Posts Tagged 'money games'

First Rotten Fruit

rotten-fruit

Every year between January and Easter, pulpit pimps begin to lick their chops as they look forward to flogging the sheep into giving to their absolute favorite pyramid scheme of the year – the “First Fruit offering.”

Unlike the tithe scam (where the pimp puts a gun to the back of your head every Sunday and Wednesday by threatening holy wrath upon you and your descendants for “robbing God”), the “First Fruit” scam is a 1 day cash windfall for the pimps. Before I go any further, I invite you to watch two brief videos (courtesy of  spirituallysound) featuring “Pretty” Paula White – the original Florida Gator – pimping with wreckless abandon. These videos are from 2008, but you can surely believe that the same hollow lie is being perpetuated in churches across the country today:

Paula White’s “First Fruit” Scam!

(breathe in…breathe out…breathe in the good…breathe out the bad)

Like Pretty Paula, many pimps want you to give them “your increase” (a day’s salary, a week’s salary, or a month’s salary) so that God will “protect your crops for the remainder of the year” – and they always start off with a poor exegesis of Proverbs 3:9 as justification. However (and, as always) when you read Proverbs 1, 23, 4 and so on, you’ll see that the proverbs are (essentially) the letters of a father to a son extolling the virtue of knowledge, wisdom, insight into his royal court, instructions on relationship and correction. The Proverbs were written as “wisdom literature”, designed to produce meditation on God, and they should be read thoroughly and in context in order to see the deeper truth contained therein.

The Proverbs (in particular) are not “legal guarantees” from God (e.g “honor the Lord with the first fruit…so shall your barns be filled…) – they are written in hyperbolic language, based on the whole truth of the Old Testament. The entire Proverbs (all 31 chapters) are a very interesting read, but they are challenging, particularly because of the nature of wisdom literature (veiled understanding that must be studied thoroughly, hyperbole, etc). Further, the Proverbs are essentially “sayings” as opposed to direct Law given by God to Moses and the children of Israel. 

Having said that, let’s start at the very beginning (where the pimps don’t dare tread)…the first fruit offering was initiated in Leviticus:

Leviticus 23:9-14 (New American Standard Bible)

9Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,

 10“Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘When you enter the land which I am going to give to you and (A)reap its harvest, then you shall bring in the sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest to the priest.

 11‘He shall wave the sheaf before the LORD for you to be accepted; on the day after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.

 12‘Now on the day when you wave the sheaf, you shall offer a male lamb one year old without defect for a burnt offering to the LORD.

 13‘Its (B)grain offering shall then be two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil, an offering by fire to the LORD for a soothing aroma, with its drink offering, a fourth of a [a]hin of wine.

 14‘Until this same day, until you have brought in the offering of your God, (C)you shall eat neither bread nor roasted grain nor new growth. It is to be a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwelling places.

…and further detailed in Deuteronomy:

Deuteronomy 26:1-10 (New American Standard Bible)

 1“Then it shall be, when you enter the land which the LORD your God gives you as an inheritance, and you possess it and live in it,

 2that you shall take some of (A)the first of all the produce of the ground which you bring in from your land that the LORD your God gives you, and you shall put it in a basket and (B)go to the place where the LORD your God chooses to establish His name.

 3“You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time and say to him, ‘I declare this day to the LORD my God that I have entered the land which the LORD swore to our fathers to give us.’

 4“Then the priest shall take the basket from your hand and set it down before the altar of the LORD your God.

 5“You shall answer and say before the LORD your God, ‘(C)My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down to Egypt and sojourned there, (D)few in number; but there he became a (E)great, mighty and populous nation.

 6‘And the (F)Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, and imposed hard labor on us.

 7‘Then (G)we cried to the LORD, the God of our fathers, and the LORD heard our voice and saw our affliction and our toil and our oppression;

 8(H)and the LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with great terror and with signs and wonders;

 9and He has brought us to this place and has given us this land, (I)a land flowing with milk and honey.

