Their strength is in the shadows. Real light, bright gospel light would blind them. Therefore, they must take broad terms and coerce them into service.
If the verse says “children of light,” then they will shout and repeat “light” as if we all know that “light” refers to earthly comfort and riches. Last night he tried this tactic in lines like this.
- “I’m not going to wait 10 years for my breakthrough.”
- “God wants to make a difference between your house and your neighbor’s because you are children of Goshen.”
- “I am not under the circumstances. I am above the circumstances.”
What did he mean by those terms? They are fuzzy on purpose. In general, they are positive, or could be used positively. But the speaker and the people already have an unspoken agreement formed in their own religious culture, “All positive images refer to physical, earthly comfort.”
The cloud of their language serves another useful purpose. Who can rebuke them if they can always shift their meaning? In that respect, they are on the cutting edge of our post-modern world. Slippery language is the daughter and intentional vagueness is the mother. Many of the listeners know that something is wrong, but they lack the articulation to put their fingers on it. We should expect that because who can nail down a mist?
This vagueness is a strategy because clear logic and tight words are no friend to the false teacher.
But we have renounced the things hidden because of shame, not walking in craftiness or adulterating the word of God, but by the manifestation of truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Cor. 4:2-4
Identifying Prosperity Preachers
Mark #1: They Do Not Stay Long in a Single Verse
Mark #2: They Are Intentionally Vague
Mark #3: They Consistently Disobey Explicit Scriptural Teaching About Tongues
Mark #4: They Prostitute the Old Testament
Mark #5: They Assume Their Listeners Are All Born Again
Mark #6: They Ignore the Great Themes of Scripture
Mark #7: They Have an Aversion to Humility
Mark #8: They Draw the Affections to Earth