In my previous post, I wrote about members of charismatic churches and the way they misread scriptures. I didn’t have time then to delve into the meaning of the word of faith, mentioned by James in his epistle. Today, I’ll examine what it really means.
There’s a movement in Christindom called the Word of Faith. Its adhearants take their title from James 5:15 (BBE) which reads, “And by the prayer of faith the man who is ill will be made well, and he will be lifted up by the Lord, and for any sin which he has done he will have forgiveness.” The Word of Faith, also called Word Faith, movement folks assume this verse means that the words spoken by spirit-filled Christians contain some sort of magical healing power.
Reading in chapter five, from verse thirteen to the end of the chapter, we see that James was writing about faith in God, the provider of healing and forgiveness. It isn’t our words which cause those things to be granted to us.
James mentioned Elijah and how he prayed for rain to stop for three and a half years in Israel and it did so. Then he prayed for rain and it came pouring down. It was God, and God alone, who withheld and gave the rain. Elija was merely allowed to command the rain to stop and start again to demonstrate to the people that God is God and Baal wasn’t.
Word Faith people also wrench Romans 10:8 (KJV) far out of its context. “But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;” The Apostle Paul is refering to salvation and having faith in Christ, not possessing the correct level of faith energy to heal or be healed.
This is precisely why I want to write my next book called You Think You’re Going to Heaven? People hear preachers on the TV, radio, or at a local church, spouting off selectedverses, and assume they’re telling the full truth. Phoney teachers use the skin of the truth to contain deadly lies. This is why biblical discernment skills are vital to every believer.