Clint Brown Charges Big Time

I had posted the other week on the Clint Brown divorce proceedings and the disclosure of a lavish lifestyle. The post had taken place on my old blogging system and I could not carry the comments over to the new site. But I did receive some fascinating comments about this story. Here is the original post and here is some more information that I found at religionnewsblog:

From 2001 to 2004, Clint Brown set up credit accounts at Mayors Jewelers to buy four Rolex watches ranging from $23,000 to $40,900, according to loan documents filed with the state. In June 2001, the divorce file shows, Angela Brown rang up credit-card charges of $9,175 at the Escada boutique in Bal Harbour — and spent an additional $12,000 there the next month. In June 2003, Clint Brown charged $12,057 at St. John Boutique in Bal Harbour. On two Las Vegas trips, Clint Brown spent nearly $25,000 at shops such as the Fendi boutique, Versace Jeans Couture and Hyde Park jewelers.

In the divorce filing, Angela Brown says her husband purchased $70,000 worth of women’s clothing on one of the couple’s credit cards, but none of it went to her or her teenage daughter. She says in the divorce filing that FaithWorld paid for all those clothing purchases.

FaithWorld church attorney Mark Matthew O’Mara said he is reviewing all the bills submitted by the Browns to the church. He said an unknown number of the couple’s credit-card charges were approved by the church’s governing board, composed of the church’s staff management team — all of them paid employees of the congregation.

In Pentecostal circles, expensive gifts of clothing are common, said former FaithWorld member Wayne Pugh, a missionary based in Marietta, Ga.

“People that minister for us, we don’t just give them a check at the end of the night,” Pugh said. “We buy them a gift — a brand-new suit, ties, a box of chocolates. That’s common knowledge.”

So when prominent female ministers come through Orlando, Pugh said, it would be common for ministers such as Brown to lavish them with a $2,000 or $3,000 suit.

You know, I do pretty well for a living and I would never, ever spend $2,000 or $3,000 USD on a suit much less $40,000 on a watch. What causes such a massive disconnect in ministry work? This is certainly way beyond a comfortable lifestyle and creates a distortion on the role and objectives of people who enter ministry to serve the needs of others.

Truly bizarre.

15 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    It’s all relative. Some people would never spend $500 for a suit, when they could buy one for $189. Some would never spend $150 for a watch when they could buy one for $29.

    Clint Brown does serve the needs of others. I have personally known him for 13 years. He is one of the most generous people I have ever met. He has given away over 20 Rolexes. He has given away cars. His music is some of the most popular church music in the country. People all over the world truly love his ministry. Trust me, there are many needs of others that are being served by Clint.

    Personally, I don’t want a $25k watch because I would rather spend $25k on something else, like a Harley or an airplane or a remodeled entertainment room. But if he wants to buy a Rolex, it’s his money and his choice.

    It’s interesting that no one will flame Puff Daddy for throwing topless parties on his yacht, or going into clubs and buying drinks for the ENTIRE club at $1,000 per bottle (can’t remember the brand name), or spending $250,000 on a pendant for his neck chain, etc, etc, etc. But they will eat a minister alive because he has a similar, yet not NEAR as extravagant, lifestyle…even though the vast majority of his success has stemmed from his music career, not his church.

  2. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    I wonder if leaders in Christian ministry need to go the extra mile to avoid the perception of excessive and lavish spending.

    From Matthew Chapter 6:

    19Lay not up for yourselves treasures on the earth, where rust and the moth consume, where thieves break through and steal. 20But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither rust nor moth consumes, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. 21For where your treasure shall be, there will also your heart be.

    I expect little from Puff Daddy. Perhaps that is why he does not get flamed for lavish spending. The standard for Christian leadership is much higher. From 1 Timothy 3:

    1Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task. 2Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, selfcontrolled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. 5(If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. 7He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.

    Having said all that, if Clint is still giving away Rolex watches, please let me know.

    Thank you for posting.

  3. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    My name is Stephan. Clint and Angie have treated me like a son ever since we met in 97. It is unfortunate that he and Angie have parted ways, but that is niether here nor there. I know my “dad” to be a giver, not a taker. This is a man that will give you the shirt off his back. He has done more to help others than the person who did this write up. Angie is a wonderful woman, she has shown character far beyond what the average person would show. As far a giving away watches or expensive gifts, Richard let’s be real. You know nothing first hand of what this man has or has not done. And in conclusion, unltimately our desire is to save souls. So to anyone reading this I ask you, do you know Jesus as your personnal Savior? If not I would encourage you to get to know Him. God Bless. Richard I would love to talk to you. Oh did you get paid to write this article, or did YIU write it “for the people”.

  4. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    Hello Stephan.

    I am pleased that Clint has treated you well.

    You ask me to be real as far as Clint giving away watches. You are confused. I never made such a claim. This “insight” about Clint giving away watches was posted by someone else who, like you, claims to be close to Clint. I found it absurd that anyone, and in particular, pastors, would be giving away Rolex watches. I dismissed it out of hand as hearsay and foolishness.

