January, 2007 UPDATE: TBN has announced that Hal Lindsey has been
brought back into their lineup. It didn't say if Lindsey has agreed
to edit out any criticism of Islam or Arab countries.
"LOS ANGELES, Jan. 22 /Christian Newswire/ -- Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), the world’s largest religious network and America’s most watched faith channel, announced that popular Christian author and commentator Hal Lindsey is returning to TBN with an all new current events program, “The Hal Lindsey Report.”" (See whole story)
Dec. 2005 UPDATE: TBN again reiterated their stand on not criticizing Islam or any other religion. Will Hal Lindsey go along or go away? We'll see in January.
UPDATE: My concerns last week over TBN’s treatment of Hal Lindsey (see article below) might have been premature. It looks now like TBN will be reinstating Lindsey’s program in January. It appears that this was just the Crouches way of correcting their old friend Hal Lindsey to get him to comply with their vision of soft-peddling the truth to appeal to more people, in this case Muslims.
In a December 8, 2005 article in the on-line news service, Agape Press, reporter Allie Martin wrote "Casoria (TBN lawyer and relative of the Crouches) explains TBN does not want to censor Lindsey's show, but that it also wants to reach out to the Arab world with the gospel of Christ. ‘Dr. Crouch believes the way to reach these people is not to inflame their senses against TBN but to show these people the love of God,’ he says, ‘to reason with them in order to bring them to at least an understanding of what Christianity is about.’" In other words, we don’t want to proselyte them or win them to Christ, we just want to make a good impression on them. [See: http://tinyurl.com/bkcgz ]
Time will tell whether the spanking TBN gave Hal Lindsey will work or not. Keep tuned to his "International Intelligence Briefing" to see if he soft-peddles the truth about the evil of Islam. One thing we will be able to tell is whether Lindsey cares more about truth or keeping his own power base and financial portfolio.
Romans 1: 18 "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness."
The Tyranny of TBN by Jackie Alnor
|The recent revelation that programmers paying for airtime on the Trinity Broadcasting Network are being censored by the Crouches convinced me that I should publish this small portion of my yet unpublished manuscript, "TBN: The Fleecing of Christianity." [It is still seeking a publisher who isn’t intimidated by TBN’s money and power.]|
Lindsey’s program "International Intelligence Briefing" has
been cancelled due to his strong stand against the threat of Islam around
the world. But that truth is a conflict of interest for TBN since they
have stations in Muslim countries. So if they can’t censor Lindsey, they
knife him in the back. One offended commentator wrote, "Hal also told
one of my board members in October at our conference that Jan Crouch does
the programming. Jan is a "Dominionist". In other words, she
believes that the church will make the world perfect before Jesus can
return. I am not sure if Paul Crouch takes that stand as he has produced
or co-produced some excellent films, some on Bible prophecy. Hal has had
many talks with Jan Crouch trying to change her theology but to no avail."1 So TBN can’t let anyone mess that up for them.
According to TBN’s attorney John Casoria, "TBN requires all its programming during December to have a Christmas theme. ‘When a programmer chooses not to do so, they are pre-empted so that TBN can focus its attention on the holidays,’ Casoria said."2
Can you imagine any other television network forcing their paying programmers to follow a theme they choose for them? This is dictatorship and tyranny. And Christian leaders have brought this upon themselves for kowtowing to Paul and Jan Crouch.
I am convinced that since good men did nothing as evil men (and women) built their empires, this large communication system (TBN) will be the false prophet’s tool for dictating the antichrist’s religion to the people of the world.
Hal Lindsey is just the first to go – the other compromisers who went along with TBN, looking the other way while TBN spewed out heresy and evil, will be the next to go
Here’s a portion of chapter 12 of my book:
CHAPTER 12 - HERESY HUNTING OR CHRISTIAN ACCOUNTABILITY?
The End Justifies the Means
Well known street evangelist Ray Comfort, author of "Hell’s Best Kept Secret," now has a weekly program on TBN. When questioned, he responded: "We will be separate/independent--like the many other legitimate ministries that use the Network, without being part of it--Charles Stanley, etc."
