A Closer look at "Prophet" T.B. Joshua

SBBC, South Africa/September 17, 2014

By Lehana Tsotetsi and Sechaba ka'Nkosi

Pastor Tenitone Bologun Joshua is simply known as T.B Joshua to hundreds of thousands of his followers all over the world. Born into an impoverished family in Ondo State, Nigeria, in 1963, Joshua attended an Anglican Primary School.  He later became leader of the Student Christian Fellowship, laying the foundation for his now almost fanatical global following.

The rich, privileged and down-trodden flock to his church in pursuit of spiritual and physical healing, as well as financial breakthrough. On a spiritual tour to South Korea two years ago, he told the congregants his calling is not motivated by money.

Pastor Joshua, who also owns a private jet, insists that his wealth does not define the church.

The reclusive faith-healer whose only messages are available from his church Synagogue Church of All Nations' Emmanuel TV postings on You-Tube, says he is only doing what God wants him to do - to heal, pray and lead the people on the correct spiritual path.

He is on Forbes Magazine list of the richest religious leaders in the world.  

In 2012, the magazine estimated his personal fortune to well over R165-million delivered mainly through the church's products such as holy water, holy oil and DVD's.

But Pastor Joshua, who also owns a private jet, insists that his wealth does not define the church.

“If you are focussed only on making money a large slice of life will pass you by - that is a very, very important part of live will pass you by. That is why you see people riches without joy, money without a centre of life, our goal must reflect our purpose.”  

Among prominent followers, former presidents of Malawi Bingu wa Mutharika and Joyce Banda. Joshua prophesied Mutharika's death and Banda's ascendency to the presidency.

South African followers include high profile politicians like Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Dipuo Peters and Julius Malema. Terminally ill springbok rugby players Ruben Kruger and Winn Basson also pinned their hopes on Joshua - both in vain.

Joshua is also held in esteem for his predictions. Last year, he forewarned that a large aircraft from an Asian country would encounter problems.

Later, flight MH370 from Malaysia disappeared - his predictions went viral.

He even has reports of waking people up from the dead.

Whether a miracle healer or false prophet; Joshua has thousands across the world eating out of the palm of his hand.

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