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INTRO

When C3 Church Watch began covering the scandal surrounding one of the biggest names on the circuit for decades, we were not certain of the outcome. For the man who added buddhism to old-style pentecostalism to be sentenced for three years in prison for tax evasion is only a qualified success. However, it is interesting to note that Al Capone who was guilty of many crimes, was also convicted of tax evasion.

Of course, defenders of Yonggi Cho would want to come out and seek to explain away the sins of the man who introduced such heresy into the Christian church. Bob Rodgers has now jumped to defend the integrity of David Yonggi Cho. It is inevitable to wonder if Rodgers is primarily thinking about his wallet.

As this is a rather long article,

1. C3 Church Watch will offer our critique of Bob Rodgers’ defense of the David Yonggi Cho scandal;

2. examine what has been said of Bob Rodgers’ ministry, behaviour and teaching;

3. look at what Steven Lambert says on Spirit Life Magazine about Bob Rodgers’ article on Charisma Mag;

4. and publish Bob Rodgers’ piece.

CRITIQUE ON BOB RODGERS DEFENSE OF YONGGI CHO

We’ve said it before and we will say it again: wolves support wolves.

Fraudulent ministers stand arm in arm together when their ‘friends’ are rightly exposed of fraudulent behaviour. When a wolf comes under fire, the pack starts the typical scripture-twisting,  truth-spinning and sin-justifying.

A good example of someone who has recently done something like this is ‘Pastor’ Bob Rodgers who recently wrote into Charisma Magazine defending the Word of Faith heretic David Yonggi Cho.

It is clear Bob Rodgers has a conflict of interest and has is own image and reputation to defend with his association David Yonggi Cho since he holds a presidential status on David Yonggi Cho’s Church Growth International board. Bob Rodgers of Charisma Magazine openly stated,

“David Yonggi Cho, pastor of Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, South Korea, has been a personal friend of our family for more than 40 years. He has stayed in our home, and my father and I have served on his church growth board for a combined 38 years. Presently, I serve as president of Church Growth International of the Americas.”

Already, Rodgers has rejected the authority of scripture and has embraced the false teacher David Yonggi Cho into his house (literally),

“Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them. Anyone who welcomes them shares in their wicked work.” 2 John 1:8-11

We can already dismiss what Bob Rodgers has to say because of his rejection of scriptures. Furthermore, if Bob Rodgers cannot see the simple fact that his friend David Yonggi Cho is a spiritual fraud parading good works to con Christianity, then how can Bob even begin to defend someone who is convicted of felony?

And what are the chances of Bob Rodgers being a false teacher? Would it surprise you that a false teacher would support a false teacher?

Bob Rodgers also made the comment that David Yonggi Cho “lives a simple life in a 1,000-square-foot church apartment. Neither does he own a car”. Well then why did Kong Hee testify that his mentor met him in a limousine? Was that the church’s limousine? Is that Cho living “a simple life” using church luxuries?

Furthermore, Rodgers’ story evades the elder controversy. If Yonggi Cho was naive and innocent, then why were elders expelled from his church? Why did he malign them and their criticisms? What was he trying to oppress them of saying? Does this sound like the behaviour of someone who is innocent? Couldn’t David Yonggi Cho repent behind closed doors to these elders? Couldn’t the leadership in the church work at fixing up the issues biblically then deal with the problems appropriately out in public?

On top of this, Bob Rodgers also ignored other allegations made about Cho’s wife. Rodgers also gave us insight to the family life of Yonggi Cho. Doesn’t Rodgers see the unbiblical behaviour of Cho’s family? Why is the eldest son still in church leadership? Is not this nepotism? A conflict of interest?

Rodgers also reported that the judge said that Cho, “… never took the lead in any of the crimes, including tax evasion, committed on the suggestion of the accounting firm“.

But Yonggi Cho was found guilty right? Not the accounting firm? Are we reading this right Bob?

As you can see, there are some serious issues in “setting the record straight”.

BOB RODGERS’ MINISTRY AND HISTORY

It appears this is not the first time Rodgers has failed in discerning frauds (We will publish this articles links in the comment section below):

Phony Preacher Ernest Cadick faces trial for fraud

This man stole from the flock of God. He had been endorsed by one of the most leading and prominent preachers/pastors in Louisville — Bob Rodgers of Evangel World Prayer Center. I’m not saying that Rodgers knew of the deceit. More than likely, he did not. As he was just one of many pastors a few years back – having no discernment –  who endorsed the likes of Tod Bently.

