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Joined: 2008/4/1
Posts: 531
America's Heartand

 The "Prosperity" Gospel - What Say You?

There are lots and lots of posts on various threads condemning the "Prosperity Gospel". I feel we at times may not be comparing apples to apples in those in those interactions.

No one here has deeper respect for David Wilkerson's ministry than I do. I esteemed his preaching highly while he was still on earth with us. However, on one, and only one, occasion he said (actually wrote) something that made me doubtful of his conclusion. It was because of how he arrived at it actually.

He was attacking the "prosperity Gospel", as is often done on threads here and various places. He said that when he discussed it with others they overwhelmed him with , "avalanches of scripture". However, "in his heart" , he sensed, knew from the Lord, etc. that "it was wrong", etc. and words to that effect.

Immediately I cringed wondering how in the world a believer would decide that their feelings on it were a better guide than "avalanches of scripture"?However, I think David Wilkerson expressed a sentiment that I also see expressed by many of Christ's followers. They "feel, sense" etc. that this "prosperity Gospel" is wrong but may be pretty short on scriptures to back that position.

That is why I wonder if we are talking about the same thing when we use the term, "Prosperity Gospel". As a result I have a couple of very serious questions to help me , and others, be able to define the same words in the same way.

1. How do you define "prosperity"?
2. How do YOU define "The Prosperity Gospel"?
3. Does God want those who are born again to "prosper"? If so in what ways- financially, physically, spiritually, relationally, emotionally, culturally, governmentally, socially etc., or any other area you might think of?
4. Is God opposed to his followers "prospering"?

Thanks in advance for the feedback. I think it will prove interesting to see how we may, or may not, be defining the same terms in different ways.


 2012/6/29 15:05Profile

Joined: 2012/5/27
Posts: 274

 Re: The "Prosperity" Gospel - What Say You?

Hi! Solomon101

I myself was introduced to the Gospel in 1969 by David Wilkerson and his 'Teen Challenge' ministry.

Anyways, I would like to give you my opinion to your final two questions; because I don't have an opinion on the the first two:
3. Does God want those who are born again to "prosper"? If so in what ways- financially, physically, spiritually, relationally, emotionally, culturally, governmentally, socially etc., or any other area you might think of?
4. Is God opposed to his followers "prospering"?

Ummm, what does it mean when the Bible says, "new man" "newness of life" "new creature" ect...?

It's speaking about an entirely new species of life!
Following Jesus is not something minimal like merely getting a second chance at life; or having your life turned around.

No, it's an ENTIRELY NEW LIFE ... not a new way of life ... but a new SUBSTANCE and FORM of life.

That's the essential difference between a saved person and a reformed alcoholic ... an alcoholic has is behavior turned around ... reformed. But the followers of Jesus have their very ORIGIN of LIFE changed ... transformed.

The faithful believers have experienced two births: 1 physical 2. spiritual. This is why the Bible states that we have two bodies, natural (visible) and spiritual (invisible), (1Cor 15:46). This is also why we have a renewed mind, spiritual eyes and ears; this is to permit us to live and have our being (citizenship) in the kingdom of God.

The unsaved have barely comprehended that they are real live UFoL's living among them ... UNSEEN FORCES of LIFE (LIGHT) walking in their midst.

I said all the above because it is our NEW SPIRITUAL EXISTENCE which our Lord desires to be prosperous; not our natural existence, but our spiritual existence. After all, Jesus pointedly said that all our natural needs would be met ; that what was important was that we prospered spiritually.

And now we also have the answer why a lot of our preaching the Gospel seems to fall on deaf ears. We are basically offering our spiritually damaged and injured neighbors something which the 'AA' and a host of other self-help ministries are offering. Regardless of how they dress it up and spin their limited Gospel with a heap of emotions and piety.

Now-a-days the inner damage and injuries are so severe in people that this limited Gospel is largely ineffectual. Jesus didn't say "You must start your life afresh all over again"; rather, He said, "You must be born again!"
You must become a new creature, a new species of being and having a citizenship in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.


