Trinity Broadcasting Network said it will no longer air shows from controversial televangelist Kenneth Copeland starting in October as part of a series of upcoming programming changes at the international Christian television network.
Kenneth Copeland Ministries and TBN have had a business relationship for some 40 years, with the network airing Copeland’s “Believer’s Voice of Victory.”
In a statement emailed to The Christian Post on Tuesday, TBN Marketing Director Nate Daniels said the removal of Copeland’s programs, which will go into effect on Oct. 2, was part of several alterations.
“In pursuit of a new vision under Matt and Laurie Crouch’s leadership, TBN has been making changes to programming over the last several years,” Daniels said.
“As a part of this transition we chose to move away from telethons, upgraded to HD, expanded our streaming platforms, forged partnerships with family brands like K-LOVE, Museum of the Bible and others, and have replaced some programs with new original content from voices like Christine Caine, Mike Huckabee, Mike Rowe and more.”
Daniels also explained that it was “a very difficult decision” to drop Copeland and that programming by Steven Furtick of Elevation Church will replace “Believer’s Voice of Victory.”
“Kenneth Copeland Ministries has found success well beyond our broadcast borders and has developed numerous ways for viewers to experience his broadcast ministry, including through his very own network,” Daniels continued.
Copeland also confirmed the removal of his program on TBN in a statement posted on Kenneth Copeland Ministries’ website earlier this month.
“Matt let me know they believe The LORD is taking TBN in a new direction, and our daily program, Believer’s Voice of Victory (BVOV), isn’t really a fit for their future programming,” Copeland wrote.
“Even though change is happening all around us, some things remain the same. The BVOV broadcasts will continue to bring you The WORD of God to build your faith, so you can live in the abundance of love, health, prosperity and fellowship Jesus has provided.”
Copeland included a link listing other ways viewers can watch his programming and expressed his gratitude to TBN for having aired his ministry.
“How grateful we are for TBN founders, Dr. Paul and Jan Crouch, as well as for Matt and Laurie Crouch, who took the helm after Paul and Jan went to be with The LORD,” he continued.
“Again, we bless TBN and all they set their hands to do for the Kingdom, and we remain their faithful family in the faith of The LORD Jesus!”
Copeland, who has a reported net worth of around $300 million and is the owner of two private jets and two twin-engine planes, is a proponent of what is often pejoratively described as the prosperity gospel.
In a controversial interview with Lisa Guerrero of “Inside Edition” last year, Copeland defended his belief that pastors like himself can live in luxury.
“It’s a misunderstanding of the Bible. If you go into the old covenant, do you think that the Jewish people believe that you should be broke? They believe in wealth,” said Copeland at the time.
“The blessing of Abraham. Abraham was extremely wealthy and he had a covenant with God. It’s not the Jewish blessing, it’s the Abrahamic blessing. I get excited talking about it ‘cause I love it and I started out deep in debt with nothing.”
Last September, televangelist Benny Hinn, a purported faith healer and longtime proponent of the prosperity gospel, renounced the theology, declaring that the “Holy Ghost is just fed up with it.”
“I’m sorry to say that prosperity has gone a little crazy and I’m correcting my own theology and you need to all know it. Because when I read the Bible now, I don’t see the Bible in the same eyes I saw 20 years ago,” said Hinn last year in a Facebook Live broadcast.
“I think it hurts the Gospel, so I’m making this statement for the first time in my life and frankly, I don’t care what people think about me anymore.”