Saturday, 13 March 2010

Bishop Brian and the needle

I wonder if the self appointed "Bishop" Brian Tamaki ever includes Matthew 19:23-24 in his sermons? "...it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

$3000-a-pop fees to speak to his own congregations? Taken from the EFTPOS-collected donations of his mostly poor and brown church members, what's more. Members were encouraged to "...buy a $300 signet ring (men only), stop buying coffee and give up Sky TV so they could give more money to the church". (NZ Herald)

An ex administrator of the church says he collects:
  • A six-figure salary believed to be in the region of $350,000.
  • Close to $100,000 tithed by Destiny pastors to him rather than their own churches.
  • Between $350,000 and $500,000 from the "First Fruits" donation
  • An assortment of expensive gifts - Destiny churches are expected to donate at least $1000 to buy gifts on significant milestones, such as birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries and Father's Day.
Plus a $1.2m home, recently used to secure a second mortgage, a 12m Rayglass boat which he moors at Pine Harbour marina (to replace the $110,000 one bought in 2004), cars, motorbikes, weird frock-coated suits for the "holy prophet" (profit?) look - and a fat salary for his wife, of course.

What would Martin Luther - or Jesus - say about this grasping hypocrite? I bet Brian doesn't care, he's cottoned on to Prosperity Theology and uses this to justify his continued cash-grab. I don't think Brian's camel will pass through the eye of a needle, but I'd like someone to pass a needle through Brian. Maybe it will prick his conscience.

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