Friday, October 1, 2010

My Online "Discussion" With Hillsong's Executive Pastor (Part 5)

There is more dialogue to come from my "online conversation" with Joel A'Bell who is the Executive Pastor at Hillsong church in Sydney. But while we have been pursuing the subject of Scripture's sacredness and the abominable practice of deleting parts of Bible verses, I had to post the observations of a sister from Canada concerning the Brian Houston "money" video that I posted last Monday. Whilst being dazzled by Brian Houston's vast arsenal of marketing techniques I failed to pay attention to his quotation of Scripture. Watch the following video again and pay particular attention to Brian Houston's Scripture quotation. Is there a problem with it????

Here are the observations that our Canadian friend made about the above video:

As the subtitles pointed out in the video of Brian Houston promoting his book “Money,” it is a major error when he says that the Bible says, “Let the poor say, ‘I am rich.’” Those words felt familiar so I went searching and found two choruses that say exactly that.

What the Lord Has Done in Me by Reuben Morgan / Hillsong Music Australia

Let the weak say, “I am strong.”
Let the poor say, “I am rich.”
Let the blind say, “I can see.”
It’s what the Lord has done for me.

Give Thanks by Henry Smith

Give thanks with a grateful heart
Give thanks to the Holy One
Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ His Son
And now let the weak say, “I am strong,”
Let the poor say, “I am rich
Because of what the Lord has done for us.”

Brian Houston says, “The Scriptures say, ‘Let the poor say “I am rich.”’” He is quoting an uninspired line from a chorus, saying it comes from the Bible, and using it to support his wealth and prosperity theology. He is building a house of straw on sand and unfortunately misleading many who assume he knows what the Bible says.

So it would seem that the only problem with Brian Houston's Bible verse is that it isn't in the Bible . . . . oh details, details. So deleting "unHillsong" parts of Scripture is not the only hermeneutical skill on display in the Hillsong empire. Perhaps adding new verses to Scripture is another part of the package. I wonder if Pastor Houston holds to inerrancy with regard to Hillsong choruses?

Am I being sarcastic - yes! Is this mock worthy - yes when it is a world renowned "Bible teacher"! Is there something constructive we can glean from this - yes, go to a church pastored by a man who labors in the text instead of inventing new text. And if you have a pastor who is a 2 Timothy 2:15 man, then thank him passionately for his faithful shepherding and the care of your soul.

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15)

Go On To Part 6
Go Back To Part 4
Go Back To Part 1


Randy said...

Wow, you have got to check out this verse with that in view:

'Because you say, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.' (Revelation 3:17-18 NASB)

Here we have a clear case of the poor saying they are rich, and the Lord Jesus Christ laid down a strong rebuke on this congregation. It always amazes me how the same errors continue to crop up, and people like the folks at Hillsong read and study the Bible and cannot see this.

Matthias said...

Mot only has Houston misquoted Scripture but he has fallen into the error of 'adding to it' .But this should be a timely reminder to us as to what the Bible says ,about no man can serve two masters -either God or mammon. Christ talking to the church at Sardis ,or Hillsong or where I attend even
"” i know thy works and that thou havest a name and that thou livest ,and art dead” Revelations 3:1),then he gives His warning about coming as a Thief in the Night,then where is the Prosperity gospel ,the sacro pop music,the multi million dollar mansions,or all our plans for the rest of our lives

Anonymous said...

The video of Brian promoting his book is pretty old news of which he may (or may not) heve repented. I have heard him say he regretted wrting the book (or perhaps it was the title of the book?) But there are other problems with Hillsong in my opinion. Twisting scripture is of course a huge issue, but Hillsong and Brian Houston have a well verified pattern of promoting and endorsing very worrisome ministries. Joel Osteen has spoken at the conference and is highly regarded by BH.The fact that Osteen has denied Christ on Larry King, has pronounced Mormons a valid form of Christianity and has worked with the Roman religion to win "separated brethren" back from the protestants, all seems not to be a problem to the Hillsong team.
Other ministries endorsed by Brian and Hillsong include Robert Schuller, Rick Warren, Joseph Prince and the former and current Pope!They supported the Catholic World Youth day here in Sydney. The Shack is (or has been ) for sale in their bookshop. All in all as you noted earlier "Houston, we have a problem" I strongly believe true believers, including those in leadership, need to separate from this religious mess before they make a shambles of their faith.

Cameron Buettel said...

Glenn, I couldn't agree more. Your insights are welcome on this blog.

I realize the video was old. It just served as a classic example of Scripture twisting and . . . adding to the Canon! I am aware that he withdrew the book from sale but his reasoning was, as best as I can recall, along the lines of a misunderstood victim of unfairly harsh press.

Anonymous said...

Romans 4:17 says, speaking of Abraham, "(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were."

Should we say we are rich when materially not, dose the above verse say we can? can we call or speak things about our lives and believe them to be changed materially not just spiritually or is that error? Is Pastor Brian Housten refering to the above scripture when saying let the poor say they are rich ( Rich in heavenly things first then earthly) Christianity is not the letter of the law but the spirit of the law I thought, not of pulling down but of building up and using wise correction where needed in an attitude of love for the person.

I don't believe I am wrong but lets not bring judgement upon ourselvs by jumping onto the errors of others even if they do have large congregational churches. They are preaching Christ and even if out of selfish reason so be it as long as Christ is preached, I think the Apostle Paul said something similar.

Thanks Rowland

Cameron Buettel said...

Rowland, I never questioned their motives. My contention along has been that Brian Houston and his team at Hillsong do not preach the Gospel. If you read the rest of my posts on this subject you will find that the evidence is conclusive. So I can rejoice when the Gospel is preached for wrong motives, but I must expose when a false gospel is preached - even with the right motives. Galatians 1:8-9 Romans 16:17