South African Pastor Performs Boiling Water “Miracle” That’s More Like a Pathetic Magic Trick

We laugh (and cry) on this site when we hear about church pastors taking advantage of a congregation that’s supposed to know better. But when the bar for skepticism is so very low, pastors don’t have to try very hard to fool anyone.

Like the pastor from Zimbabwe who claimed to have the ability to fly… even though savvy viewers could easily figure out the trick.

The latest entry in the It’s-a-Miracle category is South African Pastor Thamsanqa Sambulo. His magic trick involves boiled water. Maybe.

WaterBoiling1

According to the Facebook page for Thy Word Kingdom Harvest Ministries:

The apostle [Sambulo] then told someone to go boil water in a kettle at the kitchen. One young man went there and did so…
He came back with boiling water.
The Son of God took the kettle and put it on himself (on his chest, he hugged it). The congregation was in shock, as they shouted: “NO!”
Some couldn’t even look.
.
He then asked; “who has faith here?”
One by one, people came and did what the apostle did, and were not hurt.
He re-boiled the water… as he did;
…one young woman came to him and said;
“Papa I have faith, pour it on my hand as hot as it is.”
The Son of God first poured on Himself, then poured unto this lady.
The rest of the congregation, one by one followed, as they also wanted to test their faith.

That sounds amazing… until you consider what the kettle looked like:

WaterBoiling2

That’s not exactly a replica of a metal tea kettle… There are so many ways this could have happened: Maybe the water wasn’t boiled directly in the kettle. Maybe the water wasn’t really boiled at all. We don’t know who this assistant was. We also don’t know why the pastor burned it on himself before pouring it on an audience member.

Needless to say, this is a pathetic magic trick. Nothing more. Certainly not a miracle.

But the people were duped anyway.

If Sambulo really wanted to show off, he could have boiled the water in the same room as the congregation. He could have had someone take the temperature first. Even magicians test the knife for the audience before doing a trick.

The church says video is coming soon. Don’t hold your breath.

(Images via Facebook. Thanks to Jaynee for the link. This post has been edited to remove the quotation marks around the word “kettle.” Except that one instance just a second ago.)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.


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