Is God’s removing His covering from many Charismatic leaders?

Marko Joensuu         No comments
As someone who has worked in a large Charismatic church now for nearly 15 years I have heard about and seen my fair bit of scandals. And, in themselves, scandals are nothing new in our movement. But in the last few months I have been left with a sense that perhaps something more profound than the individual failure of Charismatic leaders is taking place. 

In fact, what I believe is taking place is another transition from “the rule of Saul” to the “rule of David” when it comes to the Charismatic movement. And as part of that transition God is removing His covering and protection from many Charismatic leaders.

In my book Five Movements: Winning the Battle for Your Prophetic Gift I tell how in the early years of the 21st century I received a prophecy about how there would be many falls from leadership in the Charismatic Church because of sexual sin and financial irregularities, and that many of these fallen leaders would be our friends in ministry. I promptly shared this word with my church leadership. 
You might say that you don’t need to be a prophet to discern that and you’d be right. But the point of the prophecy was that this would be God’s work and not the devil’s. 

In the last thirteen years or so I have witnessed many of these falls personally. Until recently I didn’t think much of it.

I put it down to the increasing demands for transparency in the world governed by social media and immediacy of information.

We have also seen an increasing number of public scandals in the area of politics—when President John F. Kennedy managed to get away with multiple mistresses without anyone else but his inner circle knowing about them, President Bill Clinton couldn’t, and today social media gives politicians plenty of opportunities to self-destruct.

And such a high number of entertainers have gone to prison for sexual predatory behaviour committed in the 70s, 80s and 90s that it is clear that a fundamental shift has taken place with the tolerance levels in society when it comes to certain types of bad behaviour.

I believe that God is using this fundamental shift in society toward demand for more transparency and hatred of hypocrisy for His Kingdom purposes. Whereas in the past many leaders used to get away with a murder—sometimes literally—they can’t do it anymore.

What is happening is that God is reading the Book of Malachi and applying it to the Charismatic Church. 

Quite a few Christians perceive the Book of Malachi as the book that commands us to tithe. 

That’s why they never read it, as they expect it to contain more bad news for them. But that’s based on many preachers abusing a single verse about bringing the full tithes to the storehouse and taking it completely out of context. For Malachi didn’t write to get the people’s tithes. Instead, he wrote to the priests.

He wrote,

“‘Listen: I will send my messenger before me to prepare the way. And then the One you are looking for will come suddenly to his Temple—the Messenger of God’s promises, to bring you great joy. Yes, he is surely coming,’ says the Lord Almighty. ‘But who can live when he appears? Who can endure his coming? For he is like a blazing fire refining precious metal, and he can bleach the dirtiest garments! Like a refiner of silver he will sit and closely watch as the dross is burned away. He will purify the Levites, the ministers of God, refining them like gold or silver, so that they will do their work for God with pure hearts.’” (Malachi 3:1-3)

The Book of Malachi is a book that every Christian minister should read,  not to their congregation but to themselves. It is about  Jesus purifying the priests. And if He is unable to purify the priests, He will purify the temple of those priests!

God covered Saul until David was ready

But have you ever wondered why King Saul stayed in power for such a long time after his rule had been rejected by God, and long after David had been anointed to kingship by the prophet Samuel? And then after many years, he and his sons were suddenly destroyed.

Why did God withhold His judgment for such a long time? Why didn’t God simply get rid of Saul and promote David straight away?

There are two main answers. 

First, God in His love for Saul, whom He had chosen first, still longed for him to come back to Him.

Second, David wasn’t ready for kingship yet.

It was God Himself who protected King Saul until King David was ready. 

By the time we get to 1 Samuel 28 the covering of God over King Saul has already lifted but Saul is only becoming aware of it. 

“The Philistines gathered their forces and advanced to camp at Shunem. Saul gathered all Israel, and they camped at Gilboa. When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was so afraid that his heart beat wildly. When Saul questioned the Lord, the Lord didn’t answer him—not by dreams, not by the Urim, and not by the prophets. So Saul said to his servants, ‘Find me a woman who communicates with ghosts! I’ll then go to her and ask by using her techniques.’” (1 Kings 28:4-7)

For years, King Saul had walked without God, and now when he wanted Him there, He was nowhere to be found. 

But King David was now ready.

