A few months back, I wrote to warn readers that Benny Hinn is promoting a proven work of fraud called the Archko Volume to his worldwide audience as a valid historical reference that adds credibility to the Gospel accounts. I’ve made repeated contacts to Mr. Hinn’s organization by phone and email, including this email, which was sent to every contact listed on his website:
“Date: Thursday, March 31, 2011
To Whom It Concerns,
Recently, I have been made aware that Mr. Hinn is offering and recommending the the Archko Volume through his program and via his website. I wonder if Mr. Hinn is aware of the fraudulent nature of the Archko Volume. Consider the following from my website:
“Of all of the glaring evidences against the Archko Volume’s veracity, the most horrible is in the manuscript called “Eli’s Story of the Magi”. It appears that several pages of this story were copied verbatim from Ben Hur, a famous work of fiction which had just come out in Mahan’s day. In his defense, how could he have known how popular the novel would become? One striking detail is the use of the word anuman, which isn’t a word at all. In the Archko Volume, Eli’s story reads, “ Egypt is satisfied with her crocodiles and anuman, holding them in equal honor.” Page 272 of Ben Hur has some lines that read:
“ Egypt was satisfied with her crocodiles and anu-
bis, the Persians were yet devoted to Ormuzd and Ahri-
man, holding them in equal honor … “
The ”anuman“ word arose because a line was skipped when copying this sentence.
In 1885, W.D. Mahan was summoned before the Lebanon presbytery, found guilty of plagiarism and falsehood, and suspended from his position as a Presbyterian minister for one year based on the evidence brought against him. Mahan promised to withdraw the book, but instead published it again with major revisions, including the chapter stolen from Ben Hur.
The evidence is overwhelming: The Archko Volume is the purest fraud. “
Mr. Hinn claims that he is so close to the Holy Spirit that he says Good morning to him everyday, that he has been anointed to heal through the Holy Ghost and that the Holy Spirit manifests itself in such power that when he waves toward the crowds they fall. He is no doubt then aware that it is the Holy Spirit who guides us into all truth [John 16:13]. Why then does Mr. Hinn promote the Archko Fraud to his international audience? will he make a statement to warn his followers of the grave error it represents? and who publishes this special edition of the Archko Volume?
I have contacted Customer Service regarding this matter several times by phone and have been promised a return call by a supervisor. This has not yet occured; meanwhile, the thousands if not millions of Christians who trust Hinn’s advise are being mislead into accepting the Archko Fraud as an authentic historical authority.
Rev Tony Breeden
I made contact with an administrator in Benny Hinn’s School of Ministry who promised to forward this email to the Marketing Department. (It did not occur to me at the time why the Marketing Dept would be the best place to send my concern!):
“Date: Friday, April 1, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to hear my concerns today.
Please forward this email to the Marketing Dept as discussed today via phone. Given Mr. Hinn’s influence and the size of his wordwide audience, it is imperative that he be made aware that in promoting the Archko Volume he is recommending a work of fraud to the faithful.
Rev Tony Breeden
I followed up a few days later:
“Date: Monday, April 4, 2011
Have you received any word back regarding whether Mr. Hinn intends to pull the Archko Volume fraud from his program?
As yet, I have yet to receive a call back or a return email from anyone in the Benny Hinn organization. As the one-time customer service lead supevisor the leading ticketing company on this planet, I can tell you that this is most unprofessional. I honestly would have written up any employee or supervisor under me who did not contact a client back within two days, even if it was just to say we’re still working on your case.
Rev Tony Breeden
“Date: Monday, April 5, 2011
Over the past couple weeks I have repeatedly contacted Benny Hinn Ministries by phone and email regarding Mr. Hinn’s promotion of the Archko Volume. The Archko Volume is a fraud; the original version included a chapter plagiarized from Ben Hur [see below]. By promoting this Archko fraud as an athentic historical reference which corroborates the Gospel accounts, Mr. Hinn is promoting error and falsehood, and encouraging his audience in 200 countries to support their arguments for Christianity with fictional information.
Despite the seriousness of this situation and multiple contacts, no one in the Benny Hinn organization has so much as called me back or emailed me a response, despite the fact that several persons within the organization have promised to the contrary!
Please have someone in your Marketing department contact me.
Rev Tony Breeden
At long last, I received a rather dismissive response:
“Date: Monday, April 5, 2011
I have forwarded your information to the proper department and they have reviewed your information. Thank you for the information you’ve shared with us.
[Name removed] *As a point of irony, this administrator posted 2 Timothy 2:15 below their signature.”
Unwilling to give up, I emailed back:
“Date: Monday, April 6, 2011
Your rubber stamp response seems dismissive. Am I to understand that Benny Hinn Ministries intends to continue promoting this fraud?
