The prosperity gospel is a false teaching that teaches God rewards faith — and hefty tithing — with financial blessings (http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/topics/p/prosperity-gospel/).
Numerous alarmed Christian have pointed out the aberrations of this teaching (please see http://www.huffingtonpost.com/pastor-rick-henderson/osteen-meyer-prosperity-gospel_b_3790384.html , for example), and with time, I also hope to present my objections to the properity gospel in this blog.
Nonetheless, I recently came across this interesting article in Charisma News (http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/the-flaming-herald/48828-demon-filled-man-mocks-slaps-powerless-charismatic-pastor ), about a man in Gabia, West Africa, who had been demon possessed since childhood but who had the evil spirit cast out of him, after being prayed for by an evangelist from the U.S..
After the African man got delivered, the evangelist interviewed him, and was fascinated by the man’s testimony:
For 12 years he’d been under the spell of Satan. From a very young age demons unveiled the spirit world to him as degree by degree they possessed him.
I asked him many questions and I will not elaborate on the entire interview I had with him, but I want to enforce one main point that was very compelling to me. I asked him if he’d ever sought to be delivered from these demons. He told me that he’d visited many churches, but none could help him. As a matter of fact, instead of being helped the demons in this young man often hurt the amateur exorcists.
For example, in the largest charismatic church in the country the demon in this man slapped the pastor and ransacked his office, repeatedly telling him that this church had no power to set him free. “All this church does is talk about money and they don’t live holy,” the demon said. Can you believe a demon said that? Demons know churches. Demons know men. “Jesus I know, Paul I know, but who are you?” (Acts 19:15).
Beware of prosperity teachers! These teachers do not preach out of sincerity, but rather, it’s really your money they are after (2 Corinthians 2:17), and “in their greed they will make up clever lies to get hold of your money” (2 Peter 2:3, NLT).
However, all blame should not be assigned on prosperity teachers — there is a saying that there cannot be leaders without followers, and followers of properity teaching need to do some self-examination and soul-searching:
For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. (2 Timothy 4:3, NIV)
Indeed, the bible warns believers, that if they deisre to get rich quickly, they set themselves up for great harm, even to the point of their own destruction:
Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. (1 Timothy 6:9, NIV)