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The Word-Faith Movement

Recommended Reading

Word-Faith: Index of Articles



All the books recommended below should be available on

The Disease of the Health & Wealth Gospels  (1985 / 2006)

Author:  Gordon D. Fee

"Does God will that the true believer in Christ be in good physical health?  Is a Christian promised good financial health by virtue of his or her faith in Christ?  If the Christian does not experience these blessings, must we assume that he or she is outside the will of God?  Gordon Fee provides a provocative discussion and a direct challenge to all who struggle with these issues.  Perhaps no other issues more directly affect the lives of professing Christians as do the issues of health and wealth and their relationship to the will of God.  In [this book] Dr. Gordon Fee looks at the treatment of these two themes as frequently found in popular Christian teaching.  Based on solid exegesis of the Scriptures, looking at each theme separately, this book suggests that there may be yet a 'more excellent way' in viewing these emotionally-charged issues."

A Look Into...  The Word Faith Movement: A Biblical Investigation 

Authors:  The Reachout Trust

"Word/Faith Movement:  (A) Who are they?  Some will maintain that groups such as this are outside our brief.  Whereas we would not call this group 'a cult' in the normal sense of the word, there are a number of reasons why we believe we do need to be attentive to what is happening.  probably the most important is the Biblical definition of a cult found in 2 Corinthians 11:4 and Galatians 21:8-9.  We shall see that there are aspects that make this 'another gospel' with 'another Jesus'.  (B) History ...  (C) main Beliefs ... (D) Scriptures ... (E) Sharing Jesus ... (F) Important Factors..."  

The 'Faith' Movement May Be Prospering But Is It Healthy?

Author:  Stuart St.John (for The Reachout Trust)

"What would you say, I wonder, if you were told that there is a teaching sweeping through evangelical churches in our day that not only has made changes to, but has also taken out the very core of the Gospel and replaced it with a fake?  Such is the message being propagated by Kenneth Hagin, Kenneth Copeland, Marilyn Hickey, Charles Capps, Fred Price, Robert Tilton, Buddy Harrison and Ray McCauley.  These people have international followings numbering thousands, several having their own TV broadcasts.  many believers who see these ministries at a distance know that something is not right about them, but most see them as the Gospel plus healing and prosperity on demand.  Research carried out in 1994 among a number of Christians from many different backgrounds has confirmed this.  Almost 100% held this idea that the 'Faith' message was only the Gospel plus.  None had any idea of the extent of its error..."

A Different Gospel
  (1988 / 1995)

Author:  D. R. McConnell

"Every Christian should read this book in order to be aware of the dangerous implications of the widespread and cultic Word of Faith movement preaching what is popularly known as 'Name It and Claim It' theology.  A Different Gospel is a bold and revealing examination of the biblical and historical basis of this movement ... The author knows the movement first hand and has a heart for those snared by it.  He is also an academically trained observer who has based this work on careful historical and biblical analysis.  McConnell warns of the movement's cultic nature in its doctrine of healing and its understanding of the atonement and demonstrates how far the movement's doctrine of prosperity is from Scripture's true teaching.  A Different Gospel, a book for the heart and mind, is must reading for those who seek reliable information about the Word of Faith movement."

The Love of Power or the Power of Love: A Careful Assessment of the Problems Within the Charismatic and Word-of-Faith Movements  (1994)

Authors:  Tom Smail, Andrew Walker, Nigel Wright

"The profound yet controversial influence of the Charismatic Movement and Word-of-Faith emphasis in the Church is a well-documented fact.  Dramatic claims of healing and changed lives through the power of the Holy Spirit have made significant impact.  But to what extent is the movement held together by a secure theological framework?  Has it at times stressed the emotional and miraculous experience of faith at the expense of biblical integrity and intellectual credibility?  The authors come from diverse theological backgrounds, but all three have been positively influenced by the Charismatic Movement.  When they placed the teachings of the Charismatic Movement alongside the basics of orthodox Christian truth, the authors discovered where the theological implications of certain charismatic attitudes, practices, and priorities failed to line up with the biblical gospel.  Without a spirit of witch-hunting or inquisitorial menace, they point out the need for serious theological correctives, balances, and reflective criticism within the movement.  Their greatest concerns are reserved for the Word-of-Faith proponents.

ristianity in Crisis  (1993)

Author:  Hank Hanegraaff

"Controversy for the sake of Truth is a divine command" [Walter Martin]

"Imagine browsing in your local bookshop and reading statements like: 'You don't have a God in you, you are one. God cannot do anything on this earth unless we give Him permission. Satan conquered Jesus on the cross. being poor is a sin. There will be no sickness for the saint of God ... not even a headache, sinus problem, not even a toothache - nothing' ?  How would you respond?  Past generations of Christians would have been shocked at such blasphemy,  The truth, however, is that such statements have become commonplace in the books and broadcasts of a powerful cultic movement which has now invaded the church.  Under the banner 'Jesus is Lord', these teachers are leading thousands of unsuspecting Christians away from the Kingdom of Christ and into the kingdom of the cults.  Christianity in Crisis is a rousing call for the church to take a firm stand for the faith 'once for all delivered to the saints'... while there is yet time to avert a disaster of unimaginable proportions."