We gotta' get our act together as Christians.
We've been mostly talking about a Gospel under any variety of hype and false promises and fraudulent claims. But that's because many of our teachers and preachers only know the gospel ABOUT Jesus; and there's very limited product lines to sell under that banner. So, they invent and imagine and color the vagueness of their message; in so doing, hiding their own emptiness. The prosperity gospel might tickle the ear but possesses no power to save to the uttermost.

But there is also the gospel OF Jesus! It is the Gospel that Jesus taught. The Gospel of the Kingdom. And this is what we should be preaching and teaching in these days. It's the only gospel which can offer healing and renewal and restoration to the damaged and injured of the world.

The Gospel of Jesus is a message of metamorphosis ... from a caterpillar to a butterfly. From natural man to a spiritual man. The caterpillar is TRANSFORMED. It becomes truly 'born again' as a "new creature" and now lives as a new species. Any gospel that cannot offer such a dramatic newness of life is not worthy to be named a gospel.

 2012/6/29 16:03Profile

Joined: 2005/6/18
Posts: 1481


hi, the problem is balance... there are truths in the prosperity gospel.and it works for the preacher to the extreem.Jesus came that we might have life and that abundantly.haveing a roof over your head and food and cloths is prospering.the gospel brings prosperity .america is an example compared to countries with no bible that are poor.always keep that which is good and throw away the bad.jimp

 2012/6/29 17:28Profile

Joined: 2002/12/11
Posts: 37402
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11


The modern Gospel that is called the "prosperity gospel" in North America today is a false gospel. This is what David Wilkerson believed.

I strongly encourage everyone to listen to this sermon by David Wilkerson:

Another Gospel by David Wilkerson

David Wilkerson gives a strong message with "prophetic urgency." He clearly shows that the "prosperity gospel" teaching that gain is godliness is unscriptural and a lie from hell. Surely this is a word from God to a generation of Christians in America that have swallowed this ear tickling teaching up to their demise.

Also I personally recommend believers to read and re-read 1 Timothy 6 about 20 times in a row and then try and believe this modern false gospel.

God does not want to prosper us for us to enjoy ourselves so much on this earth. He does take care of us and will give us things that are nice to be enjoyed but the normal is not over-abundance but rather our daily bread. In North America "normal living" is luxuriant living in all the other nations almost of the world. As a believer in North America I realize I have an abidance everyday even when living as the normal middle class or just believe it.

SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2012/6/29 17:33Profile

Joined: 2008/5/3
Posts: 435


Very much spot on explanation, Blayne. And further very well defined by Greg. Yes that exactly is the essence of the whole matter, a false gospel. Where now the spiritual prosperity is redefined by material-only prosperity.

You know what the word says in Matthew 6:33  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

The false gospel reverses that causality in a very profane way, i.e. preachers that have this attitude of "God wants me to have a Rolce Royce in order to represent his message more convincingly".

But by God's mercy and grace He will bring this profane illusion down. Perhaps this year is the year the false prosperity gospel will come to an end. Why? In order that the true gospel can be preached, and the world gets it's last chance to pay attention.

We all remember that David Wilkerson was one of the first, that told us that this will happen, and it will start in Europe. Since then we knew it will be just a matter of time. Now today, mid 2012 we can see all this happening in the material world:

17 Reasons To Be EXTREMELY Concerned About The Second Half Of 2012

 2012/6/29 19:12Profile

Joined: 2010/5/17
Posts: 1175


Also I personally recommend believers to read and re-read 1 Timothy 6 about 20 times in a row and then try and believe this modern false gospel.

Spot on.

An "avalanche of Scripture" personally means nothing if it's taken out of context, separated from it's co-texts, and twisted to fit the agenda of the propagator. Satan has no problem using Scripture out of context either. It's his trademark actually. 1 Timothy 6 is excellent in light of this.

 2012/6/29 20:12Profile

Joined: 2012/3/23
Posts: 58


Also I personally recommend believers to read and re-read 1 Timothy 6 about 20 times in a row and then try and believe this modern false gospel.

Yes! People who think they can desire to be rich in material things and even pray for these things, so they can "help" their church, but don't realize that they can fall to temptation. Here is a verse from the same chapter for proof.

