By Mark W. Swarbrick
NEW! The author’s latest book, Swaggartism is now released. For information click HERE.
“These things you have done and I kept silence; You thought that I was just like you; I will reprove you and state the case in order before your eyes.” (Psalms 50:21)
It would appear that the Swaggarts have a warped view of God. Their actions and statements over the years reveal a God with a different character and diverse priorities from the God that is revealed in the Bible. Whether or not they really believe the things they say, or if they make them up as they go along, we do not know. Do they say these things to impress people of their intimate relationship with God? Do they really hear the voices they claim to hear? If we assume they are not making these things up, then we must conclude that the god of the Swaggarts is not the God of the Bible.
Perform or Else!
The God of the Bible honors marriage, telling husbands that even if their wives are not Christians, they are not to leave them. But the God of Frances Swaggart is performance oriented. Frances said that God would give Jimmy a different wife if she didn’t tolerate ten years on the road as an itinerant preacher. Frances says that God spoke to her and said, “I’ll remove you and replace you with someone else.”
Frances’ God is one who doesn’t really care about her. She is replaceable. But Jimmy is the apple of God’s eye and her only value is in serving Jimmy. Her God is one that doesn’t really honor marriage. Frances’ god is an uncaring taskmaster, one that will replace her with another woman if she doesn’t perform to standards. Why? Because it’s all about Jimmy.
The Swaggarts believe that preaching the Gospel involves hiring people to run around to the homes of elderly people persuading them that they should will all their money to Jimmy Swaggart Ministries, thereby defrauding the children of their rightful inheritance.
In 1981 the Swaggarts wormed their way into the home of millionaire widow Zoe Vance of La Jolla, California. Jimmy himself visited her and serenaded her with organ music. Repeated follow up visits to her ocean-front home occurred over the next two years by Swaggart operatives. A log was kept of each visit, with notations such as, “Good public relations call; she says she intends to give cash gift in the future…”
When she died relatives were shocked to find she left her entire ten million-dollar estate to Jimmy Swaggart Ministries. The will was contested by the family, claiming Swaggart had “exploited” her. The suit was settled in 1984 with the Swaggart ministry receiving 70% of the estate, or a total of $7 million dollars.
That is only one of many examples that could be given. The scripture warns of such people: “Having a form of godliness…They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over gullible women…” (2 Tim 3:5-6)
The God of the Bible wants the inheritance to go the children. “And if we are children, then we are heirs…” says Romans 8:17. This speaks of God’s children inheriting from God, but it presumes the principle of children inheriting from parents. Proverbs 3:22 says, “A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children” Proverbs 19:4 says, “House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers…”
The God of Holy Scripture wants your heart. The god of the Swaggarts wants your money.
It’s All About Jimmy
When Jimmy confessed his sin with prostitutes to Marvin Gorman he said, “If those women go to hell, I don’t know what I’m going to do about that.” What a strange god this is! He will send the prostitutes to hell, but hypocritical lying adulterer and fornicator Jimmy Swaggart is free and clear! What outrageous audacity! The god of Jimmy Swaggart will not punish Jimmy because once again, it’s all about Jimmy
The God of the Bible says, “Fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” (Hebrews 13:4) and “Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)
Scripture says, “Long ago…God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son…” (Hebrews 1:1-2). God no longer speaks to us doctrinally through prophets as He did under the Old Covenant. That was done away with long ago. The days of the prophets are past, according to Jesus, who said, “the Prophets were until John…” (Luke 16:16). The time of the apostles is also past. There are no apostles today, but we are told “to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.” (Jude 1:3)
The doctrines of our faith have been delivered “once and for all.” They do not need to be delivered again and again. The biblical canon is closed.
But along comes Jimmy Swaggart claiming a new doctrinal revelation, supposedly greater than anything ever before revealed. If he could get away with it, he would write a new book of the Bible: The Gospel According to Jimmy. The god of Jimmy Swaggart will bring us new revelation through Jimmy but the God of the Bible tells us in his word that such a thing is not going to happen. Which of these gods shall we listen to?
