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Lord, contentment is found in sacrifice, calling is found in obedience, and truth is found in your word. Help us as we follow Jesus in sacrifice, obedience, and truth.

There are three theological viruses floating around these days that concern me.

My concerns are two-fold: 1) They have wide appeal 2) I can see why they have wide appeal.

The first virus is the idea that God exists for us. God’s function is to make us happy, give us what we want and make our dreams come true. I truly get the appeal of making God a means to worldly prosperity but the message of Christ actually stands antithetical to this notion. Jesus taught that true happiness is found in submitting our dreams for ourselves to the dream of God for our lives. Jesus taught that we live by dying to self, become great by serving and our lives are defined by what we give away, not by what we have. In fact, Jesus said clearly that until the grip of material things is broken in our lives we invite an existence of anxiety and worry (the diametrical opposite of happiness). Here is the deal; God does not exist for us, we exist for God. God is not a means to our ends, God is an ends in Himself.

The second virus is the notion that Christian people should spend their lives in waiting for some great thing God may ask of them. The idea is to say “no” to the good in hopes of the very best. I get the appeal of the notion to worn out and discouraged church and charity volunteers but the Bible does not support the premise. Waiting for a “burning bush” call that only has occurred once in the history of humanity seems like a bad use of the limited years we have on earth. In sharp contrast, the Bible teaches that being faithful in small things is actually what qualifies and prepares us for a call to greater things. I am convinced the true greatness of a person is not defined in a single heroic act but in the grind of daily faithfulness and obedience to God. I don’t think “burning bushes” or “for such at time as this” moments are the inheritance of those sequestered in wait. Here is the deal; if you hope God will use you to do one thing big, be faithful in all things small. There is a lot right and not a thing wrong with living a simple life of love, faithfulness and obedience.

The third virus is that we are suddenly smarter than everyone else who has ever read the Bible. Such “enlightenment” is historically short-lived and never serves the Christian faith well. In this shift from classic liberalism, the focus is not “the Bible is wrong” (that one didn’t work); the focus is that “we have been reading the Bible wrong. Everybody.” These pseudo-theologians begin with socially popular outcomes and then steer the Bible their direction in a game of isogetical gymnastics. It would honestly be comical, if so many people were not taking it seriously. The harm will not be to the Bible, it will be to our culture who will lose its power, witness and critique. Surely, creating God in our own image will not stand (it never has) but we are worse for it. My default is that if the clear and consistent teachings of the Bible are in conflict with my way of thinking; it is me who stands in error. . .

Contentment is found in sacrifice, calling is found in obedience and truth is found in God’s word.


(Excerpt from Musings from Rev. Shane L. Bishop.)

534 People Prayed
2874 People have read this article

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  1. My husband & I were caught up in the prosperity gospel many years ago. It can make for a very demanding bratty child of God…which I had become. We were attempting to sell our home in one state to move for a new job in another state. God had the audacity to sell other people’s homes…even non believers and yet ours had not sold. I was angry & quite put out with God. I still remember the day when God sat me down and told me how things were. I did not hear an audible voice, but I knew it was Him. He told me, “I am God Almighty maker of Heaven and Earth. I am NOT your “servant boy!” I will do what I will do when I will do it!” I was quite shaken, but it was what I needed. We abandoned the teaching we had been getting (from a charismatic church and Kenneth Copeland)and found a good Bible teaching church. God did indeed sell our house so our children & I could join our husband…but not until I had bowed before Him and asked forgiveness and placed the entire matter in His Hands…and at what looked to be the very last minute for us financially. I love Him for that lesson!

  2. Worse than prosperity gospel is the third virus! Even Bible teachers who have been sound in the past are falling for the “re-interpretation” of scripture on things like homosexuality and gay marriage. Broken-hearted parents are gearing their children who have gone into the gay lifestyle that we have misinterpreted scripture all these years! Father in Heaven, please release your Spirit in our nation to remove the blindness on minds that the enemy has put there! Pour out convicting power on all of us to live according to the truth of your word! Have great mercy on a people in darkness! Thank you, Lord!

    1. So true. People like Beth Moore really need our prayers for their eyes to be opened. An interesting article from American Family Association talked about Beth Moore turning from the truth of the Bible. We need to pray those false teachers will not lead any people astray. For more information, look at the AFA website or read the book Jezebel’s War on America by Dr. Michael Brown.

    2. Matt6:33 seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness;and all these things will be added to you. Father I pray that your people will set their affections on things above and not on the earth help us to rightly divide your word and pray for those who may be in error. Father I believe you want your children to prosper spirit soul and body. We will only do this by renewing our mind to the Word of God. Help us to focus on Jesus the author and finisher of our faith and know that that your Word is the same yesterday today and forever. Culture changes but God you never change and we the body of Christ should never compromise your Word. What we compromise to keep ,we loose.

  3. So true! So many of my Protestant friends are caught up in the prosperity gospel thing and I worry about them. I am far from perfect, but see right through that one! Please help me pray to be useful to them.


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