Charismatic Chaos

Author:  John F. MacArthur, Jr.

"The charismatic movement of the past quarter-century has made an impact on the church unparalleled in history.  But one legacy of the movement is confusion and mushy thinking.  In Charismatic Chaos, John F. MacArthur calls for biblical evaluation and analyzes the doctrinal differences between charismatics and non-charismatics in the light of Scripture.  'My principle concern', writes [the author], 'is to call the church to a firm commitment to the purity and authority of the Scriptures, and thereby to strengthen the unity of the true church.'   To tough questions that seem to divide, Charismatic Chaos provides tougher answers that strive to unite.  This book tackles such questions as:  (1) Is experience a valid test of truth?  (2)  Does God still give revelation?  (3)  Prophets, fanatics, or heretics?  (4) Does God still heal?  (5) What should we think of the Signs and Wonders movement?  (6) Does the Bible promise health and wealth?"

The Agony of Deceit: What Some TV Preachers are Really Teaching (1992 / 1990)

Editor:  Michael Horton

"Until many of them became embroiled in scandal, television preachers had been above reproach in the eyes of millions of viewers.  Their followers assumed them to be learned, enlightened, and creditable ministers of the gospel.  But the fall of several popular televangelists has forced the church to take a closer look at the teachings of her more visible preachers.  The Agony of Deceit is an in-depth, carefully documented analysis of television evangelism.  This collection of fourteen essays ... represent[s] several denominations, [but] all the contributors agree that the most significant problem plaguing televangelism is not moral or ethical decline but a gross deficiency in its doctrinal foundations.  In short, heresy."

The Promise of Health and Wealth: A Historical and Biblical Analysis of the Modern Faith Movement

Author:  Dan McConnell

"[This book] examines the biblical basis and historical roots of the so-called Modern Faith Movement, often associated with US televangelists.  It's proponents claim that their teachings on health and wealth follow divine revelation.  McDonnell first exposes the historical links between Kenneth Hagin, Father of the Faith Movement and E.W. Kenyon, an influential writer of the 'New Thought' school of metaphysics, closely associated with occult and theosophist influences.  The author then proceeds to examine the Bible's teaching.  The doctrine of prosperity promised to 'true' believers is seen to fall short of Scripture's teaching: the Movement's understanding of atonement and of the doctrine of healing are clearly shown to be cultic in nature and heretical."

The Health and Wealth Gospel: What's Going On Today In A Movement That Has Shaped the Faith of Millions?

Author:  Bruce Barron

"'Name it and claim it!'  'God wants you rich!'  'God wants you well!'  These are the voices of a movement that is shaping the faith of millions of people today.  Where did the faith teachers come from?  What are they saying?  Is it biblical?  Is it dangerous?  Bruce Barron probes the teachings of prominent preachers like Charles Capps, Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland.  Can we have whatever we ask from God?  Can we see a hundredfold return on our kingdom investments?  Is sickness a sign of lack of faith?  These and other claims are examined fully and fairly.  The story Barron tells is one of both triumph and tragedy, insight and error - a movement that has ignited the faith of some and provoked the ire of others.  Here's a book that is sure to spark debate and disagreement about this controversial movement."

Beyond Seduction: A Return to Biblical Christianity

Author:  Dave Hunt

"A sudden and unexpected revolution has begun.  Some have hailed this revolution as a much-needed purification of the Church, while others are saying that it will lead to a major schism in Christianity.  Since the release of the bestselling The Seduction of Christianity, Christians everywhere have come face-to-face with this undeniable truth:  We must be certain that what we believe is firmly based upon the clear teaching of God's Word alone.  The only real remedy for deception and apostasy is a return to a true biblical foundation for Christian living.  Now, with a heart for God's Word, Dave Hunt takes you Beyond Seduction, thoroughly exploring the biblical and historical view of Christian teachings within the Church: meditation, the proper view of self, faith, divine revelations, prayer, healing and psychological teachings.  This inspiring book sounds the call for a return to the sacrificial life that Christ required and the abundant life He offers."

The Seduction of Christianity: Spiritual Discernment in the Last Days

Authors:  Dave Hunt & T.A. McMahon

"The Bible clearly states that a great Apostasy must occur before Christ's Second Coming.  Today Christians are being deceived by a new world view more subtle and more seductive than anything the world has ever experienced.  What are the dangers in the growing acceptance and practice of:  (1) Positive and possibility thinking,  (2) healing of memories,  (3) self-help philosophies,  (4) holistic medicine?  The Seduction of Christianity will not appear as a frontal assault or oppression of our religious beliefs.  Instead,. it will come as the latest 'fashionable philosophies' offering to make us happier, healthier, better educated, even more spiritual.  [This book is] A compelling look at the times we live in.  A clear call to every believer to choose between the Original and the counterfeit.  Only then can we hope to escape the seduction of Christianity."




"For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves,
waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of the body.  For we are saved by hope"
(Romans 8:19-25)


Elizabeth McDonald & Dusty Peterson