Thursday, January 17, 2008

More 'innocent' believers fleeced in pyramide sceme

Another story is surfacing, in Cape Town, of gullable believers being hoodwinked out of their hard earned cash. The Burger, an Afrikaans newspaper in the Western and Eastern Cape, reports in an article, 'Piramide man steeds gesoek', that members of the Fountain Christian Community and Ravensmead AFM are looking for a man called, Mr Stanton Hermanus. According to his mother, seemingly the one running the operations in Cape Town, he is somewhere in Hongkong, trying to get investor's money back. The question is: why do we find so often, this odd mixture of sincerity in faith, greed and crooks amongst us as church people. The scandal that broke last year in Johannesburg and Durban, around JCC and a character called, Wayne Jones, is still fresh in our memories, yet it seems as if this is hardly the tip of the iceberg-there is more sleaze to come.

At a deeper level, it seems as if a time of deeper searching and listening to the word of God is critical on the areas of finance, businessethics and faith, and what role does the prosperity gospel plays in this, if any. The church has to play a key role, if not central in economic development and raising the quality of life amongst believers and the nations. The Abrahamic covenant speaks of being a blessing to the nations (Gen 12:3) Indeed, the Bible does speak of prosperity and wealth, of being blessed as being much more than simply spiritual-it is real and it does relates to our tithes and offerings. But equally so, we need to revisit the kind of values that we incalcate amongst our children, the children of the church, so to speak. In the much published investigation of Debra Patta, of 3rd Degree, it was mentioned time and time again, that the kingpin of the scheme was a sincere 'son of God'. It begs the question: what kind of 'sons' (children) of God are we raising ? These are pertinent questions for us to delve into, over the long term.

In the meantime, however, we can only hope that the members of these churches at least, get their money back from these dubious schemes and shady characters.


flytrap said...

I think victory over money is the biggest challenge facing the church. Human greed and need for security can quickly turn believers into dupes, and yet to accomplish it's calling, the church is going to need finances. And God don't print money in Heaven!

3 years ago I was the kind of believer that had NO idea how to steward finances. When I got, I spent. Not sure I would have been taken in by a pyramid scheme, but there are other paths of foolishness.

Through a friend I got involved in the stock market. It has been a fantastic learning experience. The market challenges your greed and fear. There is no better way to test the intent of the heart relating to money, than to buy shares. I made mistakes, I learnt, I even made a few bucks. I will not be duped again.

To all my brothers/sisters I say this. Stop trying for the quick buck and the comfortable life. These are the worlds goals. What God gives you is not always yours.
Consider it may have been given to allow you to be a blessing, not for your comfort. Prosperity teaching is for the body, take it too personally and you become selfish. Rather increase your financial IQ and gain financial wisdom. Jesus said in Luk 12:42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?

Make sure you know what you are doing and that what you gain through your hard labour is (intentionally)correctly allocated.

Need more insight. Give me a shout.

Remember this verse?
Luk 16:8

Anonymous said...

Please make sure of your facts before publishing. Your uninformed comments do nothing but judge Stanton hermanus before you know whart really happened. You are slandering him on the basis of what you ead in the tabloids. SHAME ON YOU!!!

Reggie said...

It's allways easy to talk behind a veil of anonymity, isn't it ? What is in the post is nothing more then what is in the public domain and I'm not so sure that Die Burger would qualify as a tabloid. We all have the right to talk about what is in the newspapers.

Be that as it may- the point of the post is simply this: our churches should stop with a type of message that make material wealth the ultimate criterion for being blessed. It not about people-its about our message as Christains- to believers, to our own children. Do you feel comfortable with the type of developments that are taking place in our churches- the cloned Benny Hinns and the Creflo Dollars parading as pastors ? I am not.

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