“Paula White is a charlatan and recognized as a heretic by every orthodox Christian, of whatever tribe.” Russell Moore.
So that I get my definitions right, my first Google search tells me:
“charlatan” – a person falsely claiming to have a special knowledge or skill.
“heretic” – a person holding an opinion at odds with what is generally accepted.
Like many doing “ministry”, I have come across more than my fair share of charlatans and heretics purportedly doing Christian ministry, as well as many more who I consider are off beam when it comes to discerning the Lord’s will and doing it. But first I want to set the scene before attempting not just to answer the question that is posed but also to reflect whether I am qualified / called to do so.
A few days ago, I found myself having a robust exchange with concerned Christian ministers on this very question, and I said I would go away and come back after thinking about it. As I did, I discovered I have already covered a good deal of the ground in an article I wrote some four months ago: “Paula White, demons and praying for President Trump”. It was obvious then that the main reason Paula is being discussed rather than a number of high profile, prosperity type American preachers is because of her close links to President Trump. The anti has been upped somewhat recently by news that can be encapsulated in the following report: “Trump’s spiritual adviser joins White House staff”.
In pointing out things to check out, one friend who was prepared to give Paula the benefit of the doubt about her soundness pointed to an article: “Paula White Hits Back at Critics, Reaffirms Belief In Trinity, Bible’s Inerrancy, Christ’s Divinity”, which gave what was in my view a not very convincing defense of her genuineness and orthodoxy. Another, who agreed with statement at the top of this article pointed to “PAULA WHITE DENIES JESUS CHRIST”. While this was undoubtedly a hit piece, there was enough in it regarding her fixation of getting the gullible to send her money to indulge her what seems to me lavish lifestyle in return for promises of prosperity to make me think “charlatan”. Elsewhere in the clip there were utterances that suggested an erroneous view about the person of Christ that made me think heretic, but I am open to being told I am wrong and am reluctant to call people out on merely because they happen to see things differently to me. After all, Russell Moore (whoever he is) who made the statement has come out with views critical of Trump that I disagree with. She is right to pray for Trump noting he is under demonic attack and while I don’t agree that not supporting Trump is necessarily resisting God, I do share her concerns.
I am wading in here because Jude 3 tells us to earnestly contend for the faith, the teachings of Jesus in Matthew 24 warns us there will be false teachers in these last days, who will deceive the very elect (and we need to take note), and my own calling is to be a watchman on the wall and to look out for the sheep. I am also intrigued about Paula White’s close relationship with Trump, not that I condemn it per se, and respect she answered the call. My own Bible studies lead me to a conclusion that spiritual advisors had a considerable bearing on the actions of the kings of the Bible (too often they had round them “yes” men, pushing aside those who disagreed), whether for good or as was so often the case for bad. Yet I believe Trump is the Lord’s anointed to, among other things, “drain the swamp”.
I am also inclined to answer in the affirmative the question posed in this article: “Is God Using Trump Like a Biblical Jehu to Take Down Jezebel in America?” mindful that Jehu, a king anointed by the prophet Elijah on behalf of God, has gone down as a bad king despite undoing the legacy of wicked king Ahab as God required. I am all for Trump having a spiritual advisor (I would if I were POTUS and would have more than one) but why Paula White, when there are others more worthy and qualified he could appoint? In making this appointment he has made a mistake. despite my responding to the question posed in my e-book: “Donald J Trump – bad, mad or good?” that he is more good than bad / mad.
My take on “Is Paula White a charlatan / heretic?” ia while I would like to think she is doing a measure of good in her ministry, especially with Trump, my answer might have to be, sadly, yes.