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From my understanding and study, here are some of their main teachings:

  • God wants us to be prosperous in this life (health, wealth, relationships etc)
  • If we don't receive we don't have enough faith (faith is a like a force)
  • we are little gods; we have creative power to speak things into reality (i.e think positively and that thing will come to pass - often related to success) (name it, claim it)
  • Jesus was tortured in hell/hades by demons, for 3 days to atone for our sin (the cross wasn't the end of his suffering.
  • There are some other niches of teaching within these doctrines I simply can't remember currently (these are the main ones above)

From listening to some of these preachers they do use verses to back up their claims; are these actually what the bible says, or are they being twisted?

I do have my own thoughts about the truth of these teachings, however I am not going to include them, as I still want to neutrally approach the topic/question.

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For every passage that justifies a religious focus on the accumulation of wealth, there is another that presents the opposite, or example Mark 10:24-25 (copied in Matthew 19:23-24, Luke 18:24-25):

Mark 10:24-25 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

The Bible often associates prosperity with wickedness; for example Psalm 73:3-9:

Psalm 73:3-9: For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm. They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men. Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment. Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish. They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily. They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.

An association of prosperity with wickedness may be unfair, but is also inconsistent with any claim that the Bible condemns as lacking faith, those who do not achieve prosperity.

I would more willingly accept the claims of prosperity theology if its advocates gave their own wealth to the poor, as Ananias was called upon to do in Acts 5.

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