Word of Faith Prosperity Gospel Heresy

prosperity gospel word of faith

At first glance, the Word Faith Movement is very appealing, and appears to make sense. On closer scrutiny though, it becomes clear that there is something horribly wrong. Is the Word of Faith teaching fact or fiction? You decide …

Turn on the TV and flip through the channels and you’ll find TV Evangelists also known as Faith Teachers or Prosperity Teachers asking you to send in your “seed” a “vow of faith” or a “seed-faith offering” and God will bestow His blessings and riches of health and wealth on you.

It’s not uncommon to hear these Word of Faith movement (WFM) teachers, sometimes subtly, sometimes blatantly spin their messages into a message of how God wants you to be “healthy and wealthy” and “prosperous” and to think other wise is a sin and not living up to your God given potential.

Today’s WFM is a very popular message and truthfully, people like to hear that they were born to be prosperous and live a long life without any illnesses or poverty issues to deal with.

The Faith gospel is “without question the most attractive message being preached today, or for that matter, in the whole history of the Church.” 1

In a nutshell, the word faith movement believes and teaches, among other things, that:

  • Faith is a force that can be manipulated by words to create a reality of health and wealth.
  • God has human proportions and He created humans in His physical image and that we are “little gods.”
  • Jesus Christ gave up His Divinity and became a man, died spiritually, took Satan’s sin nature upon Himself, went to hell, was born-again, and rose from the dead with God’s nature.2
  • It’s a sin and lack of faith to be sick and poor.
  • Health is guaranteed in Christ’s atonement

Here are some examples of well known ministers who teach this false gospel (slideshow)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Origins of the Word of Faith Movement

Let’s get a little background on the origins of the WFM by looking at its beginnings so we can see exactly where many of these false teachings originated.

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby (1802-1866)

phineus p quimby philosphical society
Phineus Parkhurst Quimby

P. P. Quimby, whom many consider the father of New Thought, was a metaphysical healer, who practised mesmerism and mental healing and believed that sin, sickness, and disease exist only in the mind.3

For example, Quimby says:

“If I believe I am sick, I am sick, for my feelings are my sickness, and my sickness is my belief, and my belief is in my mind. Therefore all disease is in my mind or belief.”4

Quimby wrote and taught about his “Spiritual Science Healing Disease” and called his metaphysical system of healing “Science of the Christ,” and called it “Christian Science” in February 1863.5

Quimby was also a student of the occult, spiritualism, hypnosis and many other aspects of parapsychology.

Essek William Kenyon (1867-1948)

ew kenyon
EW Kenyon

E. W. Kenyon was an evangelical pastor during the Pentecostal movement of the middle part of the 20th century and studied these metaphysical New Thought and Mind Science teachings of Quimby.

Mind Science (where “name it claim it” originated) fit well with the emerging Pentecostal movement and its emphasis on the supernatural, so [Kenyon] combined them and created a peculiar mix of orthodox Christianity and mysticism.6

Mr. Kenyon is the “true father” of the modern-day Faith movement and many of the phrases popularized by today’s prosperity teachers, such as “What I confess, I posses,” were originally coined by him.7

Kenneth Erwin Hagin (1917-2003)

kenneth hagin word of faith
Kenneth Hagin

Kenneth Hagin, often referred to as “Dad Hagin” or “Brother Hagin”, was an American Pentecostal preacher who in turn studied under the teachings of E. W. Kenyon and has made the WFM what it is today.

Virtually every WFM teacher has, in some form or another, been influenced by Kenneth Hagin. Teachers like Kenneth Copeland, Benny Hinn, Fredrick Price, Robert Tilton, Marilyn Hickey and Jan and Paul Crouch of the Trinity Broadcasting Network, to name a few.

Dr. John MacArthur says:

“[E. W. Kenyon] was a faith-healer not in the Pentecostal tradition, but in the tradition of Mary Baker Eddy and Christian Science. He attended a college that specialized in training lecturers for the metaphysical science cults. And he imported and adapted into his system most of the essential ideas these cults propagated. [Kenneth] Hagin absorbed them from there.”8

Hank Hanegraaff explains further the progression of faith teachers and the aberrant teachings that multiply:

“If, for example, you examine the cultic progression of E. W. Kenyon’s theology, you will discover that his original deviations from orthodox Christianity were minor compared to those which characterized the later stages of his ministry. And with each of Kenyon’s successive disciples, the errors become even more pronounced. Hagin, who popularized Kenyon, not only expanded Kenyon’s errors but added to them as well.”9

WFM teacher Fredrick K.C. Price says:

“Kenneth Hagin has had the greatest influence upon my life of any living man…his books…revolutionized and changed my life.” Charles Capps gives a similar testimony: “Brother Hagin was the greatest influence on my life.” Kenneth Copeland credits Hagin’s tapes with having revolutionized his ministry.10 

Likewise, John Osteen (1921–1999), father of Joel Osteen also acknowledges Kenneth Hagin as introducing him to the Faith movement saying,

“I think Brother Hagin is chosen of God and stands in the forefront of the message of faith.”11

Today, along with these “old school” WFM teachers, we have a new breed in the likes of Joel Osteen, T.D. Jakes, Joyce Meyer, Creflo Dollar and Rod Parsley, among others, who teach, “health and wealth, believe that people can speak things into existence, thwart God’s plans, and purchase salvation; that money is the root of all happiness, that Christians are not sinners; and that Jesus did not come into the world as God.”12

  So, as we have seen, the WFM teachings have dubious roots in the occult and metaphysical teachings of the Mind Sciences originating around the middle of the 19th century.

Mind Sciences are defined as Christian Science, Religious Science and The Unity School of Christianity.

So, since we have seen the order of progression of the WFM teachers and their students, we need to be aware of these teachings and how to Biblically answer and respond to those who have fallen under the teachings of the WFM since it’s so prevalent today.

Dr. John MacArthur says:

“The Word of Faith teachers owe their ancestry to groups like Christian Science, Swedenborgianism, Theosophy, Science of Mind, and New Thought…Word Faith doctrine is a mongrel system, a blend of mysticism, dualism, and neo-gnosticism that borrows generously from the teachings of the metaphysical cults.”13

As D.R. McConnell points out, “any new religious movement [within Protestantism] must bear the scrutiny of two criteria: biblical fidelity and historical orthodoxy.”14

brian houston
Brian Houston of Hillsong Church
eddie long
Eddie Long
 So the question we have to ask ourselves is – Does the WFM bear up under the scrutiny of “biblical fidelity” and “historical orthodoxy”? 

The art and science of answering this and other questions that are in contention with historic orthodox Christianity is called Apologetics.

Apologetics comes from the Greek word apologia and means “to give a rational defense of the Christian faith.”

Webster’s second edition defines apologetics as, “that branch of theology having to do with the defence and proofs of Christianity.”