1Timothy 6:9"But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition."

Then it goes on saying that the love of money is the root of all evil. 6:10"For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."

David Cisneros

 2012/6/30 0:36Profile

Joined: 2011/9/16
Posts: 207

 Re: The "Prosperity" Gospel - What Say You?

This tone of message("prosperity gospel") is needed to be opposed, it is not an issue to be ignored or be neutral about
as Elijah said:
"How long are you limping over two opinions?"

“If you have faith you can be prosperous”, but what is true prosperity? Abundant life? Or victorious life means? Blessed life? How you answer such questions somehow describes you are...

even those who don't preach or opposed this king of message, honestly, we are also in danger of falling to covetousness... God have mercy on us,

Scripture verses:
Matthew 13:22, Luke 12:15, 1 Timothy 6:3-12, Luk 16:11, Matthew 6:31-34
I encourage you to watch these from Zac Poonen:

Where Christianity becomes profiteering:

Father who supply all our needs:

 2012/6/30 5:50Profile

Joined: 2010/10/6
Posts: 169


God bless you Joliboy for that link of zac poonen "Father who supply all our needs"This is an excellent teaching on the practical way of walking and trusting God even in materials things is stead of relying on the arm of the flesh.


 2012/6/30 6:52Profile

Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2003
Joplin, Missouri

 Re: The "Prosperity" Gospel - What Say You?

This is really a difficult topic because of abuses and the deeply held beliefs that are, probably more than we like to think, derived from the abuses we have seen. If we are not careful, I am afraid we drive off into either ditch and chide the person in the other ditch for not being more in the middle of the road.

First I think it is important that we realize that prosperity is not about money or possessions, although it would be twisting scripture to say that it does not include finances or possessions. The word prosper in the new testament really implies to have success in reaching a goal. It is used by Paul of both financial success (1 Cor. 16:2) and of having a successful journey (Rom. 1:10). The term prosperity is not used in the New Testament, but is in the old testament where it seems to indicate someones good or their welfare and is sometimes applied to finances.

If I am a farmer, prosperity means that I have success in my herds or crops. If I am a businessman, prosperity means that I am blessed in my business endeavors. As a person, prosperity includes the total well-being of my spirit, soul, and body. For example, emotional prosperity means that my emotions are under the control of the spirit and that I have the joy of the Lord governing my emotions. Lack of worry and fear is emotional prosperity.

The problem and the abuse comes, I think, when we begin to mistake the financial blessing that can accompany our prosperity for prosperity itself. We begin to get our eyes on the things that being blessed can provide as the end goal rather than seeing the things as an integral part of the blessing that is meant to be used for the glory of God and of His kingdom.

A preacher spoke once of a friend of his who was a very wealthy businessman. This man had an estate, horses, boats, ATV's, and nice cars. He was a very outspoken believer. One day a person came to this preacher complaining about this man. This person said things like, "How can this man live this way? He should be giving his money to the poor, to the church, and to ministry. No believer ought to live such a lavish lifestyle." The preacher said that he bit his tongue during the whole conversation. He knew that this man gave 90% of everything he earned to the work of the ministry and was living on 10%. The person who complained might have given 10%. This shows that we cannot be too quick to judge until we know the heart of the person in question.

A good definition of financial prosperity is, in my opinion, having enough resources to meet your own needs plus an abundance so that you can be ready to give at any occasion what God lays on your heart to give. It is being able to meet your own needs as well as the needs of others.

In this sense I do not believe God is opposed to His children prospering financially. But again, financial prosperity is only a byproduct of our soul prospering, and is meant to be a tool to be used for the furtherance of the Gospel, not an end in and of itself.

Paul, at times, had all the money he needed. He was in touch with some pretty wealthy and influential people who were believers, especially in Rome. At times he also had to make tents to have enough to eat. He said that in times of abundance and in times of want he had learned to be content. He was so focused on God that he was able to walk in prosperity of soul regardless of financial circumstances.

There is no proof of Godliness found in being blessed with finances. But there is also no proof of Godliness found in being poor.


 2012/6/30 9:38Profile

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