Like Israel under King Saul, many churches and Christians today suffer under bad and unloving leaders. Like with David hiding from Saul amidst the Philistines, their dreams and visions have been hunted down by the generation of leaders who should have promoted and supported them. Not only do their dreams seem impossible but their fulfilment is thwarted by the Church itself.

You might find yourself in a situation like that. 

But ask yourself a simple question—what would happen if God would simply remove bad leaders? 

What would have happened to Israel had God simply removed Saul before David was ready to rule? That would have caused a lot more havoc and destruction than simply keeping King Saul in his place as a ruler.

When God has to choose between two evils, He often lets the lesser evil reign. They say better the devil you know than you don’t know.

God kept King Saul on the throne until David was ready. And then the covering was lifted.

More scandals are coming

Luke 12:1-3 says, “Meanwhile the crowds grew until thousands upon thousands were milling about and crushing each other. He turned now to his disciples and warned them, ‘More than anything else, beware of these Pharisees and the way they pretend to be good when they aren’t. But such hypocrisy cannot be hidden forever. It will become as evident as yeast in dough. Whatever they have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms shall be broadcast from the housetops for all to hear!’”
Often, it is God Himself who conceals the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, but He won’t do it forever. He waits for the Pharisees to repent and if they don’t He still often delays their exposure—sometimes because the next generation isn’t ready.

But it is important to understand that the uncovering of sins is God’s attempt to bring people back to Him. It is an expression of His love to a sinner—this time a hypocrite and Pharisee. Even in the act of uncovering God’s heart is for restoration and reconciliation.

Nevertheless, I believe that we will be heading towards an unprecedented season of scandals within the Charismatic Church—to the point that we will all become so weary of them that we can’t stand hearing about even one more!

Through the scandals God will be calling many people to repent, but also, He will demonstrate the failure of many hypocritical Charismatic paradigms. For the Charismatic Church is full of ministers who peddle the Word of God for personal profit and lie to people. They pretend that their paradigm is working when it’s not, as their great act of pretence seems beneficial to them. 

Right now, a large part of US prophetic movement within the Charismatic Church is under the influence of lying and deceiving spirits—and the failure of the Charismatic prophetic movement will be abundantly clear to all of us before this decade is over.

Big part of this is that people are losing respect of their leaders, and when they lose respect, they will talk about things that they have remained quiet about in the past.

We will be seeing such high failure levels in diverse ways in Christian leadership that many Christians will become so disillusioned that they will leave the Church altogether. We will see churches and whole movements decimated in a flash, as the false paradigms they stood for will be proven to be nothing else but hollow shells and ghosts of glories past. 

And all that will be necessary; all that will be God’s doing. God knows most Christians are like sheep, following even false leaders until they are clearly demonstrated to be wolves.

But at least ministry will cease to be mere stage performance art. The times of the great Christian illusionists pretending to have life on stage when inside they have died many years ago will be over. For a time.

And new Davids will arise. We will see a whole generation of leaders coming out of the desert where they have been in exile during the reign of Saul. We will see the return of both genuine fruit and gifts of the Spirit back into the body of Christ. We will see the power of holiness that won’t be forced but loved as it will emanate from the giver of life, the Holy Spirit.

We will see a new river of God moving on earth. And although I have one foot back in the old rivers, I pray to God that He would let me be part of that new river.

This river, this new movement of God’s grace and power won’t run forever, but for a time it will bring refreshment and new life to earth.

And if I am right about God reading the Book of Malachi, this can only mean that King David is nearly ready to rule. I believe that we will see a new generation of leaders rising that will have learned from the mistakes of this and past generations. They will have more longevity than King Saul, and hopefully they will have even more longevity than King David!

There will be a lot more scandals we will hear about before God has finished lifting His covering on the Charismatic Church. The uncovering is taking place gradually, giving as many leaders as possible an opportunity to repent. The sins have been there for years but now they are being uncovered. Like Saul, many Christian leaders have got used to getting away with a murder, only suddenly to realise that the rules of engagement have suddenly changed. The covering by God has not brought them to the place of humility and deep gratitude; instead it has led to the hardening of their hearts.

You can connect with Marko on Twitter @markojoensuu and on Facebook at or by visiting

Published by Marko Joensuu

Marko Joensuu has worked for over sixteen years in the publishing and media ministries of Kensington Temple. He is an author, publisher and screenwriter.
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