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Benny Hinn - Truth or Consequences?
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Benny Hinn - Truth or Consequences

Part 3

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by:
Let Us Reason Ministries
 
Hinn's Healings? . . .

     We should see genuine, outward healings if Hinn really has a gift from the true God.

Those on stage during Benny Hinn’s crusades claim healing from a sore back, a neck problem, cancer, lupus, and we see the crippled walk. You never see genuine healings from permanent physical deformities like an eye forming in the socket or someone’s arm that was amputated being restored as with Biblical miracles. Yet Pentecostal stories are held up as if such acts were happening all over. However, they are never filmed and there is no medically documented proof. What has been produced as "proof" is glaringly lacking. Still the outrageous stories continue as, "I was in Ghana just recently and we had half a million people show up and a man was raised from the dead on the platform. That’s a FACT people!"
     What is the implication? Benny suggests, I was there and I saw it. When questioned face-to-face, "Do you literally believe that someone has been resurrected on the platform?" guardedly Hinn responded, "Oh, John, I would not limit God. Ah, God can raise the dead, absolutely. I have not seen it. In that one case we did hear about it." (Impact NewsOff-site Link). Whenever anyone presents an inaccurate story about a resurrection, doesn’t this hinder the presentation of the biblical resurrection?
People testify how they have been healed from cancer because they felt something. Feelings can be unreliable and misleading. Most "healings" in the Benny Hinn crusades seem to have the same descriptions such as warmth, burning and intense fire. In contrast, there is no description of anyone in the Bible having feelings like electricity, numbness, or heat. Today’s crusaders claim that say this is how they KNOW God touched them.
     Investigation finds many people already predisposed to a "Word-Faith" theology, claiming their healing beforehand and believing they will receive it. Most of the testimonies come from Hinn’s own Covenant Partners and others who follow his ministry. Consequently, many are predisposed to believe they will receive. The people worship with thousands, lifting their hearts to the Lord and are wide open to any kind of an experience. With this a person can have lots of "feelings." These may be misinterpreted as being from God; when really it might be only from within oneself or from convincing affects produced by the atmosphere. This is very important! If there are real healings, it is because of the grace of God in spite of the what is being presented on stage.
     The Impact News special said, "Benny Hinn says all of the healings that appear on his television program are fully documented." Consider the famed healing of Evander Holyfield. This "miracle" has often been paraded around on Mr. Hinn’s program and on TBN as a genuine healing. He announced, "The Lord is telling me right now He is repairing Holyfield’s heart completely."[26] Benny Hinn’s influence on Holyfield’s health gained the attention of leading magazines such as Time and others. Yet the medical specialists found that Holyfield’s internist really gave an inaccurate diagnosis from the tests.[27] We ask, who was "telling" Hinn that Holyfield was healed? Holyfield clarified the confusion with sports writer, Terence Moore. "He felt the faith healer had no affect upon his heart." Holyfield said, "There really was not anything to heal. That is because I do not believe that I had a problem with my heart to begin with."[28] After donations were low in covering the crusade attended by Holyfield, Hinn solicited $100,000 from him to help with the expenses. After agreeing, Hinn requesting the full $265,000 to underwrite the cost of the whole crusade. Holyfield then agreed to donate the total amount.[29]
     Real healing does not come easy. Inside Edition has monitored Benny Hinn since their first program on him in 1984. In one dramatic scene, Hinn claimed to heal a mother and her two young children of AIDS. Again Hinns credibility is questionable. The so-called "healing" was presented over national TV without valid verification.
