Some Christians look at you sideways if you dare say that there are huckster evangelists out there working religion for a buck. Or, they admit there’s probably a bad apple or two but no one dares think it could be their favorite evangelist.

The truth is there are very clever men out there whose only intention is to make money. One such man was Marjoe Gortner. In the 1950’s he was known as the youngest ordained minister in the world (officially ordained at just 4 years old). As he grew to manhood, he traveled doing tent revivals, preaching, prophecying and working miracles… but the amazing truth was – Marjoe was a fraud! In fact, he claimed to be an atheist!

His general view of “the ministry” was that it was no different than the entertainment business. In 1972 Marjoe decided to get out of the “ministry” but took one last ride on the tent revival trail… this time with a band of camera men and he exposed his own charade! His self-created documentary (titled “Marjoe”) was made into a feature film and shown all over.

Below is a 9 minute clip of him in action, both as a child and as an adult (the file is in Windows Media format). You’ll notice how similar are his antics to any number of preachers who are regularly seen on TV today and in churches everywhere. It’ll put chills down your spine how convincing he is as well. Next time you think it’s unlikely that a well-known preacher could possibly be doing what he does for no other motive than money, remember Marjoe! Christians, stay alert, for many false anointed ones have gone out into the world!

P.S. Today Marjoe is an actor and also a public speaker for social causes he cares about. Foremost among those causes is informing the public about some of the rhetorical techniques that are being used to manipulate their thoughts and emotions. He is still not a Christian, but he visits about 20 colleges a year teaching them how “faith-healers” do their “tricks”. People actually still “fall down under the power” in his lectures as he demonstrates how the masters of religion work their “magic.” While he says he cannot account for every experience that may transpire in a religious meeting, he believes most of the evangelists working up the crowds today are simply using proven and practiced psychosomatic techniques of manipulation (just like he did) that really involve no supernatural power at all and they are simply using these “skills” to operate their business.


  1. WOW, I didn’t watch this, I read it though.

    I have a story to share about my healing. I was at a Vineyard Seminar in the 80s. They were calling out ‘words of knowledge’ I wasn’t impressed by the words for back pain because I figured many people had back pain, but I had attended the healing conference to investigate this stuff. I had a injured back caused by getting pushed flat on my back that left me in constant pain for years so I went up on the stage to ‘play along’…regardless of my doubt.

    The teacher said to get into an attitude of healing so I did, I prayed and opened my fists. Suddenly, it felt as if there were two hands inside my body moving my spine around…my pain left!

    Then the teacher said, Now, let me have two volunteers to pray for each of these people up here.

    Well, I didn’t need anyone to lay hands on me or pray because I was already healed.

    There are miracles healings. Just because there are some wolves in sheep’s clothing out there doesn’t mean there aren’t true ministers of healing around.

    Consider there are just as many errors in the conservative churches: Bad Sunday school teachers that sour a child’s experience with Jesus for the rest of their lives, unloving finger pointers not letting a man take offering because he smokes, telling a person that heard from God that it was the devil.

    There are people who get deceived, but if we all really, really spent time in prayer and worship, not just on Sunday-some of these things would be revealed and eliminated. But then there will always be Tares in the Wheat Field.

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