A representative of Comfort’s ministry responded to another concerned Christian explaining the ministry’s reasoning. "I wanted to let you know that I forwarded your email on to Ray and that he read it and appreciated your concern. He noted that the very fact that Jesus preached to the scribes, Pharisees, and hypocrites validates what we are doing. Jesus didn't cut Him self off from them. Instead He preached to them, because He cared about their eternal salvation. We are doing the same."3
However, they did not respond to his follow-up question in which he said, "When you say that you are preaching to the scribes and Pharisees, (those on TBN who are preaching another gospel), are you openly rebuking them and calling them by name as Jesus did. If so I missed it. Where did you do this?"4
Hal Lindsey who has had a long association with the Crouches in the early years used to confront false teachings on the air. Paul Crouch allowed Lindsey to debate the Kingdom Now heresies with Earl Paulk on a Praise the Lord show back in the 1980s. But Crouch has since been able to muzzle Lindsey and he has now been trained to stick with areas of agreement. The Christian Sentinel asked him for his justification and he gave one of the most convincing justifications when he wrote:
"Do you recommend I pull off TBN altogether and abandon that slot to whoever comes next? Who should I associate with? People who already know the truth? How useful is that?" He has a point. At least that half-hour of programming will not be spouting the Word/Faith heresies.
TBN management runs a disclaimer at the beginning of Lindsey’s program saying something to the effect that "the views and expressions on this program do not necessarily reflect the views of TBN." It doesn’t work the other way around, however. If any sound Bible teacher with a program on TBN were to put on a disclaimer that "the policies and practices of TBN’s management do not reflect the spiritual and ethical standards of this program," they would be cut off faster than you could say "antiestablishmentarianism."
Lindsey’s reasoning was mirrored D. James Kennedy, pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, who has had a long-standing relationship with TBN. He responded to a critic in a letter dated January 26, 2000:
"You say I tolerate a TBN or apparently agree with what they put on the air. I do not agree with everything on TBN. I don’t even watch it very much… I don’t agree with everything on TBN, nor do I agree with all of the programs on CBN, ABC, FOX, or any of the other networks. If I were to abide by your philosophy I could not have my program on any broadcasting network or my books in any bookstore or library… Furthermore, I don’t wish to beat this dead horse anymore."
But is buying airtime on TBN no different than buying airtime on NBC or FOX? I pointed out the difference once on Zola Levitt’s discussion board when I received no response from his ministry after writing him about his Jewish Roots program seen on TBN. I pointed out that the money that keeps the lights on at TBN is generated by the fleecing of the flock of God by compelling people to give or their prayers won’t be answered. TBN also habitually uses false prophecies as a pretense for people to get in on the last chance to sow a seed before the prophesied date of some cataclysmic event occurs that never pans out.
On the other hand, network television raises revenue by the advertising dollars paid out to sell cars, toothpaste, clothing, and every other product used by believer and pagan alike. This is honorable. But taking advantage of cheap rates on TBN due to the fact that they rake in the tainted money by stripping the wool off the sheep is the same as participating in their evil deeds. Why would anyone dare to cash in on that?
I pointed this out to the Zola Board when I wrote: "I know some would say, 'I'd go on any network as long as I can preach the gospel without interference.’ But that excuse does NOT wash regarding TBN. Secular networks make their money honestly by selling their ad spaces. The world is already under judgment -- we're not to judge them. But within the professing church the Bible tells us we are to judge and to not have any fellowship with so-called brothers if they are immoral or to enter into their deeds. By going onto their network, we are in fellowship with them and partners in their crimes against God and the flock of Jesus Christ" (reference to 1 Cor. 5:9-13).
A Zola Levitt defender responded that it wasn’t in Zola’s best interest to "bite the hand that feeds him." In other words, if you’re getting a good bargain for airtime on TBN you don’t dare speak out against them in any fashion. That seems to be the policy of all the ministries -- good or bad -- that have programs on TBN.
Failed Correction Attempt
This has been demonstrated in the past by the late Walter Martin, the original Bible Answer-Man. He shared his own experience in trying to put together a coalition of church leaders to confront the heresies of TBN and other "Christian" networks. :
"Recently, I committed an unpardonable sin. I sent a letter to fourteen of my colleagues, Christian leaders whom I could name, and I said, 'These are the following heresies being taught on radio and television. And it's a stench in the nostrils of God.' And then I just reproduced the quotations. And I said, 'I know you don't believe these things. Why don't we all stand together and say we are not going to give you any credibility if you are not going to stand for the foundations of the faith.' Twelve of them didn't bother to answer me. Two of them did. One said he would do absolutely nothing about it because unless they interfered personally in his program he didn't see where that was his business. And the other one said, 'Well, think of all the good that's being done on all these.. programs . . . the gospel is certainly being preached. So we shouldn't talk about things like that.' We used to condemn the Jesuits for things like that. It's called the end justifies the means. The very thing we condemned them for, we now tolerate and sometimes practice."5
I know from Walter Martin personally that the second man he quoted was none other than Jack Hayford, allegedly the Crouches own pastor. Now almost 20 years later the false teaching and false teachers have multiplied and part of the blame goes to those men Martin wrote who didn’t see it as their place to speak out. Christians need to increase the pressure upon those who compromise with TBN by writing letters and withholding support. Perhaps it’s not too late for them to heed the words of Walter Martin when he said:
"If the Christian ministries that are on TBN would say to them, 'You clean this up or we clean you out. We won't support you anymore. We'll pull all the programs.' You want to know how fast repentance would come? Like yesterday . . . The gospel of the checkbook rules the roost, not the gospel of Scripture!"6
Dr. Martin’s words went unheeded by those Christian leaders whose ministries benefit from their association with the Crouches. And not enough Christians responded to his admonitions and so nothing has changed since Martin went to be with the Lord in 1989.
