The Prosperity Gospel


I only heard the term a day back. What is the Prosperity Gospel and is it orthadox? Thanks and God bless.


From what I have heard, the prosperity gospel states that God wants us all to get what we want, and if we have enough faith and ask God fervently enough, we will get whatever we desire. The other side of this is that if we do not get the things we want, there is something lacking in our faith.

I have heard it also called the “name it and claim it” gospel and the “blab it and grab it” gospel.


You left out the most important part. You have to demonstrate your faith by sending money to the preacher before it will work. :rolleyes:


Short answer: no it is not orthodox … and it is anti-biblical … and since it is neither traditional nor biblical, it must be abandoned.

Long answer: the prosperity gospel is something preached at “feel-good” churches … churches that are meant to make you hear good stuff and make you feel better


  • If you give the church $10 you will receive $1000

  • God wants you to keep all your money

  • God wants you to be happy so you can do whatever you want to do

As you can see, these are very different and prove even more the error of the Prosperity Gospel.


The Prosperity Gospel is one of those errors which has a strong kernel of Truth to it, but which is held up and distorted.
2nd Corinthians chapter 9 teaches us, clearly, that he who sows sparingly will reap sparingly, and he who sows generously will reap abundantly. This is the word of God.

The Prosperity Gospel teachers take this and run miles with it, claiming that if you send THEIR MINISTRIES as much money as possible, God will multiply it 100 fold.

Lately, televangelist Paula White has been engaging in MONSTROUS scripture twisting on her tv program this past week.
She and Pastor Steve Munsey had a series of programs which taught that if we Christians sent in a good “seed faith” offering to coincide with the Jewish “Day of Atonement,” God would, in honor of the Jewish “Day of Atonement” (I think September 22nd this year) God would pour out a huge financial blessing on all of us who sent in the Offering to coincide with the Day of Atonement because God allegedly wants to bless us Christians for sending in a Financial Gift to honor the Jewish Day of Atonement from the Old Law. These programs took my breath away. This isn’t just error, this really is sacrilegious. And of course, Paula suggested an Offering of $60.00 or more to her ministry. She is also one of the ones claiming that God wants to pour out super-special Financial Blessings on those who make generous gifts to them during this calendar year of 2007 ( because it’s the “seventh year” of the millenium, don’t ya know ). This kind of thing is shameless.



Maybe I’m making a leap here but what is the difference between this (Word of Faith/Prosperity gospel) and The Secret besides God and the Bible?


My wife’s boss is a big part of the Word of Faith movement, of which televangelists Kenneth Copeland and T.D. Jakes are big players. Essentially, they take the Scripture passage assuring that words will not return void and blow that up into basically the whole Gospel. It’s secular equivalent may be found in the Oprah Book Club Selection “The Secret”.

It is essentially Amway for the religious.

It is most certainly not orthodox; Jakes I am told by my wife doesn’t even believe in the Trinity.


You are absolutely right.

The snarky answer is “A couple of hundred million dollars’ head start.”


There is also the flipside to it, which makes it especially monstrous to true Christians:

If you are sick, poor, or suffering, it is your fault because you “spoke it into existence.”

Word of Faithers IMO have little claim at all to be Christian because they violate Christ’s command to love one’s neighbor as oneself and elevate money to idolatrous levels. They have the appearance of good works, but lack the essential Christian charity of spirit we are all called to possess and exercise.


This is all very Calvinist is it not?


No, it isn’t.

If you are really interested you can do a little research of the classes offered at several different reformed seminaries (Westminster, Reformed Theological Seminary, or maybe Covenant) and read or scan the works of say RC Sproul, James White (not very popular here at CAF) or maybe JJ Packer and you won’t find any trace of the prosperity theology.


My minister touched on this today in his sermon and said it is NOT BIBLICAL and SHOULD NOT BE TAUGHT!!!:mad:


This bad theology also teaches that if you do not get what you prayed for then you are arent faithful enough:eek:


When are you going to stop relying on that silly left-wing website’s garbling of Weber for your understanding of Calvinism?

I have, I believe, challenged your use of that website twice. You keep citing it uncritically. Apparently you don’t want to defend it–or you know that you can’t.



It may be an extension of Calvinism in the sense that it shares the view of some Calvinist-descendant commuities that anything bad which happens to you is a sign of your lack of faith, but beyond that, there’s not much in common.

The Word of Faithers are nothing if not optimistic. “Sinners in the Hand of An Angry God” and the whole Puritanical streak of the Calvinists just isn’t their bag.


As a former Presbyterian (and Presbyterianism is Calvinist),
I can assure you that Calvinism doesn’t teach what these
money-grubbing televangelists preach.



Wow, then this is very much like “The Secret”. It also warns about thinking or saying negative things because they could happen.


I’ve never read The Secret, but from what you folks have been saying, this sounds like Magic to me.

No way is that compatible with the Catholic Faith.



Yes, precisely.

Now, I will stress to point out that my wife’s former boss and his family are very, very nice people, have donated plenty of money to charity, and have further striven always to treat others as they themselves wish to be treated.

As always, it is certainly possible to be a good person in such a faith, but it is harder to truly be a good Christian with such a limited view of Christianity. This is an excellent example of the Catholic notion that other communities have some truth to them, but not the fullness possessed by the Church Christ himself founded and abides within.

Moreover, once people start tossing out sacraments and dogmas they personally disagree with for ones they prefer, and once they utterly reject apostolic authority as passed down since the Great Commission, it is almost inevitable that communities arise around one passage of Scripture (like the Word of Faith) or around none at all (as some of our non-denominational communities do).


My BIL and SIL are into this. My SIL is convinced that the reason they are wealthy today is because of this “prosperity gospel.” Never mind that my BIL is a highly intelligent, dedicated man who worked very hard and made many sacrifices to achieve his wealth, along with sound financial investments. They are blessed, but it sure didn’t fall into his lap because of this “gospel”, and as far as I can see, she didn’t contribute much to the family finances, mostly she spends it.:wink:

Nevertheless they are fine, generous, loving people who truly love Jesus, it’s just that their theology is badly flawed, and I don’t buy it for one minute. It seems very unbiblical to me. My belief is that God gives people wealth to help others, but it seems that the poor are more generous.

However I do believe that a positive or negative attitude can greatly affect your life and your fortune, but it’s no “Secret”. It’s just plain common sense. If you are a negative person, people perceive that, will not be attracted to you, and you are more likely to be passed over for promotions, etc. Plus you are not as creative as you could be and less likely to follow through with any ideas you might have. But those who are positive attract people, are not afraid of innovation, not afraid to fail, and are more creative. I sometimes help with inteviews at work and am always inclined to give the positive people better reviews because I know that even if they have less experience or whatever, they will soon make up for it and are more likely to motivate others to do a better job.


Just to be clear what was described isn’t The Secret. If I am afraid of getting mugged, if I think about it, according to The Secret I brought it on.

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