Seen on a supermarket shelf yesterday – HK$80-90 breakfast cereal with the brand name ‘Ezekial 4:9’…
The Old Testament lines on the front say: “Take also unto thee Wheat and Barley and Beans and Lentils and Millet and Spelt and put them in one vessel and make bread of it…”
Sadly, the cereal pack isn’t big enough to include the rest of the verse, which, we find, continues by telling you to “bake it with dung that cometh out of man” and eat it (the bread, that is) for 390 days within sight of people besieging you. Yum!
Those with an interest in Biblical wonders will be pleased to learn that Hong Kong is about to receive a visit from noted preacher Andrew Wommack. Some of Donald Trump’s evangelical Christian supporters signed up to his ‘Declaration of Dependence’, pledging to disobey man-made laws on abortion and same-sex marriage. And here he is chatting with one of his buddies about the ethical and practical challenges of imposing a backward Bronze Age desert tribe’s (supposed) customary laws in present-day USA…
He also does faith healing, saw his own son raised from the dead, and believes physical and psychological illness is the result of not having heard and obeyed God’s Word. This concept applies to wealth as well as health: if you are not prosperous, it’s because you have given Satan control of your life. Among miracles Wommack has personally experienced (beyond resurrection of his son), he kept his car running without gas for a week.
Bringing dead kids back to life plus free gas might inspire impoverished trailer-dwellers far away. But will it sell in Hong Kong?
Many of its proponents justify this ‘prosperity theology’ on the belief that Jesus and his disciples were, despite their popular image, actually quite rich. They had the means to travel around without ever having to go to work, and the gospels (apparently) suggest that they owned real-estate. It is common knowledge that a few of our local property moguls, and some Singaporean and Malaysian tycoons, are into churches of this type – though I have no idea whether any are connected with Wommack’s ministry.
You can see why American mega-preachers would like to bear witness among wealthy Asians, though Wommack seems a bit of an amateur in gathering donations compared with some of his peers. For Hong Kong’s rich or avaricious, meanwhile, ‘prosperity theology’ offers peace of mind. It teaches that God rewards the faithful in cash or kind – in this world – solely for their acceptance and obedience to Him, not on the grounds of ‘works’. Dating from the Reformation, ‘works’ is now Protestant-speak for being nice or generous to others. These people are quite insistent about the irrelevance of ‘works’.
Some say Mr Wommack is doctrinally aberrant. But hey – aberrant can be interesting! He will be in town this weekend in Wanchai and sunny Kwun Tong on Oct 29-30.
I see that the Rev. Andrew will be at Vine in Wanchai. Interesting. If you ever decide to become a Vine regular you will find out that they demand 10% of your monthly income as tithes. The first 10%, brother. Before taxes. So you know what you, and your family and friends, can look forward to. Happy tithing y’all.
And lo I did veritably cogitate in the Lord and remembered the wise words of someone who founded Scientology that the real way to get ahead in life is to found a Church.
And I did look about me in Hong Kong.
And lo I saw all manner of little tax dodging havens of obscure religions nestling in apartment buildings and coining it in through rentals and money laundering in North Point, Wanchai and verily even in Stanley.
Wherefore do there temples stand empty with ne’er a service for the Lord?
And I did bethink myself and remembered I had the idea of founding the Church of God, Satirist.
And lo the first miracle happened and I declared myself a charity and said goodbye to income tax forever, paying myself a large salary on the donations.
And I saw that it was good.
And I did rent me an office and offered colonic channeling.
I see that Dr. Adams (how’s the chest pain ?) has had the same idea as Mr. Cosmo Beatson of that fine charity Vision First.
I wonder what would happen if you put a bunch of Hong Kong’s most Jesus-y tycoons in the same room with Donald Trump. Perhaps the sheer concentration of arsewipery in a small space would be enough to form a small black hole.
(Interestingly, many evangelicals can’t stomach Trump; he gets his support from self-described Christians who rarely go to church but get angry when someone wishes them “happy holidays”.)
They said I was a pain in the arse. All clear on the chest front. It was catarrh . I have been breathing too much Northern Island air. Deadly.
And what’s wrong with getting angry when someone wishes you “happy holidays”? On a good day, I might answer such a greeting with merely stony silence; other days you’d best duck.
And I wouldn’t be seen dead in a church.
Depends on whether you get angry with them because you’re a miserable git in general, or because you’re offended that they didn’t say “merry Christmas”. The latter are Trump voters.
“They said I was a pain in the arse”. You didn’t have to go to the hospital for that affirmation.
It seems that Georgie Porgie (PhD in English) is unaware of the difference between there and their. To top it off, he once again tuns to plagiarism, using the term “colonic chanelling”, which I coined for him so many years ago when Hemmers and I were writing for NTSCMP—before we saw him for what he was.
I assume Wommack’s car is a Tesla? And as for Jesus’disciples allegedly not having to go to work, we know from the Bible that several of them were fishermen and another was a tax collector – that sounds like work to me.
And another thought:
“If you are not prosperous, it’s because you have given Satan control of your life.” So how does this explain the many rich arseholes who combine their prosperity with obvious adherence to the dark side?