The prosperity gospel is very attractive. It says God will end poverty here on earth. But it doesn’t address our real problem, or provide real relief.
What’s Wrong With The Prosperity Gospel? Timestamps:
0:10 – We Must Show Compassion
0:37 – We Must Actively Love All Men
1:07 – So, How’s The Prosperity Gospel Wrong?
1:51 – Issues The Eye Can’t See
2:48 – First, Look At Christ
3:46 – Look Beyond The Prosperity Gospel
“It’s all important, even as the Church seeks to love in physical things, that we never lose sight of the spiritual need that our members and people around in our communities have.”
“It takes someone who has really seen things the way God sees them to see people who are dressed nicely as those who are actually famished and in desperate need of being fed with the truth of God.”
“The Christian message is the one that ultimately offers the poor, the oppressed, ultimate hope. Not in a better heaven down here, they point to something called glory. That’s pure perfection!”
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What is wrong with the prosperity gospel? What is the correct Christian response to prosperity preaching? Pastor Ken Mbugua answers these critical questions in the video above.
We Must Show Compassion
“For one I think it’s important for the Church to have compassion on people. Our Lord taught us to show compassion. He was moved, when he attended a funeral, to tears. Yet when the church preaches theology as though it’s not preaching to actual people, with actual lives, with actual issues, we are preaching a different way than our master taught us to preach.
Our Lord taught us to show compassion.
We Must Actively Love All Men
Secondly, it’s important for us, a Church, to ask ourselves as believers, “How can we love?” And not just merely be moved with empathy, but how can we act to care for those who are actually affected? I think in Church we are those who are supposed to be characterised with good works – not only for those within but also for all men. At the end of Galatians an admonition is given to the Church. (Galatians 6:9-10)
So, How’s The Prosperity Gospel Wrong?
However, it’s also important to grasp that the Bible shows us that there is another poverty that is more shocking, or more painful if you so please, than the poverty of a lack of money. That poverty is a spiritual poverty that we all possess.
We are falling short of the glory of God
So, you will find that as a church we are not a social organisation in that sense, right? The Lord has sent his son to address that poverty. And what that poverty is, is that we are falling short of the glory of God. We are absolutely lacking in anything in us that would cause us to stand before God and point to some merit in us – and that’s a dangerous poverty.
Issues The Eye Can’t See
The truth is the scriptures address issues that the eye of flesh cannot see. The United Nations can be moved with the poverty that plagues countries in Africa. It takes someone who has really seen things the way God sees them to see people who are dressed nicely as those who are actually famished and in desperate need of being fed with the truth of God.
It’s all important that we never lose sight of the spiritual need.
It’s all important, even as the Church seeks to love in physical things, that we never lose sight of the spiritual need that our members and people around in our communities have.
So, as we proclaim the gospel then, with the priority on the spiritual need that believers have, that does not mean that the secondary stuff does not matter. All it means is that the primary stuff is infinitely more devastating. And we will see that more clearly in eternity.
First, Look At Christ
As we proclaim the gospel to this people, it’s useful to point first and foremost to our saviour Christ and show how he came to this fallen world that rebelled against God and he bore the cross on our behalf. And yes, he has said that all who choose to follow him will also bear a cross. And yet that suffering that comes along with following Jesus, it’s important to understand that it is not ultimate. Right? The same Lord who bore the cross was raised up on the third day, glorified.
All who are followers of Jesus will know a life of glory.
The truth is, all who choose to follow Jesus – as hard as that path actually looks like – even though it sounds as though you are saying you are ignoring the realities on the outside – that’s not true. The truth is Christ has promised – he who rose from the grave has promised – that all who are followers of him will know a life of glory.
Look Beyond The Prosperity Gospel
So, the reality is the Christian message is the one that ultimately offers yes, the poor, the oppressed, ultimate hope. Not in a better heaven down here: namely you’ll drive a better car, you will live in a bigger house, you will have a higher paying job. Not that prosperity, that is not what they point to. They point to something called glory. That’s pure perfection!
And I tell you when that gets here, they will not think that you are preaching a lesser gospel, because you did not tell them that the physical things in this earth were not going to be elevated. They will realise that the new heavens and the new earth provide for them the hope that they all longed for in far better terms than they ever imagined.”