Titus 1:9 exhorts as in the context of qualified elders to “hold fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.”

1 Peter 3:15 says “…and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear…”

With these verses in mind, lets consider a few of the false teachings of the WFM.

1.   Positive Confession

2.   Prosperity Gospel

3.   Perverts Jesus’ Death and Rebirth

4.   Promotes a God of Human Proportions

1. Positive Confession

Positive confession is the faith concept that if a believer speaks “faith-filled” words, once can alter the spiritual and the physical world.

They teach that “faith is a force and words are the containers for the force.”15

At the heart of the Word of Faith movement is the belief in the “force of faith.” It is believed that words can be used to manipulate the faith-force, and thus actually create what we believe Scripture promises (health and wealth).16 This concept of positive confession becomes a formula for getting God to do what you want Him to do.

The formula works like this:

  1. God created everything by His faith by speaking things into existence.
  2. We are created in the image of God.
  3. Therefore, we too can speak “faith-filled” words (just as God did) in order to create our own reality.

According to word of faith teachers, faith is a force; a tangible substance that is released when you speak words.

This “faith-force” operates like a law that even God is subject to.  If this were true though, even pagans would be able to manipulate God to do their bidding.

“Because man is a little god “in God’s class: very capable of operating on the same level of faith as God” (Capps), and “because all men are spirit beings” (Hagin), therefore anyone, whether Christian or pagan, can release this “faith force” by speaking words if he only believes in his words as God believes in His (Hagin).”17

These “laws” supposedly govern the “faith-force” and are said to operate independently of God’s sovereign will.

Here are some other statements made by word of faith teachers that demonstrate their belief that faith is an actual tangible substance and speaking “faith-filled” words actually moves God to fulfill your demands of Him because it is based on a spiritual law.

  • Kenneth Copeland stated, “Faith is a power force. It is a tangible force. It is a conductive force.”18
  • Again, Copeland says, “The force of faith is released by words. Faith-filled words put the law of the Spirit of life into operation.”19
  • Charles Capps says, “These principles of faith are based on spiritual laws. They work for whosoever will apply these laws.”20
  • Kenneth Hagin stated, “Believe it in your heart; say it with your mouth. That is the principle of faith. You can have what you say.21

Likewise, negative confessions can also have negative impacts or have negative consequences in one’s life. According to them, negative words represent fear. Just as positive words “activate God”, negative words can “activate Satan.”

For example:

  • Kenneth Copeland teaches, “Fear activates Satan, the way faith activates God.”22
  • Charles Capps teaches, “Job activated Satan by his fear when he said, ‘the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me’ (Job 3:25). Active faith in the Word brings God onto the scene. Fear brings Satan on the scene.”23
benny hinn
Benny Hinn

Hank Hanegraaff points out that “[Binny] Hinn, along with other Faith teachers, almost always cites Job 3:25 to demonstrate the devastating impact of “negative confessions.” [Hinn] teaches that Job calls down calamity upon himself by setting in motion the force of fear via his negative confession.”24


Biblical Teaching

Hebrews 11:1 is the verse most frequently cited by the word of faith teachers to prove that “faith” is a tangible material.

Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

Word faith movement teachers interpret the word “substance” to mean “something tangible” and as Kenneth Copeland put it:

“Faith was the raw material substance that the Spirit of God used to form the universe.”25

The word substance [Greek: hupostasis] means “assurance, confident or confidence” so in context the verse says, “faith is the assurance or confidence of things hoped for…”

Dr. John MacArthur explains it this way:

“Faith is living in a hope that is so real it gives absolute assurance. Faith is not a wistful longing that something may come to pass in an uncertain tomorrow. True faith is an absolute certainty. Faith, then, provides the firm ground on which we stand, waiting for the fulfilment of God’s promise.”26

For the word of faith teachers to claim that faith is a tangible substance based on only one verse of Scripture, violates the basic interpretive principle that Scripture interprets Scripture.

Other translations of Hebrews 11:1 are:

“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for…” NIV

“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for…” NASB

Biblical faith has to do with whom we place our trust in (God). It is not a substance (based on some cosmic laws) that can be manipulated to fulfill our carnal desires.

God alone is the Sovereign creator and sustainer of the universe (Genesis 1:3; 1 Timothy 6:15). God does not need faith but is the object of our faith.

In other words, we have faith in God, not faith on our “faith” or faith in our “words” in order to manipulate reality:

Mark 11:22 says, “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Have faith in God.’”

We also have faith in Jesus Christ:

  • Romans 3:22 says, “even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe.” (emphasis added)
  • Galatians 2:16 says, “knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but byfaith in Jesus Christ…” (emphasis added)
  • Galatians 3:26 says, “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” (emphasis added)

See also Ephesians 1:15, 3:12; Colossians 1:4, 2:5

As for the Job 3:25 passage that word faith teachers use to justify their teaching that negative confession brings about negative circumstances, Hanegraaff rightly notes, “Such an interpretation ignores the fact that Job’s lamentation comes after his trials (1:6-2:13), not before. His lament was a product of his suffering, not its cause.”27

As Christians, we have faith in God; faith in what God will do for us and through us. Our faith is in Him and not in what we can get from Him.

The faith of those who promote the false doctrines of the word of faith movement is a misplaced. Contrary to what they teach, man does not have the power to speak health or wealth into existence. God is Sovereign and it His prerogative to answer prayer as He chooses.

2. Prosperity Gospel

The early beginnings of the word of faith movement was largely known for its emphasis upon healing, but today the movement is not only known for its healing aspect but also as a major source of prosperity or wealth teaching among modern churches.

Kenneth Copeland teaches, “The basic principle of the Christian life is to know that God put our sin, sickness, disease, sorrow, grief, and poverty on Jesus at Calvary. For Him to put any of this on us now would be a miscarriage of justice. Jesus was made a curse for us so that we can receive the blessing of Abraham.”28 (emphasis added)

leroy thompson
Leroy Thompson

Watch Leroy Thompson hype up his audience and proclaim “money cometh to me now.”

 At this point it may be beneficial to download The Baalam Syndrome teaching by Bob De Waay. This teaching about the error of Balaam has profound implications for the church today and is essential reading on the subject of the prosperity gospel and false teachers in the church. 
According to the word of faith teachers, Christians are promised health and this is guaranteed in the atonement of Christ as much as the forgiveness of sins. 

In ‘A Different Gospel’, D.R. McConnell points out and elaborates on several key beliefs that the word of faith movement teaches regarding disease and believers: 29

Disease is a physical manifestation of a spiritual issue.

E.W. Kenyon taught that “sickness is a spiritual condition manifested in the physical body.” Kenneth Hagin also taught that all disease is spiritual in origin and God’s method of healing must be purely spiritual as well. These teachings also come from the founding father of New Thought, P.P. Quimby who also defined sickness completely in terms of spiritual causes.

