The views I am going to raise are likely to be misunderstood or may simply be dismissed because they may appear to be out of sync with the current popular religion or hermeneutics of the times. I write this article with a heavy heart because of the spiritual manipulation which is being master-minded by heartless religious vultures who take advantage of the poor and the sick in the name of God. This article is not there to discredit the manifestation of the miraculous, neither does it aim to prove that miracles expired with the death of the Apostles. Far from it. I am speaking as a concerned Pentecostal Preacher and Biblical Scholar who wants to be true to the inspired word of God. I am of the view that the prophetic and the miraculous phenomenon has been highjacked by unscrupulous religious opportunists who do not care a damn about how many souls they are destroying and misleading by their so-called claims and miraculous performances. The so-called miraculous performances have become something attractive, captivating, sensational, entertaining and is glorifying man rather than God. Due to poverty, unemployment, sickness, crumpling health systems, political instability and uncertainty as well as human needs and personal problems, there is now a new religious right to demand for miracles. The most vulnerable people are my African brothers and sisters who come from a world that interprets life and all its happenings from a religious point of view. Previously the n’anga or sangoma was the kingpin of African society who could deal with all African problems and ailments. May I hasten to say that the n’angas have been outsmarted by the modern Urban Elite Prophets in handling African realities of poverty, diseases etc. Religious vocabulary is now awash with extra-biblical miracles like miracle money, miracle babies, miracle weight loss, miracle hair, miracle juice, miracle oil, miracle handkerchiefs, miracle stones, miracle bricks, miracle water, miracle grass, miracle rides. The list is endless and its bound to grow because of MIRACLES ON DEMAND. The Miracle Workers are now under innumerable pressure to come up with new performances of miracles. They, like any other magician on Britain Has Got Talent, have got to up their performance so as to maintain or increase follower-ship. Furthermore it is common knowledge that when such prophets are prophesying, recipients often say, ‘GO DEEPER MAN OF GOD’. Or alternatively its the prophet himself who asks the crowd for permission to GO DEEPER. This is none other than PROPHECY ON DEMAND. As far as I am concerned this is not a case for laughter or to joke about when we see these miraculous claims being paraded in the free for all media. The question is what did Jesus do when people demanded miraculous signs? In John 6 after Jesus fed the five thousand with miracle bread and miracle fish, the same crowd followed him to the other side of the lake and demanded for more Miracle Bread. But Jesus refused to offer miracles on demand. Hence he lost a very large number of his followers (John 6:66). Even the devil tempted Jesus to perform a miracle on demand i.e. to change stones into bread in order to fulfil his hunger. Again Jesus’ answer was a straight NO. Some Pharisees and Teachers of the law also demanded a miraculous sign from Jesus but he said NO and went on to challenge them that only a wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign. Matthew 7:21-23 has sobering thoughts from the mouth of Jesus ipsissima verba. Not everyone who says Lord, Lord shall enter the Kingdom of God and not every Miracle Worker shall enter the Kingdom of God even if they claim that they performed these miracles in the name of Jesus. I rest my case.
MIRACLES AND PROPHECY ON DEMAND (John 6:66, Mt 4:1-4, Mt 12:38-40)