Carlton Funderburke, the senior pastor at Church at the Well, recently preached a sermon calling his congregation “broke, busted, and disgusted,” because they didn’t give him enough money to buy a watch he wanted to buy.
The Prosperity Gospel–also known as “Health and Wealth Gospel,” “Name it and Claim it,” and “Word of Faith”–is a perversion of the biblical gospel that teaches that the primary purpose of Jesus’ death and resurrection is to create material gain for those who have enough “faith.”
Adherents to this false gospel are found primarily in the charismatic movement and include prominent figures such as Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, and T.D. Jakes. But the movement also includes men such as Joel Osteen who isn’t as focused on charismaticism as much as he is on the financial prosperity of his movement.
Yet, the primary benefits of the prosperity gospel are always the charlatans at the top of the pyramid—and never the people being fleeced.
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I’m not worth your McDonald’s money? I’m not worth your Red Lobster money? I ain’t worth your St. John Knits — y’all can’t afford nohow. I ain’t worth y’all Louis Vuitton? I ain’t worth your Prada? I’m not worth your Gucci?” he said in the now viral video clip while apprising the congregation of a Movado watch they could have bought him from Costco.
“And y’all know I asked for one last year. Here it is all the way in August and I still ain’t got it,” he said. “Y’all ain’t said nothing. Let me kick down the door and talk to my cheap sons and daughters.”
After the video went viral, Funderburke offered an apology on his Facebook page:
“Though there is context behind the content of the clip, no context will suffice to explain the hurt and anguish caused by my words. I’ve spoken to those I am accountable to and have received their correction and instruction,” he said. “I have also privately apologized to our church, who has extended their love and support to me.”