True or False prophecy alert:
Sunday, 3/29/20. I watched the Eagle Mountain Church on the Kenneth Copeland channel (BVON) at noontime. Pastor George Pearson, son-in law to Kenneth Copeland, officiated to an empty auditorium, as is now common. This church is part of Kenneth Copland Ministries, and the Rev. Copeland was part of the program. Ah, I hear the grumblings of “turn off” as many of you discount Kenneth Copeland as a fanatic of the prosperity Gospel. Yes and no. He is more moderate on this in the last few years, and as I discussed in my book, Quenching the Spirit, there is indeed a moderate prosperity doctrine found in the scriptures which the Puritans discovered three centuries ago and which laid the foundations of American prosperity. I find Copeland’s insights on faith and healing excellent and extravagant only in comparison to cessationist faithlessness which taints much of mainline theology and often does not even believe in healing prayer (i.e. John MacArthur).
I have certain bed-rock beliefs formed from my years as Christian historian. One is, “There is no such thing as a flawless theologian.” Even Martin Luther, with his grace-filled insights on salvation by faith, had a horrible, destructive belief about the Jews that was ultimately used by Nazi propagandists to justify their cruelty and genocide toward the Jews. Who knows what people will say about my theology decades from now. John MacArthur has already taken some shots at me – take a look at his book Reckless Faith. (Please don’t buy it new, go to a used book site where he will not get a penny of your money as royalty.)
OK, now to the point, This Sunday pastor George and Kenneth Copeland both prophesized about the corona virus Covit-19 and “judged” it to disappear “much sooner than expected.” Bu judging they meant that the Christian can take Jesus’ authority over it and declare it ended. OK, maybe. I certainly believe that Christians have certain authority over nature, as in stopping tornadoes.
But now, will this prophecy be fulfilled, or merely turn out to be a wishful exaggeration? If the pandemic ends in a few weeks it will be a startling verification of their prophecy/judgment (and the many prayers of other Christians, including the Pope). But if the pandemic takes its normal course and does not dissipate until August of September; then we have a case of false (or presumptuous) prophecy. Let’s see.