Speaking negative words promotes sickness. 

Word of faith teachers Kenyon, Hagin and Price all teach that “verbal acknowledgement of disease gives Satan the “right” to inflict it.” In some of the more radical Faith churches, Christians are not even allowed to speak of sickness in order to receive prayer.

It is abnormal for a Christian to be sick. 

E.W. Kenyon taught that “Sickness does not belong to the body of Christ…It is not normal or natural.”  Kenyon also concludes that “it is wrong for us to have sickness and disease in our bodies when God laid those diseases on Jesus.”  

Word of faith teachers teach that no believer should die before the age of 70, they should live to 120, and definitely not die from disease.  

frederick k price
Frederick K Price

Fredrick Price teaches, “The only reason people die before their time is because they do not understand how to exercise their faith according to the Word to prevent death, or they choose to die before their time.”  Price says at another time, “How can you glorify God in your body, when it doesn’t function right?…What makes you think the Holy Ghost wants to live inside of a body where He can’t see out through the windows, and He can’t hear out the ears?”30  


Symptoms are to be denied because they are a trick of Satan. 

E.W. Kenyon taught that symptoms of illness are spiritual decoys with which Satan is attempting to trick the believer into making a negative confession. 

Kenneth Hagin taught that, “real faith in God – heart faith – believes the Word of God regardless of what the physical evidences may be.” 

In a nutshell, the word faith movement teaches that the symptoms that a believer feels in their body due to illness and sickness are to be ignored because they are not real and are a trick of Satan. 

They teach that they are healed no matter what the symptoms tell them because the atonement of Christ guaranteed our healing since all sickness was laid on Him at the cross.

marilyn hickey
Marilyn Hickey

Marilyn Hickey teaches, “Say to your body, “You’re whole, body! Why, you just function so beautifully and so well. Why, body, you never have any problems. You’re a strong, healthy body.” Or speak to your leg, or speak at your foot, or speak to your neck, or speak to your back; and once you have spoken and believe that you have received, and don’t go back on it. Speak to your wife, speak to your husband, speak to your circumstances; and speak faith to them to create in them and God will create what you are speaking.”31 

Biblical Teaching 

Isaiah 53:5 is the main verse that the word of faith teachers use to teach that the health of the believer is guaranteed in the atonement: 

  • Isaiah 53:5 says, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.” 
  • The word healed [Hebrew: rapa] is used to connote not only physical but also spiritual healing and it is in this context that the verse refers to as seen by the words transgression and iniquities
  • In other words, the context denotes mankind’s healing from the misery of sin. 
  • For example, Jeremiah 3:22 says, “Return you backsliding children, and I will heal [rapa] your backslidings.” NKJV 
  • In the NASB, backsliding(s) is rendered as “faithless and faithlessness” respectively. We can see clearly that the issue was a sin or spiritual problem and not a physical issue. 

While the ultimate final healing of our bodies is in the atonement when we are resurrected, while in our mortal, fallen state, healing is not a guarantee. 

In the New Testament, we can see that physical healing while in our mortal bodies is not guaranteed and that it’s not always Gods will to heal. 

  • In 2 Corinthians 12:7-9, we see that Paul was given “a thorn in the flesh” and after pleading three times, the Lord said that, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 
  • In Galatians 4:13-15, Paul speaks of his “physical infirmity” or a “bodily illness” according to the NASB. 
  • According to 1 Timothy 5:23, the apostle Paul encouraged Timothy to drink wine (medicine) for his frequent stomach issues. 
  • Paul left Trophimus in Miletus because he was sick according to 2 Timothy 4:20. 

The bottom line is that while we are still in our “perishable and weak” (1 Corinthians 15:22-24) and “corruptible” (1 Corinthians 15:53) mortal bodies, they will continually run down and “decay” (2 Corinthians 4:16 NASB) and until we put on our new resurrected bodies, that’s just part of the human condition. 

Flip through many of the religious channels on TV today and you’ll see that the gospel of grace has become the gospel of greed. 

One of the hallmarks of the this movement is it’s over-emphasis on gaining wealth through “Seed-Faith” theology which emphasizes that those who give to God will get things in return. What it boils down to is the teaching that financial prosperity and success in both our personal and business lives demonstrates extreme favor with God. Most word of faith teachers promote the belief that Jesus was rich and therefore we too [Christians] should be rich. Unfortunately they never refer to the Bible to prove their theology. Rather, they constantly refer to the writings of human authors from whom they learned their doctrines of demons in the first instance.

Robert Tilton
Robert Tilton

Robert Tilton teaches, “Being poor is a sin, when God promises prosperity.”32

Creflo Dollar
Creflo Dollar

In a recent article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, John Blake lays out exactly what prosperity teacher Creflo Dollar believes: 

  • “He sees a baby born into wealth because the kings visiting him gave him gold, frankincense and myrrh. He sees a messiah with so much money that he needed an accountant to track it. He sees a savior who wore cloths so expensive that the Roman soldiers who crucified him gambled for them.”33 
  • Again, Creflo Dollar:34 
  • “See, there are some people that believe not in prosperity…They don’t want to hear about that God is a God that wants to put money in your hand…Well, you need to hear about money, because you ain’t gonna have no love and joy and peace until you get some money.” 
  • “What’s the gospel to those who are poor? Prosperity! What’s the gospel to those who lack? Prosperity! And if you don’t preach it, then you won’t be able to do anything about the poverty situation.” 

 To many of the word of faith teachers, material gain is the gospel and the reason to come to Jesus, or in other words, coming to the Master for what’s on His table instead of just coming to the Master. 

“Give-to-get” messages are a common theme within the movement. “Sowing your seed of faith” and of course, by sending them your money, they are helping you to grow spiritually. 

joyce meyer power thoughts
Joyce Meyer

For Example:35 

Joyce Meyer teaches, “When I talked to Dr. [Oral] Roberts today and we talked about this seed-faith thing, he said…when you give you get a receipt in heaven that when you have a need you can then go with your receipt and say, ‘You see, God, I have got my receipt from my sowing and now I have a need and I’m cashing in my receipt.’” 


rod parsley
Rod Parsley

Rod Parsley teaches, “God is saying you can sow that money for whatever you want…Your job. For sheep. That’s your covering and your food. How about for wine? That symbolizes to us fruit, joy, peace…You mean if you need some love you can sow money? Well, that’s what it says.”  Parsley also teaches that salvation can come from sowing, “Salvation for your family…Is that what you want? Then sow for it.”  

