Driving Out the Money Changers from the Temple of God! A Copyrighted Gospel Sold in the Den of Thieves!
(Ver 2.0) I will warn you up front that this Bible lesson will offend some people today. I’m sure after you read this lesson I will have some people who agree with me and others who strongly disagree with me, but I really do pray that you will agree with God’s Word and not my opinions I am not writing this Bible lesson today to seem better than anyone else or to say that I am perfect and I never make any mistakes! I am just writing this article today to point out a major problem that has been running rampant in the Body of Christ. It seems there are certain internal policies called the doctrines of men in many Christian Ministries today who believe that they have the right to limit and control what is being taught to others and even how it can be shared. This is what I call today the “Copyrighted Gospel of Jesus Christ” and you will soon learn more about why I called it this. These offensive policies are giving the body of Christ a black eye and a very poor reputation and what even one Christian man does reflects on all of us as a whole whether we like it or not, since we are just ONE BODY! You see I’m definitely not perfect either and I make a ton of mistakes. But, if someone sees me making a mistake I would greatly appreciate them telling me about it so I can learn, repent and change. This is my attempt at teaching so others will see a different perspective to what they are doing. I try very hard not name names in my lessons, and I will do the same today after considering what these words might do to damage the reputation of certain Christians. Somebody definitely needs to wake up the sleeping giants, sound the alarm and they need to stop what they are doing and this is my deepest prayer. Perhaps God can use this message to do something that might cause a change to occur. I have tried to talk to a few ministries personally and privately first and since this didn’t work, I am now taking the message publicly to the Body of Christ for your attention and consideration. So today I am going to talk about the moneychangers in the Temple of God, who they are and what they are selling in the modern world:
Mat 21:12 And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves,
Mat 21:13 And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.
As you can see from these verses in Matthew Jesus is NOT a happy Savior! This is an example of Godly Righteous Anger in action. Many people like to think that God is only Love and that this means He is nice all the time and will put up with your antics indefinitely. The vast gay community embraces the scriptures of God’s love and grace and they ignore the scriptures of sin, repentance and His judgment. Here in Matthew 21:12 Jesus goes into the Temple in Jerusalem and starts casting out those who were there to profit from God’s Word. These were His natural brothers and sisters if you did not know that. So I feel justified to speak of my spiritual brothers and sisters today in the same light. These people in the temple were all religious people who knew what the Bible said and they used this knowledge to make God’s work and His Word a business that caused them to get rich and profit from what did not belong to them. So Jesus got angry and cast them all out! Do you think that God thinks differently about this today than He did back then in the Temple? Do not get me wrong, being rich is not a problem at all, but how you got there is! If you are using God’s Word to prosper you or your ministry then you are a modern day moneychanger in the Temple of God at risk of being driven out before Christ returns for His church very soon. There are many and I do literally mean many Christian ministries that are in danger of this catastrophe today. All you have to do is go on to the internet and search for ministries that do this and you will find them. They have literally thousands of tapes, CDs, Video Tapes, DVDs and books for sell that clearly have huge mark ups and profit margins built into them. They have taken the Word of God that was given to them for free and put a price on it because it was valuable to someone and they can sell it to help pay for their ministry and TV expenses. This is what I call prostituting the Word of God for money and it is going on almost everywhere! Many of these ministries justify this practice with the logic and human reasoning that all of the money just goes back into the ministry and never their personal pockets, but yet most of these ministers and their employees still draw salaries from this income and there lies at least a part of the root of the problem.
