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The Victims of Benny Hinn: 30 Years of Spiritual Deception

This week, Christian apologist Mike Winger published a meticulously detailed documentary (4+ hours long!) of televangelist Benny Hinn's fake healings, false prophecies, faux repentance. It is difficult to watch.

Failed Prophecies

In it, Winger shows Benny Hinn's own videos of his failed prophecies. Winger begins documenting these at 46:28 in the video.

In one instance from early 2020, Hinn prophesied in the name of God that COVID will kill no more than 5,000 people. A month later, after 10,000 had died of COVID, Hinn prophesied COVID would disappear by Easter 2020.

In reality, COVID is still a problem today, 4 years after Hinn's failed prophecy to come to pass. Over 7 million people have died of COVID. Even if you think that number is inflated, no one argues it's less than 5,000.

In another recent example, September 2023, he prophesied in the name of the Lord that Israel and Saudi Arabia will sign a peace agreement, the Middle East will experience a new regional peace between Jews and Arabs, and it will result in a wealth transfer from unbelievers to Christians by 2024. 

In reality, just a month later, not only did the unprecedented peace and wealth transfer not occur, but the opposite did: Hamas attacked Israel on October 7th, launching the region into war. Jewish-Arab tensions reached new heights.

It turns out Hinn prophesied the exact same thing back in the 1990s: unprecedented peace and a transfer of wealth from unbelievers to Christians as soon as Israel signed a peace agreement with Syria. Hinn's own video shows him saying the Lord has spoken it; "It's guaranteed!" This too turned out to be a false prophecy from Hinn.

False Healings

Winger documents how Hinn made false claims of healing and even resurrections. This was probably the hardest part of the video to watch.

In one case, Hinn convinced an elderly mother and adult son, both of whom had stage 4 cancer, that they had been healed. In a later interview with the mother, she believed she was healed, despite still showing symptoms. Shortly after, her son died of cancer. The mother was still convinced she was healed. But a month later, the mother too died of cancer. Heartbreaking.

In another case, Hinn claimed a man in Africa had risen from the dead at one of his meetings. When an investigation was launched, a manager of Hinn's TV program claimed Hinn was repeating something they heard, and they made a mistake in repeating it without verifying it.

But then later Hinn is shown speaking about the same resurrection, claiming it was witnessed by "200,000 to 300,000 people." Hinn even gave additional details about the supposed event, saying the man raised in front of the audience while Hinn's back was turned.

In one of many more instances, Hinn claimed in a book that he went into a Catholic hospital and anointed patients with oil. Something like an earthquake occurred, and there were many miraculous healings, Hinn's book claimed.

But after a secular investigation, the hospital confirmed that while Hinn did preach at the hospital chapel, there was no earthquake, reported healings, and they confirmed that not a single patient had left the hospital that day.

In what I can only guess to be hiding the truth, later reprints of Hinn's book removed the claim of the miracles at the hospital.

Harmful theology

In front of a crowd of 10,000 people, Hinn said that God is 9-in-1. He claimed the Father is body, soul, and spirit. As is the Son. As is the Holy Spirit. "There's 9 of them!" Hinn says to his congregation.

When confronted about this by other Christian leaders, Hinn backpedaled, saying he was repeating something he had read elsewhere, and that "When I said it to the congregation, I could sense tension in the room. So I made a joke and said there was 9 of them and people laughed." 

But we have video of the preaching, and there was no joke or laughing. He lectured on for several minutes about it.

In another teaching, he claimed that human beings are "little-g gods", because just like animals reproduce after their kind, when God created humans it meant that humans are a kind of god.

Recently, Hinn claimed that the spirit of God revealed to him that women were meant to give birth out of their sides (???!).

And perhaps above all, Hinn has for decades preached the prosperity gospel: that if a person "sows a seed" into the Kingdom of God (that is, a person donates to Benny Hinn's ministry), then God will multiple and increase that person's finances. 

Faux Repentance

Much of this was not news to me; I've always kept Hinn at arms' length because I am a hopeful skeptic. When I hear reports of miracles, I am hopeful but skeptical. Hopeful knowing God is able, skeptical knowing people are bad.

But what was news to me was that Hinn's recent repentance in 2019 wasn't really repentance at all.