In this video Rod Parsley appeals to his audience to give 1.6 million dollars. This shortfall in funding is apparently because of Satan’s attacks on him personally.


john avenzini
John Avenzini

John Avanzini stated, “I don’t know where these goofy traditions creep in at, but one of the goofiest ones is that Jesus and His disciples were poor. Now there’s no Bible to substantiate that.”36

Tithing 

It is important, in the context of the teachings of the Word Faith movement, to bring tithing into this discussion. Without exception, word faith teachers ALL teach that in order to be blessed by God Christians MUST tithe. Tithing is the leverage used by these false teachers to ensure that their personal earthly prosperity program succeeds. Because the subject of tithing is a big subject and best dealt with as a separate study, please download this document that provides an exhaustive analysis on the subject of tithing. It clearly answers the question of whether or not Christians should tithe. (The document is in a PDF format and will open in a new window. I suggest you save it to your pc desktop and print it for careful study).

What does the New Testament teach about giving?

  • 2 Cor 9:7 “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver”
  • There is NO command to tithe.
  • The old testament Levitical priesthood has been terminated and replaced by a superior priest (Jesus) who is perfect, and lives forever. (Hebrews)
  • God does not expect us to give what we do not have.
  • Because God is love, we too will love the body of Christ (His church) and be liberal and loving as God our heavenly father is liberal and loving.
  • We should not only be concerned about our own needs and problems, but also about the needs and difficulties of others in the body of Christ. 

Biblical Teaching 

First, all evidence in the Bible points to the fact that Jesus was a poor carpenter from Nazareth. 

Let’s look at some Bible passages that demonstrate this fact: 

  • His father Joseph was a carpenter (Matthew 13:55). 
  • Jesus was born to a common Jewish family from the small village of Nazareth (John 1:46). 
  • His mother Mary presented the sacrifice of a poor person who was unable to afford a lamb when baby Jesus was presented at the temple (Luke 2:24, see Leviticus 5:7). 
  • Jesus borrowed a boat from which to preach from (Luke 5:3). 
  • Jesus borrowed a colt for His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:2-3). 
  • Similar to a missionary, Jesus lived off of financial support of others (Luke 8:3). 
  • Jesus had to borrow a coin just to tell a parable about money (Mark 12:16). 
  • Jesus had Peter catch a fish with a coin in its mouth in order to pay their taxes (Matthew 17:27). 
  • When a man told Jesus that he would follow Jesus wherever He went, Jesus said that He had “no home of [His] own, not even a place to lay my head” (Matthew 8:20). 
  • Jesus was buried in a borrowed tomb (Matthew 27:60). 

It would have been the height of hypocrisy for Jesus to have been a very wealthy man and then tell people the following: 

  • Jesus says in Matthew 6:19-21, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in or steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” 
  • See also Matthew 19:21-26; 1 Timothy 6:7-10 and Hebrews 13:5. 

Second, I want to point out that being rich is NOT a sin, having possessions is NOT a sin and, riches in-and-of-itself is NOT sinful. 

1 Timothy 6:10 says that, “the love of money is a root for all kinds of evil…” 

  • Notice that it’s the “love of money” – it doesn’t say that “money is the root of all kinds of evil” but the “love of money”.  The love of money has a huge potential to become an idol in our lives.
  • Matthew 6:24 says, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” 
  • The word mammon is Aramaic for “riches”.  What Jesus is saying is that your loyalty will be split and anything that takes the Lord’s place, anything that draws your attention off the Lord and places it somewhere else – is an idol. 
  • Jesus warned His disciples, and by extension us, in Mark 10:23, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!”  
  • Notice that Jesus didn’t say “it is impossible for those who have riches…” but it is difficult when we start letting money and things become the focus of our lives and it draws our attention off Jesus. 
  • In the corresponding verses in Luke 18, when the rich young ruler asked Jesus what he needed to do to inherit eternal life (Luke 18:18), Jesus knowing the mans heart and all things (John 21:17) replied, “Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” 

And the young mans response: “But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich.” (emphasis added) 

Our attitude should be to hold out our hands and let the Lord put in and take out as He desires – it’s all His anyway! 

  • John the Baptist said in John 3:27, “A man can receive nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven.” 
  • God says in Psalm 50:10, “For every beast of the forest is Mine, And the cattle on a thousand hills.” 

1 Timothy 6:6-11 says, “Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things…” (emphasis added) 

2 Timothy 3:1-5 says, “There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be…lovers of money…lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God – having a form of godliness but denying its power.” 

Luke 12:15 says, “And [Jesus] said to them, ‘Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.’” 

3. Perverts Jesus’ Death and Rebirth 

In a nutshell, the word of faith movement teaches that Jesus’ death on the cross was not sufficient, that He took on the nature of Satan and that He then had to go to hell and be pushed around by the devil and his demons but, due to a technicality, Jesus didn’t have to stay in hell. In fact, these teachers say Jesus was born again in hell. 

As Hank Hanegraaff puts it: 

“Faith teachers take Christ, the spotless Lamb, and pervert Him into an unholy sacrifice on the cross.”37 

Jesus’ Death on the Cross was not sufficient? 

A. They teach that Jesus’ death on the cross was not sufficient to pay for our sins and that Jesus’ torture in hell was a “ransom” God paid to Satan. 

In other words, Jesus’ passion on the cross was insufficient to cover the sins of the world and redeem mankind by His atoning death. 

B. They teach what’s called the Ransom Theory of Atonement; that Jesus’ death was a ransom or payment to Satan to settle the legal claim that the Devil had on the human race because of Adam’s sin at the beginning in the garden. 

Let’s look at some quotes by prominent word of faith teachers demonstrating that Jesus’ death on the cross was not sufficient: 38 

  • Robert Tilton teaches, “For three days and nights He [Jesus] was in the pit of hell, breaking the powers of darkness to set us free.” 
  • Fredrick K.C. Price teaches, “Do you think that the punishment for our sin was to die on the cross? If that were the case, the two thieves could have paid your price. No, the punishment was to go to hell itself and to serve time in hell separated from God…Satan and all the demons of hell thought that they had Him bound and they threw a net over Jesus and they dragged Him down to the very pit itself to serve our sentence.” 
  • Kenneth Hagin taught, “He [Jesus] tasted spiritual death for every man. And His spirit and inner man went to hell in my place…Physical death wouldn’t remove your sins.” (emphasis mine) 
  • Kenneth Copeland teaches, “When Jesus cried, “It is finished!” He was not speaking of the plan of redemption. There were still three days and nights to go through before He went to the throne…Jesus’ death on the cross was only the beginning of the complete work of redemption.” 
  • Copeland even more blatantly denies Jesus’ blood atoning for us when he says, “Jesus went into hell to free mankind from the penalty of Adam’s high treason…When His blood poured out it did not atone…Jesus spent three horrible days and nights in the bowels of this earth…”39 

Biblical Teaching 

Let’s take a Biblical look at the verse that Kenneth Copeland is referring to when Jesus cried, “It is finished!” and Mr. Copeland says, “He was not speaking of the plan of redemption.” 

John 19:30 says, “So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.” 

