Today I’m contributing to Seth Haines’ current series “the creeping prosperity gospel.” Please read all the posts. It is so very important that we address this head-on. Nothing fills me with more rage than the prosperity gospel.
In a nutshell, “the prosperity gospel” is the idea perpetuated by the likes of TBN and Joel Osteen (but is by no means a new or recent idea) that following God guarantees you a problem-free life. If you believe it hard enough, claim it strongly enough, find the right formula, God will do whatever you want Him too. Sounds like a fairy tale, right? Except it has a dark underbelly. According to the prosperity gospel, if you experience problems, whether it’s poor health, injury, financial loss, broken relationships, whatever, it’s the direct result of weak faith or sin in your life. Our children’s medical problems, Elli’s seizures and developmental delays and brain injury? This teaching says all of that is our fault.
The prosperity gospel is FALSE. It is wicked. It destroys people.
See? This stuff gets me worked up.
My post for Seth addresses the question, “What does God NOT promise?”
“Jesus calms storms,” the man proclaimed from the center of the circle, campfire glowing orange behind him. He waved his Bible as he paced in front of the kids as they perched awkwardly on the concrete ring encircling the gathering place. “Jesus spoke and the storm stopped raging. Jesus spoke and the demons left the man in the cemetery. Jesus calms storms inside you too.”
Read the whole story at Seth Haines’ blog, and then let’s talk about this in the comments. What doesn’t God promise? What does this mean for us, especially in the midst of suffering?