So here is where I am going to start to get directly to the point that needs to be said today. I recently asked a very popular Christian TV ministry for permission to distribute copies of their materials for free to those in other countries that cannot afford to buy them. I did not modify the messages or make any changes to them, nor did I charge anyone for any of them. In fact, I mailed them to others with me paying the full cost of shipping. I also took upon myself the duplication costs, the material media expenses and the gas and labor for sending them were all paid by me. So I was never attempting to profit from their copyrighted materials. I was only motivated to help others to learn from the great messages that I had learned from. There is a huge problem with many ministries today; they do not fully understand the advantages of modern technology and the power of it. While the world around them has gone fully digital, these ministries primarily live with an analog mentality. I am a computer geek and I do not deny this one bit. Over 15 years ago I started buying old tapes from certain ministries and I converted them to MP3 files on my computer. This allowed me to keep them electronically so even if the tapes wear out, I still have the message. But, today there are also new MP3 players that you can fit in your little shirt pocket that will hold over 2000 sermons on it. This allows the Gospel to be carried around wherever you go. It also allows the Gospel to be freely and cheaply distributed to others for little to nothing. There are some ministries that are starting to learn about MP3 files now, but they are still stuck in their analog paradigm of selling them for the same cost as their tapes and CDs. That is crazy; do you know how much it would cost to fill up a MP3 player with your $5 MP3 files that cost you pennies to create and distribute? You see we live in a different world today; it is not a reel to reel Gospel mentality anymore. It is not even a cassette tape mentality where you can only put one tape into your tape player to hear the Gospel anymore. It is a digital revolution that has occurred to allow you to carry around 1000’s of your favorite Bible lessons and you can do all of them in a device that is less than 1 inch square or even on your smart phone. Wake UP PEOPLE!
You see this ministry that I asked for permission from, did not care if people had their materials, they only cared that they were given away for free to people outside of their control. How arrogant and controlling is that attitude? According to them anyone is free to go to their website and spend $5,000 – $10,000 to buy all of their ministry materials and they will be mailed directly to them. But, do not ever think you can make copies of them and give them to anyone else or they will sue you because of the copyrighted Gospel only belongs to them. This is a GOSPEL FUNNEL effect that Satan loves. If you limit the Gospel to go through one source of distribution only, it causes the Gospel to in effect be easily stopped or at the least severely hindered.
Does any ministry have the right to be a funnel for the TRUTH? What if Paul had this attitude? Would we have a Bible today? How did the early church grow into the fastest known religion from a small handful to thousands in only a very short time? Could it be the fact that there were no funnels limiting the spread of the truth? Could it be the fact there were no COPYRIGHTED Gospel ministries? All of this sounds a whole lot like the people in the temple who were profiting from selling doves and sacrifices for the people to obey the Word of God. If only the rich could afford to buy their sacrifices, then the poor were in trouble. This is the same situation we have in the world today. We have a bunch of ministries that are preaching a rich man’s Gospel and the poor are left out to fend for themselves.
Let me describe to you the situation so that you understand what is going on. I try to be a man of integrity and I never do anything to profit from preaching or teaching the Word of God as you can tell from reading my Bible lessons on the internet for free. So over the past 30 years, I had bought a bunch of a certain ministries materials costing me thousands of dollars and I thought they were all excellent Bible lessons that everyone should hear. So I emailed this ministry and asked them for permission to make electronic copies to distribute to others free of charge. In other words I would give their materials away to help others for free in order to assist people all over the world learn the same truth of God’s Word that I had learned. Does that sound unreasonable to you? You see after I emailed this well-known TV ministry and asked for this permission to make copies of their materials to give away to others for free, they wrote me back and explained all of their materials were “copyrighted” and I could not give them away to anyone because it was just not allowed by their internal policies. Forget, the Spirit of God said not to do this and forget what the Bible says about spreading the Gospel, they did not mention either of these to be factors in their policy; they just said it was THEIR Policy that forbids me in conjunction with the copyright laws of the United States of America which backs their right to do this. Wow and I thought there was a separation of church and state? I guess the separation is only important if the government is trying to tell the church what to do, but if the church wants to use the government to helps them to make a profit from the Word of God and the Gospel, then that is OK! So I became righteously angry with their email response and this is my attempt to tell the world about it. Since I am a Christian and a man of integrity I have no choice but to abide by their ignorant Godless policy, but you need to know about it so that you can decide if what they are doing is allowable both in your eyes and in the eyes of God. Here is the email response that I got from this ministry:
Because of the great amount of requests we receive from persons both known and unknown to us for duplication of “OUR UNNAMED” Ministries material such as cassette tapes, CDs, video tapes, DVDs, excerpts of books and magazines, printed lessons, etc., we have had to adopt a standard policy in order to be fair to everyone. In times past there has been confusion, misunderstanding and even unauthorized message changes resulting from duplication. Now that all of our materials are copyrighted, we feel it best to deny all requests for duplication. Thank you for your understanding in this matter.
