Tuesday, July 13, 2010

THE PAIN OF THE PROSPERITY GOSPEL


My good friend Bob Nance posted a video from John Piper on the danger of the prosperity Gospel (Thanks Bob). Take a look at it below before you read this note...and then come back and read the rest...I think I feel John Piper's pain...When Ana was born (she was born with Down' Syndrome) I had someone from within our church ask me if I had faith that Ana would be healed? This guy came from a prosperity background. My answer to him was that Ana did not need to be healed. Why should something that God did need to be fixed? She was knitted together in Simone's womb (Psalm 139:13-18) and He does not knit anything incorrectly. Shortly thereafter I was asked by another person in our church who is selling medicine that has "proven" breakthroughs in making people with Down's syndrome to even change their appearance away from the features of Down's Syndrome. And again the prosperity Gospel says that Ana is something less than perfect something less than human, something less. I was stupefied...I was completely speechless...I had no answer for this guy because I could not believe what he was saying to me. He was trying to sell me a medicine that I would ask my daughter to take to make her less Down's syndrome like? What is the problem here? What has evangelical Christianity become? Do we really buy this bill of goods that cancer, and Diabetes, and illness and Down's syndrome are a curse from God? Then I got the most amazing Preaching CD ever. This person gave my wife the CD thinking that it would help her. Have you ever had someone hand you a Preaching CD saying "I think this will help you". What a condescending thing to do to someone especially in our situation. Ana developed "Infantile Spasms" a rare form of epilepsy. Simone was sharing at a women's Bible Study that she is not asking God to heal Ana anymore (we stayed up countless nights begging God to stop her seizures) but that we are now praying for Him to give her Grace ("My Grace is sufficient for you for my power is made perfect in your weakness" -Paul the Apostle-). and someone in the Bible study gives her a CD that she thinks will help. The pastor that will remain nameless said...and I quote "God is good! Satan is bad! Health is good! Cancer is bad!" So what are we to surmise from that? Anyone who has any illness or who has ever had Cancer received it from Satan! or better yet is possessed by Satan! Please keep your CD and don't try to help with your wacked out theology that has no root in the goodness of God or his word! So I was confronted with my own pain and grief trying to mourn the loss of the child that I thought I was going to have, so that I could completely accept the child God had given me, and these prosperity people tried to rub in my nose again that she was something other, something less than what she was supposed to be. The fallacy of the prosperity Gospel is this that sickness and illness are abnormal, and that God does not want us to feel pain. The scripture is clear, in Romans 5:12 "Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned" So we get ill and die because sin has entered the world...It also says in Romans 5:18-19 "So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous." Notice that Christ's Righteous act doesn't secure our health it secures our righteousness. So keep your prosperity pain, and CD's, and medicine to yourself. I have "Embraced my weakness" for as the Apostle Paul said in 2 Cor. 12:8-10 "So now I am glad to boast about my weakness, so that the power of Christ may work through me. Since I know it is all for Christ's good, I am quite content with my weaknesses and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong." I have never learned anything of value toward the deepening my faith during the "good times" only in the calamities and hard times have I ever learned anything about trusting my Savior. So I will embrace the pain and the weakness so that I can draw close to the cross of my savior! I hope this encourages you to draw close to the suffering of the cross also. Just another voice crying out in the wilderness. Please turn away from the lie of prosperity and turn to Christ and embrace weakness! Until later...-Richard-

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

VERY Well written Richard! :)
My Son Victor 14 y/o now; was born with Genetic disorder they call it " Extended third gene" At the get go when he was born at first i thought it was autism, Then we thought it was epilepsy, it was not epilepsy. Then they told us it was ADHD, Not ADHD! FINALLY a GENETIC DISORDER! He is approximately 3 1/2 grade levels below the curve. He is a good kid! And I love him just as he is.

Sanctorum Communio said...

Thanks for sharing about your son. WOW It must have been a hard road. our daughter also had infantile spasms a rare form of epilepsy. I am sure you have had very hard moments, but the Joy outweighs the sorrow!

Giving Thanks Daily said...

I am so glad I saw your blog. This is wonderful Richard. Your post puts an entirely different way for me to look at "how we are born" or "what we get", you have opened my eyes to a different way to pray for illness and/or healing. "My grace is sufficient", the voice booming from above.

Thank you for being so honest and faithful.