Lifetime is rolling out a new docuseries called Preach in June. Core Media Group is producing the series, which follows four women who call themselves prophetesses.
These ladies believe God has given them the supernatural abilities to heal the sick, see the future and rid people of their addictions, otherwise known in Pentecostal and charismatic circles as spiritual gifts.
If Core Media keeps it real, this could bring God glory and open the eyes of the world to His healing and delivering power. But I'm concerned by the description of the show alone that this reality TV series is making a mockery of prophetic ministry and supernatural gifts. Read what Core put out:
"Known as 'prophetesses,' these women speak as interpreters through whom the will of God is expressed. In order for their legacy to continue, they must enlist protégés and teach them how to carry on their gift. These 'Queens of the Church' each have different styles and their own special way of delivering God's message, but all are united in their love of the Lord."
A press release for the series goes on to list the "prophetesses and protégés" featured. The descriptions smack of Hollywood hype and seem to discredit the very "prophetesses" they are spotlighting. Read on:
Belinda Scott, who Core says considers herself a "Major Prophetess," has reportedly given council to politicians and celebrities across the country. "She has the ability to predict child birth and specializes in blessing the wombs of barren women," the release reads. "Belinda's protégé, Hadassah Elder, grew up Muslim and has never seen a woman in the pulpit so adjusting to new life as a Christian protégé will have its challenges."
Taketa Williams apparently has been called the "Beyoncé of the Preaching World" and supposedly has a global following. "She trains her protégé with a strict hand and isn't afraid to drop someone if they don't come up to her standards," the release says. "Her protégé, Rebecca Hairston, is a single mother with three children."
First, should we really be comparing prophetesses to Beyoncé? Second, is it godly to just drop people who don't come up to our standards. I'm not entirely sure Core caught the heart of Williams but the hype paints a poor picture of her prophetic ministry.
Linda Roark's specialty is delivering people from the street and bringing them to God. That's awesome! "Known as the 'Blue-Eyed Soul Sister,' she has been told that she 'looks white but she preaches black,' and is admired in African-American churches for her ability to roar and get the room standing on their feet," the release reads. "Linda's protégé, Angel Pound, had a rough start in life. A former drug addict who has now turned her life around, she is still haunted by a past that threatens her chances of becoming a Prophetess."
OK, first of all, no prophetess can make anyone else a prophetess. Jesus calls prophets, not people. Roark has no more say in the matter of whether Angel Pound will flow in prophetic ministry than she has over when Jesus will return for a glorious church without spot or wrinkle.
Finally, there's Kelly Crews, who is Scott's former protégé and is now building a ministry of her own. The only single prophetess in the group, the release says she has trouble finding a man who can handle her gift. Kelly's protégé, Stacey Williams, is newly married and pregnant and apparently struggles with making her prophetic training a priority.
See why I am concerned? Prophetic ministry should not be mocked. Supernatural gifts of healing, discerning of spirits, praying in tongues and so on should not be mocked. God should not be mocked. But this show sets the stage for plenty of skeptics to poke, prod and make fun of prophetic ministry. This show is reproducing the false concepts of prophetic ministry I (and so many others) have worked hard to overcome. Will the true prophets please stand up, or bow down to your knees and pray against the perversion of God's gifts?
Pockets of true revival are breaking out across America. Want to know more about the next great move of God? Click here to see Jennifer LeClaire's new book, featuring Dutch Sheets, Reinhard Bonnke, Jonathan Cahn, Billy Graham and others.
Jennifer LeClaire is senior editor of Charisma. She is also director of Awakening House of Prayer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and author of several books, including The Next Great Move of God: An Appeal to Heaven for Spiritual Awakening; Mornings With the Holy Spirit, Listening Daily to the Still, Small Voice of God; The Making of a Prophet and Satan's Deadly Trio: Defeating the Deceptions of Jezebel, Religion and Witchcraft. You can visit her website here. You can also join Jennifer on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.
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