Following media reports and public backlash over the matter, representatives for Paula White, who has been accused of being a “false teacher, who also serves as the chair of President Trump’s Evangelical Advisory Board, have scrubbed a page on White’s website of any mention that she had urged followers to give a “first fruits” offering of a day, week, or month’s wages—and that there are “consequences” for those who don’t give God their first fruits out of “ignorance or direct disobedience.”
As previously reported, Leonardo Blair of the Christian Post had first reported on White’s pitch, in which she declared via the web page (which includes a recorded video), “When we apply the Principle of First Fruits, we see that all firsts should be given to the Lord: the first of the day, week (Sabbath), month, and the first of our harvest—be it the wages for the first day, week, or the month.”
She asserted that “2018 is a year of life and deliverance from struggle [and] it begins right now with first fruits.” White noted that part of the Hebrew word for 18 means “alive” or “living.”
“We are demanding life to your purpose,” White declared. “And with obedience to this first fruits instruction, which is putting God first now, your purpose, your year, your prosperity, and your power will have life and be resurrected!”
She said that she personally gives one month’s wages every year, and noted that others “sow a month’s pay, a week’s pay, [or] a day’s pay,”—whatever is their best.
“Each January, I put God first and honor Him with the first of our substance by sowing a first fruits offering of one month’s pay. That is a big sacrifice, but it is a seed for the harvest I am believing for in the coming year,” White outlined.
“When you apply this, everything comes in divine alignment for His plan and promises for you. When you don’t honor it, whether through ignorance or direct disobedience, there are consequences,” she also warned.
White urged followers, both in the video and article, to click on a donate button to give their first fruits offering to her ministry. Depending on the amount donated, she offered a book, devotional and/or wall calendar, repeating several times that one should give God “their best.”
“Many people can do more! Remember, I believe in sowing a month’s, week’s, or day’s pay,” White reiterated. “By honoring God and obeying His Word it shifts something supernaturally! It’s about doing your very best! Honoring God with the principle of first fruits with your seed is all about Him—God is worth it! Let me hear from you right away and make your ‘promise to come’ a reality!”
However, following media reports about the matter, as of Jan. 9, any language referencing a “day, week or month’s” wages or “consequences” or “demanding life to your purpose”—or any of the above quotes, with the exception of the book/devotional/calendar offer and references to giving your best—was absent from the web page. An edited version remains, which still asks followers via a donate button to “give your first fruits offering today.” The link leads to a donation page, which likewise discusses first fruits.
A spokesperson for White also claimed to the Christian Post in a statement that White’s remarks weren’t reported in their “full context” in Blair’s article and that White was only referring to herself giving of a month’s wages—and that she wasn’t suggesting that her followers must donate a month’s salary to her ministry or suffer the consequences.
“Pastor Paula White’s comments were originally reported out of their full context. She was actually speaking of her personal, longtime commitment to ‘put God first at the beginning of a new year,’ and as part of that commitment she has often donated her entire January salary to charity in gratitude to God for His blessings,” the statement said.
“She encouraged others to also be generous, but she does not—and did not—suggest that other people must donate a month’s salary to her or her church or face divine punishment,” the spokesperson added. “Charity is at the heart of Christianity as it is at the heart of every religious tradition in the world, and anyone who has listened to White’s teaching within its proper context should come to this conclusion as well.”
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SOURCE: Christian News Network – Heather Clark