The Copeland/Huckabee Love Affair

01/27/2008


Huckabee & Copeland

Billionaire evangelist oilman cattle rancher Kenneth Copeland, who sits so high atop the “prosperity gospel” pyramid that he has hundreds of “franchise” churches whose pastors send money back up the pipeline, spent much of his annual ministers conference last week talking about how he stonewalled the Senate Finance Committee, then boasted about having Mike Huckabee on his team.

“Kenneth Copeland, I will stand with you!” Huckabee yelled over the phone, according to Copeland. “You’re trying to get prosperity to the people, and they’re [the Senate] trying to take it away from ‘em. I will stand with you anytime, anywhere, on any issue!”

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You can watch the whole speech here, but basically Copeland is saying that he offered to hide his close relationship with Huckabee—the ex-governor had recently recorded a full week of televised “Bible studies” with Copeland, who constantly huckstered Huckabee’s ten-year-old book—but Huckabee said he would gladly oppose the Senate’s investigation of Copeland and others because “they only have an 11 percent approval rating.”

Every year Copeland invites about 1,000 fellow prosperity-gospel ministers to his church/broadcasting facility/ranch/natural gas field/airstrip in Newark, Texas, a few miles north of Fort Worth, for a three-day conference. This year he shut down the conference after two of the days and convened some kind of separate session with the same ministers that would protect his 501(3)(c) tax exemption while he raised campaign funds for Huckabee. Reports on Thursday morning were that he’d come up with $111,000 in immediate cash, plus an additional million bucks in pledges, which would work out to around $1,000 per pastor. (These sorts of fundraising efforts with the Copeland “family” are fairly common. About 30 pastors raised $2.1 million for Copeland’s 70th birthday celebration a year ago.)

The Door left messages for Huckabee and his press secretary over the weekend, but they were not returned.

Copeland spent much of the three-day ministers conference reassuring his fellow pastors that all their ministries were safe from the prying eyes of the Congress. He repeatedly made a distinction between the Congress and the Internal Revenue Service, saying that he recognized the executive branch but not the legislative when it came to oversight. He was especially upset by a request that he reveal the donors to a “special offering” made to himself and his wife for the 40th anniversary of their ministry and said that he’d “promised to God” never to give any information to anyone about that, even if it means prison or death. He frequently mentioned receiving direct instructions from “the Lord,” including instructions to put Mike Huckabee on his television show, Believer’s Voice of Victory.

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During his six programs with Huckabee, airing in November, the two men reminisced about their friendship and Huckabee’s political career in Arkansas, with occasional excursions into scripture. Neither of them distinguished themselves as Biblical scholars, but Huckabee’s comments were especially lame as he seemed to be sucking up to “Brother Kenneth” in discussing passages like James 1:3: “It is the trying of your faith that works patience.”

Huckabee’s read on that passage was that he used to think “trying” meant a trial of faith. (This is what 99 percent of commentators for the past 2000 years have also believed it meant.) But then, the more he thought about it, the more he thought the key word was “try.” It meant to “keep trying,” and every time you fail, to try again. “I tried tithing and it didn’t work. Well, try it again. I tried it three or four times. Well, try it again.” Huckabee’s view: it doesn’t mean to be patient when God sends trials, it means to assert yourself—in other words, the opposite of its apparent meaning. Since the Greek word for “try” as in “trial” and the Greek word for “try” as in “attempt” are two different words, Huckabee’s exegesis of this particular scripture is not only demonstrably wrong as a matter of fact, but he seems to be insisting on it as a way to support Copeland’s emphasis on tithing, which is the source of his fortune.

There are other examples scattered through the week, including some statements by Huckabee that, no matter what office he holds, “my only client is Jesus.”

Other highlights from the minister’s conference:

• Copeland seems puzzled by the fact that Senator Charles Grassley, who is spearheading the Senate investigation, was also the author of the Church Protection Act.

• Copeland talks about his natural gas company and says that the Senate’s suspicions about the source of that wealth are “bull.”

• Copeland’s characterization of his answer to Senator Grassley: “We gave them a several page lesson on ‘No’. . . . We gave them the address of the Internal Revenue Service in Washington, D.C.”