  • The phrase “it is finished”, [Greek: tetelestai] is an example of Koine or common everyday street language Greek. It’s an accounting term that means “paid off; the debt has been paid in full.” 
  • A Strong’s Concordance lookup on the word says, “to end, complete, conclude, accomplish, make an end, finish.” 
  • The Bible Knowledge Commentary says, “Papyri receipts for taxes have been recovered with the word tetelestai written across them, meaning “paid in full.” This word on Jesus’ lips was significant…He meant His redemptive work was completed.” 
  • Likewise, J Vernon McGee says, “‘It is finished!’ What was finished? Your redemption and my redemption was finished.”

In order for the word of faith teachers to teach that Jesus’ atonement on the cross was not sufficient and that He had to descend into hell for three days to finish the work that the cross did not accomplish, they twist two key passages:

  • Matthew 12:40 says, “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” 
  • Ephesians 4:9, 10 says, “(Now this, “He ascended” – what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)” 

First, the Matthew 12:40 passage speaks of Jesus spending three days and nights in the grave – buried in a cave – his burial plain and simple. There is no mention of being tortured by Satan and his minions. 

Second, the Ephesians 4:9, 10 passages can be interpreted two ways: 

  • One position is that while Jesus’ body was in the grave, His spirit visited those Old Testament believers who were in “Abraham’s bosom” and that He spoke to the “spirits in prison” according to 1 Peter 3:19.  This is the place called hades or sheol that is mentioned in Luke 16:19-31 in which believers and unbelievers were separated by a “great gulf” (Luke 16:26). 
  • The second position is that Jesus and the Old Testament prophets went directly to Heaven as indicated in Luke 23:46 where Jesus said on the cross, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit” as well as Luke 23:43 where Jesus told the thief on the cross, “Today you will be with me in paradise.” 

Further more, saying that Jesus “descended into the lower parts of the earth” does not mean that Jesus descended into hell, but to the grave. 

Ron Rhodes says that, “the phrase simply means caves, graves, or enclosures on the earth, as opposed to higher parts, like mountains.”40 

Either way, the word of faith teachers are guilty of reading into the text that Jesus went to hell and was tortured by Satan and the demons and then finally, because of a technicality, Jesus spoke faith-filled words to get out. This stretches beyond credibility. 

Going beyond what the text says and reading into the text, (i.e., letting your own ideas color how you interpret Scripture) is called eisegesis, which means “to lead in.” 

Exegesis, on the other hand, which means “to lead out”, is letting Scripture speak for itself without imposing your own ideas on the text. 

Word of faith teachers are guilty of eisegesis. 

We always, always, always want to let Scripture speak for itself. 

Jesus had the nature of Satan? 

These teachers have a misconception of Jesus, His nature, and atonement. 

Because of this, they teach that Jesus gave up His deity and took on Satan’s sin nature and that Christ actually died spiritually. 

Let’s take a look at some quotes that demonstrate the flawed teaching that Jesus took on a “sin nature” or the “very nature of Satan” while on the cross: 41 

  • Benny Hinn teaches, “Jesus Christ knew the only way He would stop Satan is by becoming one in nature with him…He became sin, so sinners can be righteous in Him. He became one with the nature of Satan, so all those who had the nature of Satan can partake of the nature of God.” 
  • Kenneth Hagin taught, “spiritual death means something more than separation from God. Spiritual death also means having Satan’s nature…Jesus tasted death – spiritual death – for every man.”
  • Kenneth Copeland teaches, “[Jesus] accepted the sin nature of Satan in His own spirit.” 
  • Copeland also says that Jesus made Himself “obedient to Satan…[and] took on his nature.”42 

Biblical Teaching 

These teachers misinterpret 2 Corinthians 5:21 as their “proof-text” that Jesus took on the “sin nature of Satan” and was “made sin” for us. 

  • 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”       
  • Ron Rhodes says it perfectly, “Regarding Jesus being “made to be sin,” Jesus was always without sin actually, but He was made to be sin for us judicially. That is, by His death on the cross, He paid the penalty for our sins and thereby canceled the debt of sin against us. So, while Jesus never committed a sin personally, He was made to be sin for us substitutionally.”43 
  • We can see this in the “type” of sacrificial system in the Old Testament. 
  • The sacrificial offering had to be “without blemish” NKJV or “without defect” NASB according to Leviticus 4:23, 32.  
  • The Old Testament gives us an example of substitution as hands would be laid on the animal as a way of symbolizing transfer of guilt. 
  • Again, I refer to Ron Rhodes, “the sacrificial animal did not thereby actually become sinful by nature; rather, sin was imputed to the animal and the animal acted as a sacrificial substitute.”44 

Jesus did not become sin personally, but He was made sin by substitution. 

We know that Jesus being God, didn’t change His nature, because the Bible tells us so. It goes against Gods nature to “change His nature.”

  • Malachi 3:6 says that God, “does not change.” 
  • In Hebrews 1:12, the Father says of Jesus, “But You are the same, and Your years will not fail.” 
  • Listen to what Dr. John MacArthur says about this verse, “Men come and go. Worlds come and go. Stars come and go. Angels were subject to decay, as their fall proves. But Christ never changes, is never subject to change, is never subject to alteration. He is eternally the same.”45
  • Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” 
  • True, Jesus veiled Himself of certain attributes or to put it another way, He voluntarily chose (Philippians 2:7, 8) to limit or lay aside the use of His divine attributes as seen in (Matthew 24:36), but that in no way diminishes His deity. 
  • Christ did not hesitate to set aside His self-willed use of deity when He became a man. As God He had all the rights of deity, and yet during His incarnate state He surrendered His right to manifest Himself visibly as the God of all splendor and glory.46  

Jesus was born-again in hell? 

And finally, the word of faith movement teaches that once Jesus took on the nature of Satan and then died an insufficient atoning sacrifice on the cross, He descended into hell where Satan and his demons tortured and tormented Jesus’ “emaciated, poured out, little, wormy spirit.”47 

As mentioned previously, according to the word of faith teachers, Jesus died spiritually: 

Copeland says that the Lord told him, “I accepted in my own spirit spiritual death, and the light was turned off.”48 

And at that time, Jesus was dragged off into hell for three days and nights. 

