The church has become a business
Churches today are run like a businesses. I attended a popular church, Jimmy Swaggart Ministries and I saw the dark side of the church/business beast. Here is my story.
My name is Greg and I attended Jimmy Swaggart’s Bible College (WEBC) for two years and worked as a cameraman for Jimmy Swaggart Ministries for six months. I also lived at the Swaggarts’ apartment complex and was fully immersed in “the JSM bubble.” Attending church at JSM three times a week and working there, I saw the workings of JSM up close and was deeply disturbed. The sin of JSM grieved my spirit and to remain at JSM I would have had to compromise, so I left.
I was born again three years ago and set free from Roman Catholicism as a result of a co-worker at OLOL Hospital preaching the gospel to me. Jesus saved me and began to gloriously deliver me from drugs, alcoholism, and other bondages of sin in my life. Jesus had truly made me a new creation in Him!! I give Jesus all of the glory for saving me and calling me to preach the gospel. I am also grateful for my friends I met at JSM who encouraged me to follow Christ.
Immediately I began attending “church” with my co-worker/friend and fell more and more in love with Jesus. I was in the honeymoon stage with my Jesus. My family and friends were confused and worried by my newfound love for Jesus and my forsaking of the old life. The old Greg had been crucified with Christ, and I had become a new man. I defended JSM and Jimmy Swaggart to the death, no matter what anyone said. Some people told me Jimmy Swaggart is greedy, while others accused him of running a cult. I thought surely the work at JSM was good because they are preaching the gospel that changed my life. Oh how I was wrong!
My eyes were soon opened by God’s word. Jesus spoke of the Pharisees, “Do as they say and not as they do.” JSM preaches good but their hearts are far from God. After a while at JSM I began to see JSM’s hypocricy. Mainly I saw a love of money. JS lives in a two million dollar property, and is constantly begging for more money allegedly get the gospel out to the world, while many in his congregation live in one and two bedroom apartments. If he humbled himself and gave up his mansion, he would not need to leech so much money from his supporters.
I also saw how Jimmy Swaggart perverted the gospel of Jesus Christ into money making scheme. The constant merchandising of Bibles, CD’s, commentaries, etc began to make me sick. They truly have made God’s house of prayer a house of merchandise. The term “message of the cross” is used to create a unique brand for JSM’s business. Other worldly organizations such as Nike, Apple, etc make brand names for their products. For what purpose, you ask? The answer is simple. $$$$$$$
The last straw for me was easter campmeeting 2010. I saw the birth of a denomination/cult. Donnie Swaggart spent a half-hour squeezing $100,000 out of people’s pockets by using guilt and pressure. Jesus told his disciples, “freely you have received, so freely give.” Where did we go wrong? I will tell you! When the church became a business. The next day of campmeeting I heard Loren Larson call Jimmy Swaggart Elijah. Larson also told pastors of smaller churches to make giving to JSM a priority over reaching their local area. Larson also said, “If you do not give to JSM, you will be destroyed and there will be nowhere to hide!!!” Larson was using fear to get people’s money. Cults use the same tactics. Could JSM be a cult???
JSM is an empire of man, for it is named after a man, and built upon Jimmy Swaggart’s personality. Jimmy Swaggart’s desire is to conquer the religious world by any means necessary, just as the Roman Catholic Church or any other religion. JSM is a cult! Sickening isn’t it.
After the spring semester of 2010 I left JSM and Baton Rouge for personal reasons. Six months later I came back to Baton Rouge and I chose to re-enroll in World Evangelism Bible College and make JSM my church again. In life we often return to familiar places for refuge. I returned to bible college with a fresh passion for Jesus Christ. The Lord opened the door for me to work in the TV department as a cameraman to take me deep inside JSM and show me how dark JSM really is.
Paul wrote that in the last days men would have, “a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.” JSM’s preachers have been speaking of a revival to come to JSM for all three years I attended. However I saw no such revival , no healing power of God, and scarce holiness while attending JSM. There will be no such revival at JSM. Wake up people!!!