Inside Edition confronted Mr. Hinn because the woman and children were not really healed. In addition, one of the children did not belong to the lady. When told this, Hinn tried to justify himself saying, "All I know is what she said. I was praying she would get a miracle and I put it on, showing me praying for someone with AIDS to give someone hope with AIDS." Are we to assume that "the word of knowledge" was turned off at the time? For the dying, true hope was absent.
     On Larry King Live, Mr. King said, "You could do it on the street." Hinn said, "Well, yes, but look, it’s not as easy because you really need that atmosphere of faith." Did Jesus and the apostles need an atmosphere? The answer is obviously no! In contradiction to this statement, we are told that people are healed on the drive to the crusade or while waiting in line without being in any atmosphere of faith. I certainly agree the atmosphere is important, very important! On March 16, 1997, Impact News gave a couple of common examples of people who attend the crusades for healing. Linda Tyson brought her 17 year old son, Shandez who was injured in football and is now incapacitated in a wheel chair. She went to his crusade in Atlanta with much hope and faith. The first and second night she could not get in. Then Hinn prayed for Shandez briefly backstage and they went home still hoping for a miracle. Laura Twilly was dying of cancer and came to be healed. She was interviewed in a screening process. As often happens, she said she could not walk, but after attending she felt better and was very excited. Not truly healed, she walked with a new strength at the crusade; she died four weeks later.
     Why are some accepted on stage while others are not? Larry king inquired about the screening process. Benny said, "I have doctors. I have people that are trained who make sure that the person is healed...I don’t really pray for the sick. I pray for them, you know, after they are healed. On the program I pray for the sick when I say now stretch your hands…But in the crusade itself, they are healed just sitting there, see? And so they’re checked. They’re questioned. ‘Do you know what’s wrong with you?’ And then the doctor, or whoever, will check as much as possible, of course. And, ah, you know the pain is gone and now of course when someone is healed of cancer or leukemia, or something, we will always say, ‘Go back to your doctor and make sure you really are healed because you really can’t tell by just asking some questions.’"
Within a minute Benny contradicted himself. Why have doctors in the screening process to make sure if no one really knows? Why does he pray for the sick on This is Your Day and other programs but not in the crusades? In truth, he does pray for people to be healed during crusades, making such statements as, "If God will heal one he’ll heal two, if he will heal two he’ll heal three." How logical is it to attribute the sicknesses to demons and then cast them out of people who were already healed?
Are the demonized healed? When Benny pronounces that they will never be sick again or commands the sickness to go, what does that mean? Other faith healers call that "healing," so should Mr. Hinn.
     A few years ago after Inside Edition exposed such inconsistencies Hinn said, "We will not say they’re healed or something like this, because how do we know they are healed. They’re telling us they’re healed, so we can’t speak for the people." (TBN, March 4,1994). Then why do we hear that a left ear is being "healed," cancer is "healed," a blood condition is "healed," deafness is going and that sort of thing?
     On the Larry King Live show, Benny shared a story about being sick with a head cold. He claimed that he turned on the TV and saw his own program. He explained, "I had a terrible cold one day. Oh, it was terrible! I couldn’t breath, it was terrible. I turned on my program (Larry: "No. You cured yourself!")…Benny Hinn on the show said, ‘Stretch your hands!’ and I thought, (Larry: "Come on, Benny!") Oh I thought to myself…so stupid you know for me to go and actually put my hands…and suddenly the Lord really spoke to my heart and said, ‘The man on television is my anointed servant.’…I went over and put my hands on the screen and yes; I got healed." Benny claimed he was healed by his own video! I would find it more believable if he had breathed on himself. Seriously, if this is possible, people no longer need him in live crusades; they could just show his videos in hospitals and touch more people’s lives with the power of God. A Benny Hinn video would be a greater miracle than the Apostle Paul’s handkerchief? Why did the Lord say the man on the TV was anointed and not the live person? Obviously, Benny’s promo was a pitch to the viewers to lend confidence in his ministry! "Come on Benny!" are my sentiments also! Characteristically, Hinn tells people what they like to hear.