I confess that I am at a loss to comprehend the lack of concern BHM has displayed over this issue, specifically, and for the truth in general. The Archko Volume is a lie, a fiction, a fake, a fraud your ministry and its founder are promoting and recommending to the world as an authentic historical document that corroborates the Gospel accounts.
Why does this seem to concern you so little? In all honesty, will any one bother [perhaps dare is a more fitting term] to tell Mr. Hinn that he’s been reading and re-reading a fraud and is now offering it to his fans, many of whom will presume it is authentic simply because Mr. Hinn has place his stamp of approval on it? Or is his reputation worth more than the truth?
Well-intentioned Christians will prop up their faith on the claims of this Archko fraud at Benny Hinn’s bequest and, inevitably, someone will show them it is a fraud; when that happens they will be put in a horrible position. They may wonder what else they’ve been told about Christianity is wrong, they will recall that Mr. Hinn is supposed to be this great man of God who promoted this fraud… How many little ones will stumble because of your decision to continue promoting a fraud? How many will fall away?
In all honesty, I’m appalled that I’ve been directed to the [oh-so-silent] Marketing Dept [by yourself and Customer service] in the first place. Since when is confronting error a business decision? The Marketing Dept shouldn’t even get a voice in this decision: either the Archko Volume is a fraud and it should be pulled and Christians should be warned about it… or you’ve decided it’s true no matter the evidence to the contrary.
I certainly pray I haven’t heard the end of this matter,
Rev Tony Breeden
“He who rebukes a man will in the end gain more favor than he who has a flattering tongue.” Proverbs 28:23″
All to no avail. I even contacted this person by phone again and, well, I was told there was nothing else they could do.
In the meantime, I received a comment from a fellow got a mail-out from Benny Hinn ministries:
“In it was a pamphlet picturing a beautiful book… the “gift” they would send for “your generous seed gifts” (money). The book was “The Archko Volume.” These are some excepts from the pamphlet:
1. “This is one of the most unique books we have ever offered to you! In addition to your Bible study, you’ll gain so much from these testimonies by both friends and enemies of Jesus of Nazareth. You will read and reread The Archko Volume , as I have done through the years.” Signed, Benny Hinn.
2. “You won’t be able to put this book down! I first heard about the Archko Volume when Kathryn Kuhlman read portions of it on her radio program. I’ve read and reread it many times since, including to packed crowds at the Orland Christian Center. This book isn’t Scripture, of course, but the information provides historical data that helps illuminate what happened during the time of Christ.”
3. “Request The Archko Volume today! You will be amazed, and it will strengthen your faith.”
4. “To request this life-changing book, return the enclosed reply form… etc.”
Basically, it appears that Benny Hinn is blind to the fact that he is promoting a proven work of fraud. And far from being led by the Spirit of Truth, Hinn has this habit of saying the most outlandish things and alleges that they were either given by a word of knowledge from God or by careful study of the Scriptures. For example, he completely gets the idea of dominion wrong when he interprets Genesis:
“Adam was a super being when God created him… I don’t know whether people know this, but he was the first Superman that really ever lived. First of all, the Scriptures declare clearly that he had dominion over the fowls of the air, the fish of the sea—which menas he used to fly. Of course, how can he have dominion over the birds and not be able to do what they do? The word “dominion” in the Hebrew clearly declares that if you have dominion over a subject, that you do everything that subject does. In other words, that subject, if it does someting you cannot do, you don’t have dominion over it. I’ll prove it further. Adam not only flew, he flew to space. He was—with one thought he would be on the moon.” (Benny Hinn, Praise the Lord program on TBN (December 26, 1991).
Obviously, when a king has dominion over his kingdom, it means he has authority, that he’s in charge, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the king can best his baker in culinary skill or make shoes better than the kingdom’s best cobbler. To say that the term dominion means you can do anything your subjects can do is just ignorance. Hinn also preaches the Gap theory [which he got not from the Holy Spirit but from the notes in Dake’s Annoted Bible], which has neither textual support nor apostolic tradition, and is refuted by Jesus’ affirmation that God made Adam & Eve “from the beginning” (which leaves no room for an alleged “gap” of long ages between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2).
