There is a certain activity I do from time to time that is to the detriment to my mental and spiritual health. I know this, but yet I’m inextricably drawn to switching on the “Christian” TV channel, FAITH TV (channel 341 on Dstv). If it’s not the prophet speaking, it’s the apostle or bishop.
Of course, they ignore Ephesians 2:20 where it says that the church is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, and therefore now that the foundation is laid these offices have fallen away.
Of course, they ignore the fact a bishop is an appointed overseer, not a self-appointed leader of their own church.
Nevertheless, the far greater cause of my mental health issues is the blatant false teaching and distortion of the gospel, all in the name of Christ.
May I warn you that if you base your spiritual life and growth on FAITH TV, you are in great spiritual danger. You need to be committed to a local church to fall under the rule of Christ as God’s word is systematically and consistently preached week by week.
The Man of God
The typical “Anointed Man of God” on FAITH TV, and in thousands of churches on our continent, says that what Christianity offers is physical and financial blessings now. Success now. Money now. Healing now. Your best life now. These blessings are available as long as you have enough faith (or “step out in faith” or “stir up your “faith”) and give your money as confirmation. As a helpful demonstration of how God blesses, these Anointed Ones live in mansions, have private jets and only stay in luxury hotels. You can be like them if you have enough faith in the God who wants you to be healthy , wealthy and prosperous.
The gospel that these men and women peddle is in total contrast and contradiction to the gospel of Jesus Christ – the gospel the Apostle Paul so powerfully expounds in his letter to the churches in Rome.
The heart of the gospel: justification
Romans 5:1 is the heart of this gospel:
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:1)
The false gospel that is being peddled by many today cannot save, nor give us peace with God. It’s a deadly gospel that leads to death.
Romans 5:9 is another key verse:
Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. (Romans 5:9)
Our great problem as human beings is not that we lack money, have bad self-esteem, are prone to sickness, or have a job we don’t like. Our great problem is that we are under the wrath of God. We need a gospel, not that makes us rich, but that saves us from the future, coming, imminent, undiluted wrath of God.
Only the apostolic gospel can justify, give peace with God and ultimately save us from the future wrath of God. Justification or “to be declared righteous” is the very heart of the gospel, but this is the one word I have never heard spoken on FAITH TV. I’m constantly told that God want wants to heal me and solve my problems. I’m constantly being asked for money. I’m never told how I can have peace with God.
Don’t settle for second best
The authentic gospel does not promise us our best life now, but deep joy in the midst of inevitable suffering and afflictions (Romans 5:3). The authentic gospel gives a deep joy in hope of the future glory of God (Romans 5:2). Jesus suffered and faced afflictions before he entered his glory and so too will his people.
Why settle for a cheap, false, this-worldly gospel of temporary pleasure, when you could have eternal peace with God and a share in the future, lasting, unfading glory of God?