     One of the most peculiar testimonies came from the broadway movie star, Ben Vereen. He was in two traffic accidents which gave him a very small chance at survival. Later he attributed his healing to Hinn’s crusade. I watched as Mr. Vereen said, it doesn’t matter what you believe in, whether its Buddha, Mary or Jesus. Strangely, when Vereen was to appear on the TBN show with Hinn to give a testimony, he canceled because he had a little cold. Later, on the Suzanne Somers show (Sept.29,1994), he attributed his healing to his doctors, the therapists and a pastor named J. Coleman, a former Unity school of Christianity minister, still holding those beliefs. Vereen is currently endorsing the Tony Robbins power tape series.
Why doesn’t Benny Hinn go visit hospitals and heal the patients? Does God heal mostly during a crusade? Or do people need to wait for Hinn to come to town? Hinn is confident that God is going to respond in the same way in every city he visits. Hinn did go to a hospital! He says he received a special invitation from the Reverend Mother of a Catholic hospital. Benny went and conducted a service with three Pentecostal preachers and seven Roman Catholic priests in a hospital of 150 patients. (Welcome Holy Spirit, page 231).
He claims that this hospital’s chapel was filled with clinically ill, bed-ridden patients. The doctors and nurses watched as they anointed people. He said that it looked like an earthquake hit because the people were lying everywhere. His story went on into a miracle mystery tour of Benny’s imaginations.
     What Benny chronicled got investigated by G. Richard Fisher of Personal Freedom Outreach. He wrote, "Something of this magnitude probably never would have been forgotten at Sault Saint Marie General Hospital. How did it ever escape the attention of the news media? As described by Hinn, this could be the most incredible happening Canada had ever experienced. Many people could verify it, yet there is neither anyone at the hospital who remembers it as Hinn tells it, nor are there records to confirm the fact.
     The real story is neither extraordinary nor miraculous. Here is what actually happened. Our connection with the hospital got us the response, ‘Benny who?’ Director of community relations for Sault Saint Marie General Hospital, Lois C. Krause instantly denied all that Hinn claimed. She said it could not have happened in the way that Hinn’s book described. She laughed after reading a copy of the story. No miracles occurred in the hospital as Hinn claims, she said, adding that no patients left that day due to miraculous occurrences. Some older staff members did recall Hinn’s name but did not remember anything as extraordinary as Hinn’s book describes. They did not deny the possibility that chapel meetings were held, but did not recall the meeting as recounted in Welcome Holy Spirit. Mother Superior Mary Francis, also disputed Hinn’s account. The hospital released this statement which included the following remarks: ‘No such events have ever occurred at General Hospital. His pronouncements can neither be verified through the medical records nor by testimony by past or present personnel of this hospital. Mr. Hinn’s claims are outlandish and unwarranted.’ (July-Sept. of the Quarterly Journal of Personal Freedom Outreach).
     In his book, The Confusing World of Benny HinnOff-site Link, Fisher declares that Hinn "embellishes truth and he fabricates, exaggerates and misrepresents events." He went to the hospital but the experiences did not happen anything like he claimed. What a terrible testimony for someone claiming to be God’s minister! Hinn’s greatest stories which he personally documented are fabrications! Hinn’s book exaggerates stories going to millions of people. Word Faith theology seems to affect the way he looks at things.

