Florida.
God Ceased to Exist?
Unfortunately, in his ministry, Chironna communicates a basic misunderstanding about many aspects of the Scriptures, starting with the nature of God. He says “When He [Jesus] released Himself back into the hands of the loving and Almighty Father and He said ‘It is finished,’ literally…that moment when the immortal One died, rocks split apart, because that which held them for that brief moment was no longer in charge…and the whole earth went dark because that which held it together was expired for a moment.”
How can the "immortal One" expire? In reality, Jesus never ceased to exist, even for a moment, because it would have meant that God, who by definition is eternal, ceased to exist. In addition to the fact that the earth "went dark" starting at noon, not when Jesus died at 3:00 p.m., one might ask, if the rocks split because Jesus, the One who held them together, had died, then why didn’t the rest of the universe, including everyone on earth, also split for a moment?
Preaching the Health and Wealth Gospel
Chironna teaches that to the poor the Good News of the Gospel is money. “So in Isaiah 61….The first thing He says is ‘He has anointed me to bring good news to the poor.’ What is good news to the poor? You don’t have to be poor anymore. And if you don’t believe me, even liberal scholars acknowledge that Christ is talking about economic compensation, payback, economic forgiveness….God wants to bring people out of places of poverty into places of abundance.”
One would wonder why Chironna, who is supposed to be conservative, is quoting liberal scholars for support. To learn the context of this passage, Chironna would have done well to quote the rest of Isaiah 61:1, which continues, “He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.” The passage in Isaiah that Jesus quotes describes what Jesus did in His ministry, and, in context, it is obvious that Jesus is presenting Good News for the poor in spirit, and for those oppressed by sin – the Good News being the forgiveness of sins. Likewise, in places like the Sermon on the Mount He talked about the poor in spirit, not the poor in pocket book.
While Jesus did heal the blind and the lame, He didn’t restore wealth to the physically poor, nor did He even give them a pep talk on how to escape physical poverty. On the contrary, He warned people about the deceitfulness of wealth (Mark 10:24, 25).
Giving God Permission to Act
Chironna tells followers to speak words of faith and give God permission to act. “How many of you know you’re a new species of being? If you really are, then what God did in the original creation you can now give Him permission to do again in the new creation….Now you have the mind of God on the inside….You realize the person of perfect health is already living inside your body even if you’re sick right now. And what you and I need to understand is that God wants us to begin to think His thoughts after Him and once we think them, God the Son wants to then speak them on His behalf. That’s what the word of faith is….And then once you hear something in the Spirit, speak it with your mouth. As the Father thinks, the Son speaks and then the Spirit takes what you say and begins to reorder your world to line up with your faith!”
If people need to give God permission to do anything then He is no longer sovereign! Chironna teaches that Christians can speak things into existence. He states, “If I’ve been made in the image of God and I’m not like a giraffe or a monkey, the thing that makes me like God is I can talk. I can say ‘Let there be’ and there will be.” Imagine the chaos in the world if everyone could have exactly what they wanted, even if this ability applied only to Christians?
Choosing Wise Teachers
James made it clear that those who teach will come under more strict judgment from God (James 3:1), and Peter warned that false prophets and teachers would invade the church, introducing destructive heresies (2 Peter 2:1). It is the responsibility of the Christian not to blindly accept the teachings of anyone (particularly most of those on TBN) but to test everything by the Word of God.
Praise the Lord, Trinity Broadcasting Network, January-April 2003
Labels: Mark Chironna