Oh, I understand perfectly well! Here is a ministry that charges a great deal of money on their website and in the meetings for their copyrighted Gospel and as long as you can afford to pay their prices you can have a copy of anything you like. If you are rich enough you can even buy one of everything. Oh, I understand perfectly well! But, if you cannot afford to pay $5 for a MP3 file, $7 for a CD or $15 for a DVD then you are screwed! Yes, I understand perfectly! Here is a ministry that is interested ONLY in making a dollar; more than they are for getting people the Word of God to teach them. Here is a ministry that God came for free and taught them what to teach to His people and they turn around and think they own the message. Wow, did you hear what I just said? Here is a ministry that does not allow you to copy “their” messages to give to others because it would cut into their future revenue stream. This is no different than the moneychangers in the Temple of God that Jesus drove out with a whip. If the people of Israel could not afford the moneychangers prices they did without a sacrifice that year. Oh, well maybe they can come back next year and could afford to buy a dove? I understand perfectly! What if the apostle Paul had that attitude? I would bet you that Paul would not have written 2/3 of the New Testament for us to have today. He would have seen how much money he could have made from the revelations of the mystery of the Gospel and only give this valuable information to the rich who could afford to buy it. If Paul would have copyrighted the New Testament, we would not have the Bible today. If the church in Paul’s day was not allowed to make copies of the letters that were written to them by Paul, they would have worn out, died and faded away forever. Do you understand these concepts that I am giving you today? What is the difference between a hand written letter or a scroll in Paul’s day and a CD in our day? They are both the Words of God, are they not? I do not see there is any difference between them. So what gives a ministry the right to limit who gets what they teach and forbid others to copy it? Who died and made them God? Is it only because the government says they can do it, that this makes it permissible in the eyes of everyone? Is the government the God of these ministries who charge for “their” gospel? Listen to what Paul said about this subject and pay very close attention to the Word of God and what He says:
1Co 9:18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.
Wow, when I read this verse I nearly fell on my face and asked God why don’t men see and understand what they are doing with their eternal rewards. They have chosen to sacrifice an eternal reward for a temporary monetary gain. My Bible says in Matthew 6:20 “Lay up for yourself treasure in heaven, where neither moth nor rust does corrupt it”. Paul very clearly tells us in 1 Corinthians 9:18 that his reward is great because he has freely given the truth to everyone without a charge. Paul further calls the charge of the Gospel an abuse of the power of God. Are you listening to what God just said? So if you are making ANY money from the Gospel you are abusing God’s power and losing your eternal reward. These are not my Words are they? I did not make this up, did I? Is this what your Bible says about selling the Gospel? What are the vast numbers of ministries doing with the Gospel that they have been given? Do they just ignore the Bible because they can? Most modern ministries when they go to a church to teach in person, they go for free, but then they usually receive an offering for their work that they have done. That is a normal Bible way of doing things in the church and I believe this is acceptable based upon Romans 15:27 and 1 Corinthians 9:11. But, here is where these ministries take it up a notch because of the advent of modern recording technology which was not available in Paul’s day. Because the Gospel can be recorded, preserved, and redistributed in the modern world, it is copied and packaged into an attractive sellable product and peddled everywhere they go for profit and income. Most of the ministries who do this are on television and they see these products as ways to help pay for the very expensive television time costs. So they will offer these valuable lessons on special promotions that will cause people to want them and send in their money so that they can hear the Gospel. So they make millions of dollars from the Gospel of Jesus Christ to help them pay for their TV bills.
