Whatever happened to...Rodney Howard-Browne?
Televangelist Rodney Howard-Browne came to the United States from South Africa in 1987. Keeping a low profile for a number of years, he rose to fame in 1993 when an Assemblies of God preacher by the name of Karl Strader asked him to preach at Carpenter's Home Church in Lakeland, Florida.
He quickly became known as the laughing revivalist, because of his habit of bursting into laughter during his sermons. Over the next month thousands came to the church to hear the evangelist, hoping to get caught up in the laughing fits themselves. He became such a phenomena that people were flying in to Florida from around the world just to see him.
In an interview with Julia Duin, Browne reported
"One night I was preaching on hell, and it just hit the whole place. The more I told people what hell was like, the more they laughed, and when I gave an altar call, they came forward by the hundreds to get saved."
Somehow, a sermon on hell doesn't seem appropriate for laughter, but that didn't seem to bother Howard-Browne.
Fads such as this come and go in the church. But what happens to the stars?
Howard-Browne is still in Florida, but the laughter has subsided somewhat, replaced with even more questionable doctrine.
In a March message titled "Honoring the Blood and the Body" he emphasizes the importance of regular Communion. Why?
"For your protection. The Lord spoke that to me. He said 'If they take of My bread I'll heal their bodies. If they take of the bread that represents My body i will supernaturally heal them and sustain them.'...By His stripes you were healed....By His stripes you are healed."
Mind you, in context the passage quoted had to do with salvation, not physical healing. However, Browne assures his listeners that during upcoming tribulation, because they take part in the Lord's Supper, they will be protected. He had earlier admitted that other Christians around the world have suffered persecution and have died, but apparently American Christians are different.
On December 20, 2010 Rodney and his wife Adonica gave a message titled "Real Meaning of Christmas."
The emphasis of the message, delivered mainly by Adonica, was that the wise men went to Bethlehem prepared with untold amounts of gold, frankincense and myrrh and that provided for Jesus and His family when they fled to Egypt. What we are to conclude, presumably, is that we should come to Christ - and church - properly prepared as well.
In fact the overall emphasis of Rodney's messages appears to be on wealth, as can be see in message titles such as "God Gives Power to Create Wealth," "God Wants to Prosper You," "Sowing in Faith," "Our Giving Is an Indicator of Our Faith" and numerous other messages.
False doctrine dwells on a slippery slope, and once that slide begins it's nearly impossible to stop. Rodney Howard-Browne is still sliding.
Dueling tongues with Kenneth Copeland
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