• Copeland assures everyone that he’s personally been a billionaire “a long time” and that his ministry has taken in $1.3 billion over 41 years. “I’m the seed of Abraham. The seed of Abraham are known for being rich. I’m a Jew. I’m a rich Jew backed by a richer Jew. God loves me just as much as he loves Jesus.”

Editor's note: Confronted about the Copeland statements on "Meet the Press," Huckabee did not deny that he said what Copeland said he said.

(This story includes reporting by John Bloom, Pete Evans of the Trinity Foundation, and Harry Guetzlaff of the Trinity Foundation. The Trinity Foundation press release can be found here. See our Copeland Collection here.)


Comments(327)

Nineveh | 11:45 pm on 1/28/2008

Galatians 3:13-14 (KJV)
13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Anonymous | 06:42 am on 1/29/2008

This is so funny... Good ole Kenny Copeland and his floosie wife Glamorous Gloria... are sitting back laughing their heads off at all the gullible suckers sending them mega buck$...they have done for years... and yet the fools keep on sending it...they are outright scammers of the highest order... just what does it take for people to wakeup and stop getting sucked in by these people??

Anonymous | 08:01 pm on 1/29/2008

How do you know this?
Do you know them personally?
Have you been around them?
I haven't been around them, but I would not blantantly judge them for something I have no evidence for.
This is absurd.

Bouldergeist | 09:19 am on 1/30/2008

Are you blind as well as deaf?!?

With all respect, people like you persuade me that, to become an Xian, you have to check your brain at the door.

Anonymous | 12:07 am on 1/31/2008

I'd be careful criticizing ministers like you are doing. Until there is PROOF POSITIVE of wrongdoing, (and there hasn't been yet; despite what you 'think' you 'know')then I would keep silent.
God takes a dim view of those who criticize before they remove the LOG out of their own eye.

Mat 7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

Luk 6:42 Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye.

Anonymous | 12:37 am on 1/31/2008

Amen

Bouldergeist | 08:38 am on 1/31/2008

We've had proof positive on some of these guys, but people like you are simply too brain-dead to listen.

You DESERVE to get fleeced, because you have all the discernment of a common garden implement.

that calvinist doug | 10:08 am on 1/31/2008

Your reply here reveals more than you intended, I think. While I'll be first to condemn the tele-moneychangers-in-the-temple, your statement that someone "deserves to get fleeced" reveals your own high view of your opinion and morality. If you are intellectually and morally superior than all us hopeless Christians, why are you so angry at us in general, as opposed to specifically? When I hear the foolishness of a child expressed (to whom, in general, I consdier myself intellectually superior) I just dismiss them, rather than attack the child. Logic reserves attacks for those I deem a threat.

Bouldergeist | 05:01 pm on 1/31/2008

Hardly. If you have been warned that the bridge is out around the bend, and you go driving around the bend like Mario Andretti anyway, you only have yourself to blame when you put your new Ferrari in the drink.

If you're going to give your beer money to Crouch so that he can put hi-test in his top-of-the-line Bimmer and drink vintage champagne at lunch, you deserve what you get.

Swongerosa | 03:25 pm on 2/22/2008

And you don't think that Copeland's teaching is a threat? We're talking about something far more serious than money. We are talking about the eternal destinies of thousands of souls. If any man or even and angel from heaven preach any other gospel than that which we have preached LET HIM BE ACCURSED. Jesus never rebuked anybody but those who led others astray. Copeland's teachings are unscriptural and extremely dangerous. He may talk about Jesus but it's not the Jesus of the Bible. By the way, Copeland's teachings killed both of my parents.

that calvinist doug | 02:10 pm on 2/27/2008

I sure DO think his teaching is a threat. I was responding against the attack on Christianity and Christians in general; the idea that if anyone claiming to be a Christian is a fraud, then all must be.

Anonymous | 08:25 am on 1/29/2008

if you voted for the most rightous candidate, who would it be? Hitlary, Obama, McCain? Perhaps the only choice we have is the lessser evil. My vote is still for Huck

lover of truth. | 01:08 pm on 1/29/2008

RON PAUL...that's who. He is a pro-life christian who does not use his "faith" to try to sucker in the vote of evangelicals. His voting record is consistent and solid and he takes no money from special interest groups.

His only agenda is to restore true constitutional limited government.

Anonymous | 08:03 pm on 1/29/2008

We have to remember "The most righteous in whose eyes?"
How would one know?
From what I believe the word righteous to mean is right satanding with God.