He also has some odd and heretical views on the Trinity:
“Man, I feel revelation knowledge already coming on me here. Lift your hands. Something new is going to happen here today. I felt it just as I walked down here. Holy Spirit, take over in the name of Jesus…God the Father, ladies and gentlemen, is a person; and He is a triune being by Himself separate from the Son and the Holy Ghost. Say, what did you say? Hear it, hear it, hear it. See, God the Father is a person, God the Son is a person, God the Holy Ghost is a person. But each one of them is a triune being by Himself. If I can shock you—and maybe I should—there’s nine of them. Huh, what did you say? Let me explain: God the Father, ladies and gentlemen, is a person with his own personal spirit, with his own personal soul, and his own personal spirit-body. You say, Huh, I never heard that. Well you think you’re in this church to hear things you’ve heard for the last 50 years?” (Benny Hinn, Benny Hinn program on TBN (October 3, 1991).
Worse than being a poor Bible scholar, Benny Hinn is a false prophet. On January 1, 1990, Hinn made the following prophecies:
“The Spirit tells me Fidel Castro will die in the ’90s. Oh, my! Some will try to kill him and they will not succeed, but there will come a change in his physical health and he will not stay in power and Cuba will be visited of God.
The Lord also tells me to tell you in the mid-90’s, about ’94, ’95, no later than that, God will destroy the homosexual community of America. But He will not destroy it with what many minds have thought Him to be. He will destroy it with fire, and many will turn and be saved, and many will rebel and be destroyed.
Of course, Castro didn’t die in the 90s, nor did he give up power in Cuba until 2008. Nor did homosexuals suffer a plague of fire. So false, and false. Yet he uttered a worse prophecy still during a TBN Praise-a-thon on April 2, 2000 (http://op.50megs.com/benny-hinn.wav):
“The hour is urgent. Many of you have known me for many years. But I am telling you right now, things I haven’t said years ‘n years ‘n years ago. I believe – here this, hear this! I believe, that Jesus, God’s Son, is about to appear physically, in meetings and to believers around the world, to wake us up! He appeared after His resurrection and He is about to appear before His second coming! You know a prophetess sent me a word through my wife, right here, and she said ‘Tell your husband that Jesus is go’n to physically appear in his meetings.’ I am expecting to see, I am telling you that – I feel it’s going to happen. I, I, I’m, I’m careful in how I am saying it now, because I know the people in Kenya are listening. I know deep in my soul, something supernatural is going to happen in Nai – in Nairobi Kenya. I feel that. I may very well come back, and you and Jan are coming, to – Paul and Jan are coming to Nairobi with me, but Paul, we may very well come back with footage of Jesus on the platform! You know that the Lord appeared in Romania recently, and there’s a video of it? Where the Lord appeared in the back of a church and you see him on video walking down the isle? Yeah! Paul do you remember when I came on TBN years ago and showed you a clip of the Lord appearing in our church in Orlando, on the balcony on the wall? Yeah. You, you remember that? [Paul Crouch] Very well, I saw it! [Benny Hinn] That was ’80, 80 something, ’86, what – whatever. You know I always wondered why the Lord, why did He do that? Do you know why, now I look back? That was the beginning of the greatest move of God in our church. Because ’83, ’84, and ’85 were horrible years for me, horrible years. Eighty-six the blessings of God began, but they began with a – with this manifestation of the Lord’s face on, on the balcony, that stayed for eight weeks. Eight solid weeks! The Lord has done this in the past, but He is about to do it again, now hear this, I am prophesying this! Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is about to appear physically in some churches, and some meetings, and to many of His people, for one reason – to tell you He is about to show up! To Wake Up! Jesus is coming saints! You have held back from the Lord in the past, don’t you dare do it now. The day will come you’ll stand before Him and give an answer. How dare we not give to God. How dare we hold back.”
Benny Hinn declares these visions of Christ tentatively at first, but then emphatically declares, “I am prophesying this!” Of course, it didn’t happen and Christians should have called him on it because Jesus Himself warned:
At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect— if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. (Matthew 24:23-27)
You know what the Bible says about false prophets:
“But a prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded him to say, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, must be put to death. You may say to yourselves, “How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the Lord” If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message that Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him” Deuteronomy 18:20-22.
“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1)
The bottom line is this: Benny Hinn has proven himself to be a false prophet and a poor Bible student despite his fame on Christian television. Even if he weren’t promoting a proven fraud (the Archko Volume) as an authentic historical work, we have much reason to reject him on Biblical grounds and, I daresay, to pray for his soul.
Jesus warned us to test the spirits and to watch out for false prophets, for they would come to us in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves (Matthew 7:15). He also warned us that in the last days false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive even the elect — if that were possible (Matthew 24:24).
Yet Christians aren’t taking these warnings seriously. They can’t see past Benny Hinn’s celebrity status. In fact, I had the following mind-boggling exchange on Facebook…
…so Benny Hinn might be promoting a fraud because God works in mysterious ways??? Ugh.
Would that Christians had such unswerving faith in the truth of God’s revealed Word rather than the word of man!