Prosperity Gospel

For the Love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many grief’s’ 1Tim 6:10

Prosperity gospel is one of the most popular false teaching in these last days. Put simply, it teaches that God wants us to be financially wealthy and materially comfortable. They also teach that the more you give to the Lord, the more the Lord will bless you financially. Let’s search the Scriptures to see if these things are so. In Luke 12:15, Jesus said ‘Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.’ Jesus makes it clear that your material blessings do not determine your spiritual life as a Christian. So He asked us not to be greedy. In Matthew 5:5, He said ‘Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.’ (Also in Ps 37: 5-11). So the Scriptures give us the picture of a disciple, for whom earthly possessions are of little interest. So whether he has it or not, is not an issue. Then what is his concern for?

In Luke 16:13 Jesus said ‘No servant can serve two masters, either he will hate one and love the other or be loyal to one and despise the other. No one can serve God and Mammon’ (also in Mat 6:24). He made it clear that you either will be serving God or serving money. So a true disciple is not concerned about whether he is materially prosperous. Does that mean we should not have money? Certainly not, we need money to live. But we should keep money as a servant and not as a master. When the rich young man came to Jesus in Mark 10:17 and asked about inheriting eternal life, Jesus asked him to sell his possessions to the poor. At this he became sorry, for Mammon was his master. Thus, the person who claimed to keep all commandments broke the very first commandment ‘of not having any other gods other than God’ (Exodus 20:3). Is money the real God in your life? Prosperity gospel preaches a very extravagant Christian life and the Scriptures in James 5: 1-6, warns us the worthlessness of riches. Now that does not mean that God wants us all to be poor. The Bible never says that. Instead it sheds light on the hopelessness of putting one’s trust on riches. (Matthew 19:23 Mark 10:24).

After an investigation on the prosperity gospel, a secular journalist pointed: it works, for those who preach it. The Scriptures give us many warnings about these false teachers. In 1Timothy chapter 6, Paul writes to young Timothy about people ‘who think that godliness is a means to financial gain’ (v.5).He says that they ‘teach false doctrines, is conceited and understands nothing’ (v.4) If you switch on any Christian TV today, you will find preachers fitting to the above description. During fund raising periods of these channels, prosperity preachers are flocked to preach the ’sow and see’ theology. You’ll find the same preachers on the next channel, when they go for fund raising. Like Paul said in 2 Corinthians 2:17, they are ‘peddlers of the word of God for profit’. By the way, Christian TV is one of the greatest tool of deception (not evangelism) these days. It’s better not to watch it. To these preachers who justify their teachings, the word Jesus spoke to the money loving Pharisees is apt. ‘You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.’ (Luke 16:15) To sum up, the true gospel does not promise prosperity, it promises provision for one’s need. Like Paul said in 1Timothy ‘if we get food and clothing (one’s NEED), we will be content with that’ (6:8). On the other hand, ‘those who WANT to get rich, fall into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction’(6:9).
May God give you more light from His Scriptures.

'Godliness with contentment is a great gain' 1Timothy 6:6


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By Jay Dharan
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