As I have already written about, just a few weeks ago Ronnie delivered a sermon to get his church members to believe that unless they fork over 10% of their income to their church, they are probably not real Christians. And to make his point he did not quote the Bible, instead he quoted the most abusive first-fruit-tithe-teaching pastor that is out there now: Robert Morris.
Here is what Ronnie told his church members:
This is Ronnie's mistake: he thinks "giving to God" means "giving to Ronnie's church". No, Ronnie, when I put my family first, and I pay my rent, and my insurance, and my kid's college tuition, and pay for my family's food and shelter FIRST, it means I place them above your 501(c)3 institution. It doesn't mean I don't fear God, or that I don't respect God. And the truth is, as Wade Burleson points out in his article today, this is what more and more church member are realizing, and it is why people are leaving church. They realize men like Ronnie Floyd are trying to manipulate them into thinking their church IS God's kingdom."Pastor Robert Morris says 'it's a real shame that Christians don't believe the importance of writing the first check [10% of your income to your church] because God is the one we value first. God is the one we respect first....God is the one we fear first. It's not the mortgage company we fear first, it's not the U.S. government fear first, we should live our lives fearing God first."
But Ronnie wasn't done quoting the wonderful Robert Morris, who as I said without question the worst of the mainstream evangelical first-fruit tithing abusers. Morris says non-tithers are arrogant, thieves, and subject to demon possession. He says do not pay rent or electric bill until you first give 10% to your church. He says church members must tithe to avoid divorce, or losing their kids or jobs to the devourer. Go to those links. Watch the video evidence of his teaching. This is the man Ronnie is quoting to his church as the premier expert on biblical financial principles.
Back to Ronnie: Next, Ronnie put up Morris' mug on the overhead image screens (see image above), and the quotes from his book "Blessed Life":
"He writes a book called 'The Blessed Life'. You never read 'The Blessed Life"? You oughta get a copy of 'The Blessed Life'. It's one of the greatest books on financial matters that I've ever read."
Wow. Do SBC'ers know what is in this book? Ronnie says it's the best book he's read on finances. Only two explanations for that endorsement: either this is the ONLY book on finances Floyd has ever read or remembers reading, or by "best" he means "if my members will believe this nonsense in this book I can double or triple my church's revenue". Take your pick.
But this book has a tagline at the bottom which says: "The Simple Secret of Achieving Guaranteed Financial Results."
This is health and wealth prosperity teaching. The book teaches people the concept of "first fruits" giving, that God requires the very first 10% of a Christian's income to be given to their church. This is not a recommendation - this is a requirement, for Morris teaches in this book that if you DO give 10%, God will bless you financially, "guaranteed". And God will "rebuke the devourer" - you know, like the mafia boss protecting your business if you share the profits with him. But if you do NOT give 10%, you are cursed by God, and God will not prevent "the devourer" from hurting you, your children, your spouse, your marriage and your finances. You think I'm exaggerating. No, this is what Morris teaches in the book, and what he teaches from the pulpit.
And Ronnie Floyd is pushing this nonsense on his congregation..
But Ronnie wraps things up with this quote from Robert Morris - note, he is quoting from a book written by Robert Morris, not from the bible:
"Robert Morris says these words: 'When God blesses you when you give the first fruits, being blessed means you're having supernatura power working for you'. Listen carefully, he says then 'By contrast, being cursed means having supernatural power working against you."Now Ronnie is going to interpret what Robert Morris says. He is not interpreting scripture, he is interpreting Robert Morris:
"When we honor the Lord with the first fruits, then I've got the supernatural power of God working for everything else in that bucket. But listen: if I don't wanna honor God with my first fruits, then I've got the supernatural power of God working against me and my buckets."Yep, don't give 10% to Ronnie's church, and God is going to work against you. You're "cursed".
When you get right down to it, this is about as anti-Christian of a message as you can get. As one writer said recently, to say you will be cursed if you do not tithe is really to publicly mock the work of Christ on the cross. Ronnie surely knows Galatians 3:13, where Paul says "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us".
So not only does Ronnie spit on the work of Christ with this teaching of the "supernatural power of God working against you" if you don't tithe, but he does it in the most arrogant and condescending way throughout the entire sermon. Watch him strut around and hoot and holler and point and bellow, here at this link. Or if you don't have 50 minutes of you life to waste, watch the 3 minute clip below.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, will likely be the next president of the Southern Baptist Convention.
I think that is perfect. The SBC deserves a man like Ronnie - a man whose search for revenue at his church ultimately harms the faith he professes.
And this is the man the SBC will likely get as their next president.