Mission Statement

In classical sacrifices, the people get the good bits, and the gods get the refuse, the bits that would get thrown out otherwise.

Not our God. Leviticus (particularly Leviticus 3) describes the sacrifices that our LORD demanded from His people of Israel. God gets the kidneys, the tail, and all the fat. He gets the prime steak, He gets the best.

Today we do not literally give sacrifices of animals. For us the ultimate sacrifice has been made through our Lord, Christ Jesus. But should always be our ambition to do the same thing - to offer God the best of what we have, to offer Him the fat, and not the smoke and bones.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

The Healing Prosperity Gospel

I've spent most of my life being sick, getting sick, or recovering from being sick. I sometimes say that I have had seven near death experiences... and then I made it out of the birth canal. (That's true. And I have had more than a few more since.) I am one of those people who never has any sick leave, who rocks up to work looking like they need a month or two off, and who generally is not well.

I no longer go up the front when people ask for people to be prayed for for healing.

It's not that I don't believe God can heal me. It's that I don't want to hear the comments. I've heard some good ones.

From being told the story of everyone anyone's ever met who had "allergies" who was prayed for and was healed ("so I'll pray for you and then you can eat meat"... except I'm a vegetarian by choice), to being told that "God will heal the hole in your lungs when you have enough faith", to "You should be praying for your pwn healing and not getting us to do it for you", to "I read this book and we should be able to heal everybody because Jesus healed everybody," I really have heard them all.

The thing is, God does not always choose to heal. He wants what is best for us. And sometimes, what is best is not physical health. We have taken what the world has deemed to be good and just Christianised it.

Health is a blessing. No one who's been sick would deny that. But God's ways are not our ways. His ways are higher.

Anything less than that is nothing short of a prosperity gospel, which insists that because God loves us we need to be healthy, wealthy and wise, and that anything less proves we are not Christians / in sin / in the wrong church / etc. It's just not true. God's ways are different. They are higher.

And we follow Him in sickness and trial just as much as in health and prosperity. Because we love the Giver and not the gifts. Because He is our God, and nothing else matters.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Retain the faith that God can and does heal. For the glory of God, a man spent most of his life blind.

With that encouragement out of the way, thank you for this message. I was recently confronted with the existence of the "name it and claim it" doctrine within my own community and it's terrifying how people can believe that creature comforts should be a Christian's primary concern.

For the times when we deal with the attacks of a fallen world, perhaps the best encouragement isn't that blessings may occur, but that the trials of this world will refine you as fire refines silver. Great is the eternal reward for those who suffer for God's sake.