Leprosy of a spiritual variety is out there and it has struck down many a powerful ministry. Gehazzi was Elisha's servant and caught an incurable case of leprosy for doing two things that angered the LORD.
1) He got money from someone in exchange for a gift from God at the hands of a true prophet.
2) He lied about it.
Now Naaman, captain of the host of the king of Syria, was a great man with his master, and honourable, because by him the LORD had given deliverance unto Syria: he was also a mighty man in valour, [but he was] a leper. And the Syrians had gone out by companies, and had brought away captive out of the land of Israel a little maid; and she waited on Naaman's wife. And she said unto her mistress, Would God my lord [were] with the prophet that [is] in Samaria! for he would recover him of his leprosy. And [one] went in, and told his lord, saying, Thus and thus said the maid that [is] of the land of Israel. And the king of Syria said, Go to, go, and I will send a letter unto the king of Israel. And he departed, and took with him ten talents of silver, and six thousand [pieces] of gold, and ten changes of raiment. And he brought the letter to the king of Israel, saying, Now when this letter is come unto thee, behold, I have [therewith] sent Naaman my servant to thee, that thou mayest recover him of his leprosy. And it came to pass, when the king of Israel had read the letter, that he rent his clothes, and said, [Am] I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man doth send unto me to recover a man of his leprosy? wherefore consider, I pray you, and see how he seeketh a quarrel against me. And it was [so], when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? let him come now to me, and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel. So Naaman came with his horses and with his chariot, and stood at the door of the house of Elisha. And Elisha sent a messenger unto him, saying, Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean. But Naaman was wroth, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper. [Are] not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? may I not wash in them, and be clean? So he turned and went away in a rage. And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, [if] the prophet had bid thee [do some] great thing, wouldest thou not have done [it]? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean? Then went he down, and dipped himself seven times in Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God: and his flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child, and he was clean. And he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and came, and stood before him: and he said, Behold, now I know that [there is] no God in all the earth, but in Israel: now therefore, I pray thee, take a blessing of thy servant. But he said, [As] the LORD liveth, before whom I stand, I will receive none. And he urged him to take [it]; but he refused. And Naaman said, Shall there not then, I pray thee, be given to thy servant two mules' burden of earth? for thy servant will henceforth offer neither burnt offering nor sacrifice unto other gods, but unto the LORD. In this thing the LORD pardon thy servant, [that] when my master goeth into the house of Rimmon to worship there, and he leaneth on my hand, and I bow myself in the house of Rimmon: when I bow down myself in the house of Rimmon, the LORD pardon thy servant in this thing. And he said unto him, Go in peace. So he departed from him a little way. But Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, Behold, my master hath spared Naaman this Syrian, in not receiving at his hands that which he brought: but, [as] the LORD liveth, I will run after him, and take somewhat of him. So Gehazi followed after Naaman. And when Naaman saw [him] running after him, he lighted down from the chariot to meet him, and said, [Is] all well? And he said, All [is] well. My master hath sent me, saying, Behold, even now there be come to me from mount Ephraim two young men of the sons of the prophets: give them, I pray thee, a talent of silver, and two changes of garments. And Naaman said, Be content, take two talents. And he urged him, and bound two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of garments, and laid [them] upon two of his servants; and they bare [them] before him. And when he came to the tower, he took [them] from their hand, and bestowed [them] in the house: and he let the men go, and they departed. But he went in, and stood before his master. And Elisha said unto him, Whence [comest thou], Gehazi? And he said, Thy servant went no whither. And he said unto him, Went not mine heart [with thee], when the man turned again from his chariot to meet thee? [Is it] a time to receive money, and to receive garments, and oliveyards, and vineyards, and sheep, and oxen, and menservants, and maidservants? The leprosy therefore of Naaman shall cleave unto thee, and unto thy seed for ever. And he went out from his presence a leper [as white] as snow.
Gehazi had been a faithful servant to a true prophet and the report of him throughout the Bible until this one singular event was good. He faithfully served his master in everything. Yet somehow, he thought he wanted more and mammon and greed got the better of him. Oh Gehazi! What were you thinking?! The gift of God is not for sale it never has been and never will be! This curse that fell upon this once faithful servant of the LORD's prophet is a warning to all of those who serve the LORD to NEVER, NEVER, NEVER sell or even insinuate selling anything that has to do with the kingdom. The Kingdom of God does not operate under the principles of the spirit of Mammon (riches, the world system). It is totally different. Yet the temptations to sell books, video's, audiotapes, holy handkercheif's and important 'spiritual updates' are real and very enticing. I know what it is like to run a ministry with little or no support, it is very difficult and extremely discouraging. Those of you out there who visit this site regularly do not know how much work, research, time, effort, problem solving (including and especially technical problems) that running a site like this entails. If you have never done it, you just don't know, though you may think you do. I do it all. I get no help. Murmurings and complaints I get a lot of; help?... never get it from my readers.
There are times when I have really cried out to God about this. He has heard me many a time and specifically told me to continue. He would provide all the support I need in his own mysterious ways until it is time to move on. I am here to bear witness to the fact that God is true to his world and has kept his promise to me, to him be the Glory forever and ever and ever! AMEN.