 10‘Now behold, I have brought the first of the produce of the ground (J)which You, O LORD have given me.’ And you shall set it down before the LORD your God, and worship before the LORD your God;

First fruits are mentioned in the New Testament, but only symbolically; new converts were referred to as “first fruits” in the early Church because they were often the first followers of Christ in their communities (Romans 16:5; 1 Corinthians 16:15). However, Paul and James made it explicitly clear that Christ was a type of first fruit for those of us in the faith (1 Corinthians 15:20; James 1:18).  There is no mention of cash or money in regards to the biblical principle of first fruit (see every reference to “first fruit” or “first fruits” in Nave’s Topical Bible). Under the Law, sacrifices (animal, grain, burnt offerings, etc.) were required by God for the forgiveness of sin and for “covering” or “blessing” (Genesis 3:21; Genesis 4:4-5; Genesis 8:20-21; Genesis 22:10-13; Leviticus 4:35; Leviticus 5:10).

Jesus Christ became the final Passover Lamb when He shed His Reedeming Blood for His elect, rendering these ceremonial sacrifices moot, null, and void (John 1:29; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Timothy 2:5-6). There is no need or reason for ANY CHRISTIAN to “sacrifice” or present “sacrificial offerings” in a mock ceremony. The sad reality is that these hirelings  (who have already spiritually molested you with the tithe, convincing you that God is moved by your money) now tell you that your “crops” need to be “blessed”, otherwise you’ll meet all manner of financial calamity and the “devourer” will wreak havoc over your finances.

“So, passa, bishop, apostle, evangelist Smith…how can I be assured that God is going to make my crops reap a huge harvest this year” you ask? They can barely hide their delight when they reply “You have to give a first fruit offering  – the first and best of your harvest – so that God will cover you for the remainder of the year!”. Next thing you know, the hireling is standing before the congregation in his best ceremonial frock with a huge basket (full of your money), declaring that he’s going to “wave the heave offering (another sacrifice of grain that was rendered moot) over the congregation so that God will be pleased with our sacrifice”.

What you don’t know is that your “special offering” to (essentially) get God off your back is actually a windfall cash payment to your hireling – a payment that he’s been waiting for since he took it from you the previous year. Sure, you may be told that “this offering is going to programs in the church”, and you don’t even question it when those same “programs” require a payment from you if you want to participate in them (sound familiar, lemmings of the Pimp of Hampton’s club?). Your pimps love of cash and material things has created an insatiable lust for stuff that is no longer satisfied by the consumption of even more cash:

Ecclesiastes 5:10-11 (New American Standard Bible)

10(A)He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity.

 11(B)When good things increase, those who consume them increase. So what is the advantage to their owners except to look on?

I know for a fact that the “first fruit offering” goes directly to the pimp as a love offering, so don’t attempt to defend your pimp’s money grab here. And even if the “first fruit offering” was used for “benevolence”, it was taken from you in the guise of a lie because (yet again) your hireling doesn’t trust you to give from your heart (2 Corinthians 9:7) – you must be threatened and cajoled. Further, some churches even move the date of the collection of the “first fruit” during the months of January through April. If this was a mandatory offering (mandated and honored by God), then don’t you think God would clearly say so (in His Word), something like: “My Bishops/Apostles/Pastors/Shepherds et al shall collect a first fruit offering on My behalf on the 3rd Sunday of January”.

Even further, I find it curious that these vipers will put a pistol to your head for (at least) two Old Testament customs (that NEVER EVER EVER APPLIED TO YOU), yet they overlook every other animal sacrifice, (real) grain offering, etc. The next time your pimp wants a “sacrificial first fruit offering”, then throw a New York strip steak or a bushel of oranges on his “altar” – and see what he does then.

Folks, I implore you from the bottom of my heart to flee these lying, wicked, vile, covetous, desperate pulpit pimps and degenerate hustlers. They wouldn’t get within spitting distance of you were it not for their profane lust for your money – that’s why they can dismiss you with no impunity when you remove their hands from your pockets.

Those of you who have paid (or are paying) into these money scams because your pimp has convinced you that God doesn’t even see you unless you have money in your hand, you need to repent of your fleshly desire to gain favor and material things from God. Jesus paid the sacrifice for you already, and God is not a slot machine.

If you truly love the Lord and are earnestly seeking to be transformed into the Image of Christ (Romans 12:1-2), then please get away from these money-grubbing thieves before they cause you to question your faith when you see that you (and them) aren’t prospering as they promised you would.

If you are a hireling that knowingly participates in and perpetuates this first fruit scam (among other parlor tricks) then you still have time to repent before the Lord, renounce your wickedness, and seek restoration through Jesus Christ. Now is the hour, because you do not know what tomorrow holds for you.

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