(Beware OF Prosperity Preachers)

Lord have mercy on Pastor Joel Osteen and other religious leaders in America who have the capital, manpower, and the resources to assist people who are victims of Hurricane Harvey. If I had my Christian organization up and running we would help as many people who want and need our assistants. Touch the hearts and minds of people on my friends list to spread my book information with their friends so that I can recruit brave and smart people to join my management team and also to get my book on the best seller list so that I can do all of the things which I have written in Jesus name.

Prosperity gospel is a belief among some Christians, who hold that financial blessings and physical well-being is the will of God for them, and that faith, positive speech, and donations to religious causes will increase one’s material wealth. Prosperity gospel views the Bible as a contract between God and humans: if humans have faith in God, he will deliver security and prosperity.

The doctrine over emphasizes the importance of giving and material blessings, proposing that the atonement (reconciliation with God) is interpreted to include the alleviation of sickness and poverty, which are viewed as curses to be broken by faith. This is believed to be achieved through donations of money, visualization, and positive thinking.

Christian socialism opposed prosperity theology as heresy and prosperity ministries have come into conflict with other Christian denominations who argue that prosperity theology has little in common with traditional Christian theology. Prominent evangelical leaders, such as Rick Warren, Ben Witherington III, and Jerry Falwell, proposes that prosperity theology promotes the idolatry of money, and others argue that Jesus’ teachings indicate a disdain for material wealth. Jesus’ statement in Mark 10:25 that “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God” (KJV) as evidence to oppose such thinking.

Televangelist are often criticized for abusing the faith of their listeners by enriching themselves through large donations. They use a predatory method which appeal to people in financial distress or personal crises. Prosperity theology has been opposed for not adequately explaining the poverty of the Apostles.

For instance, some theologians believe that the life and writings of Paul the Apostle, who is believed to have experienced significant suffering during his ministry, are particularly in conflict with prosperity theology. Cathleen Falsani, religion writer in an opinion piece in the Washington Post, points to the conflict with basic Christian teachings “Jesus was born poor, and he died poor. During his earthly tenure, he spoke time and again about the importance of spiritual wealth and health. When he talked about material wealth, it was usually part of a cautionary tale.”

In the book “Health, Wealth and Happiness”, theologians David Jones and Russell Woodbridge suggest that righteousness cannot be earned and that the Bible does not promise an easy life. They argue that it is inconsistent with the gospel of Jesus and propose that the central message of the gospel should be Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Jones and Woodbridge see Jesus’ importance as vital, criticizing the prosperity gospel for marginalizing him in favor of a focus on human need.

Jones criticizes the prosperity theology interpretation of the Abrahamic covenant, God’s promise to bless Abraham’s descendants, arguing that this blessing is spiritual and already apply to all Christians. He also argues that the proponents of the doctrine misconstrue the atonement, criticizing their teaching that Jesus’ death took away poverty as well as sin. He believes that this teaching is drawn from a misunderstanding of Jesus’ life and criticizes John Avanzini’s teaching that Jesus was wealthy as a misrepresentation, noting that Paul often taught Christians to give up their material possessions.

Jesus instructed his followers to focus on spiritual rewards, citing his command in Matthew 6:19–20 “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (KJV). Jones criticizes the doctrine’s view of faith: he does not believe that it should be used as a spiritual force for material gain but seen as selfless acceptance of God. God’s will should have precedence over the will of man, including their desires for wealth, and Christians should recognize the sovereignty of God. Prosperity theology overlook the importance of prayer, prayer should be used for all requests, not simply for financial blessing. Prosperity theology appeals to those who are already in affluent means.

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