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Jesus versus Benny Hinn

Marriage-Gods-Way-author-Scott-LaPierreThe last two weeks I’ve been studying the cleansing of the leper and the healing of the paralytic. While doing so I couldn’t help finding myself contrasting Jesus’ miracles with the supposed healings of self-declared miracle workers, such as Benny Hinn. The differences between them seem so obvious, it begs the question, why are thousands of people in attendance at his events? Why do so many people give him millions of dollars? These people should consider…

First, Jesus’ healings were complete and immediate.

When Peter’s mother-in-law was healed Luke 4:39 says, “Immediately she arose and served them.” In Luke 5:13 when Jesus cleansed the leper it says, “Immediately the leprosy left him.” In Luke 5:25 when Jesus healed the paralyzed man it says, “Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house.” But if you ever watch some of today’s “miracle workers” people are practically lifted out of their wheelchairs and held up as they take their first steps. Other times some part of the body is healed, while the rest of the body is left unhealed. That’s nothing like how Jesus healed: He healed immediately and He healed completely.

Second, Jesus’ healings were testable.

The leper had leprosy, and then he didn’t; there was no wondering about whether he was cleansed. The paralytic couldn’t move, then he picked up his bed and walked away. Blind people couldn’t see; then they could see. My personal favorite: people were dead, but then they were alive. These are nothing like the healings of the “miracle workers” where you’re left wondering, “Was his heart…or back…or knees really healed? Were his headaches really taken away?”

Third, Jesus WANTED His miracles verified.

In Sunday’s sermon in Luke 5:15 Jesus tells the leper, “Go and show yourself to the priest…as a testimony to them” (something He also told the lepers in Luke 17:14). If today’s “miracle workers” wanted their healings validated like Jesus did, things would look WAY different!

Too much of what passes for the miraculous today receive no healthy evaluation and it makes the whole church look bad. Antony Thomas produced a documentary called A Question of Miracles that followed people like Benny Hinn, and in an interview with the New York Times, Antony said, “they do more damage to Christianity than the most committed atheist.” The solution is for their healings to face some scrutiny. If they were really doing what they claim to be doing they should say, “Go and show yourself to doctors and others who can verify it, and so it can be a testimony to them.”

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5 thoughts on “Jesus versus Benny Hinn

  1. Scott,

    You did not sound that “we” should not pray for the sick. It is just that often I have found that some “leaders” withing the Body of Christ will seem to go at great lengths to often prevent God from using some within the Body if they are just not the same as “we” are. (I am not saying that you are doing this at all…)

    I agree that we as a Body of Christ, need to be careful as to what we do, say and present. Often a “ministry” can become to “big” or more about the “minister” than lifting up Jesus etc. I think often one’s starting out with good (Godly) intentions can fall into this trap when they see what one may call “success” and start to see a big following. We need to be praying for the whole Body of Christ. We need to be praying that those that God touches and heals, no matter what means, to get the proof so that God may be lifted up and Praised etc. We need to pray that our own head don’t get “big” when God chooses to use us to touch another and give God all the credit for the healing and be very humble that He would decide to work through us.

    There is a problem within the Body of Christ, however, where different parts end up attacking other parts. When the “body” attacks itself, it is not at its healthiest. I guess this is one reason we have so many denominations. I don’t think God wanted this division in His Body. I guess I have seen so much of this and even have taken a few attacks myself as well in this area so I still have some bruises that can bring back some pain when touched.

    Some seminaries (groups) teach that God does not move with certain “gifts” that He once moved with. Some groups don’t allow their ministers to even teach on these certain “gifts” and in fact require them to teach against them being used today. At the same time others stress the “gifts” so much that they will go as far as to say that one part of the Body of Christ is not really a “true part” because they are not like them. Both of these can divide the Body of Christ… Both extremes can damage the Body as a whole. It can make part feel that they are not really saved or good enough (even though it is the Righteousness of Christ that make one saved etc.) and it can It can also prevent one part from trying to obey the Word where Jesus called His disciple to heal the sick, cast out demons, raise the dead etc. because they have been told that Jesus is not the same yesterday, today and forever. (Please understand that I am not saying that you are doing this as well. I am only trying to let you know that I guess the title of your post, touch a bruise.)

