An open letter to Pastor Jannie Pelser about T.B. Joshua
Bill Randles answer to Ds. Jannie Pelser
‘…One of the most alarming aspects of Joshua’s ministry that I raised is Transubstantiation, the heretical teaching that Joshua has power to transform water into the Blood of Jesus. This magical ritual demeans the true teaching of the precious blood, which Christ offered unto God for our salvation’.‘
Dear Jannie, thank you for your letter and the concern that comes across in it for fairness as well as for the Berean spirit.
Since yours is an open letter, I ask you to consider disseminating this reply as widely as possible. I believe that it is a healthy thing to discuss these things openly.
First of all I have not “found T.B. Joshua” guilty of anything! There is nothing personal about this criticism, the fact is, he has a public ministry which is affecting thousands and perhaps millions of people around the world, therefore we are duty bound to be Bereans and examine these claims and practices in the light of the Bible.
As a matter of fact I was very careful to note that Joshua does not seem to be about money, I said in my talk that Joshua gives money away to the poor and seems to be a very humble and giving person. I don’t think it fair of you to imply that I have become “instrument(s) of strife and division”.
I do not claim to have gone to Nigeria to see Joshua, I believe that it is possible to make judgements based on what the Prophet teaches, as well as on the basis of the videos which the Synagogue itself releases and endorses. As far as your criticism that the videos we used were outdated, and that the Prophet has progressed since then, my reply would be that these are currently being distributed by the Synagogue.
Jannie, do you contest the testimony of Wium Basson and His Mother? Why do you distribute an open Letter implying that she changed her testimony? Have you consulted with her privately about it?
Do I need to meet the prophet personally, to prove as you assert that I am “serious about the Truth”? I disagree with you there, Jannie. I do not have to have personal contact to know where a prophet is coming from. I can read His words, I can watch the videos streaming out from the Synagogue and I can make judgements based upon what he says and the practices he promotes.
Would you have to meet personally with the chief prophet of the Mormon church in order to make a judgement about Mormonism? You know that you don’t.
You say that I am not putting things into an “African context” and that things like exhibitionism, vomiting, and nakedness are typical of African culture. I make no claim to understanding the “African context” so perhaps you are right. But doesn’t real Christianity transcend pagan aspects of all cultures?
All I have asked people to do is consider these ‘miracles’ in the light of the miracles worked in the Bible. If we have to accept these things in the name of cultural context, where does Christianity sanctify?
Jannie you mention that the clips we used only represent about 15 minutes of services that can last all day long, therefore implying a biased representation. Why not answer for the video clips as they are? All we are doing is showing what the Synagogue itself presents as the ministry of a modern day prophet! What context are we withholding that would make Biblical sense of the practices of “Remote control”, Transubstantiation, “Vomiting problems away”, exhibitionism, etc.?
I take exception to your criticism of the use of the phrase, “Is this the God of the Bible?”, I know that the God of the Bible has done strange and wonderful and terrible things which are hard to explain.
But when the God of the Bible came in the flesh in the person of Jesus Christ, and “went about doing good, healing all of those oppressed by the devil”, we do not see him subjecting people to anything like the indignity of naked exhibitionism, putting them into vomiting states, turning water into “the blood of Jesus”, or “remote control techniques”.
Therefore regardless of your assertion, it is a valid question to ask, “Is this the God of the Bible?”. We are to “Try the Spirits, to see whether they are of God . . . for many false Prophets are gone out into the world”. Rather than trying to “Force God into my preconceived ideas” I am simply asking people to judge through a Biblical frame of reference.
One of the most alarming aspects of Joshua’s ministry that I raised is Transubstantiation, the heretical teaching that Joshua has power to transform water into the Blood of Jesus. This magical ritual demeans the true teaching of the precious blood, which Christ offered unto God for our salvation.
The blasphemous sight of people fighting to get under the spigots, that they might wash in it, swim in it, drink it, and the demoniacs going into a frenzy under it ought to revolt all true Christians. I believe personally that it is even an insult to African Christians, to relegate such paganism to an “African context”.
All Christians, from every tribe and tongue, have “turned away from idols, to serve the living and true God and to wait for His Son from heaven”. Transubstantiation alone is enough to justify the caution I have raised concerning Joshua.
Jannie I appreciate the spirit of your letter, I hope the dialogue can bear fruit. I would gladly debate you although it will not be until March that I get over there, so let’s pray for the good will of God on it. Please consider what I say, I have carefully considered your letter.
May God help us to stand for Truth,