RELIGION

Ephren Taylor Preached The Prosperity Gospel While Reportedly Running A Megachurch Ponzi Scheme

DENVER, COLORADO--FEBRUARY 28, 2007-ABOVE: Ephren Taylor  addresses a lunchtime audience at St. Cajetan's Church on the Aurar
DENVER, COLORADO--FEBRUARY 28, 2007-ABOVE: Ephren Taylor addresses a lunchtime audience at St. Cajetan's Church on the Auraria campus. Ephren Taylor is the youngest African American man to be named CEO of a major corporation at the age of 23. He has continued to pave new paths in business. He will be the keynote speaker for the Entrepreneurship Week Expo in St. Cajetan's. PHOTO BY HELEN H. RICHARDSON (Photo By Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

From the fake revelations of revivalist preacher Peter Popoff, to the 80s excess and false lashes of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, to Greater Ministries International’s antigovernment pyramid scheme—the basic idea remains the same: Praise God, promise miracles, and when all eyes are turned up to Him, rob the whole flock blind.

Certainly, that was the MO of Ephren Taylor II, a twentysomething minister’s son and self-proclaimed “social capitalist” who spent most of the years between 2007 and 2010 visiting churches with his Wealth Tour Live seminars, hawking “socially conscious” investment opportunities that would make believers both godly and rich. Taylor was arrested this summer after nearly three years on the run from federal authorities, who claim he was running a multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme that targeted megachurches around the country.

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