    His or her post was marked Anonymous and it is the first comment on this thread. My response is the second comment which has my name against it. I believe the quoted scripture in that comment is relevant to Clint’s situation and I have nothing further to add.

    In terms of getting paid to write this article: it’s a blog, Stephan. I make no money from it.

    Thank you for posting.

  5. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    Indeed. Who are we to judge? And, to whom is anyone held to account on this world? The latter point is what we are discussing. Christian leaders who behave this way are held to account. They will be judged by God for their actions. And, remember, judgement has consequences.

    My opinions on this item are not judgements.

    You might want to crack open a bible and take a look in there for the principles on leadership and accountability. You will find many references to accountability. I’ll throw a couple here as an attempt to provoke your thinking.

    First, what is the standard for Christian leadership? I’ve already quoted 1 Timothy 3. Here is another segment from Titus:

    Titus 1:5-9

    5The reason I left you in Crete was that you might straighten out what was left unfinished and appoint[a] elders in every town, as I directed you. 6An elder must be blameless, the husband of but one wife, a man whose children believe and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient. 7Since an overseer[b] is entrusted with God’s work, he must be blameless”“not overbearing, not quicktempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. 8Rather he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is selfcontrolled, upright, holy and disciplined. 9He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.

    In scripture, examples for accountability are seen on every level of leadership. Moses was held accountable; godly kings were subject to accountability; elders in the church are held accountable to the pastor and each other; pastors are accountable to the elders and even the apostles were held accountable by elders and each other. No one was exempt from accountability.

    In error, some think that because the pastor is the head of the local body that he is accountable to God alone, but scripture teaches a different doctrine. If the apostles whom God used to write scripture were held accountable, and the great biblical leaders who led God”™s people had accountability, why would we think that a pastor would not be? The first symptom of a spiritual struggle in a leader is the desire to break off accountability. Ungodly leaders in the Old Testament rejected accountability and even godly leaders like King David rejected accountability before falling into sin.

    Galatians 2:14-18
    Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
    Exodus 18:12-24
    2 Samuel 19:2-8
    Acts 17:10
    Acts 15:6
    1 Kings 22
    2 Samuel 24:1-13

  6. Jen
    Jen says:

    Thank you for quoting scripture to back up your point. God’s Word is the only standard to live by and not by others.

    It saddens me that people do not live according to GOD’s principles. That even when messages are preach from the pulpit we are to study for ourselves.

    God has listed certain criteria for a man to head a church and if he doesn’t fit the bill. He isn’t fit to run a ministry.

    Take it up with God….the Bible plainly states it.

  7. Stephen
    Stephen says:

    I’ve admired Clint for a long time now……His anointing to play and write music surpasses many of our time and I’m truly distraught to hear of his recent divorce.
    As always, I just pray that the separation was for the right reasons…..(And we all know that there’s only ONE REAL reason, Biblically.)
    As for the lavish lifestyle, I myself like nice things……BUT there’s is a time where that can go too far. Gucci watches don’t even cost $5,000 a piece.
    I don’t feel like Christians should go around looking poor and needy all the time because you can’t convince others that God wants you to prosper if you look like a defeated person.
    But a wise man once said…”Just because you CAN have it all, doesn’t mean you SHOULD have it all…..”
    As people who shouldn’t be worried about houses, clothes and food, for that matter, how do we justify million dollar houses?????
    I don’t know…….my spirit just doesn’t sit right with it….In other words, I don’t feel like Jesus would do that if he was still on the earth…….Even though he has ALL POWER to do so……

  8. Steve C
    Steve C says:

    The problem I do have with the critic’s of ministry is. They are always quick to find scriptures in the bible that deals with the money,houses and land, but when it comes to them finding scritpure to stop their sinful lifestlyes and give their heart to Jesus, they are mute.

    Having money is not a sin, the love of money is the “root” or the begin stages in which evil begins to manifest in a person’s life.

    You could be making $5.00/ hr and still have a love for money.
    Not because a man of God has expensive taste, or lavish lifestyle that means he loves money. I believe God’s people need to live better than the world, because all of the blessings was ordained for his people, but unfortunatley we have been blinded to what is really ours.

    When the bible says that the man of God must not be given to filty lurce, we have to understand that receving offerings in support of ministry is not filty, creating wealth through entrepreneurial means is not filty, obtain the money through carnal means. e.g prostuition, gambling, deception, usury etc is filty. There are many scriptures in the bible that supports God’s servant having money. It is a tool in which we can effectively enjoy life and more so be a blessing to other by introducing them to Jesus.

    Another way you can tell if a person loves money, is by looking at the way they treat others. If they are selfish and self-centered, it is a clue that they have not master covetousness. The bible says Luke 4:4 that man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, and money is apart of that every word is “Money answereth all things”Ecclesiastes 10:19. Anyway, let’s contiue to pray for Clint and Angie. Love

  9. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    Hi Steve,

    Thank you for posting.

    Jesus did not accumulate wealth or worldly possessions. Some Christian leaders would do well to follow His example and tame down their excessive consumption.