More on this fleecing can be found here: http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20110612/NEWS01/306120091

http://www.arcamax.com/religionandspirituality/religiousnews/s-904597

Now to those who would love to quote the scripture “love covers a multitude of sin,” I will say to you: You are a wolf if you think we are to keep these things covered up. Where was Bob Rogers and other preachers like him, when this man was allowed to come in a steal from the very ones God entrusted them with? Why did they not — from the pulpit – stand up and warn the sheep of this crook?

A lot of people had their life savings stolen from them. Yet, I will say the root to this is greed. The Word/Faith doctrine appeals to greed. Give to me and God will bless you.

Cadick used fear to manipulate people into handing over their money. Their greed, their desires to have their ears tickled led them straight to a lying thief.

Rogers said he is not “taking up for him one bit.” But he said, “In Ernie’s eyes I don’t think he felt like he was taking advantage of anyone.”

Sorry pastor Rogers, that just does not ring true to me. One has to ask what you gain by not coming out strongly against what this man did. Sounds like Rogers has more in common with wolves than he does with sheep.

Source: Mark, Phony Preacher Ernest Cadick faces trial for fraud, Redeemed Hippies’ Place, http://redeemedhippiesplace.wordpress.com/2011/06/20/phony-preacher-ernest-cadick-faces-trial-for-fraud/, 02/09/2013 at 6:58:54 ASD.

A commentor also stated:

“I don’t know if you are aware of this or not, but, Bob Rogers also sold shares of stock or ownership in oil wells in the late 80′s utilizing scripture throughout the Bible to promote the selling of this stock. He solicited promises from God to make his point and lure people to purchase these shares. Nobody was ever made aware of what became of the stock or investigated to see if Bob Rogers made a significant gain from those who purchased in these oil wells. It wasn’t to long after this transaction took place that Bob started TV 21 which was supposed to be a Christian television station and now is no different than many of the other local stations. I am sure the station is valued at a lot of money though and Bob is living well. I would just like to know did he mislead people when he sold these oil well stocks also and did he use the finds to begin a television station and if this is the case shouldn’t those who invested in oil wells that never truly existed be owners of a television station which does? Just for thought.”

Source: Mark, Phony Preacher Ernest Cadick faces trial for fraud, Redeemed Hippies’ Place, http://redeemedhippiesplace.wordpress.com/2011/06/20/phony-preacher-ernest-cadick-faces-trial-for-fraud/, 02/09/2013 at 6:58:54 ASD.

Another witness has described Bob Rodgers ministry of being very Word of Faith. They say he endorses some of the worst spiritual scam artists like Mike Murdock and Jesse Duplantis.

I use to attend Evangel World Prayer Center, where Bob Rodgers was pastor. He’s a big WOF guy. Brings in the Mike Murdocks, Jesse Duplantis’, etc on a regular basis.

Source: So Thankful, info on some pastors on Daystar (Bob Rodgers and Gary & Drenda Keesee and Robert Morris and…, Rapture Ready, http://rr-bb.com/showthread.php?155430-info-on-some-pastors-on-Daystar-(Bob-Rodgers-and-Gary-amp-Drenda-Keesee-and-Robert-Morris-and, Published February 19th, 2011, 03:55 AM. (Accessed 02/03/2014.)

Jesse Duplantis should sound familiar to our readers. Phil Pringle had this Word of Faith heretic influence his Bible College Students.

SPIRIT LIFE MAGAZINE REVIEW OF BOB RODGER’S ‘RECORD’

Steven Lambert from Spirit Life Magazine also had this to say about Bob Rodgers’ article,

[Editor's note: In an article posted on Charisma Magazine at 1:30 PM, 25 hours after its original posting reporting David Yonggi Cho's being found guilty of embezzlement and tax-evasion charges, Charisma Magazine then posted the following article by a pastor claiming to have been present at the trial and being a longtime close friend and adviser to Cho.

Bob Rodgers' article reports details of the sentencing as well as the facts of the case that conflict with Charisma's original article by Jennifer Leclaire, and places the blame for the embezzlement of church funds and tax-evasion scheme squarely on Cho's eldest son and some treacherous church elders who essentially duped the elder Cho into signing some papers without comprehending their contents or import that were the paperwork for a $12-Million fraudulent stock scheme using church monies. Spirit Life Magazine has been unable at the time of this posting to independently verify any of Bob Rodgers' version of the story, but will report them if and when we are able to do so. In the meantime, Rodgers' version of the facts in the case, in our view, even if true, do not change much the thrust of the cautionary tale represented in the matter and the matters we wrote about in our article.

Those issues remain unchanged. Moreover, Rodgers' article only brings up another whole set of issues relative to other character, heart, spiritual, fathering, and leadership questions and issues on the part of Pastor Cho. "To whom much is given, much is required," "Let not many of you become teachers (church leaders) for in such you incur a stricter judgment," and are two admonitions from Scripture that come to mind, along with another that says that an overseer "must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?) [1 Tim. 3:4-5].