HINN’S INCOME:

     Impact News, on March 16, 1997, presented Mr. Hinn with this question, "May I ask what your annual salary is?" Benny explained with difficulty, "Well, John, you knew that that would be private, but ah, I knew you would ask it.
I can tell you this, um, if it wasn’t for my book royalties, I’d be dead!" Yet when Larry King asked about his salary, he said, "People ask me what I do with this money from my books, for example, from my royalty. I give much of that away." In Hawaii at the February 28 service, he discussed the distribution of his books, saying, "Anything that sells, I don’t get a cent. All the books, all the tapes, I get nothing. I just get one cent. That’s it!"
     Notice the two stories! Which is really true?
There is a consistent mystery of multiplicity when it comes to explaining either the practical or the supernatural. Impact obtained a copy of his five year employment contract. It set Hinn’s salary at $250,000 a year plus unspecified group benefits. Benny responded to another question, "So you’re asking me if it’s accurate?" (Impact: "If it’s reasonably accurate.") "It’s close." Later Hinn told Impact his yearly income including royalties was much more, between $500,000 and $1,000,000 a year. Two to four times as much is not close!
     Hardly a man in history ever made so much money preaching "the Gospel!" Benny said softly, "I would love the day to come where, ah, I would live only on my royalties and would not have to take a salary from the ministry at all." Mr. Hinn has been quoted saying, "I have lost complete desire for anything to do with the world. My worldly desires are gone."30 On Larry king he said that he has needs while defending his opulent lifestyle, claiming that he gives much of his book royalties away. In truth, what comes through the ministry stays in the ministry. The week following the Impact program on Larry King Live, Larry asked, "Big salary?" Benny said, "Um. It’s OK." Larry inquired, "Are you wealthy?" Benny said, "No, I’m not wealthy." What is Mr. Hinn’s definition of wealthy or even well-to-do? He recently moved from the exclusive Heathrow Development to an even more exclusive Alaqua $685,000 home. On Impact he stated, "The home…the car, I paid for. The ministry pays nothing when it comes to home and car and all that." That sounds wealthy! His suits are tailored, his shoes are Italian leather, and his wrist and finger are endowed with gold and diamonds. He wears a diamond Rolex watch. How many people do you know who enjoy this kind of lifestyle that are not rich? Benny says, "What’s the big deal, for goodness sake? What am I supposed to do, drive a Honda?" When Larry King asked about his Mercedes, he was not aware that Benny traded it in for a Jaguar.
Jesus and the apostles walked in suffering and experienced tribulation to express their faith. In contrast, Benny shows it by what he owns (See 2 Cor. 6:3-10Off-site Link). Mr. Hinn embraces the prosperity philosophy. He declared, "I’m sick and tired of hearing about streets of gold [in Heaven]. I don’t need gold in Heaven. I got to have it now."31 This is certainly reflected in his lifestyle of ministry. He spent nearly $9,000 per staff person on a round trip fare to fly the supersonic Concord.
This saved four hours of flying time. Hinn and his personal bodyguards stay in presidential suites of the most exclusive and expensive hotels in the world, costing as much as $2,200 a night. (Impact News). While The apostles said, "Silver and gold have I none but in the name of Jesus rise," Hinn can honestly say silver and gold I have also. Benny reasoned, "And I do not ever want to get to the place where I have to be begging for money to, ah, keep the bills paid." Then we saw, "If God would speak to you, even giving $10,000, $50,000, or maybe even a $100,000 we need, we can use it, believe me now." (Impact News). While this may not be called begging it certainly could be called manipulative.
     Benny Hinn’s Hawaii crusade included showing a video of his crusade in Nicaragua. He claimed that he did not have the heart to ask the people of Nicaragua for an offering. Why? He teaches, "If you have big debt, you sow big seed…If I had to have a big financial miracle, I would not give a dollar. I would give a big sacrificial seed, believing God for the harvest." (Impact News). According to Hinn’s own faith theory, he denied the people of Nicaragua the blessing of overcoming poverty by giving. On Larry King Live he stated, "We don’t force the people to give. People give out of their own freewill and it pays the bills." He asked the Lord to speak to the people of Hawaii, to give generously saying, "I’m asking the Lord to speak to many of you to give a thousand dollars tonight. Some can give even more…at least a hundred dollars to help us." He cleverly lifted a greater offering, instructing the people, "If you have nothing to give but you really want to give something to the Lord’s work, would you mind standing up…Now would you look around and see those standing around near you?…Come on! Somebody get up and give them some money so they can give also. There’s people standing up who have nothing to give. Somebody give them something to give so they can be blessed!" While freewill is involved there is a lot of coaxing. Once again we hear a double message. He couldn’t ask from the poor in another country to give yet he cleverly got people to give double offerings in the wealthier Hawaii.  
 
More to come . . .


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