Prophetic Prayers Over the Television

I was watching Pat Robertson today when he and his wife began praying for healings for people they ‘felt led’ to pray for. They went on to pray for a busted knee, a crushed face, a person coughing up blood. Does anyone know where this kind of prophetic-type praying came from? I would be interesated to hear your thoughts on this. Try not to be too negative about it – talking about Robertson’s other issues. I am concerned about the whole televangelist idea of believing God for healings that can’t be confirmed.

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11 Comments

Filed under Charismata, Theology

11 responses to “Prophetic Prayers Over the Television

  1. Matthew,
    When you say prophetic prayer, do you mean they prayed and then pronounced that God has healed them as in Benny Hinn style? On the other hand, if they were led to pray and they did but left it up to God’s will, then that’s all good b/c we should bring our petitions to Him, along with thanksgiving, adoration, etc.

  2. Matthew,
    I tend to think it’s just the voices in their head… but John MacArthur has provided a much more substantive critique & review in his book called “Charismatic Chaos”. I highly recommend it. It’s probably one of the most comical (he tells the story of a documented account of a chicken being raised from the dead) yet informative books for such a particular issue.
    Ultimately, and I think MacArthur argues this, it boils down to issues of authority. How do you know what you know? “Well, God told me.” Hmm. What chapter? What verse? Sola Scriptura is almost completely abandoned in many charismatic and pentecostal type ministries from what I can tell. . .
    One other point MacArthur makes that I think is important is that basically anything goes in ‘charismania’. No truth claim is to be questioned. Their governing authority and source for truth often times are the voices in their heads. (God told me this or that or told me to tell you whatever).. This road always leads to a big mess. . . your thoughts?

  3. Joshua,
    You are absolutely wrong b/c God told me so. How about that for argument:o) Seriously, you are right b/c the Bible provides guiding principles for us to live. Otherwise, I can say to a brother that God has told me that he should give me all his money in his bank account or tell a sister that God has told me that she’s to marry me. This would be good if they confirm the message but not so otherwise b/c it leads to mass confusion.

    The sad part about the faith healing is that it gives false hope to the sick and when they are not healed, they think they are not favored by God. We know from the book of Job that God does allow us to suffer so that we may see his glory in the midst of suffering and persecution and that our faith will be strengthened.

  4. I don’t know, but the other day, I woke up with a busted knee, a smashed face (i don’t even know) and a my pillow was all bloody. then I turned pat on (uh). I got all willy-like when he started shouting and feeling led, but nothing happened. I sent my money in anyway. that was the right thing to do, right? money, money, money.
    but seriously folks.
    televangelists have a place in the kingdom, but very few of the very few I’m aware of actually preach the good news about Jesus, as opposed to, say, the good news about “hook-me-up-with-some-sweet-stuff!!”

    Mr. Robertson got some props from World Mag recently. He’s probably a wonderful Christian man. But there is instability built in to this view of holy spirit-laser gun prayer, and many televangelists simply use it as unverifiable fakery to extort money from people who really do need Jesus, but end up getting a prayer towel or some other rot.
    all that to say: no comment.

    [wire-man: lots of posts for a 4 fingered typist! i’m impressed]

  5. Robertson is Pentecostal. The Pentecostals were some of the first Christians to use mass media, first with radio and then with television. I’m no expert on things, but I bet Kathryn Kuhlman was one of the first to heal over the radio.

    Although she died in 1976, Kuhlman has an official website: http://kathrynkuhlmanfoundation.org/

    You can also listen to some of her messages. She sounds creepy to me. Listen to it late alone at night with the lights off to get really scared.
    http://kathrynkuhlmanfoundation.org/realaudio/infilling-of-holyspirit.html

  6. That’s pretty funny David.

    Well you guys probably know I’m a cessationist from my earlier comments here and that I am suspicious to the point of mocking the slightest bit of mumbo jumbo but allow me to tell you about something similar I experienced.

    I was on a summer home mission team and we served in several different churches. Prayer had always been a struggle for me and I felt like I didn’t know what to say besides asking for some of the usual stuff (bless the food or for someone to get well). I really disliked praying in front of other people.

    I think someone asked me to pray with/for them. I would never turn anyone away but I thought why are you asking me, just because I am in this ministry this person thinks I am spiritual enough to pray with someone, I’m probably the last person they should ask. I said ok and then I ended up praying for them for a long time.

    This happened several times and it seemed strange that I should just think of things to pray for someone I didn’t know. I even asked the pastor if this was something that is possible.

    Some key points are that it was not in front of a bunch of people but almost always one on one and it I don’t think it made me look special. I think God does prompt us to pray for people. It seems like that is glorifying Pat Robertson rather than edifying the church. Sometimes it’s really hard to know what is what.

  7. David, I’d rather be a four-fingered ring bearer, but typist will do.

    As for the posts on charismata, I do want to post some more on the gifts. To let you all know I hold to continuationism of the gifts. That is, I believe that tongues, prophecy, the whole bit do continue…I am in the minority in the Reformed camp on this one. But until I see otherwise I will bear the brunt of the criticism.

    I do not believe in a second baptism by the Hole Spirit, nor do I currently speak in tongues. I earnestly desire to prophesy (1 Cor 14.1) and want to understand what the practice of the gifts looks like in the church. iconoclasm, I would suggest that your experience in intimate prayer with a friend is an example of prophecy.

    I have a friend who has argued against Grudem’s argument for the continuation of prophecy. I agree, Grudem’s argument on Agabus and Eph 2.20 are not the strongest, and probably would be strengthened by dropping the arguments altogether. I would like to hear some comments on Paul’s teaching in 1 Cor 13.8-13. When will we see face to face? I believe it is at Christ’s return…so until then we will see the gifts manifest in the Body.

    Thoughts??

  8. I’m a charismatic! I just didn’t know it. Thanks matt.

  9. My pleasure!

    Although I don’t know if I would label you a charismatic as there probably needs to be an affirmation that the gifts continue to be considered one.

  10. I have to side with continuation of the gifts. After seeing the gifts in action, it’s difficult to deny it. They are definitely supernatural and I wouldn’t even begin to imagine that they are from Satan, so it must be God 🙂

  11. Gene

    Sorry to diappoint you but Pat Robertson is a BAPTIST. Yes, licensed and ordained.

    God can do what He wants when He wants and through whom He wants. He don’t have to ask me if it is acceptable or not.

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