  10. Steve C
    Steve C says:

    You are wrong Sir. The Magi’s brought him Frankincense, Myrrh and Gold when he was a child. He was riches kid in Nazareth. He received expensive Gold from Sheba. He wore costly apparels (Linen’s).

    Why do you think they cast lots for his clothing at his grave. I will buy any broke man clothing, would you?

    What King do you know of, that is broke. Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He did not have to bust his chops to get anything. He could call ten thousand of angels, snap his finger and get all what he wanted. He is Son of God. If God owns the world why would his son be broke. hmmmm

    He did not have need for millions of dollars because his time on the earth was short. He said we shall do greater works that he did. And in order for us to do that we need the money. He did not have the kind of bills we have the today. I don’t mean to sound argumentative, but if you are stating a point you cannot twist the Scripture to suit your opinion.

    The bible is not contradicting, it does not say one thing and mean something else.

    2 Corinthians 8:9
    9For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.

    This is the bible.

  11. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    Hello Steve.

    Jesus did not accumulate wealth or worldly possessions. We are instructed to follow His example:

    Matthew Chapter 6:

    19Lay not up for yourselves treasures on the earth, where rust and the moth consume, where thieves break through and steal. 20But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither rust nor moth consumes, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. 21For where your treasure shall be, there will also your heart be.

    This is the bible. Read it carefully.

  12. Steve C
    Steve C says:

    Are you following the bible that you are quoting from? If you are that means you do not have a bank account, you should not have a job, you should be living in a shelter. You cannot preach to me one thing and do something else. (Ha!ha)

    Anyway you are not interpreting the scriptures, you are just quoting one portion. What about all the other scriptues that talks about wealth. Are you saying God is confused or made a mistake?

    Anyway, thank you for letting me post my comment. You seem to be a fun person to chat with. I do mean that repsectfully. God bless

    I would love to get a little more indepht on the subject, but I would rather not consume the space on the website. You’ve got my e-mail. We can chat if you wish. Until then

  13. richard cleaver
    richard cleaver says:

    Hello Steve,

    It isn’t right for us to be unproductive, lazy, sloppy, careless, unskilled or dishonest and still expect God or others to provide for us. We are to work to earn what we have. If we don’t work, we don’t deserve to eat. Our hunger then drives us to work (II TH 3:10, Pr 16:26). We are to work hard, in a dedicated fashion for our living. If we don’t work hard, we are stealing from our employer and don’t deserve much money (Pr 14:23, Pr 18:9, Pr 20:13, Pr 10:4). To serve in high position, we must improve our skills and do superior work (Pr 22:29). We are required to be honest in our professional dealings (Ex 18:21, Le 19:35, Pr 13:11). We need to balance work and rest (Dt 5:13-14, Mk 2:27). This is what God requires from us.

    We are not to love money or put it above God, self, or family (I Ti 6:10, Lk 12:15, Mt 19:23-30). It is obvious what would happen if we thought that highly of money. We would risk our health, our loved ones, even our relationship with God just to get more worldly possessions that we can’t take with us after this life. Sadly, many people live like this. And, regretfully, some Christian leaders model this behaviour by lavish and excessive spending on their own personal wants.

    We also can’t hate money. The Bible is full of examples of how wealth was used to fulfill God’s plan (Ex 3:22, II Co 8:19, Lk 10:33).

    A balanced attitude about money recognizes it’s just a tool.

    Any wealth we might have comes from God and we should honor Him with it (Pr 3:9, Dt 8:18, Mt 6:21, I Co 11:12). With a healthy attitude, we understand that our use of the money God gives us reflects His importance in our lives and must bring Him glory and honor.

    And a key part of that attitude is in giving. The scripture counsels us to give:

    As much as we can afford (II Co 8:12, Mk 12:41-44, I Ti 6:17-18).
    As much as is needed (Acts 4:34-35).
    Willingly (II Co 9:5).
    Cheerfully (II Co 9:7).
    Generously (Pr 11:25).
    Privately (Mt 6:1-4).
    First…before anything else in your budget (Pr 3:9).

  14. Steve C
    Steve C says:

    You have just blessed my heart with your comments. We are now on the right page. I totaly agree with what you have said. I know God is not against us enjoying the fruit of our labor, even if we make millions of dollars in our professions. Again, depending on the type of work we do our income may vary. As a matter of fact, you may be making let’s say 50k a year, but in the Islands of Guyana, if you were to convert the money in their currency you will be a millionaire, on top of that if you were to spend just $200.00 USD on a suit, in their minds you might be crazy, because it’s like spending almost two thousand dollars their money. That includes meals, cars, homes etc.

    Even if we were to give all of our monies to the poor, and wear thirft store clothing, it’s still not going to solve the poverty level in the world.
    Yes we should as much as we can, tithes, offerings, alms etc.. The more we do it the more God rewards us and blesses us.

    So it all boils down to the heart of man, we can have abundance, but we must not put our trust in the abundance of our wealth, but in the God who supplies our every need. Blessings to you and I pray you contuie to prosper be in health even as your soul prospers.

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