There are other avenues that I would like to explore in ministry but God has for the time being, has limited my work to the web. I guess in many ways I am still in 'training'. That is fine with me. I have seen too many ministries get ahead of themselves and fall flat on their faces. So I am going to be obedient and one of the most solemn directives I received from Jesus was never to sell anything that I write, say (in audio form) or publish that I have not made available for free, if it deals with prophecy, the Bible or spiritual teachings. Now some of you are ready to accuse 'AHA! You do sell a book, I have seen it advertised on your site...hypocrite!” That is true, I have a book that I sell. That book is also available as a free download as well on the Prophet's Corner. Those wishing a hard copy can buy it (I cannot afford to give it away to everyone), but for those who cannot afford it or do not want to buy it but want to read it, it is FREELY given with no strings attached, other than this; they are not allowed to sell the downloaded copy to others. I can remember writing and writing and spending a lot of money to get that book published before I had a web site. It was a lot of work and it is not perfect by any means but if I waited for perfection, it would never have been published. Yes, I was misled (more like insensitive to God's gentle pleadings) as to how God viewed selling of works directly related to his kingdom and repented of what I had done. That is when I made the free copy available.
Why am I telling you this? Well, money is a necessary evil as long as we live here on Earth... emphasis on the world evil; how we view it, how we use it, acquire it and spend it speaks volumes about where we are spiritually. Look at Gehazi, somewhere deep in his soul lurked the soul of a coveter and a liar. His service was impeccable but he failed an important test and was cursed for it. He and his decedents were cursed forever for this one act of mammon worship. 'This is a hard saying', as the disciples would say, 'who can hear it'? Those who really want to serve God in spirit and truth can hear it, those who have the spirit of mammon and lies lurking deep in their soul cannot hear it. You see, they want the money now and cannot wait for their heavenly reward, so they charge for their work now in the form of mammon's rewards, that is money. One must wonder if God is really behind these ministries or if another spirit is at work. Some of these ministries are 'spot on' and 'right on target' when it comes to doctrine, last days teaching, salvation and know the time in which we live. Yet still they refuse to actually HEED the teachings of Christ on the subject of money.
Remember Judas. He sold the Lord out for thirty pieces of Silver. Man, what a greedy, traitor! Judas was well acquainted with the teachings of Christ and sat at Christ's feet and heard teachings that were reserved Only for the apostles; that is, of all the world's people to ever live only 12 were told the mysteries of the kingdom in person by Christ. We are talking with someone who was intimate with Christ and knew his teaching. Yet Judas wanted 'that cash money... now!' and wouldn't wait for Christ to come into his Kingdom. Gimme mine now! That is the essence of the spirit of Gehazi and the curse thereof. This I know, if God wants you (anyone that is) in ministry he will provide, however, faith and obedience are required to receive God's provision. There are some ministries that God raises up only for a season and then the ministry (is supposed to) go(es) away. All true Christian ministry is on God's timetable and under God's specific direction. Some ministers I have seen, heard and read had powerful ministries but I think somewhere along the way they either did not heed God when he said that phase of their life's work was over or just missed God's direction either by sin, hardness of heart and hearing, or they caught a terminal case of Gehazi's Syndrome.
But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back [part] of the price, his wife also being privy [to it], and brought a certain part, and laid [it] at the apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back [part] of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things.
Here we see the first century Christians were sharing things in common. Yet somehow one couple decided they wanted to benefit from the Church's wealth that was all held in common but did not want to fully put all of their money in the Church the way everyone else did. The key thing here is that, just like Gehazi, they lied about it. He could have kept the land and the price thereof. He wanted to make a show and cheat the Church, cheat God and wound up only cheating himself. Let us never ever be caught up in any kind of covetousness brothers and sisters, it leads one on a path that leads one to deceive others (for mammons sake) and become accursed. That is what has happened in many ministries I see on TV, on the Web, in Christian book stores, etc. You know I have often believed that God has allowed Christians to use the Internet to get the word out to those who would never have heard the truth if they depended on the so-called Christian book stores, popular ministries on TV and radio because most of them want Money to hear much of what they have to say. They want cold-hard CA$H or that ubiquitous credit-card number, then you can hear their 'word's and prophecies', but only AFTER you pay.
And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and [in] the bond of iniquity.
Here is a slightly different variation on the same theme, Someone saw Paul give the Holy Spirit to some believers and then wanted that power for himself in order to SELL it. Simon was in awe of the world's wealth and saw Holy Spirit as a way to acquire wealth for himself. Now Simon was a disciple but he had not been one for long at all. Peter saw through this guy and rebuked him accordingly. It was a serious matter because notice how Peter words his rebuke; “if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee”. There is something very, very upsetting to God about selling God's gift or using ones position in the Church to one's own financial gain (as with Judas). The worst curses are ascribed to those that do it and forgiveness is by no means guaranteed. Indeed, the name Simony (a Catholic Term) is derived from this incident in the book of acts. Here is a definition of Simony according to the Catholic dictionary. (For you catholic haters, this is most detailed definition I could find).
