Observations of the 700 Club


#1

I’ve been watching the 700-Club for the past few weeks. I really like the show, and until about two weeks ago I thought it was a brand new show and not one that’s been on the past forty years! :yup:

Anyhow, the show is very uplifting. I especially like the stories about people who find Christ after being addicted to worldly pursuits and are spiritually healed. Overall I think the program is pretty cool, especially with the miracle stories that it presents.

However, I have noticed that people on CBN (the company that hosts the 700-Club) tend to act differently than many Catholics on the EWTN channel. In my opinion, this is most clearly seen in the attitude towards physical illness and miraculous heailng. On the 700-Club, the evangelicals tend to focus on God’s great desire to heal us and to have us live a happy life here on earth–to provide us with all our needs. The evangelicals seem to believe that, so long as you have faith, God will give you great joy in your life. Usually physical and mental addictions are seen either as a result of sinning or as something to turn the pagan’s attention to Christ. Once one has Christ, it seems that one is constantly joyful, smiling, etc. Usually I imagine the evangelical conception of a Christian as one who is married, has several children, goes on picnics, and overall lives in neither penury nor luxury, but nontheless is completely provided for with food, health and shelter. There is little emphasis on physical suffereing after one finds Christ.

The Catholic perspective seems a little different. We Catholics agree that physical suffering results from sinning, and we agree that sometimes suffering is necessary to draw one closer to Christ. However, I believe that Catholics have a different understanding of suffering. Spiritual healing is a priority with Catholics, as it is with evangelicals. However, it seems that we do not believe as much as do the evangelicals that God wishes us to be physically healed, even after we come into a deep personal relationship with Him. Oftentimes I see shows on EWTN that emphasize the Christian role of deep suffering, and of patience. Catholics believe that Christ desires His children to be well, but I think that we also more firmly emphasize that a person must carry his cross daily.

I wonder if we emphasize suffereing more so than evangelicals because we believe in redemptive suffering, whereas many evangelicals believe that they’re already saved and that God would not cause them “salvatory” suffering if they don’t need it. Anyhow, I would like to hear comments!


#2

A huge influence on conservative evangelical ideas of healing is the “atonement theory” of healing, an idea popular among Holiness and Pentecostals starting in the late nineteenth century. This theory argued that the atonement of Jesus not only cleansed you from sin, but could totally heal you of all disease as well: salvation equals total health + forgiveness of sin. This theory implied that if you were truly saved, you would never get sick. Of course, not all Protestants believe this, but some do.


#3

This has been bothering me lately. While Catholics thoroughly investigate miracles, Pat Robertson’s miracles (and most Pentecostal and Charismatic miracles) are beleived in by faith. After investigating, the Catholic church declares most miracles that Catholics claim as false. Either fraud, psychosomatic healings, or a case where someone thought they were healed but their affliction came back. Does anyone have info on this?


#4

[quote=Madaglan]I’ve been watching the 700-Club for the past few weeks. I really like the show, and until about two weeks ago I thought it was a brand new show and not one that’s been on the past forty years! :yup:

Anyhow, the show is very uplifting. I especially like the stories about people who find Christ after being addicted to worldly pursuits and are spiritually healed. Overall I think the program is pretty cool, especially with the miracle stories that it presents.

However, I have noticed that people on CBN (the company that hosts the 700-Club) tend to act differently than many Catholics on the EWTN channel. In my opinion, this is most clearly seen in the attitude towards physical illness and miraculous heailng. On the 700-Club, the evangelicals tend to focus on God’s great desire to heal us and to have us live a happy life here on earth–to provide us with all our needs. The evangelicals seem to believe that, so long as you have faith, God will give you great joy in your life. Usually physical and mental addictions are seen either as a result of sinning or as something to turn the pagan’s attention to Christ. Once one has Christ, it seems that one is constantly joyful, smiling, etc. Usually I imagine the evangelical conception of a Christian as one who is married, has several children, goes on picnics, and overall lives in neither penury nor luxury, but nontheless is completely provided for with food, health and shelter. There is little emphasis on physical suffereing after one finds Christ.

[/quote]

Madaglan don’t mean to throw you a curve here but you have to be careful in grouping all evangelicals into the same bowl. Yes many evangelicals believe that what scripture says about God giving us joy is true, however we believe that needs to be balanced with reality. We all go through times of trials but we teach that we are to depend on God in all things. In otherwords I am not to let my heart be thwarted by any trials that I may suffer. However we believe that all christians are put here on this earth to glorify God. Jesus dies for us so he may redeem us, but that is no reason for us to make ourselves the center of the universe. In other words just as Jesus gave his life for us so ought we to give our life for one another.