 1 Corinthians 7:13
 Ann Rowe Seaman, Swaggart: The unauthorized biography of an American evangelist, (New York, Continuum, 1999)
I grew up in a Assembly of God home. My Dad in particular was a devout Jimmy Swaggart follower. We lived in the Dallas area in the 70’s and my Dad dragged me to EVERY Jimmy Swaggart concert/preaching event during his heyday. He owned EVERY record he ever made as well.
It isn’t surprising that my Dad and Mother were abusive in many ways and that they never owned any of the abuse they heaped upon me. I mention it because my Dad and Jimmy Swaggart were so very much alike in many ways.
I was diagnosed with JRA at the age of five yet my parents were taught in the A/G church at the time that ONLY God healed. My parents forced me to go to the front of these events by Swaggart and other “faith healers”, yet refused medical care. Consequently I just had my 76th surgery 3 months ago.
There’s so much more I could say about Jimmy Swaggart but I am glad FINALLY someone is disclosing the truth about him!
Hi Nancy, I am sorry for what you went though. You are one more example of how Swaggart’s unloving and arrogant influence has had a far-reaching effect. God bless and thanks for commenting.
Hi Nancy, my heart breaks for you. I’ve only had RA for 16 years, I’m 66, I can imagine what you have been going through in part due to Swaggart. May God bless you, give you healing and comfort. Consider reading the book by Dr. Henry McPherson Brown, The New Arthritis Breakthrough. He pretty much devoted his life to curing RA and discovered that a large percentage of cases are due to infection of synovial fluid by mycoplasmas and tetracycline antibiotics will treat it thereby reducing inflammation. I wish you the very best. May God also bless Pastor Mark.
Since having my 90 year old mother move in with me because of COVID, I’ve watch her listen to some of their television talk shows. They scare me. I’m not seeing a humble meek spirt. They have made Trump a demi God and are still telling their listener that democrats are going to hell, Biden is not a Christian and that election results will change. I’ve have to educate my 90 year old mother about a sect versus a cult mentality and she’s been in church her entire life.
An African American preacher called into the show and the expression from the ministers and the talking under their breaths did not see Godly and her simply ask a legitimate question. They had Roger Stone on their show and Christian dollars went to pay for this criminal to be on their show sowing falsehood.
This is freighting to me and now I my dear mother get’s it!
Thanks so your research. This was helpful!
Hi Leah, I’m glad the research on my site is helping you. My prayers are with you as you try to help your mother. Let me know how it goes. I suggest you might want to get my book, Swaggartism. You can read more about it here:
quem é voce para falar de jimmy swaggart ?
Hi Paulo, Translation of your question from Portuguese to English is: Who are you to talk about Jimmy Swaggart?
I will tell you who I am. I am a Christian, a member of the Church. The Bible says, “Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment.” (1 Co 14:29) The Bible teaches that each one of us is called to examine what anyone says and determine whether or not it agrees with the Bible. Isaiah 8:20 says, “If they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Acts 17:11 tells us that the Bereans were noble because they “examined the scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” They were called noble because they didn’t just blindly accept what Paul and Silas told them, they checked the word of God to see if it was true. If you will honestly examine what is said in these pages and examine the scriptures, you will see that many things that Jimmy Swaggart teaches are not biblical. I suggest you order my book and prayerfully read it. You can get it here: God bless,
In Southern Illinois, where I reside, SBN appears on two channels. I am quite intrigued every month when they have their “Share-a-thons”, that they cannot make their $4 million or $5 million goal on the nose. The programs they air seem convincing, but thank for you, Pastor Mark, for an extensive coverage on the Swaggarts. I wish more discernment sites would cover the Swaggarts a bit more, but God has placed you, and a few others, to fill that role.
Oh, on your assessment of Rick Warren, I have to politely say that he is a false teacher. There maybe a few points here and there in his books that are orthodox, although I never read The Purpose Driven Life and The Purpose Driven Church in any great detail, I read on other discernment sites such as Let Us Reason Ministries (http://www.letusreason.org/) ran by a minister named Mike Oppenheimer, that Warren is trying to make ecumenical progress with Catholics and Muslims, and so forth.
But, other than that, I am edified by this site, as mentioned before, especially regarding the Swaggarts.
Thank you, good day, and God bless!