The Ringo Kid | 06:46 pm on 1/30/2008

As for me and my house,I'll be voting for John McCain!!!
Senator McCain is a true American Hero!!!
The man endured seven years of captivity in North Vietnam
and refused to abandon his fellow POW's when he was offered the chance for freedom!!!
Which is one helluva lot more than I can ever say about Catcher's Mitt Romney and Huckabee Hound!!!

Anonymous | 12:08 am on 1/31/2008

A vote for mcCain is a vote for the national ID card. Want to have to show your 'papers' to travel?
Shades of Nazi Germany!

CH | 01:08 pm on 1/31/2008

did yer know that hes name means son of CAIN. an how eve had sex with the serpent and cain was there literal offspringg, see Arnold Muray fir more http://www.shepherdschapel.com/

Anonymous | 06:21 pm on 1/31/2008

google "arnold murray false teacher" and then RUN.....

Terry B | 01:18 am on 6/12/2008

Why not create the ultimate 'Dream Ticket Triage"? -PRES. Obama, VP. Hillary and Special Embedded Iraq Pullout Facillitator, McCain- all the strengths and weaknesses combined! All three together- 100% of the vote- something for everyone!

Anonymous | 11:34 am on 6/18/2008

Go to youtube.com and type in "joe america us" and listen to this guy....he's got more sense than your above triage!!

Pennsylvanian | 02:30 pm on 1/29/2008

Twenty five years ago, I left the NAME IT AND CLAIM IT GOSPEL, that COPELAND, and his group of pastors taught. I heard it on tape and had a Video with Copeland's lies on it. He also thought he was the Holy Spirit and was going to minister through the congregation himself... That is witchcraft, and I left the meeting never to attend one again, I requested my name and files to be removed from Copeland and many other of his friends, off their mailing list... They returned my files to me.

Anonymous | 03:58 pm on 1/29/2008

Yeah Penn, I too left the word of faith four years ago. I don't think Ken claimed to be the Holy Spirit but God was going to allow Copeland to minister to a congregation without his body!! Actually that was just as absurd! Copeland is a false teacher and in my opinion very close to being a heretic! Kenny is a fable teller just like his buddy Jesse DuPlantis!

Anonymous | 08:04 pm on 1/29/2008

We are not to put our trust in men anyway, but find out what God's word says for ourselves.

PimpAlert | 06:24 pm on 1/31/2008

Yes, that's true, but we are also responsible and accountable to God for whom we allow to teach us. I was under the prosperity gospel for 12 years. I've had to relearn everything!! I thank God every day that he loved me enough to remove the scales from my eyes and remove me from that apostate church under John Hagee.

Anonymous | 04:17 pm on 1/29/2008

Typical Copeland response to someone who criticizes him! Years ago Copeland accused Walter Martin of hating his ministry. Now Ole Anthony "hates" poor Kenny! This is how these guys have operated for decades. Accuse people who disagree with them of hating them. I think more people are catching on to these "ministers." Copeland is shameless! Watch these videos and you will see his arrogance!

Anonymous | 06:36 pm on 1/29/2008

I believe the Gospel! Jesus has set me free, satan is the accuser of the bretheren, not other Christians. If you dont believe you have authority over demons & evil spirits, then tear the Gospels out of your Bibles, because it is obvious you dont believe the word of God.

It is only the IRS and Kenneth Copelands business what thier records contain. NOT Sen. Grassley. I watched the entire conference online, I beleieve you have taken some liberalities with your context and comments. may God reward you for your deeds.

There is not one of us who has it all together, NOT ONE - but for the Grace of God, I am at peace

So, you without sin, cast the first stone

God Bless
Pastor Stone

Anonymous | 08:07 pm on 1/29/2008

Wow! You hit the nail right on the head.
Who are we to judge especially when we know very little about the matter?
No stone throwing here.

Bouldergeist | 09:17 am on 1/30/2008

I'm totally without sin, Pastor Stone! I don't believe the rubbish about "sin" -- I've never done anything that God has told me not to do, mostly because God has never told me what he does or does not want me to do! Yes, I will cast stones! Fraud is fraud.

The Bible was written by men, and inspired by greed. Copeland proves that beyond a peradventure of a doubt.