However there is a branch of evangelicals who teach a man centered Gospel, it is all about what God will do for them. Once again what I am getting at is, Jesus died for us so now we ought to die for one another, but what these people teach is Jesus died for us, and now he is giving us rolexs’ mercedes benzes, excellent health.

In short I believe that God can heal whom he may and wills, but that is not my concern. My concern is to know Him. As is the concern of many evangelicals.

So I am sure Pat Robertson is uplifting but I as an evangelical don’t know what to make of his show.

Peace,
Jeff


#5

As my Christian walk as an adult was first through the Protestant churches, suffering was not taught in the way Catholics understand it.

posted by Madaglan

I wonder if we emphasize suffereing more so than evangelicals because we believe in redemptive suffering, whereas many evangelicals believe that they’re already saved and that God would not cause them “salvatory” suffering if they don’t need it. Anyhow, I would like to hear comments!

For some this may be the case, but does not account for all. I have had many talks with my still fundamental friends who do not believe in Once saved always saved. They search for reasons on why they are suffering, what is God trying to teach me? It has greatly helped when I say to them in these words: The servant is never greater than the master. As Christ suffered, so must we. To become more Christlike, we sometimes need to suffer.

It is just not something that is really taught in most Protestant branches I have gone to.

I think more that it has to do with the fact that Protestants, while Christian, have only a portion of the truth. It is only in the Catholic Church, that the full truth, including suffering, is found.

Also, I read Scott Hahn. Great insight into Catholic teachings for a Protestant mindset!

God Bless,
Maria


#6

[quote=MariaG]As my Christian walk as an adult was first through the Protestant churches, suffering was not taught in the way Catholics understand it.

For some this may be the case, but does not account for all. I have had many talks with my still fundamental friends who do not believe in Once saved always saved. They search for reasons on why they are suffering, what is God trying to teach me? It has greatly helped when I say to them in these words: The servant is never greater than the master. As Christ suffered, so must we. To become more Christlike, we sometimes need to suffer.

It is just not something that is really taught in most Protestant branches I have gone to.

I think more that it has to do with the fact that Protestants, while Christian, have only a portion of the truth. It is only in the Catholic Church, that the full truth, including suffering, is found.

Also, I read Scott Hahn. Great insight into Catholic teachings for a Protestant mindset!

God Bless,
Maria
[/quote]

You might want to thow in some catholic books about suffering Father Benedict Groeschel is excellent as is our holy father he touches on this subject in many of his books and has some insights that would blow away a protestants looking for answers on the mystery of suffering the popes encynical
"on the christian meaning of human suffering" is excellent despite being brief the pope says more in his letters to us than protestant authors say in all their books combined. I encourage all protestant seeks to read catholic authors objectively you might find the answers your pastor isn’t providing you.


#7

Well, protestants like to think that once you believe in Christ all sufferings and other trials are gone. That’s the biggest baloney the devil wants us to believe. Paul, highly regarded by protestants, speaks and boasts of his sufferings in Christ! Did they overlooked that?

Pio


#8

[quote=hlgomez]Well, protestants like to think that once you believe in Christ all sufferings and other trials are gone. That’s the biggest baloney the devil wants us to believe. Paul, highly regarded by protestants, speaks and boasts of his sufferings in Christ! Did they overlooked that?

Pio
[/quote]

Exaclty Paul says he makes up for what is lacking in Christ Suffering by his own sufferings.
Christ paid the full price for our sins on the cross however Christ ask us to emulate him in everyway one of which is to pick up our own cross and follow him. THis is so obvious to anyone who looks objectively at the human condition all people suffer and all people die.
THe only way around this obvious human state is to beleive you will be raptured out of this inevitable human experience.
Thus the popularity of this doctrine that goes togehter so well with the word of faith ie name it and claim it prosperity gospel.
Where the rapture is preached the other is likely to be preached they are linked together at the hip with the conculsion we don’t ever have to suffer as a christian and if you are suffering you not doing something right.


#9

Originally Quoted by jphilaphy:

Madaglan don’t mean to throw you a curve here but you have to be careful in grouping all evangelicals into the same bowl. Yes many evangelicals believe that what scripture says about God giving us joy is true, however we believe that needs to be balanced with reality.

Yes, I apologize if I over-generalized. I suppose that I used the term “evangelical” so freely because the show targets a broad evangelical audience; and so I presumed that most of what is presented on the show is accepted by most evangelicals. But this is not completely sound reasoning, I agree. I specifically failed to think of the Pentecostal / mainline conflicts.


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