God has things for us to do beloved. Each person on the wrong path is not doing what God has called them to. There is damage to the kingdom. A prosperity doctrine believer is also tied to an outcome that probably never comes. Maybe they will keep showing up each Sunday to buy that lottery ticket but eventually they will blame God when the promises of the huckster do not come to fruition.
But there is also the risk we rarely consider. Beloved, people who come to church might be there for any number of reasons. Perhaps they are seeking prosperity. Perhaps they are looking for a place to feel like they belong. But beloved, they only need one thing. Even if they do not know it - they need Jesus. So here is the question for us all today. What do the people who need Jesus the most get when they attend a church that is not actually focused on Christ? Listen, I know that a person here or there can get saved in any situation because they are genuinely seeking the Lord. The majority however are being sold a different christ and a different gospel.
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel-- which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. - Galatians 1: 6-7 (NIV)
Realize here that the Galatians had heard the true Gospel and were deserting it. The problem with the false teachers is that often the real Gospel is never heard. The result is obvious. We have countless people sitting in churches across this country who think they are going to heaven who have no real relationship with Jesus Christ. What will happen to these countless people?
"Not everyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, "I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!' - Matthew 7: 21-23 (NIV)
This is serious business beloved. The I.V. Hilliards of the world are leading people astray for their own personal gain. Moving back to the key verse we see the second consideration is that God did not send these false prophets nor appoint them. Think about that for a minute. In the case of Hilliard, that means 28,000 people show up every Sunday to listen to someone who was not sent by God nor appointed by Him. If God did not send or appoint them then who are we listening to? How much influence does the enemy exert in the body of Christ?
The final consideration is directly related. If God did not send nor appoint them, then they do not benefit these people in the least! There is no Biblical principle of sowing into a ministry area for a need you have in a personal area. There is no transportation favor seed beloved. All there is, is a huckster millionaire pastor who doesn't want to pay to fix his helicopter. All there is, are congregants being suckered into giving him more money. All there is, is a world that sees this nonsense and it moves them further away from Christ. There is real damage being done. There are people who literally will not be entering the kingdom of God because of people like I.V. Hilliard. May God have mercy on his soul and impart to us the wisdom He has promised us if we would only ask.
Reverend Anthony Wade - June 24, 2013