Fortunately for us, Satan allegedly held Jesus in hell illegally – due to a technicality: 

  • Copeland says, “Satan was holding the Son of God there illegally…The trap was set for Satan and Jesus was the bait.”49 
  • The technicality was that Jesus hadn’t actually sinned! Satan didn’t have a legal right to hold Jesus in hell: 
  • Copeland then goes on, “The Devil forgot to take into consideration that Jesus hadn’t sinned Himself but, rather, had merely become sin as a result of the sin of others.”50 
  • At that point Jesus spoke His “faith-filled” words while in hell and all of a sudden…51 
  • “That Word of the living God went down into that pit of destruction and charged the spirit of Jesus with resurrection power! Suddenly His twisted, death-wracked spirit began to fill out and come back to life…He was literally being reborn before the devil’s eyes. He began to flex His spiritual muscles…Jesus was born again – the firstborn from the dead. ” (emphasis added) 
  • Charles Capps teaches, “Jesus was reborn in the pit of hell. He was the firstborn, the first begotten, from the dead. He started the Church of the firstborn in the gates of hell…He went down to the gates and started His Church there…The Church started when Jesus was born again in the gates of hell.” (emphasis in original)
  • Kenneth Hagin also taught that, “Jesus is the first person ever to be born again.” 

Biblical Teaching 

Word of faith teachers twist Scripture into making the claim that Jesus had to be born again in hell, by utilizing a couple of key passages: 

They point to Colossians 1:18 to show that Jesus had to be “born-again.”

  • Colossians 1:18 says, “And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” 
  • The word firstborn [Greek: prototokos] means “preeminence or headship.”  
  • Just by the context of verses 15 and 18, we see that Jesus is “the very image of the invisible God, [preeminent or head] over all creation.” 
  • In Psalm 89:27, God says that He will make David “My firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth.” Yet we know David was the lastborn (1 Sam. 16:10-13) in his family but God made him “preeminent” over them. 
  • In Jeremiah 31:9, God says that “I am a Father to Israel, and Ephraim is My firstborn.” Yet we know that Manasseh was actually the first one born (Gen. 41:51) but Ephraim was given the position of “preeminence”. (Gen. 48:14) 

They point to 1 Peter 3:18 to show that Jesus had to have a spiritual death in order to be “made alive in the Spirit” and thus be “reborn or born again.” 

  • 1 Peter 3:18 says that Jesus was “being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.” 
  • First, notice that Jesus’ death was a physical death [death in the flesh]. He died a physical death. 
  • Second, this verse is simply contrasting His death physically by saying that He was alive spiritually. Peter is simply pointing out that Jesus was dead physically but He was alive in His spirit as seen in Luke 23:46 where Jesus said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” 
  • This verse says nothing about Jesus dying spiritually and then being reborn and to claim it does is simply reading into the text something it does not say.

And finally, the Ransom Theory of Atonement is contradicted by Scripture itself in the fact that Jesus was a “sacrifice to God” and not a ransom paid to Satan. 

  • Ephesians 5:2 says, “as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.” 

4. Promotes a God of Human Proportions 

God as Human 

It’s been said that, “God created man in His image and man returned the favor by demoting God to man’s image.” 

Mormonism and word of faith teachers share this concept in common as they both bring God down to the human level.

Below are some word of faith teachers demonstrating their belief that God has a human form:52

  • Kenneth Copeland says that God is, “not some creature that stands 28 feet tall, and He’s got hands, you know, as big as basketballs… A being that stands somewhere around 6’-2”, 6’-3”, that weighs somewhere in the neighborhood of a couple of hundred pounds, little better, [and] has a [hand] span of nine inches across.”
  • Jerry Savelle says, “God is not 437 feet tall, weighing 4000 pounds, and got a fist big as this room. He’s big, but He’s not a monster. He measured out heaven with a nine-inch span…The distance between my thumb and my finger is not quite nine inches. So, I know He’s bigger than me…But He’s not some great big, old thing that couldn’t come through the door…I don’t serve The Glob. I serve God, and I’ve been created in His image and in His likeness.”

    jerry savelle
    Jerry Savelle
  • Morris Cerullo says, “As I lay on the floor…my spirit was…in the heavens…Suddenly, in front of this tremendous multitude of people, the glory of God appeared. The Form that I saw was about the height of a man six feet tall, maybe a little taller…”
morris cerullo
Morris Cerullo

Kenneth Copeland also goes on to explain in detail that God is a “spirit-being with a body, complete with eyes, and eyelids, ears, nostrils, a mouth, hands, fingers, and feet.”53

And just like Mormonism, Copeland teaches that the earth that we live on is a “copy of the mother planet” which God lives on.54

And again, just like Mormonism, Copeland teaches that Adam was God and “Gods reason for creating Adam was His desire to reproduce Himself. I mean a reproduction of Himself. He [Adam] was not a little like God, he was not almost like God, He was not subordinate to God even”.55

Copeland even states that “Adam is God manifested in the flesh.”56

Biblical Teaching

In order for them to come up with a God of human proportions, one of the verses they look at is Isaiah 40:12, which says:

  • “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, measured heaven with a span and calculated the dust of the earth in a measure?”
  • A span = ½ a cubit or the width of a hand or about 9 inches.

After all, the Bible says that God has “arms” (Deut 33:27) and “eyes” (Heb 4:13) and even Moses spoke with Him “face to face” (Exodus 33:11) so He must have a body, right?

At first blush, it looks like the Bible speaks of a God who as the physical dimensions of a man.

But if we take anthropomorphic and metaphorical descriptions that the Bible ascribe to God, then we have to conclude that God is a bird because He has “feathers” and “wings” (Exodus 19:4; Psalm 91:4), and that He’s a “rock” (1 Samuel 2:2), and a “tower” (Proverbs 18:10), and a “shield” (Genesis 15:1).

Anthropomorphic comes from two Greek words anthropos, meaning “human” and morphe, meaning “shape or form” and it’s simply language that attributes human characteristics to God so we can better understand and communicate spiritual truth. They are not intended to be taken literally.

A metaphor falls along the same lines in that the [first subject] is like the [second subject] in some way. For example:

  • 1 Samuel 2:2 says of the LORD, “…nor is there any rock like our God.”
  • This verse is not saying that God is a rock but that God is like a rock in that He’s strong and solid.

We must always look at the panoply of Scripture or “Scripture as a whole” and apply the basic interpretive principle that Scripture interprets Scripture and when we do, we see the following: 

  • In John 4:24, Jesus says “God is Spirit…” 
  • In Luke 24:39, Jesus says that “a spirit does not have flesh and bones.” 
  • 1 Timothy 1:17 says, “Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise…” (emphasis added) 
  • Colossians 1:15 says, “He [Jesus] is the image of the invisible God…” (emphasis added) 
  • In Hosea 11:9, God Himself affirms, “For I am God, and not man…” 
  • Numbers 23:19 says, “God is not a man, that He should lie…”
  • See also John 1:18; Romans 1:22-23; Isaiah 45:12 

Humans as “little gods” . Not only do they teach that God has a human form, but also the reverse – that man is a “little god”!

The only difference between Mormonism and proponents of Word of Faith ‘theology’ is that Mormons believe they will become gods after they die while Word of Faith teachers assert that we are “little gods” now!

