TB Joshua’s ministry is rife with error. He is, from the viewpoint of orthodox Christian theology, a Freaking Heretic.
But I think this is the worst. Because it deals with salvation. TB Joshua has made salvation contingent not on Jesus Christ, but on “deliverance” as defined by…(wait for it)…TB Joshua!
Please recall that TB Joshua styles himself as the lone untouchable prophet of God. He frequently “delivers” pastors and prophets and “men of God” from supposed demons. If they are ministering and delivering people in Jesus’ name while themselves demon possessed, clearly the only logical way to be sure one is properly “delivered” is to do it under the auspices of TB Joshua.
Sadly, this leaves an awful lot of people unable to be born again, because they cannot be delivered by TB Joshua. The vast majority of the world’s 7 billion people, and the Christian Church, don’t have a clue who TB Joshua is. According to this video, it is blasphemy for any of those people to say they are born again believers.
At about 2:40 in this video, TB Joshua says this:
[his victim is explaining that he is born again, but experiencing many troubles in life, possibly due to his family’s historical involvement in idol worship]
“No. It’s a blasphemy to say “Born Again.” Without deliverance, no-one can be born again. Tell your neighbor…”
[at this point the poor dupe he’s castigating tries to say something and TB Joshua says “Please, remove the mic.”
“It is, it is blasphemy [audience repeats] to say I’m born again [audience repeats] without deliverance [audience repeats]. You know what I mean. You are taking from dark. Darkness. To light. And this cannot just happen by mere talk. Mere hope. Mere prayer.”
Oh no he didn’t! Did he? He did.
What does Scripture tell us about salvation?
When the jailer asked Paul and Silas what he must do to be saved, they responded with this simple prescription: “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.”
Jesus said it even more simply: “Follow me.”
Occasionally, we find reference to repentance and baptism, one preceding, the other following. What we do not find is “fasting and prayer to drive demons out” as a required precedent for being born again. We also do not find “falling out,” vomiting, interviews with demons, screaming, and “manifesting” as requirements of being born again, and we know that these things are what TBJ calls “deliverance.”
What TB Joshua has given us in this little gem is a gospel of works righteousness. We cannot be born again without first following his formula. I don’t think “blasphemy” means what he thinks it means. He’s certainly not using it correctly.
Scripturally, not a one of us can work our way to salvation. We cannot deliver ourselves. We cannot make ourselves “light” so that we can be saved once we’ve gotten all tidy and clean. No one can do it for us, either.
JESUS SAVES US OUT OF DARKNESS. He IS the Light. We do not pull ourselves out of the pit. To say that we must “get delivered” first is to negate the work of the cross. There is unbelief, and there is belief. There is darkness, and there is light. There is no ridiculous murky in-between of “I want to be saved but demons are preventing it, I need a prophet to get rid of them so that Jesus can save me and I can be called born again.” No. That, my friends, is the real blasphemy.
Back to the video, it appears that TB Joshua does offer the option of “Self deliverance.” You can be delivered in your house. If you fast and pray just right, you may “just find yourself delivered,” after which, you are in the right situation to be born again. That’s not particularly comforting. You “might” get delivered at home, if you do it just right. How can one be sure though? He does not explain.
We are left to assume that self-deliverance is iffy, while deliverance at SCOAN is a sure thing.
And then of course there is the problem of this being a blasphemous false gospel, creating salvation by works and self-righteousness, rather than complete and utter reliance on Jesus for salvation.
You know what I love about the real Gospel? It tells me that I CANNOT save myself, and it tells me that I have a Savior who has the power to save me from my wretched, awful, sinful state. The true Gospel tells me I can trust in Jesus because he is MIGHTY TO SAVE. No demon can prevent my salvation, if I indeed “have a demon.” No. Jesus is no wimp. He does not need me to create the right environment (demon-free) in order to save me. I serve a God who is far mightier than TB Joshua seems to think He is.
- In Which TB Joshua Rewrites the Bible (tbjoshuawatch.wordpress.com)