I have often said that the proof of the Word of Faith camp as a false group is evidenced by the fact that a nation like Nigeria, where many in this camp abound, remains one of the poorest and most corrupt on earth. And the very fact that many continue to argue in favour of this falsehood and give support to its leading proponents, is very proof of its devilish nature.
Perhaps my choice of words is a bit strong and may be perceived as harsh, but those are words I chose carefully to convey my utter dismay at the attitude of many Christian professors in the face of the truth of God’s Word.
Recently, I was in place where someone received the sad news of the death of two kinsmen. This person’s (he happens to be the pastor of a branch of a very popular Charismatic church in Lagos) first reaction was to say, “I cannot take this….. I won’t accept this.” And my first thoughts as I looked in the direction of my wife were “what foolishness!” Just yesterday afternoon I received a call from my wife about the death of a distant relative and the reactions by her other relatives who happen to be professing Christians. One of them is noteworthy and is the reason behind my writing this piece. The particular statement was this “…..we have to keep praying…….we will not accept this. She must live again!”
Now, it is understandable that grief should arise as a result of the loss of someone dear. It is even possible that for a brief period, that unbelief at the loss of such a person will cause hallucination. It is only natural to man that pain follows the loss of someone and this loss may sometimes lead to emotional expressions that a person may not be able to control. But where one boasts against the providential act of God over His creature, such a person exposes a lack of understanding of God’s Word despite his or her belief to the contrary.
This is the exact case of those in the Word of Faith/ Positive Confession/ Name it-Claim it camp. It is the result of a poor understanding of God’s revealed truth and the proper approach to explaining it. The history of this group is long and their damage and reproach to the name of Christ enormous. Their leaders are men who though claim to be servants of Christ, serve mammon. Men whose god is their bellies and who glory in their shame, for they mind earthly things. These are men who think themselves little gods and possessive of a tongue that can speak whatever their vain heart’s desire into existence. Men who pour contempt at the concept of a sovereign God who can do with His creation as He so pleases; for if this were so, they would not be able to decide what they want, when they want it and how they want it. They, along with their followers do not really seek the city whose builder and maker is God, but are more occupied with their best lives now. They love the world and are not pilgrims passing through to a far better place. They preach Christ only for earthly gain.
Two passages of Holy Scriptures record succinctly the truth of God’s sovereignty over His creation. In Job 12:10 we read “in whose (God)* hand is the life of every living thing, and the breadth of all mankind.” The other verse is Acts 17:28 where Paul says to the philosophers at Mars Hill, “for in Him (God)* we live and move and exist….” [*emphasis mine]
These two verses highlight an important truth that all who profess to belong to Christ –indeed every single man on alive— should note, “the God who gives life is the same who takes it. And when he decides to take it, none whosoever, can stay his hand! If this were not so, He would not be God” Men should quit this strange idea that they hand halt death in its tracks by their positive words. Those who do such will do well to acquaint themselves with verses such as 2Peter 3:10-12, to see the description of the world their hearts pander after. The Son of God did not die that men may “live and not die” but that they would “die to themselves and live for Him who loved them and gave Himself for them that they might gain their live eternally to the glory of the praise of God.” The one who fulfils the latter is the true Christian.
I end by saying there is a right manner to respond to the death of anyone. If the deceased was a child born of God, we may be rest assured that such a one has only just slept and will pass from death to life [1Thess. 4:13-14]. If the deceased on the other hand had no saving faith evidenced by the fruit of the Spirit (even if he professed all his life to have been born from above), we may use that opportunity to contemplate the brevity of life as Job did [Job 14:1-2], and spend our time from that moment seeking first God’s Kingdom and His righteousness, and telling those we know about the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.