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Pastor Lukau & the dead man rising: Too many questions, not enough answers

A clip of the so-called miracle is posted on social media, sending users into a frenzy over the authenticity of this act.

The 'miracle' performed at Alleluia Ministries International. Picture: Alph Lukau.

JOHANNESBURG - It's a Sunday morning and a healing and deliverance miracle service is on at the Alleluia Ministries International church, north of Joburg, lead by Pastor Alph Lukau.

Wheelchair-bound congregants are rising up and walking, those who struggle to walk and use crutches toss them aside and start running. But something much bigger is about to hit.

While these miracles were still going on inside the church, a hearse pulls up outside, with weeping family members in tow.

Lukau is called outside to tend to the mourners, who've brought a deceased man in a coffin. He'd allegedly been dead since Friday.

Some minutes later, the coffin is opened, with thousands of eyes now watching, Lukau lays his hands on the dead man in a white suit named Elliot, prays and boom! - the man is brought back to life.

The congregants and Elliot's family lose it. A miracle has happened right before their eyes and in broad daylight.

A clip of the 'miracle' is posted on social media, sending users into a frenzy over the authenticity of this alleged act of God wrought through the hands of a 'man of God'.

This is the video of the full sermon. The dead man's raising comes in at -1:18:44

Questions from the public have varied: Is this real? Why did the man not look like someone who'd been dead two days? Where is his death certificate? Why was he not immediately tended to by a health care professional?

The funeral parlour which brought the coffin to the church, Kings and Queens Funerals, were duped into being part of the spectacle.

The questions outnumber the answers by far.

Of course, social media could not pass the opportunity to turn this into a challenge. Introducing the Dead Man Challenge.

NO STRANGER TO CONTROVERSY

Lukau may be unfamiliar to some, but he is no stranger to controversy.

In 2016, he made news headlines and was even the subject of an investigation by eNCA's Checkpoint after he held a gala dinner at the Gallagher Conference Centre where thousands of single and divorced women were invited to come and be prayed for so they could find their soulmates and get married.

This gala dinner did not come cheap though. The cheapest ticket was R450, while R5,000 got attendees a seat at the VIP section.

The following Sunday at his church, a mass wedding was held with women who'd attended the dinner getting married to their partners.

Lukau has also raised eyebrows for claiming to heal HIV/Aids, TB and other illnesses.

However, unlike his counterparts Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and Timothy Omotoso, Lukau has not faced any criminal charges nor been referred to the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of Cultural and Religious Rights (CRL).

He has, however, been embroiled in a legal battle with South African-based Nigerian journalist Solomon Ashoms after Lukau sued Ashoms for defamation of character after the journalist claimed he was a fake preacher on his Facebook account.

Lukau and his church are yet to publicly respond to claims that the miracle was staged.

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