    I do believe there needs to be a balance however, it is easy to go too much either way. Some stress certain areas like some of the “gifts” and say all must be as they do etc. Some condemn or attack Brothers in Christ that are attempting to obey their calling from God with to walk in His power in what is often called “Signs and Wonders”. Some deny either the power or the person’s calling. Other will say another is not “Full of the Spirit” of God because they may not express or walk in a so called “Signs and Wonders” gift yet do walk in some of the other gifts of teaching, preaching, and leading etc. Often I feel that it is not so much the atheist that do more harm within the Body of Christ but it is the way we treat each other. We are to be known by our love and unity yet, we are often known for hate and divisions with each other. I know, “hate” is a strong word to use but if we are not showing “love” between us then it is that spirit of “hate” that the world sees.

    Again, Scott, I agreeing mostly with your post. It is that “bruise” I have from the past that got a response where I usually do not respond. Beside the one blind person recorded that was not healed “immediate” and Lazarus that even though was raised from the dead did in fact die again. We may not have all the recorded times Jesus prayed for people nor all the healing’s of Jesus recorded. We do have recorded in Matthew 13:58 and Mark 6:5 where “He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them.” It seemed to be linked at the people’s unbelief and not Jesus there. Maybe we still today, because of our “unbelief”, we prevent Jesus from completely and immediately healing all in the Body as well as one “keeping” their healing or starting to question it and allowing the devil to come in and take it away. Just a thought….

    God Bless You Scott!

    Shalom In Him,

    Joseph

    1. Thanks Joseph!
      You said:

      “There is a problem within the Body of Christ, however, where different parts end up attacking other parts. When the ‘body’ attacks itself, it is not at its healthiest. I guess this is one reason we have so many denominations. I don’t think God wanted this division in His Body.”

      Two thoughts…
      First, I wouldn’t consider Benny Hinn or other false teachers/prophets like him to be part of the Body of Christ; I would consider them to be people making the Body of Christ look bad.

      In the sermon I preached yesterday I actually mentioned the verses regarding Jesus’ ministry being hindered in Nazareth because of the people’s unbelief…so I’m definitely with you there!

      Second, I believe the church has a responsibility to expose false teaching. I understand some people might take that to an extreme and fight battles on some hills that aren’t worth dying over per se, but there’s another unhealthy extreme where you’re considered legalistic or unloving if you declare anything to be false teaching. Most of Paul’s letters were corrective in nature, and if we use Jesus as our example (as you mentioned in your post) his strongest words were reserved for the religious leaders teaching of his day because of their false teaching.

      God bless,
      Scott

    2. Thank You Scott,

      I understand where you are coming from and what you are saying…

      God Bless You!

      Shalom In Him,

      Joseph

  2. Scott LaPierre,

    I agree mostly with your post. Yes, there are some out there that can make the church “look bad”. But, I would rather someone to pray for me for healing instead of not. Even if the pain goes away for a little time, Praise the Lord! If complete healing is done, Praise the Lord! But even if I am not healed, still Praise the Lord and thank you to the one obedient to pray for the sick…. Maybe the church looks worse if they do not obey nor pray for miracles and healing… It is that church that doesn’t look like the Body of Christ in the first place….

    Mark 8:22-25 (NIV)
    22 They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. 23 He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?” 24 He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.” 25 Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26 Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t go into the village. ”

    Not exactly “complete and immediate”… but it give us hope to keep praying for complete healing… Our goal is to become as much like Jesus as possible but it is only with His Spirit working through us….

    So even with Jesus it can take a second touch. And then there is Lazarus of Bethany. Raised from the dead, but he did die again later…. Just a thought…
    “As the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like him and reflect his glory even more.” 2 Corinthians 3:18b (NLT)

    Like the Moon reflects the light of the Sun, we too should reflect the Light of the Son. When people look at us, what reflection are they seeing?

    God Bless You!

    Joseph

    1. Hi Joseph,
      Thanks for reading my blog and for leaving a comment!

      Did it sound like I was saying we shouldn’t pray for the healing of others? I’m sorry if it sounded that way; that wasn’t my intention. Every week I send out an e-mail to the church with the weekly prayer requests, including some number of sick people, that I hope the congregations lifts up to the Lord.

      Great point about the blind man’s healing not being “immediate”! This would be the only example of a “gradual” healing in Scripture, and I think the explanation is found in the previous verses. I think it was probably an illustration to His disciples that their spiritual blindness (shown in the previous verses) would also be healed over time…or gradual instead of immediate. In the previous verse, Mark 8:21, Jesus said, “So He said to them, “How is it you do not understand?” Then right after that the blind man’s healing takes place and I see a strong parallel between that man’s sight and the disciples’ sight, that even though they didn’t understand immediately, they would in the future.

      God bless you too Joseph!

      Scott

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