JSM is not God’s ministry, but rather was founded and named after Jimmy Swaggart. JSM is Jimmy Swaggart’s personal business for his gain. So what is the product, you might ask? The product is men’s souls! Sickening I know. Paul warned us that false prophets would make “merchandise of men.” Cameramen make sure to get a close up on anyone offering true praise to God, so the whole world will see how great JSM is and give them their hard earned money. Shame on you all for prostituting men’s praise and worship for your own gain!!! As I heard a director say, “tears are like gold.” Leaders and employees involved in such business activities in the “church” will have to answer to God on judgment day. Ask God what He says about your actions. You know that feeling that you have done something wrong. That is the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Are you angry with me? So were the Pharisees angry with Jesus. The Holy Spirit will not be used to fill your pockets and has left your show!
JSM’s true sin is that it is a business, while making a false claim that it is the true, pure, unblemished church of Christ. Jesus told His disciples, “Freely you have received, so freely give.” Apparently Jimmy Swaggart missed this important verse. You rob widows and, families to lavish yourselves with vacations, luxury cars, and to feed your bellies! Shame on you, you whitewashed tombs! True religion is to help widows and orphans. Jesus told His disciples to clothe the naked, feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, take in the stranger, visit those in prison, and visit the sick.
JSM is not the body of Christ, but rather a whore church whose head is not Jesus, but rather Jimmy Swaggart. The sheep of JSM hear Jimmy Swaggart’s voice and follow Jimmy Swaggart. True sheep are to hear from Jesus and follow Him, not a man! The body of Christ is supposed to help brothers and sisters in need, but charity is hard to find at JSM. JSM members are so brainwashed to give their money to JSM only, and no money is left to help a brother or sister in need. Time and time again JSM refuses to help a struggling brother or sister . Greedy, greedy, greedy!
Jesus said, “The disciple is not above his master.” Jesus suffered and so do his true followers. Paul, nor any of the other 12 apostles lived in luxury, but rather lived simple lives. A true man of God follows in Jesus’ footsteps and forsakes riches. Paul even told Timothy to “flee from riches.” Jimmy Swaggart and his cronies are no better than Creflo Dollar and the rest of the greed preachers. Donnie Swaggart stated one Sunday morning, “We are not greed preachers, we are prosperity preachers at JSM.” What is the difference? Certain Swaggart family members are making over $200,000 per year. No wonder he preaches prosperity. Do not give them your money. I repeat, do not give them a penny. JSM is a den of thieves!
I plead with you, true sheep of God who hear the voice of God. “Come out from among them and be separate.” The great tribulation is near, and you cannot afford to be in a whore church when all hell breaks loose throughout the earth. By the way we will be here for the great tribulation. Read Matthew 24. Jesus said, “he who endures unto the end shall be saved.
I have written this article to hopefully open your eyes as mine have been opened by the Lord and the by the testimonies of His people. My message is a warning to the “church” leadership to prepare for judgment, and for the true sheep to come out from the harlot church. My message is for those who have seen the wickedness and have compromised by tolerating JSM’s sin. If you reject God’s voice and continue to dwell in a den of thieves, you are lukewarm and God will spue you out of His mouth. God is calling you to listen, He is calling you to speak up, God is calling you to come out. Will you heed His voice?
Are you sick of the greed, pride, and compromise of JSM and the church world in general? Are you tired of a sick, dying church? Come out of the buildings and gather with the sheep under the true shepherd, Jesus Christ! Come out where Jesus can heal you and set you free. Jesus is not in JSM or the other church buildings. He has long ago been rejected by church authorities. Jesus is calling, will you heed His voice?
I have left JSM and the “church” buildings to follow God into the wilderness where God is gathering His sheep for the last days. I have not once regretted my decision to leave JSM, for I have been relieved of the burden of JSM’s manmade religion of “the message of the cross.” Come back to Jesus, come back to the gospel, come back to the true word of God, and forsake your manmade doctrines. I encourage you to follow Christ outside of JSM and the church buildings where God can touch you. Jesus told his disciples in Luke 9:23, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow after me.” Will you?
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