When I was younger, I remember going to some Kenneth Copeland Believer’s Conventions and I would always have to pass by the tape tables at the front to get into the auditorium. Of course they were selling the tapes of the meetings that were going on that week, but they were also selling tapes from many years gone by at the same time. I would look at the tape series one after the other and there were normally many of them. My heart hungered for the knowledge of God and I wanted to buy them all. But, I was going to a church that taught us to give offerings and to sow seeds into other ministries. So I had a dilemma and a very hard choice to make since I was not a rich man. Do I buy tapes or do I give an offering? Why did I have to make this choice? It is because they charged so much for their taped Gospel. The Gospel was being peddled for a major profit. This was a clear prostitution of the Word of God and I can see that now, but back then I did not know enough to understand it. Oh, sure it was all nice quality tapes and folders and it takes time to duplicate them and package them. But, when you buy in the bulk like they did you can get these things very cheap and it does not cost you $5 to make one tape. In fact the cost is less than ten percent of that when done in major bulk with an efficient assembly line support process. So even if 50 cents of my $5 goes to cover the cost of making the tape the other $4.50 went to the ministry to pay for their jet airplanes or whatever. Wake up preachers!!! You see the cost of recording, duplication, production and distribution has greatly decreased over time with technology advancements. What use to cost 50 cents is now in the pennies today. What would had happened 25 years ago if preachers gave away their messages for free and allowed you to copy all of them? I believe that Jesus could have come back sooner because the Gospel would have already gone around the globe. Instead we have ministries like Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland who are charging more than ever for their 30 year old copyrighted Gospel and what can we do about it? Do you think charging for the Gospel puts undue constraints upon who is able to hear it and who is not able to hear it? Does any of this sound fair to you? You see the Kenneth Hagin ministry said that they had to be fair by making a blanket NO COPY policy and they forget who they are not being fair to are those that cannot afford to buy their overpriced materials to learn the truth. This Gospel could have been spread around the world with modern technology and the internet for pennies. I have to tell you the truth that Kenneth Copeland does give away a little bit for free on the internet, but Kenneth Hagin Ministries do not give anything away ever for FREE on the internet. So do I sound like the bad guy here? Are you going to shoot the messenger and ignore the message?
Let’s shift our focus off of money for a minute. The Kenneth Hagin Ministry claims that people have abused their materials and even edited them to make them say something that they do not say and this is the justification for copyrighting the Gospel of Jesus Christ and for not permitting anyone to make copies or redistribute the messages. Isn’t it amazing that Satan can use a few people to abuse the Gospel and this is suddenly justification to stop the ministry from spreading the truth to the hands of many more people who want to hear it but can’t afford it? Here is a great ministry with a great message and all it takes is for Satan to abuse it and they shut the doors to make sure it does not go around the world unless they can fully control it. Abuse is a funny lesson to learn from, but this is nothing new. In the natural world people abuse natural food and overeat constantly and we have a generation of kids who are grossly obese because of natural food abuse and the lack of physical exercise. Using the logic of the Unnamed TV Ministry we should control natural food to the masses of children so that they will not hurt themselves with it. In fact this is what our government has hotly debated and they have started to initiate these types of controls in schools and other places. They have limited food service in schools to only good healthy non-fried foods that are low in fat. One government agency in California passed a law that McDonalds could not sell toys in the happy meals to kids because this promoted an unhealthy lifestyle choice. This is how some ministries in the church are reacting to the abuse of God’s spiritual food. You did know that God’s word is spiritual food, didn’t you? If you did not know this you need to read your Bible some more. Because a ministry’s materials were abused they have instigated tight controls to keep it from happening and this is not the way to solve the problem. Did you know that people when they received copies of the Bible written by the Apostles they would make copies of them? Did you know that sometimes some people would abuse this policy and make little subtle changes to the copies and omissions to some of the words in the text because they did not agree with them? Did you know that this is still a point of controversy today in some religious institutions? However, the problem is solved by looking at all of the copies and comparing them. Since there are so many copies of the original manuscripts in the world that we can use to compare, the truth is easily determined. So copy abuse is not a new concept, it was an old concept used by Satan in the early church and it is still the same today. The best way to overcome copy abuse is to ensure that there are more legitimate copies in circulation than there are corrupted copies. If the Unnamed TV Ministry website gave away legit copies for anyone to download and listen to, it would be impossible for Satan to corrupt them all. This is the solution for abuse of the message and it is very easy to solve in this age of technology. A legitimate copy of the Word of God can contain signature information, even file size and date and time stamps and other ways of ensuring the accuracy. Of course any smart criminal can overcome whatever you do to protect your material, so you will never overcome that potential abuse. But, you can ensure that no matter how many abused copies there are in the world, there is still a place where you can get the complete message for FREE. So the solution to keep people from abusing your ministry materials is to flood the market with them so that anyone can get a legitimate copy of it for free from your website. Then no one can stop it or even change it to keep it out of the hands of the people to learn it. Don’t you see how the spread of the Gospel could go around the world in a matter of a few days if only ministries would start to do this?
There are so many ministries on TV and the internet that are guilty of this practice of copyrighting the Gospel of Jesus, that I really cannot name them all. Please do not get me wrong I have no problem with anything these TV ministries teach, that is not the issue at all. They all have a great message from God. The only problem that I have is how much they are charging for it. Also I want to point out that not everyone in the ministry is doing this on the internet. One man that I highly recommend is named Keith Moore (Moore Life Ministries) and he teaches the Bible with great spiritual substance to it and it is all for FREE! Keith Moore Ministries gives away all of their Bible lessons for free and that is an awesome example that he is setting for the Body of Christ. Do me a favor and go to his website and download something and then send him an offering telling him thanks for freely giving us the word of God.
