An editorial in January’s Christianity Today reveals that, uncharacteristically, CT gets it! Surprisingly, CT asks all of the right questions about the motivations of Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley in his “investigation” into the finances of famous health and wellness gospel preachers and seems to get all of the right answers.
That is, they see that this a sitting Senator’s attempt to directly interfere in a church doctrine (health and wellness doctrine) that he does not like. We agree that the health and wellness doctrine, that teaches that monetary wealth and health are direct indicators of the measurement of a persons faith, is aberrant.
We disagree with Senator Grassley, that the federal government has any jurisdiction in the matter at all. Don’t misunderstand. We think fraud is a crime. There is no fraud involved in health and wellness doctrine teaching. We think these preachers believe what they are teaching, to their eternal peril. The first amendment to the Constitution is very clear on the subject; “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;…” Doctrinal discipline is for Christ’s Church to perform, not an overreaching federal leviathan. Grassley is attempting to make political hay by implying a threat of force to change church doctrine.
This is a very dangerous precedent. It’s time for Christians to speak out on this now!