PimpAlert | 06:46 pm on 1/31/2008

Jesus rebuked the false teachers of his day and so did the Apostles. Jesus also had a meltdown in the Temple with the MONEYCHANGERS!!

CHRISTIANS ARE SUPPOSED TO JUDGE FALSE TEACHERS AND FALSE DOCTRINE!!!

We are not supposed to judge hypocritically like the "judge not" and "touch not" verses say!!

So, unless you are fleecing your flock too....JUDGE AWAY!!

CH | 08:16 pm on 1/29/2008

:"So, you without sin, cast the first stone":

john 7:53 to 8:11 is not fownd in the oldest manUscripts of the new testament. it was added in by the kenites,, it helps lower the standards.

The ringo Kid | 06:48 pm on 1/30/2008

Uh Huh!!Were your parents Brother and Sister by chance??
Don't be ashamed!!After all,look at Lot and his daughters!!!
By the way,let him who is stoned cast the first sin!!

CH | 08:49 pm on 1/30/2008

i jus teach the bible as its was written, jus like jESUS did,
look it up their fir yerself,

Anonymous | 06:49 pm on 1/31/2008

CH,
What bible do you use? How do you know that about the kenites? I read that 14 books were removed from the NT back in the 1500's, and that "tithing" was added by man as well. I'd love to read more....

CH | 08:36 pm on 1/31/2008

i jus use da bible that thar jESUS and hes desciples used, the lxx septuagint. fer new testanents i like the ast, or the majority english, or nrsv too! the king janes has lots a mistake. all of de old testamet qoutes in the new testmant are from lxx. that should sinch it.

CH | 08:59 pm on 1/31/2008

then reed mroe, heres some of my favorties sites and subeject i like to discus fir starters...i'm not that big on arnold muray,.
http://www.fixedearth.com/
http://www.divinepageant.com/
http://www.bibletribes.org/

O yeah | 12:04 am on 2/01/2008
Anonymous | 05:31 pm on 2/01/2008

CH,
Are the "kenites" related to KENneth copeland??

CH | 11:05 pm on 2/01/2008

who knows maybe distant couzins

Anonymous | 10:42 pm on 1/29/2008

The Lord Jesus Christ said to take the plank from your own eye, before looking at the speck in your brother's. It is about time the Church of Jesus Christ began acting as He commanded:
Love One Another! This is a farce and Hell is filled with those who have taken another of God's children before the heathen, with those who have refused to forgive, and with those who have accused falsely. I have heard of Christian Bashing, but from another who calls him/herself by the name of our Savior! It's time to look UP and WITHIN before looking out at another. As far as I know, the Christ is going to judge us all! As we stand before Him, there will be no finger pointing and we, alone, will stand to account for our own words and actions. May our God have mercy on those who contribute to this website.

Anonymous | 06:51 pm on 1/30/2008

What makes you so sure Copeland is innocent? Yes it's time for the church to start acting like the church. That includes weeding out false teachers with false doctrine such as Copeland's! You Copeland supporters really have no idea what this man teaches do you? His vast material holdings are but the tip of the iceberg! His whole theology is defective! In a nut shell the Word Of Faith teaches that we are "just as much the incarnation as Jesus is!" Oh yes! That's what they teach! So don't tell me to get the plank out of my eye! You need to check your doctrine, bub!

LetTheLightShine | 12:36 am on 1/30/2008

Why are Christians so afraid for these ministers to give an account of how the money is spent that is sent to them? It amazes me that you would not want to know? I am a Christian and I do not think it is an attack on any ministry for them to openly give an account to the partners or any individual that has contributed exactly how all these monies are spent. Let their be light in all areas of these ministries and the minister's lives. If they are not hiding something and wanting to keep it in the dark they should not mind this inquiry or any other one.

Anonymous | 02:55 pm on 1/30/2008

Aye, give unto Ceasar what is Ceasar's. If you have nothing to hide then full disclosure is to your benefit. My concern with this coverage is not of religion but of rule of law.

Copeland is under investigation by the Senate and a presidential candidate said he will stand with him on any issue if he can flood his campaign with donations.

The president has pardon authority. If that point alone with the statement Huckabee made, is not basically saying "send money, if you get indicted and convicted due to that senate investigation, the president can pardon you, hint hint."

