Wednesday, May 28, 2008

If the gospel works at all, it worked before there were airplanes.


We learned yesterday of Pastor Larry Reed's passing. Reed was pastor of Olympic View Assembly of God and had terminal cancer. He had been to Lakeland on the 18th and was pronounced "healed." Now some are predictably chiming "lack of faith."

The teachings on keeping your healing are pretty well established within chariscostal thought. Frankly, I think that it leads to a works-based salvation, in this case where the Works is Faith. Forget Faith without works- this is Faith equals Works.

Within the recipients of this teaching, it creates a mental/spiritual anguish that often is worse than the physical affliction. "Do I have enough faith? Why am I still sick? I'm going to name it and claim it, Bless God, although I feel like crap."

I rather tend towards healing being a provision of my salvation, based in the atonement. I understand that faith is essential. But my faith is in JESUS AND THE CROSS, not in some healing manisfestation.

But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

Faith like this - God is so Good. I believe that He is real. I believe that he sent his son Jesus to die on the cross. I believe that I am healed "by his stripes." The faith becomes focused on God, not on the affliction. We have RELATIONSHIP with GOD, behind the veil as it were.

I say all of that to say this. Pastor Larry Reed surely had that kind of faith. In fact, based on healings that he had seen over his lifespan -he was an A/G pastor- I'm sure he had great faith of the other kind (faith to keep his healing). And so my conclusion is, for whatever reason, HE WAS JUST NOT HEALED. I don't cotton to suggestions that he was healed but didn't keep it because of some lack of faith. But I expected that it would be suggested. The suggestion is offensive to the gospel and his family.

I'm not concerned that he wasn't healed.
Sometimes we aren't. So what?

Here's where the crux of the problem is- a revival atmosphere that suggests that he was healed. If Bentley proclaimed that he was healed (the event does not appear to be on the May 18th video), and if the angel "healing revival" is often whispering such info into Bentley's left ear -which means healing so he says- that who are we to dispute it?

Like Dutch Sheets, with whom I often differ, I am greatly concerned about the proclaimings of healings which may have not taken place. And the audience goes wild over vain imaginations. Is that faith or is it stupidity?

We can write Pastor Reed off as one unable to keep his healing. In Toronto, they wrote people off who did not manifest as "HTR."

My heart goes out to the "hard to recieve" people; the charismatic discards. Jesus died for them too. I am deeply pained by the anguish that many across the word are feeling. They have been handed a lie- that all you have to do is "come and get some" - come to the revival and you will get your healing and a chunk of "glory."

If the gospel works at all, it worked before there were airplanes.

I have already seen tension in the sick among those I know or correspond with. Perhaps they have sought for a physical manifestation of healing for years. Now, they are feeling like maybe if they just go to Lakeland, they will be healed. But they don't have the money for an air ambulance if that were possible. Or cannot get away from their job. Or they suspect maybe it is not the right thing to do. Tension. And not from God, whose "peace passes all understanding."



Are people getting healed at these meetings? I would suggest that some are. But the hype (Bob Jones himself called it a 3 ring circus) and the false proclaimations make me sick.

Todd Bentley has stated "We do not have to age." Either that is truth, or it is a lie. Hint - it is a lie.

Last night I watched the May 18th video timestamp 03:19:00. A family with a young girl with terminal brain cancer brought her to the revival. There was a language barrier. After praying, with no visible manifestation, Bentley asks the girls father- what did she say? He says "she want's food" Bentley turns to the crowd - did you hear that- she's hungry - as if this is a manifestation of healing. Then the father tells him she's hungry all the time, the medicine makes her that way. Bentley skillfully changes the subject immediately.

I've seen him do this with cold readings, where he gets all excited, proclaims something and the crowd goes wild, and then he realizes he heard the person wrong when the person corrects him. Quick coverup, or just "slay them in the spirit" is the usual practice.

He is very good at not looking bad (keeping an atmosphere of faith, he might say), but I would prefer that he own up to his mistakes. Seems that angel - sometimes the "angel of the Lord" i.e. Jesus -as TB states it, whispering in his left ear is not too accurate.

If we must test all prophecies, then we must certain test the proclamations of those who say Jesus is whispering in their ear.

I want to minister to the hurting, and the HTR's, the discards. I believe this is the heart of the Father God. But alas, many have believed a lie.

I don't want this to sound too harsh, but that's the issue. And that's why Pastor Reed's death is pertinant to the discussion. Proclamations, with so-called apostolic authority, claimed by virtue of dozens, if not hundreds of 3rd heaven experiences, are being made.

Just as we can verify many miracles, we can verify a false proclamation. Death is pretty convincing.

We have two choices here- either we succumb to the explanation - lack of faith- for all proclaimed healings, or we determine that lies are being spoken in the name of Jesus.

Let us not dishonor Pastor Reed, and hundreds, possibly thousands of others who are not healed, by attributing it to their shortcomings. Thank God that Jesus heals out of compassion. If it were up to our own merits, we would all be dead.

Father, I pray for Pastor Reed's family, freinds and congregation. Comfort them with your loving touch. Let this not be a stumbling block to their walk after you. Allow them to see your purposes in this this, and please Lord, work all things for good for those who seek after you.

Father, it is not our agenda to see people look good or bad. I pray that you would heal the sick and afflicted, including this liitle girl with the brain tumor. Show yourself mighty!

4 comments:

  1. This whole thing makes me sick. Regarding Larry Reed, he is in a much better place, this world is getting goofier by the minute. My spouse is a paraplegic and I don't know how many times he has been told you haven't been healed because you lack faith. Pooh! He will walk again in heaven and he is willing to wait. A result of his accident was his salvation.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you for posting. May God bless you richly!

    ReplyDelete
  3. There's this little thing you find in the faith-healing racket:

    If the healing takes, the Preacher/Healer gets all the credit as God's Anointed.

    If the healing fails, the patient gets all the blame -- "faith not strong enough", "not really Christian", "must have some secret sin", etc.

    Win-win situation for the faith-healing preacher. Lose-lose situation for the guy who needs the healing.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I just found this site while searching for something else .... this is indeed a wonderful work ... and a ministry! I will continue to "surf around," and learn my way around the postings and articles and such, but I am amazed that I can find no recent activity. I am posting this on Sunday morning, June 22, 2014. I am still trying to post this with my own name ... I do not have a URL, only an email address.

    ReplyDelete

In the "Choose an identity" section - if you click Name/URL you can enter your name or at least a screen name. The URL is optional. Comment by NAME is encouraged, as all should own up to thier comments.