In 2019, Benny Hinn repented for preaching the prosperity gospel. In one clip, a remorseful Hinn in front of a live audience says, 

"If I hear the phrase, 'Break the back of debt with [a donation of] $1,000', I'm gonna rebuke them. I think it's buying the gospel, it's buying the blessing, that's grieving the Holy Spirit. The Gospel is not for sale. The blessing of God is not for sale. And miracles are not for sale. And prosperity is not for sale."

I had heard about this back when it happened, and I thought, "Wow, great, Benny Hinn is turning a new leaf."

(In retrospect, I notice Hinn's phrasing makes it sound as if others are preaching the prosperity non-gospel, not Hinn.)

But then in October 2023, Hinn is on stage again saying, 

"Tonight, you're gonna give. Prove yourself faithful to God. To God! I know you paid [for this conference]. But your payment is not a seed. What you paid to get into this conference was [for] a chair, not a harvest. God cannot trust you with the wealth of sinners and the abundance coming with your $10 donation. You insult Him! Low giving keeps you at low levels, low altitudes. You give sparingly, you won't be loosed from that sparing life of yours. Give! Give! Give! And watch what God will do with you." 

It turns out, Benny Hinn had a similar faux repentance, saying essentially the same things, all the way back in 1993. Here we are some 30 years later and Hinn is doing the same thing he supposedly repented for.


Winger documents several ways how Hinn manipulates people.

Hinn will say things like "Why have people lost their healings? Because they didn't believe." This manipulates believers into thinking they're healed even if they aren't. (You don't want to lose your healing, do you?) And if they still have symptoms, they refuse to believe they aren't healed.

Winger showed from Hinn's own videos where, if a person doesn't fall down ("slayed in the spirit") when Hinn swings a hand or a jacket, Hinn forcibly pushes the person down. In one heartbreaking case, a frail woman in great pain due to cancer asked Hinn "please be gentle" - Hinn pushes her down repeatedly.

How is Hinn "slaying" dozens of people in the front row of his meetings? Winger shows that Hinn chooses who sits in the front row of his meetings in order to find willing participants and weed out anyone who is skeptical of Hinn's miracles. Winger showss how it's similar to fraudulent martial artists (referred to as "bullshido" artists) who claim supernatural abilities to levitate, throw invisible energy balls, or take down opponents using only their mind. These involve a deceptive or self-deluded teacher but also students who are eager and willing to believe the hypnotic master.

Winger shows evidence of this when, in one of Hinn's videos, he is facing a group of several people. They are all facing Hinn, except one woman who got turned around. When Hinn "slays" them, the people facing Hinn all fall down. But the woman who had her back turned, who didn't know she was supposed to fall down, remained standing.

Hinn uses manipulative tactics to donate to his ministry. "Give sparingly and you won't be loosed from that sparing life of yours", he says to a live audience in one of his videos after his supposed repentance from prosperity gospel preaching. On multiple occasions, he has prophesied falsely about a coming "transfer of wealth from sinners to the believers", but that one must first sow into Hinn's ministry to be a part of this transfer. He uses this sense of urgency and fear-of-missing-out to manipulate people, usually elderly Christians without much money, into giving more to his ministry.

Hinn should step down 

Watching the whole 4-hour video documenting Hinn's actions - yikes! It appears to me Hinn is deliberately misleading and manipulating people. 

I rarely post negative things about specific individuals in our faith. Had you asked me last week my thoughts on Benny Hinn, they'd be cautious but optimistic, and I'd have told you he recently repented for his prosperity gospel teachings. Last year my church hosted Benny Hinn at a revival service during Easter. (I didn't attend, but I neither felt the need to rebuke anyone who did.)

But after watching this video and seeing Hinn's troubling behavior, I felt it necessary to add my voice to the growing chorus calling for Hinn to step down from ministry.

In the best-case scenario, he is a genuine but misguided Christian who has falsely prophesied. The Bible tells us that we should not fear such people. That means we should not revere them or give them a platform to speak.

In the worst case, he's not a believer at all. He's a conman working a grift to steal funds from mostly elderly Christians with a fake signs and wonders, false promises of wealth, deceiving millions of people to enrich himself.

Either way, if Hinn is serious about repentance, we'll know by his actions. A false prophet should no longer prophesy; Christians should not give him a platform, nor should he seek one. He would return donations or give them to the poor. There is no question Hinn must stop prophesying; even if all the healings were true, the Bible demands he stop prophesying. The Scriptures require that we no longer give such people a platform.

Thanks to Mike Winger for putting together such detailed documentation exposing Hinn's bad behavior.

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