Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Jesus Is Not Your Flu Shot; He is Your God

Surely by now you've heard about Gloria Copeland's Jesus-is-your-flu-shot video. Gloria, wife of famed televangelist Kenneth Copeland, made international headlines last week after she posted a video on Facebook saying that you don't need to get the flu shot because Jesus is your flu shot. All you have to do is say you won't get the flu, and you won't get it. The video began:
"Well, listen, partners, we don't have a flu season. We've got a duck season, a deer season, but we don't have a flu season. And don't you receive it when someone threatens you with, 'Everybody's getting the flu!' We've already had our shot. He [Jesus] bore our sicknesses and carried our diseases... Jesus himself gave us the flu shot... Just keep saying that I'll never have the flu. I'll never have the flu."
This name-it-and-claim-it garbage doctrine deserves to be ridiculed, and it has been made fun of by  newspapers to talk shows. Comedian Jimmy Kimmel grabbed the video and made a mockery of it on his late-night program. As Todd Friel pointed out, even Kimmel knows Gloria is a hack!

What Gloria Did and Did Not Say

With all the derision Gloria's video has rightfully received, Kenneth Copeland Ministries responded yesterday with an article posted through Charisma News intended to explain Gloria's comments. "Let's clear a few things up about Gloria's talk about the flu," they said. "Gloria did not say or imply that you shouldn't get a flu shot or see a doctor."

Oh, yes, she did. Even Charisma Magazine (which, by the way, is the same as Charisma News) acknowledged what everyone else heard. In an article titled Gloria Copeland: Skip the Flu Shot and Inoculate Yourself With God's Word, Taylor Berglund wrote, "Gloria Copeland said that flu shots were unnecessary because Jesus provides total protection in a recent Facebook video."

In the same article, Berglund pointed out, "In 2013, the Copelands' church was the site of a measels outbreak, in which 21 people became sick, apparently due to lack of vaccination. One church member told the Associated Press, 'To get a vaccine would have been viewed by me and my friends and my peers as an act of fear--that you doubted God would keep you save... We simply didn't do it.'"

The rotten fruit of the Copelands' rotten teaching is on full display in their rotten church. Everyone in their congregation knows what the Copelands teach -- the reason why they are there is because that's what they want to hear! And anyone who follows such teaching does so at their own peril. Somehow their church is still full.

The rest of the Copelands' article in Charisma News contained more lies to cover up the previous lies. They said, "Gloria did not say that if you had contracted the flu, you were a bad Christian who did not have enough faith or who did not pray enough."

Anyone who has a modicum of familiarity with health-and-wealth prosperity teachers knows they say this all the time: if you're sick, it's because you didn't have enough faith. You didn't pray hard enough. You didn't believe hard enough. You didn't name it and claim it enough. It's not the teacher's fault you're not healed; it's your fault you're not healed.

It's true Gloria said a prayer for those who already had a flu (spoiler alert: she didn't "bind up" anyone's flu with her prayer). But for those who did not have the flu, she clearly told them that they could prevent the flu by inoculating themselves with the power of positive words.

The article went on, "Gloria did not say that by simply speaking words, you will not get the flu." Well, it's evident to everyone she did say that. That's why she's getting made fun of. On my podcast today, I played a clip of Gloria saying that you don't ever have to be sick again if you just say you'll never be sick again.

But I don't even have to provide a clip of Gloria saying such a thing because Kenneth Copeland Ministries contradicted themselves in the very next sentence of their article! Here it is in context so you can see the contradiction:
"Gloria did not say that by simply speaking words, you will not get the flu. Instead, she demonstrated how to resist the flu by expressing out loud what the Word of God says about your healing."
That is hilariously stupid. I'm over here on my side of the computer laughing at how absurd that is. Once again, "Gloria did not say that by simply speaking words, you will not get the flu." Rather, "she demonstrated how to resist the flu by expressing out loud..." In other words, she said you can prevent the flu by speaking words!

This is what the Bible calls a seared conscience. They lie to cover their lie and they do not see the contradiction and feel no shame about it. The Apostle Paul wrote, "Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared" (1 Timothy 4:1-2).

What God Did and Did Not Say

Jesus is not your flu shot. He's not your health-and-wealth prosperity doctor. He is your God. He will inflict fiery judgment on those who do not know God and did not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus, and He will show unending love and mercy for His saints and to be marveled at among all who have believed (2 Thessalonians 1:5-10).

Who are His saints? How does He show this mercy? His plan of redemption is much more glorious than inoculating us from the flu. In love, He sent His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for our sins and rise again from the grave. All who believe in Jesus will be forgiven their sins and will not be destroyed in eternal punishment. They will be clothed in His righteousness and receive eternal life. These are His saints, those who are being made holy by God.

But even His saints get sick, since we are not yet made perfect. We have not yet taken off the imperishable and put on the imperishable. We still live in this fallen world, subjected to futility by Him who subjected it (Romans 8:20). Should you pray for healing? Absolutely. If it is God's will to heal you, He will. A faith-healer won't heal you because there's no such thing. God will heal you. You're still going to die.

Even the people Jesus healed during His earthly ministry got sick again and died, did they not? Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, but Lazarus still died eventually. Jesus said it would be so. He told Lazarus' sister, "I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die" (John 11:25-26).

Your body is deteriorating. You will get sick. You will die. No amount of positive thinking is going to change that. God cursed this world because of our rebellion against Him. Sickness and death exist because of our sin. Not Ken nor Gloria nor you nor anyone else cannot straighten what God has made crooked (Ecclesiastes 7:13).

But when your body dies, if you believed in Jesus and followed Him in life, your soul won't perish. You will live forever in the presence of your holy, righteous, glorious Creator in His dwelling-place where there will be no more sin, sickness, or death. He has promised He will do this. "He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away" (Revelation 21:4).

How do you get such a wonderful reward? By faith. In that sense, you will be healed by faith! But you are not guaranteed healing in this lifetime. You are guaranteed that your lowly body will be made to be like His glorious body by the power that enables Him to subject all things to Himself (Philippians 3:21). Believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.

Believe in What God Says, Not What the Copelands Say

You will never hear that gospel in the Copelands' prosperity nonsense. When Gloria says, "By His stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5), she doesn't take that mean by Christ's shed blood on the cross we are cleansed from the sickness of sin and death infecting mind, soul, and body. She takes that mean Jesus is your vending machine and He will give you whatever you want. As she said in this sermon:
"It could be healing, it could be physical things, a car, a house, a perfect mate... I have to say to the problem, to the mountain, to the lack, to the situation, to the sickness -- I have to say these words: 'Be removed from me, and be cast into the sea.'"
Whatever you want, you just have to say it and you'll have it. That's what Ken and Gloria Copeland preach. That's what they've always preached. That's what she said in her Jesus-is-your-flu-shot video, and that's what she's always said. She lies about the Bible, and then she lies about what she lied about the Bible. Lies upon lies. She has the seared conscience of insincere liars.

The only people who benefit from the prosperity gospel are the prosperity preachers. She gets filthy stinking rich off her Jesus-is-your-flu-shot nonsense, but you only get filthy stinking lies. Gloria knows you won't actually get the healing she promises. How do I know she knows that? Because in the sermon I just referenced, she preached with glasses on.

Never trust a faith-healer with glasses.