For example: 

  • Benny Hinn teaches, “I am a ‘little messiah’ walking the earth”57
  • A week later Binny Hinn said, “The new creation is created after God in righteousness and true holiness. The new man is after God, like God, godlike, complete in Jesus Christ…May I say it like this: ‘You are a little god on earth running around’?”58
  • Kenneth Hagin asserted, “The believer is as much an incarnation of God as Jesus Christ.”59
  • Again, Hagin stated, “The believer is called Christ…That’s who we are; we’re Christ!”6
  • Kenneth Copeland stated, “You don’t have a god in you, you are one.”61
  • Copeland also said, “I say this with all respect so that it don’t upset you too bad, but I say it anyway. When I read in the Bible where he [Jesus] says, ‘I AM,’ I just smile and say, ‘Yes, I AM, too!’”62

    kenneth copeland
    Kenneth Copeland

paul & donna crouch tbn
Paul & Donna Crouch – Trinity Broadcasting Network

trinity broadcasting network catholic

In the Forward to Heresy Hunters by James R. Spencer, Paul Crouch, president of TBN, complains of word of faith doctrines being attacked and says that critics should fight “against the REAL enemy instead of dissipating all their energy wrangling over whether we are “little gods” or not.”64

Paul Crouch says, “Do you know what else that’s settled then tonight? This hue and cry and controversy that has been spawned by the devil to try to bring dissension within the body of Christ that we are gods. I am a little god. I have His name. I am one with Him. I’m in covenant relation. I am a little god. Critics be gone!”63


Biblical Teaching

There are three lies in Genesis 3 that Satan uses that we need to be on the lookout for:

  1. Questioning and then contradicting God.
  2. Scripture twisting.
  3. Humans can become gods.

Satan repackages these lies over and over, into different religious systems and be it secular or Christian, some people just keep right on taking the bait hook, line and sinker.

Genesis 3:1-5 says, “Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’” Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. “For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”” (emphasis added)

Questioning and then contradicting God

  • Notice Satan putting doubt in Eves mind, “Has God indeed said…?” 
  • Then Satan just flat out contradicts God, “You will not surely die.” 

Scripture Twisting

  • Eve almost quotes God correctly in Gen. 2:17 – God did not say “nor shall you touch it” but He did say “you shall surely die”. Eve did two things; she added to Gods words and weakened the penalty of death. 
  • This is what can happen when we are not familiar enough with Scripture and when we listen to false teachers who teach bad doctrine. 

Being Like God

  • Satan promised her that she would “be like God” if she disobeyed God. In other words, Satan held out the promise of divinity for Eve to take hold of.
  • Satan himself had this same problem (Isaiah 14:12-15) when he desired the position of God and declared five “I wills…” with the last one being, “I will be like the Most High.”   

Psalm 82:6 is the verse most often used to support the WFM teaching that they are “little gods.” 

  • Psalm 82:6 says, “[God] said, ‘You are gods, and all of you are children of the Most High.’” 
  • When we look at the whole of the chapter, in context, we can see that God is talking to judges who are unjust and showing partiality in verse 2. 
  • As judges, these men hold the power of life and death in their hands and so God calls them “gods” in the respect that they have that power, but ironically, He continues in verse 7 “but you shall die like men”. 
  • Read verses 6 and 7 together: “You are gods…nevertheless you will die like men.” There is a clear note of irony in God’s condemnation of them.65 

So, the WFM demotes God to man and promotes or deifies man, a creature created by God, to the status of God.

Conclusion 

As we have seen, The Word of Faith Movement errs in several areas: 

  1. Positive Confession
  2. Prosperity Gospel
  3. Perverts Jesus’ Death and Rebirth
  4. Promotes a God of Human Proportions 

So the questions we asked at the beginning have now been answered:

  1. We looked at what the word of faith teaches as compared to what is taught in Scripture. We discovered that their teachings are not compatible or true to “biblical fidelity”.
  2. We documented the progression of the word of faith teachers beginning with P.P. Quimby and his New Thought and parapsychology roots, to the modern day teachers of the prosperity gospel.
  3. We concluded that the ‘theology’ of this movement does not conform to “historical orthodoxy”.

And so the old maxim holds true, “Error begets error and heresy begets heresy.”66

The Bible says to “test all things; hold fast what is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21) and even Paul commended the “fair-minded” Berean’s because they “examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” (Acts 17:11 NIV)

The bottom line is that the word of faith movement teaches a different gospel. To even criticize their teachings or speak out against “God’s anointed”, brings swift rebuke from their leaders: 67

  • Binny Hinn said, “You hear this: These men and women in Southern California attacking me. I will tell you under the anointing now, you’ll reap it in your children unless you stop…Andyour children will suffer. You’re attacking me on the radio every night – you’ll pay and your children will. Hear this from the lips of God’s servant. You are in danger. Repent! Or God Almighty will move His hand. Touch not my Anointed…”.
  • Paul Crouch stated on a TBN “Praise-a-Thon” program that if God did not shoot his enemies, he would.
  • Kenneth Copeland not only claimed that “Faith Critics” would go to an early grave, but would experience the dreaded disease of cancer.

May we learn from the Apostle Paul’s example and commend those who compare what we say to Scripture and may we also compare what we hear from teachers to what the Bible teaches and “hold fast what is good.”

Resources used for this teaching and recommended reading material:  
  1. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff, Harvest House       Publishers, ISBN 0890819769 
  1. Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., Zondervan Publishing        House, ISBN 0310575702 
  1. What Does the Bible Say About…?, Ron Rhodes, Harvest House Publishers, ISBN-13 9780736919036 
  1. Correcting the Cults, Norman L. Geisler and Ron Rhodes, Baker Books, ISBN 080106550X 
  1. A Different Gospel, D.R. McConnell, Hendrickson Publishing,       ISBN-13 9781565631328 
  1. Mind Sciences, Todd Ehrenborg, Zondervan Publishing, ISBN      0310488613 
  1. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary – Hebrews, Dr.      John MacArthur, Moody Press, ISBN 0802407536 
  1. Systematic Theology: Volume Two, Dr. Norman Geisler, Bethany        House, ISBN 0764225529      