There are many of my favorite Bible preachers and teachers that I have learned a lot from that practice this Limited Funnel Gospel Prostitution and they have gotten a lot of my money in order for me to get this knowledge. If you came to my house you could find hundreds and even thousands of their tapes in boxes in my closet from these guys. There are literally too many TV preachers to name them all. However there are also many churches that follow their examples and do the same with their in church book stores. I do not believe that these ministries are purposely or intentionally keeping the gospel from the masses; I’m trying to give them the benefit of a doubt and convince myself that they are doing what they are doing out of pure ignorance and this is why I teach the way I do today by naming their names. Please join with me to help me proclaim freedom for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Call these ministries until they hear the voice of the people or the voice of God to change their ways to allow the Gospel to be preached without charge. Help me eliminate Gospel copyrights that only line the pockets of the preachers. Help me to take off Gospel limitations so that it can be spread around the world with modern technology. In closing here is the commandment and great commission given to the church by our Lord Jesus Christ:
Mat 10:8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.
Freely you have received from God, so therefore freely give to men. This does not say to charge to recover you costs, it says to freely give the message of the truth to everyone that will listen. In today’s digital world this is so simple to do.
Maybe you may have noticed that I teach the Bible totally FREE! I do not have a donate button on my website, I do not have a P.O. Box that you can mail to, I do not give you a ministry name, I do not give you my personal name. This is my way of FREELY giving to you what God has given to me! So if I never see a dime from anything I teach, I know that I have a reward awaiting me in heaven that moths and rust cannot take away. I will also tell you that anything that I publish on this site is not mine and I do not own it and therefore you may freely copy it and spread it to anyone that will listen to it or read it. I have an OPEN COPY policy that is based upon FREELY I RECEIVED so FREELY GIVE. You have full permission to abuse it or use it however you like. I do not care! I have done what God has told me to do by publishing it, now you do what God tells you to do with it and be a good steward of His Word too.
Therefore, if no other ministry in the world will distribute the Gospel for Free, I have decided that I will do it! I’m sure this is going to make Satan really angry with me so I would appreciate your prayers. Also, I recently had a commenter who asked if they could sow a seed into my ministry, but I had to turn them down. This was a very difficult decision on my part to make, because I understand the power of sowing and reaping in the Bible. However, I believe that God told me not to accept any money for what I teach. This is one of the main reasons I teach anonymously on the internet. This website is not the words of a man, these are the Words of God and if I treat them as such, somebody out there will see them for what they are and understand their value.
Before I end today let me please say a prayer and if you agree with what I have said today, please also pray this with me in agreement:
Dear God, help Christian ministries to see that everything you have given to them does not belong to them. Cause ministers to come to know that they are just stewards of the Gospel and that you will hold them accountable for what you have given to them freely. Help all ministers to have a compassionate heart for people; a heart that desires everyone to hear and know the truth and not just those who can afford to buy it. Help ministries learn about all of the new technologies that are available in the world and on the internet to help us spread the Words of Grace to everyone who is hungry to hear it. Lord God as ministries transition to a faith based life style of ministry by giving the Gospel for free to everyone, help them with an abundant supply of new partners, donors and contributors that more than make up for the revenue that they will lose from not selling your Words. Open the eyes and hears of our understanding and help us all to be good stewards of the blessed Word of God. Surely the time is short and many in the world still need to hear the truth before you come back, so help us to get this word out as fast and as efficient as we can and to not miss anyone that is open to the Gospel before you return for us. Even so Lord Jesus, come quickly! In Jesus name I pray! Amen!
Thank you and God bless you for taking the time to read my Bible lesson and please share it with someone that you know to help us all get the truth out!
If you would like to continue reading this series of Bible lessons, you can continue with “Part 2“.
Posted on April 7, 2011, in Advanced Topics, Bible Study, Understanding and tagged Bible, Christianity, Church, God, Holy Spirit, Interpretation, Jesus, Knowledge, Money, Prophecy, Religion, Revelation, Satan, Truth, understanding. Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.