This post will take Benny Hinn’s ministry through 2000. We will update his ministry from that point in a later post.
Hinn has claimed to heal thousands of people; however, the proof for such healings is sadly lacking. When Jesus healed the lepers, He told them to go to the priests to verify their healing. Not so with this charlatan. Steve Blow, a columnist for the Dallas Morning news challenged Hinn to prove just one of his healings. Hinn refuses to do so.
Hank Hanegraaff made the same request of Benny Hinn. This time, Hinn actually met with Hanegraaff and handed him “proof” of the healing of an abdominal tumor. The individual’s first X-ray clearly shows a large mass. This person then went to a Hinn “healing” show, and miraculously the tumor disappeared! As proof, Hinn handed Hank an X-ray after the crusade, and the mass was gone!
Well, not exactly. Hanegraaff decided to call the radiologist to ask about the X-rays. It seems Old Benny left out an important detail in the timeline. There was a surgical intervention to remove the abdominal tumor. Hanegraaff revealed this to Hinn who would not comment. Then Hanegraaff shared this information on his broadcast, The Bible Answer Man. Well, Hinn was so displeased that he threatened Hanegraaff. Incredibly, there is an audio recording of Hinn making the threat, and it can be heard at equip.org.
Benn Hinn’s crusades are well documented. They are characterized by singing, a talk by Hinn, along with the requisite speaking in tongues, prophecy, and “profitry” (collection of offerings). The offerings are solicited with the understanding that if one gives, God will do something for the giver.
Then comes the healing part of the service. Hinn practices the “art” of slaying in the spirit. As people approach him, he will blow on them or wave his white coat at them. They will then fall backwards and are (hopefully) caught by a catcher who strategically stands behind the person who is “slain in the spirit”. However, some have not been caught, resulting in injury and, most likely, out of court settlements.
Hinn links what he claims to be his anointing and the “supernatural” ability he has to knock people off their feet. He asserts that the “fire of the spirit” falls on the people. In one of the videos that Dee viewed, you can see Hinn, in a rather odd voice, yelling, “Fire on you! Fire on you!” But, if the viewer watches carefully, she will note some rather “fishy” happenings. People fall even when “fire” is not directed at them. Some people adjust their clothing after they fall (this must be like conscience sedation). Others, upon sneaking a peek and spying no catcher, will bend at the knees and gently descend to the ground.
Now, here is where it gets ugly. Every crusade has lines of obviously ill individuals waiting to be admitted into the arena. The stage itself is set with empty wheelchairs and abandoned crutches, along with other medical equipment. The viewer is supposed to think that these medical devices were left behind by those healed.
Those in line are scanned by Hinn’s “lynchmen”. Those obviously sick individuals (such as those on ventilators or quadriplegics, etc.) are never ever chosen to be healed on stage. NEVER!!!!!
They choose those who are more easily shown to be healed. Lower back problems is a good one. Cancer is another. You see, there is a doctor to “verify” the healings on stage. But can anyone explain how a doctor can immediately verify that cancer has miraculously disappeared without blood tests or scans? Now that really would be a miracle! Hinn had once promised some watchdog groups that he would wait six months before declaring someone healed but then reneged. He actually told the Trinity Foundation that his ministry would be “decimated” if he couldn’t instantly declare a healing. What he really means is his income, estimated to be in the tens of millions, would decline. And we can’t have a prophet of profit without evidence of profit, can we?
On one video, two women who were declared healed are followed up on. Laura Twilley was dead just two months after the crusade during which she was pronounced “healed”. The other, Joyce Vaughn also died. It is thought that her life had been shortened because she quit taking chemotherapy. Hinn told her, in front of thousands, she was healed and this poor, desperate woman believed him. She left behind a couple of heartbroken children. We at The Wartburg Watch believe Benny Hinn is an unconscionable individual who should be given a virus to make him very ill and insist that he heal himself!
On another video, Hinn claims to have raised a man from the dead at a crusade, and he claims to have this healing on video. The problem is Hinn refuses to show the video! Hinn also claimed to have turned a man into a snake on stage and that he made a pacemaker disappear from a woman’s body. All of this without documentation.
There have been a couple of instances when investigative reporters pretended to be healed and were allowed to announce this at a crusade. Hinn says he knows this happened but he can do nothing about it. (Then why does he not know they weren’t healed?) When a well known leader faked a fall during a slain in the spirit episode, he asked that it be edited out. The cameraman laughed and said people fake it all the time. (Counterfeit Revival, p.238)
Hinn claimed he had been invited to the General Hospital in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to do a healing service in 1976. He asserted that there was a massive moving of the Spirit and that people were healed, anointed, and discharged from the hospital. He said the hospital was emptied out. The hospital has outright denied such an incident. In fact, hospital records indicate that not one patient was discharged that day. (Book 1, pp.1622-164)
Finally, the well-known boxer, Evader Holyfield, claimed that Hinn healed his heart. His cardiologist refused to answer a direct question about the supposed healing, instead stating that such an improvement was not at all unusual for the treatment he was receiving. (Book 1 in list pp.110-111).
The Wartburg Watch believes it is an evil act to give desperately sick people false hope. Yet, very few pastors make a stand against Benny Hinn’s ministry. However, John Piper did do so recently. Although we have some disagreements with Piper on other matters, we compliment him for speaking out against this false teaching. We wish he had chosen a different example for the true Gospel, but his critique stands. We leave you with Piper’s rebuke of Hinn.
Dear readers, please do not be taken in by this charlatan! As Christians, we are to “test the spirits”. There is absolutely no question that Benny Hinn is a false prophet, and he must be exposed.