Pastor Alph Lukau is being widely criticised after being filmed outside of his Johannesburg church in South Africa seemingly bringing a deceased man back to life in a so-called “miracle” resurrection.
In the video, the body of a man is seen laying in a coffin while surrounded by a weeping and praying funeral procession.
While speaking into a microphone, Pastor Lukau shouts: “Rise up!”
He begins to wave his hands down the body of the deceased man, before placing them on his waist.
The dead man’s mouth appears to open wide before his neck jolts forward and his rigid body moves to sit upright.
Only the whites of the man’s eyes can be seen as he appears to look around, his mouth remains gaping open.
The funeral party erupts into loud cheers, screams and prayers while waving their hands in the air.
But the seemingly “miracle resurrection” has been widely ridiculed and criticised and has even led to legal action being taken against Pastor Lukau.
Funeral companies that were reported to have been involved in the incident say they had been manipulated into being implicated and are in the process of recovering damages.
Kings and Queen Funeral Service – who provided the funeral car – posted a statement on Facebook a few days ago.
They stated that they would like to “distance themselves from the supposed resurrection of the deceased man”.
“As Kings and Queens Funeral Services, we would like to distance ourselves from the supposed resurrection of a deceased man by Hallelujah Ministries who allegedly was at our mortuary,” a statement read.
“We were approached by alleged family members of the deceased who informed us they had encountered a dispute with a different funeral service provider and would like to use our transport services which we offered them.
“We did not supply the coffin neither did we store the deceased at our mortuary and no paperwork was processed by Kings and Queens Funerals.
“As a Funeral Services Provider we do not offer services without documentation neither do we repatriate bodies without any paperwork.
“We are in the process of taking legal action for this malicious damage to our image.
“To all our beloved clients and prospective clients, thank you for the continued support during this confusing time.
“We continue to strive for excellence as your preferred funeral services provider that offers a service that gives you honour, dignity and comfort.”
Further funeral companies have come forward claiming they have been “tricked” in many ways.
Lawyer Advocate Prince Mafu, who is representing the three funeral companies told a news conference that police have been asked to investigate, as “The three funeral parlours wish to vehemently distance themselves from events that took place at Alleluia Ministries”.
The lawyer also added that “At no time, did any one of the three funeral parlours have a body of the “dead” man in their mortuaries.”
While the stunt has been widely condemned by religious groups, some have turned to social media to share the funny side to it.
The “resurrection challenge” has begun circulating online – with people pretend to bring others back to life.
Instagram page “Barstool Sports” shared the video of the so-called resurrection, receiving 1.5million views and thousands of comments within the first 12 hours.
One shocked viewer added: ”Wtf, this dude has just raised that guy from the dead.”
Another, the unconvinced individual stated: “That dude sure managed to hold his breath for a while. Impressive.”
Someone else questioned: “Why are you referring him to as deceased whereas that guy is alive?”