Give me a break, I wonder if Hillary made the same promise to Hsu.

Anonymous | 10:14 pm on 1/30/2008

Copeland didn't hide anything, he sent the Senate what it asked for.
Now whether he sent all his donors/s information is another thing, Constitionally he doesn't have to do that.

Your donations to any kind of charity are your own business and unless you are claiming it on your taxes is not anyone else's business, including the Senate of the United States.

It is no ones business what charity you give to so Senator Grassly has no right to even ask for this information. At any rate I know what Copeland stated on his website that his ministry turned over what was required by law and why should he be required to go above the law anymore than you or I would.

I don't think anyone here knows if the man is innocent or guilty but many here don't seem to care about what the Constitution says about, or at least it use to say it, about being "innocent until proven guilty" but I suppose the only ones here who would insist on that being upheld would be the ones already to hang the man on their own personal prejudices and opinions.

What happened to America and our freedoms and protections as American citizens?

Anonymous | 04:58 pm on 1/31/2008

Yes you're right we don't know if Kenny is innocent or guilty. However if it's proved that Copeland diverted ministry funds for his for profit businesses,then he's in big trouble! My beef with Copeland is his horrible theology! The feds shouldn't be involved unless there is evidence of mishandling of funds.

Anonymous | 02:01 am on 1/30/2008

Hey geniuses wake up. Jesus talked about removing a plank from your own eye, he was talking about when you had like sin. Last time I checked Paul did alot of rebuking of peoples sin, like when Peter was rejecting the Gentiles because of peer pressure. Don't be absurd, there are lots of examples in the Bible where people legitimately called others on their sin, and moreover said they were heritics.

Kerry | 04:48 am on 1/30/2008

If you believe Kenneth Copeland is in error then you should be praying for him that God will bring him to the place of repentance! Yes it's true that Paul the Apostle confronted Peter. He confronted him personally first. If you have an issue with a brother you should confront him personally before publicizing his error or what you perceive to be his error. Personally I was quite impressed to see a Baptist man and a Word of Faith man fellowshipping together. Maybe if more christians would put aside their differences and denominations then we could finally attain to the unity of the faith which the Lord spoke of. At least Hukabee has made his stand against abortion and gay marriage known. If the church keeps picking apart fellow believers then we will see Obama or Hilary win. Is that what we want. Not me that's for sure!

Avi | 05:12 am on 1/30/2008

I personally have a problem with anyone that teaches disobedience to God's laws but be that as it may who knows what Mr. Copeland does with his money? How many poor are helped by it? Perhaps Mr. Copeland obeys the word of God in that he helps widows and orphans or the hungry, sick or imprisoned? I for one do not know him or what he does with all the money so I will not say. In fact it would have been better; in my opinion, if this article sought to know these things rather than publically call into question the morals of either man. There are many who fleece God's flock and they shall face God someday, In Matthew 7:21-23 it speaks of those that prophesy, cast out demons and work miracles in Jesus name but Jesus tells them to depart from Him as He never knew them and that they practiced 'lawlessness'. These people mentioned are Christians or those calling themselves such as nobody else would be doing these things in Jesus name! So if anyone knows for sure of wrongdoing by Mr. Copeland then go to him in private and rebuke him for it and if he will not hear you then bring a witness or if two are not enough then bring him before the counsel of elders...otherwise I caution you to be silent!

Bouldergeist | 09:13 am on 1/30/2008

I know this is a touchy subject with the Doormice, but sad fact is, Jesus doesn't do anything, either.

Tilton, Larson, Hinn, Copeland, Crouch, et al., ad nauseum are the most compelling proof one could ask for that Jesus is dead.

markscape | 06:49 am on 1/30/2008

So I watched the Copeland videos. I looked for Jesus everywhere, but I couldn't find him. Instead I got the sneering arrogance of someone trying desperately to convince me he doesn't care, when it's there for the whole world to see that it's eating him alive. Didn't someone once say that where your treasure is, there would your heart be also? How ironic.

Bill | 08:50 am on 1/30/2008

Like it or not we are all accountable.

More so if you are in a position of leadership (pastor, elder, teacher)

If Copeland/Dollar/Hagee etc. choose not to be accountable then God Himself can use the U.S. Congress to change law and force ALL 501c(3) organizations to reveal their sources and uses of funds.

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