Walter Martin set a good example for others in discernment ministry in how gracious he was to those he tried to reach. He would try to meet privately with TBN false teachers before taking it to the church. He met personally with TBN regulars such as Robert Schuller of the Crystal Cathedral before making his tape on "The Cult of Self-Esteem." He met personally with Dr. Frederick K. Price before publicly denouncing his teaching on the prosperity message. He tried over and over again to meet with Kenneth Copeland over his "we are little gods" heresy before denouncing him in public when Copeland refused to talk to him. And he had several face to face confrontations with the Crouches regarding heresy being broadcast on TBN.
Finally TBN blackballed Martin from their airwaves and would no longer discuss doctrine with him. Crouch began to label every opponent of heresy as "heretic hunters" and barred their views from the airwaves.
During a Praise the Lord program in 1992, Paul Crouch inferred that people like Walter Martin died early because of their stance against TBN. Crouch said, "I tell you, I’ve heard of a few funerals of folks just recently that have come against Trinity Broadcasting Network and I tell you it’s pretty dangerous. If I’ve learned one lesson these past nineteen years, it’s that you don’t touch an ordained ministry of God. . . Boy, I tell you, I’m not speaking ill of any TV evangelists even though I may see some false."7
"The worse possible thing that can be hurled at you is ‘touch not the anointed of the Lord,’" Walter Martin once preached. "The anointing of the Lord is upon people who are faithful to the Lord. If you’re not being faithful to God, who says you’re anointed?"8
But how can anyone who truly loves Jesus and His Word sit by silently and allow His Word to be twisted and His Truth to be distorted to the on-looking world? One pastor put it this way: "These men and women, with the help of television networks such as the Trinity Broadcasting Network, beam out by cable and satellite, a false gospel from the new kingdom of the cults, that seriously borders on gross heresy of the worse kind, and what’s most appalling is that true Christians have been either virtually silent about it, or have given approval of these teachers and their deceiving messages."9
Since the death of Dr. Martin, various ministries, including my own, The Christian Sentinel, have written letters, made phone calls, and written articles in an attempt to reach TBN and the Crouches in the tradition of Walter Martin. None of these efforts have worked out well for the truth of the Gospel. I have pleaded with many TBN employees to take a stand and stem the tide of corruption to no avail.
Two of my TBN contacts who love their paycheck but abhor what they see going on around them have demonstrated the kind of power the Crouches have over everyone around them. I asked one of these men said to me, "you should see the stacks of letters I have in my office from people who have been hurt by the teachings seen on TBN." I asked him what he intends to do about it and he said that is not his calling. He just shows his love to those hurt people.
Another long-time visible TBN executive says he never watches TBN. He says his teenager refers to it as "The Baal Network." And he is pretty much in agreement but does not want to jeopardize his position there.
These men will be accountable to God for their malaise. TBN has become a prize for the devil because of the apathy and self-seeking of those who associate with it. If God does not raise someone up to clean house then I am convinced it will be totally given over to Satan and the spirit of Antichrist. TBN could be the greatest tool for good, but it is becoming a "habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit" (Rev. 18:2).
1Jan Markell Olive Tree Ministries eUpdates for December, 2005 - http://www.olivetreeviews.org/articles/Jans_eUpdates.shtml#newsitemEEFFFAZFZkaqlUtUNd
2Art Moore, World Net Daily, "TBN Admits Concern About Offending Muslims" http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47691
3Unsigned e-mail from >email@example.com< to William Taylor, 5/15/2003
4William Taylor, 5/15/2003 e-mail to >firstname.lastname@example.org<
5Walter Martin, audio tape: "Little Gods in the Church." circa 1986
6Walter Martin, audio tape: "Schismatic Sheep"-pt. 2
7Paul Crouch, Praise the Lord, 1/28/92
8Walter Martin, audio tape "Modern Scribes and Pharisees," undated.
9Dennis L. Finnan, "The Word Faith Movement," p. 12, The Discerner, Vol. 18, No. 4, Oct.-Nov.-Dec, 1998.