Notes 

  1. D.R. McConnell, A Different Gospel: Updated Edition (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 1995), p .xix
  2. Is the Word of Faith movement Biblical from www.gotquestions.org October 13, 2007
  3. Todd Ehrenborg, Mind Sciences (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1995), p. 8
  4. Phineas Quimby, The Quimby Manuscripts, ed. By Haratio W. Dresser (New Hyde Park, NY: University Books, 1961 [orig. 1859]), 186 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 247
  5. Todd Ehrenborg, Mind Sciences (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1995), p. 8
  6. Is the Word of Faith movement Biblical from www.gotquestions.org October 13, 2007
  7. Hank Hanegraaff, Christianity in Crisis (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 32
  8. Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 289-290
  9. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 31-32
  10. An excerpt from Kenneth Hagin and “Positive Confession” by Dave Hunt from Occult Invasion, Harvest House, 1998
  11. John Osteen, taped phone interview, Pastor of Lakewood Outreach Center, Houston, TX, Feb. 24, 1982 as cited in D.R. McConnell, A Different Gospel: Updated Edition (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, ), p. 4
  12. Bob Hunter, Christian Research Journal article “Christianity Still in Crisis”, Vol. 30/No.03/2007, pg. 15
  13. Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 290
  14. Positive Confession/PMA – Prosperity Gospel & The New Agehttp://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/posit.htm    10/16/2007
  15. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 62
  16. Is the Word of Faith movement Biblical from www.gotquestions.org October 13, 2007
  17. Positive Confession/PMA – Prosperity Gospel & The New Agehttp://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/posit.htm    10/16/2007
  18. Kenneth Copeland, The Force of Faith, pg. 13 as cited in What is the Word of Faith Movement?,http://www/goslepoutreach.net/whatwordfaith.html October 21, 2007
  19. Kenneth Copeland, The Force of Faith, pg. 18 as cited in What is the Word of Faith Movement?,http://www/goslepoutreach.net/whatwordfaith.html October 21, 2007
  20. Charles Capps, The Tongue, pg. 103 as cited in the article Positive Confession athttp://www.watchman.org/reltop/posconf.htm     10/16/2007
  21. Kenneth Hagin, You Can Have What You Say (Tulsa, OK: Faith Library, 1979), p.14 as cited inCharismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 285
  22. Kenneth Copeland, The Force of Faith (Fort Worth, TX: KCP Publications, 1989), p. 11 as cited inChristianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 66
  23. Charles Capps, The Tongue – A Creative Force (Tulsa, OK: Harrison House, 1976). P. 92 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 66
  24. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 391
  25. Kenneth Copeland, “Authority of the Believer II” (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Ministries, 1987), audiotape #01-0302, side 1 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 69
  26. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary – Hebrews, Dr. John MacArthur (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1983), p.287-288
  27. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 391
  28. Kenneth Copeland, The Troublemaker (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Publications, n.d. [ca. 1970]), 6 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 241
  29. D.R. McConnell, A Different Gospel: Updated Edition (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 1995), pg. 148-157
  30. Fred Price, “Is God Glorified Through Sickness?” tape# FP605 as cited in An Examination of the Word-Faith Movement online document by Richard J. Vincenthttp://www.biblebb.com/files/WRDFAITH.HTM October 16, 2007
  31. Marilyn Hickey, “Claim Your Miricles” (Denver: Marilyn Hickey Ministries, n.d.), audiotape #186, side 2 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 63
  32. Robert Tilton, “Success-N-Life” television program (27 December 1990) as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 186
  33. Was Jesus Rich? John Blake, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, published on: 10/22/06;http://www.ajc.com/living/content/living/faithandvalues/stories/2006/10/18/1022SLJESUS.htmlaccessed on 10/08/2007
  34. Christian Research Journal – Vol. 30/No. 03/2007 pg. 16
  35. Ibid., pg. 19-21
  36. John Avanzini as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 187
  37. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 155
  38. Tilton, Price, Hagin, Copeland quotes as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 163-164
  39. Personal letter from Kenneth Copeland, Ft. Worth, TX, 03/12/1979; italics added for emphasis as cited in D.R. McConnell, A Different Gospel: Updated Edition (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 1995), p. 118
  40. What Does the Bible Say About…?, Ron Rhodes (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1997), p. 352
  41. Hinn, Hagin and Copeland quotes as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 156-157
  42. Kenneth Copeland, Voice of Victory (September 1991), p. 3 as cited in Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 279
  43. What Does the Bible Say About…?, Ron Rhodes (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1997), p. 351
  44. Ibid., p. 351
  45. Dr. John MacArthur, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary- Hebrews (Chicago, IL: Moody Bible Institute, 1983) p. 36
  46. The Bible Knowledge Commentary (Colorado Springs, CO: Cook Communications Ministries, 2004)  p. 654
  47. Kenneth Copeland, “Believers Voice of Victory” program (21 April 1991) as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 170
  48. Kenneth Copeland, “What Happened from the Cross to the Throne?” (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Ministries, 1990), audiotape #02-0017as cited in Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 278
  1. Kenneth Copeland, Walking in the Realm of the Miraculous (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Ministries, 1979), p. 77 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 169
  2. Kenneth Copeland, “What Happened from the Cross to the Throne?” (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Ministries, 1990), audiotape #02-0017, side 2 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 170
  3. Quotes from Copeland, Capps and Hagin as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 170-171 
  4. Quotes from Copeland, Savelle and Cerullo as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 121-123   
  5. Kenneth Copeland ministry letter, 21 July 1977 as cited in What’s Wrong with the Faith Movement? Part Two: The Teachings of Kenneth Copeland” by the Christian Research Institute
  6. Kenneth Copeland, “Following the Faith of Abraham”, tape# 01-3001 as cited in An Examination of the Word-Faith Movement by Richard J. Vincent http://www.biblebb.com/files/WRDFAITH.HTMOctober 16, 2007
  7. Ibid.
  8. Ibid.
  9. “Praise-a-thon” broadcast on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (November 6, 1990) as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 110
  10. “Praise-a-thon” broadcast on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (November 12, 1990) as cited in Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), pg. 274
  11. Kenneth Hagin, Word of Faith, p. 14 as cited in online document “Positive Confession”http://www.watchman.org/reltop/posconf.htm  October 16, 2007
  12. Kenneth Hagin, Zoe: The God-Kind of Life (Tulsa, OK: Kenneth Hagin Ministries, Inc., 1989, 35-36, 41 as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 108
  13. Kenneth Copeland, tape “The Force of Love” as cited in online document “Positive Confession”http://www.watchman.org/reltop/posconf.htm  October 16, 2007
  14. Kenneth Copeland, “Believer’s Voice of Victory” broadcast on TBN, recorded 7/9/87 as cited in An Examination of the Word-Faith Movement by Richard J. Vincent http://www.biblebb.com/files/WRDFAITH.HTM October 16, 2007
  15. Paul Crouch, “Praise The Lord” broadcast on TBN, recorded 7/7/86 as cited in An Examination of the Word-Faith Movement by Richard J. Vincent http://www.biblebb.com/files/WRDFAITH.HTM October 16, 2007
  16. James R. Spencer, Heresy Hunters – Character Assassination in the Church, (Lafayette, LA: Huntington House Publishers, 1993), p. ix in the Forward.
  17. Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur, Jr., (Grand Rapids, MI Zondervan Publishing House, 1992), p. 275
  18. Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 31
  19. Quotes/statements from Binny Hinn, Paul Crouch and Kenneth Copeland as cited in Christianity in Crisis, Hank Hanegraaff (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1993), p. 337, 344