Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Healing Revival

Last night I watched a couple of video clips of the revival in Lakeland Florida. I am not going to pass judgment on Todd Bentley, because I do not know enough about him or his ministry. I am always delighted to see people being healed. God’s people put up with far too much junk from the devil, so I like seeing him being given a shake around. I am not from the school that says that God sends sickness and that healing if from the devil.

However, I was disappointed to see that Lakeland Florida is using the same old model that has been flogged to death by American healing evangelists over the last fifty or more years: the big man is on the stage calling out the words of knowledge; people going onto to the stage to give their testimonies and get zapped by the big man with the anointing. It is all designed for good television. God used this model for a time to wake up the church to the reality of healing, but surely we are now past that now.

Some are saying that what is happening in Florida is the beginning of a revival. I doubt that this old model can bring revival, because it is not a biblical model.
The biblical model for Christians is to go to the elders when they are sick (James 5:14). If they cannot deal with sickness, they should probably not be elders. Christians should not have to go to a temple in Lakeland Florida to get healed. While the devil can defeat the elders of a church with sickness, I doubt they will get significant victory in other areas.

The biblical model for healing evangelism is going out into the streets, coffee houses, pubs, shopping malls and marketplaces and preaching the gospel to the crowds that gather when the sick people are healed. The lost should not need to go to the temple to find Jesus. The gospel should come to them where they are.

Under the biblical model, the anointing multiplies. Jesus sent out twelve. When they came back successful, he sent out seventy-two. He sent his people out in pairs. We will not get revival while we remain dependent on a few anointed big men. That is fine for television, but it does not work in the real world. God needs ten thousand evangelists with a quarter of the anointing carried by Todd Bentley before he can bring real revival to America. Where are they?

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