There are many other incidents in scripture that show how God views money and the religion business. Many of these ministers know these verses and can quote them in three or four different bible versions. But are they heeding the teaching or are their ministries based on selling what God has freely given to them? This includes those who say 'well I need the money from the things that I sell so that I can continue on with my radio broadcast, or website or TV program'. God is not going to go against what he has already revealed. If the only way you can stay on the air, or on the Web is through simony and selling religious words, prophetic updates, words from the LORD, spiritual advise and the likes, you probably should not be in ministry at all. Many are out there now and shouldn't be. Many know that God has forbidden them for doing what they are doing in ministry and I am not jut talking about selling the kingdom materials but many other prohibitions clearly written in scripture. But they heap upon themselves teachers with their own itching ears to tell them that it is OK to rebel against God's commandments because that is what they WANT TO HEAR. 'I don't need to obey', they deceive themselves, 'I am special' they lie to themselves; it is the same old satanic lie ' yeah, hath God said?'. I have to tell you the truth in sincerity, many of these ministers are under a curse and do not even know it. Somewhere lurks a poison deep in their souls that they dare not ask to LORD to remove because they know they might lose their 'ministries'.
Now for a moment... lets get real. I know I have a kiosk on my site. It has many books on it both secular and Christian. I cannot give these books away because I cannot afford to buy them and give them away to anyone who asked for it. It would be illegal for me to give them away. Yet and still there is important information in these books that can be and should be learned one way or another. Now before you think I make a lot of money with my association with Amazon.com I don't. The motto of this site is Information For Our Times and books are one of the best ways of obtaining information. The authors of these books have not made their work available for free and I can either not point you to some really good books or point you to them and let you decide weather or not to buy them. If it were my work I would make a soft copy available for free. The books in the kiosk are not mine to give away and since I rather like living on the outside of a jail house I will not give them away. My simple motto is this if it is under my control, a copy will be available for free. If it isn't my work and it isn't free and I think it is worth reading, I provide a link.
I know that what I have written here is something that will anger a lot of people. It goes to the heart of American Christianity. It is the dagger at the center of its circulatory system. You see what is flowing in most of American Christianity's body is not the Holy Spirit, but money. Let me ask you this: - What if you could see judgment day and saw a minister that was right on target with its doctrine but took money before anyone could read it or hear it. What if on the day of Judgment that minister stood before the LORD and saw the hundreds that were saved because of his ministry. However, then the LORD showed him the thousands that could have been saved if he had heeded the LORD and had FAITH to believe that God would provide? Suddenly his hands start to drip with blood, the blood of the lost souls that were his responsibility to preach to. Now what if, when the rewards are handed out, everyone was receiving crowns, golden sashes and medals from the LORD and were being given rulership over nations and empires. Yet the 'selling minister' got nothing. When he asked the LORD why the LORD would say to him ( I am speaking allegorically here), 'You got all the reward you are going to get on earth'. 'But I barely made enough MONEY to survive LORD!', the man answers. What if the LORD says, 'no... no you did not make enough money to survive, because you see, you are not going to remain here amongst the living but must reside with the spiritually dead. You put your trust in uncertain riches rather than in my provision and now you must receive full payment for your simony and your unbelief. Depart from me YE WHO WORK INIQUITY...
This paper is not an attack upon anyone in particular but I must admit several ministers and ministries came to mind when I wrote this. I am not out to make enemies in the body of Christ but I must speak the truth while the light is still shining. This is an important teaching that is never discussed. God had to rebuke me to get me to see the light and I know why. I know how very, very fortunate I was to receive the grace and space to repent. Very soon I expect many a ministry to fold and go out of business. That's because they weren't true ministries but businesses. They will rail against the Christians who did not buy their trinkets and religious consumer goods. They will rail at others who are seemingly new-comers and nobodies who are suddenly seeing their ministries grow because they had the humility and faith to obey the LORD in a seemingly simple matter. They will rail because they refused the LORD's counsel and wound up having their ministries die on the vine. They will be angry, pissed off and very bitter. You will witness many a spiritual tragedy in the days ahead. It is my sincerest desire, not to sit back and accuse those ministries who are in financial hard times, but to exhort them to obedience through faith in God's principles rather than mammons. Many of these ministers cannot accept the simplicity and anonymity that goes with real Christian living. “Do good and disappear” is the motto of one well known religious order, and never a truer world has been spoken about a genuine Christian's life. He will never want, ask or seek a spotlight but will rather will shun it. These ministers of mammon's will never accept that kind of life. They (self, flesh) MUST be in the spotlight, they must have their glory now. For 99% of the worlds genuine, born again, blood bought believers, quietness, anonymity, ridicule and persecution are their lot in this life, not the Christian TV spotlight or revenue's from book's video's and newsletters. You see just about everybody does it, sells their ministry materials that is, and there is safety in numbers... or so they think. The American Church is suffering from a terminal case of Gehazi Syndrome. They think it is OK to sell the word of God and spiritual teachings in the name of the LORD. Well, I know this from my God.
The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, [Is] not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.
And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. (2Pe 2:3)