Saturday, May 01, 2010

May day May day

Round Table Christians Part II - Faith & Disability

As is evident from the title of Andrew Wommack's publication 'Gospel Truth', he believes that many of the issues Christians face arise from a misunderstanding or wrong teaching of the Bible, the foremost being the sovereignty of God.

Wommack believes that God willingly gave up His right to be God in the Garden of Eden and handed His sovereignty over to us. He also believes that Jesus was spoken into existence and was crucified by Satan. Apparently, God only reclaimed authority after raising Jesus from the dead. Andrew would have his followers believe that this is a revelation from God, whereas it is actually a carbon copy of Kenneth Hagin's heretical teachings. See Andrew Wommack: 'The MOST DANGEROUS MAN On Christian Television'.

If he were encouraging his followers to have free sex, live in the mountains and practice polygamy, many would no doubt see him as a wacko and reject his teachings but because, through his heresies, he is promising healing, prosperity and trouble free life he has folks eating out of his hand. He quotes verses like 'by His stripes we are healed', inextricably linking healing with salvation and reasons that because God wants only our good, anything bad that happens is to us must be from the devil and can be countermanded. He backs up his theology with claims of healing and deliverance and quotes that thousands of souls have been saved and healed through his ministry proving the maxim that a tree is known by its fruits.

However, when you critically examine the faith movement and TV preachers such as Andrew Wommack, Benny Hinn, Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland and resist the faith-lacking guilt trip they burden you with, you discover some sinister under currents and very disturbing conclusions. Apart from being eroneous and guilt-laden (we all are healed, we just haven't claimed it or don't have enough faith), Wommack's teaching is positively offensive. The Spring & Summer 2010 edition of Gospel Truth carries an article entitled 'Diagnosis Cancelled' which tells the story of a Christian couple who are given the diagnosis that their unborn child has Downs Syndrome. They refuse to believe that God would give them anything other than a perfect baby so they pray against the diagnosis. Their faith is apparently rewarded when the baby is born perfectly 'normal'.

The following quote is taken directly from the article with no gaps or added emphasis:

"To me, it was very clear that Satan was trying to attack God's plan for our family," says Steve. "I knew this baby was a gift from God, and I knew God did not want him to be anything less than perfect."

Steve knew what he had to do. At a very young age, Steve was taught by his mother that when you're given a diagnosis that doesn't line up with God's Word, you cancel it in Jesus' name.

Can you see how insulting, hurtful and obnoxious this is to someone with special needs or the parent of a child with special needs? If you cannot see how insidious and dangerous this sort of thinking is (never mind that its glib and ultra-simplistic), take a look at The Works of God.

Knowing Wommack's belief that anything less than perfect never comes from God I immediately question why Steve is so convinced that this is a Satanic attack and the next statement confirms my suspicions. I may be jumping the gun here but it reads to me like the baby with Downs Syndrome that the surgeon has promised them has just been canceled (though to be fair, the couple told the surgeon that they would never have an abortion).

I wouldn't want to judge or condemn the couple or begrudge their joy at having the healthy baby they desired but the article clearly implies that having a baby with a disability is not in God's will and is, somehow, due to lack of faith. This may not be the intention of the article but it is its logical conclusion. It is discrimination by the back door and underlines how dangerous prosperity preachers like Andrew Wommack really are. They dream up their own fanciful theology then find scriptures to back them up, hence justifying themselves by the Word of God.

This is not 'Gospel Truth'; its a bunch of erroneous, offensive, subtle, dangerous lies.