One is also reminded of the fathering failure of Eli, the High Priest, and how his sons misused their priestly power to rape and mistreat women and to engage in a form of embezzlement and extortion. It seems evident that the “iniquity (perversion) of the father” produced a harvest of evil crop that manifested in his corrupt adult sons. God punished them all, including Eli himself, with untimely death for their wickedness.

When one has been vaunted and almost beatified as “the world’s greatest pastor,” based primarily on the fact that the church he leads has the most members of any church in the world, unfortunately, such claims to “greatness” and de facto apotheosis only subject (unfairly and unreasonably) the principal to greater scrutiny, higher standards of conduct and spirituality, and expectations from others. Regardless, having posted our original article concerning the matter, we felt obliged in all fairness to post Bob Rodgers’ article published by Charisma Magazine as well.

However, over the years of scandal after scandal emerging out of the Pentecostal/Charismatic realm, most inveterate observers can almost predict in advance that whenever an exalted leader is involved in some scandal that becomes news, some close friend or sycophant of the principal will write some article refuting all the allegations and insist it was all a misunderstanding or someone’s vendetta or a kangaroo trial and miscarriage of justice, and their good-ole boy friend is really the reincarnation of St. Francis of Assisi. We’re all pretty much used to that by now, and so Mr. Rodgers’ claims that it’s all just a big mistake and it’s really just another wonderful day in the neighborhood, doesn’t hold much water with us at this point.

Regardless of the details, where there’s smoke, there’s usually some sort of fire somewhere, which means there’s some sort of wrong doing here somewhere, wherever and whatever it might be. While it may often be true that, as the saying goes, “the devil’s in the details,” sometimes in matters of the Kingdom God’s adjudication and judgment is in a matter in which the details are muddled, unclear, or not as reported. We think this is one of those cases.]

Source: By Steven Lambert, David Yonngi Cho Case, Post Facto, Spirit Life Magazine, http://www.spiritlifemag.com/?p=5582#sthash.nuJdwYLd.dpuf, Posted 25/02/2014. (Accessed 26/02/2014.)

Bob Rodgers wrote the following on Charisma Magazine,

Setting the Record Straight on David Yonggi Cho

David Yonggi Cho, pastor of Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, South Korea, has been a personal friend of our family for more than 40 years. He has stayed in our home, and my father and I have served on his church growth board for a combined 38 years. Presently, I serve as president of Church Growth International of the Americas.

Because of the slant of some of the media reports, it is important certain details of the situation be made known. Not only was I present in Seoul during much of the trial, but there was also information disclosed during closed-door meetings which has not yet been made public. I want to share some of this as follows.

First, the Seoul Central District Court sentenced Cho, 78, to a three-year prison term suspended for five years. He had been indicted for allegedly causing financial losses worth more than $12 million. He was also fined $5 million. He will not have to serve prison time, but he is on probation.

Second, Cho’s son, Cho Hee-Jun, 49, was indicted for the same charges. Because he was considered a flight risk, he was immediately taken into custody following a court order after being sentenced to three years in prison.

Cho has three sons. The second and third sons are very productive and work in church-related ministries. His eldest son has been the prodigal. He has been married four times and has been involved in sexual scandals with national personalities. In addition, he has served prison time for investment scams and embezzlement. His scandalized life has been an embarrassment to his family and the church.

Twelve years ago, this son purposely defrauded the church in excess of $12 million in a stock-related scheme. Cho testified that he trusted his elders and son and didn’t check and read the thousands of pages of paperwork, which was prepared for him to sign. Because Cho relied upon the direction of his choice elders and son, he signed the papers. He never received any monies from the transaction.

Third, the presiding judge said, “The court considered that even though Pastor Cho had the final say in the church, he never took the lead in any of the crimes, including tax evasion, committed on the suggestion of the accounting firm.”

The court also considered Cho’s life journey as a religious leader and his long-term contribution to social welfare as mitigating circumstances on his behalf. The court ruled that his son, Cho Hee-Jun, was the instigator of the crime related to the purchase of the shares of 1-Service stock.

Even though Cho established the world’s largest church, with more than 1 million members, he lives a simple life in a 1,000-square-foot church apartment. Neither does he own a car. Cho has raised and given personally to the church more than $170 million.

Dr. Bob Rodgers Sr. is pastor of Evangel World Prayer Center in Louisville, Ky.

Source: By Bob Rodgers, Setting the Record Straight on David Yonggi Cho, Charisma Magazine, http://www.charismamag.com/life/culture/19861-setting-the-record-straight-on-david-yonggi-cho, 1:30PM EST 25/02/2014 BOB RODGERS(Accessed 26/02/2014.)