As painfully evidenced by Ruben Ecleo and the Philippine Benevolent Missionaries Association, we can see how popular a strategy it is for cultist leaders to claim to be Jesus reincarnated; not just in rural provinces of the Philippines, but elsewhere in the world as well.
Jesus had words for the generations after his ascension, a future world that could be easily deluded by false Messiahs:
“Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect — if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.”
Christ is Lord, God come in the flesh for the salvation of all who put their faith in him and him alone. That is a grisly, bloody, yet ultimately glorious mantle that no man can even pretend to take up for his own self-glorification. The Second Coming of Christ at the end of the ages will not be through a reincarnation or rebirth; he ascended bodily, and that is how he will return at the Judgement. Any who claim to be Jesus reborn, no matter their charisma, signs, and wonders, will be proven frauds: vultures gathering at the carcass of false, fleshly doctrine.
But those who through the sacrifice of Jesus have inherited the gift of salvation, who have been cloaked with the righteousness that is by faith, will be raised to a promised resurrection that no mere mortal could ever give — or take. So take careful heed, and make certain the Messiah that you follow is The True One.
(Update: Thank you to all the “Rubenian” cultists who left their angry, rambling, heretical responses. These comments will go a long way around the web to prove the true nature of the PBMA cult to the world.)