Sunday, June 26, 2011

Honor among thieves (and pastors)

When your church is based on the prosperity doctrine, is it a surprise that acquiring the   trappings of wealth drives your every action? It is accurate to call men who preach the prosperity doctrine, thieves in the pulpit. There are ample cased of excess. Just look at the lifestyle of Creflo Dollar or Eddie Long. The case of pastor Michael A. Wilkerson Sr is special. He’s facing charges that he deliberately wrote a bad check. What sets pastor Wilkerson apart from the normal fraudster is the value of the check and the product that he attempted to steal. Wilkerson wrote a check for $111,000 for a Mercedes Benz. The account he wrote the check on had been closed before he even walked in the door.

Wilkerson, according to a criminal complaint filed by Whitemarsh police, purchased a 2009 Mercedes Benz sedan from Ft. Washington Mercedes Benz on Sept. 18, 2009, for which he wrote a check for $111,000. Wilkerson then drove off with the car.

A day later, Wilkerson called the dealership “stating that the check he wrote was going to be bad because his wife had gotten mad at him for the purchase and had taken over half of it out,” according to the arrest affidavit filed by Whitemarsh Police Sgt. James J. Cotter.

Wilkerson allegedly told a salesperson that he would return Sept. 21 with a cashier’s check for the amount to complete the sale; however, Wilkerson did not return as promised, police alleged. For the next week, dealership officials tried to contact Wilkerson regarding the purchase but were unsuccessful, court papers indicate.

Source: Former Pottstown pastor to be tried for issuing bad check

Why would a humble pastor even want a high-end luxury car? Jesus was not preoccupied with wealth. How does one reconcile stealing a Mercedes with the message of Christ. It makes no sense. Yet people follow men like Wilkerson without ever asking the question. Even when their pastor attempts to build a mega mansion through fraud.

Michael A. Wilkerson Sr., 45, who previously served prison time for a fraudulent financial scheme during the construction of his planned $1.7 million luxury home in Berks County, is tentatively scheduled to stand trial on the felony bad check charge in Montgomery County Court sometime between July 18 and Aug. 22, according to a judge’s order.

What did he want? One last moment of luxury before going to prison. Of course, he calls it being persecuted for being a true Christian.