Monday, 9 March 2009

Book Review: The Disease of the Health and Wealth Gospels

A friend of mine recommended this book, The Disease of the Health and Wealth Gospels by Gordon Fee. It's only 45 pages long, and it's more like a booklet than a real book, but the content of the book is definitely worth a read. The downside would be its brivety perhaps, but it is also its strength since anyone can read this short book and understand where and why those "Health and Wealth Gospel preachers" have got wrong. I personally found Gordon's treatment on the "wealth" part of the false gospel particularly helpful and compelling.
A long time ago, I used to think how you earn the money was the issue we have to deal with if you are a Christian. Then, I started thinking that how you spend the money you have was more important than how you earned it. But more recenly, I figured the whole focus on one's wealth is a symptom to a deeper and greater issue in a Christian. And with this book, it is now clear to me that a Christian would or should treat money and his own wealth (or poverty) with such indifference. In other words, Christians would have a care-free attitude towards wealth because they have realised that the wealth and possessions are of zero value. Gordon Fee writes:
This carefree attitude toward wealth and possessions, for which neither prosperity nor poverty is a value, is thoroughgoing in the New Testament. According to Jesus, the good news of the inbreaking of the Kingdom frees us from all those pagan concerns (Matt. 6:32) [p.14]

All of this is true because for Jesus wealth and possessions were a zero value. In the new age they simply do not count. The standard is sufficiency: and surplus is called into question. [p.44]

Authors words about those "Health and Wealth Gospels" are forceful and accurate. I recommend this book with a sense of urgency and sadness because such false gospels are at rampant in this generation.

You can get this book from Koorong or Amazon.

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