As someone who has marinated in the Word of Faith for several years, I speak from personal experience as someone who has walked in the shoes of one who has sincerely believed and preached error. I am motivated by compassion to speak the truth in love to those who are still in those shoes. I do not have anything against these folks and do not intend to address anything about them personally. I only address doctrines they have taught in their own words. In any case where I am in error, I hope to be corrected. In any case where they have changed, matured, developed, and corrected their teachings, I will gladly annotate so.
There are good things in Word of Faith, but there are also some areas in which they go too far… I will try to address many of the areas where they cross the line…
Doctrine of “little gods”
The bible says:
I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me – Isaiah 45:5
I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me – Isaiah 45:5
Satan tempted Eve by saying “you will be like god” – Gen 3:4
Peter and Paul refused worship and said they were “men like yourselves” Acts 10:26; Acts 14:12
The teaching of there being many gods is polytheism, it elevates man to god-hood and lowers God to man-hood.
Kenneth and Gloria with Paul and Jan Crouch on TBN saying they ARE gods.
That we do not have a god in us but that we are a God.
“You don’t have a God in you. You are one!” – The Force of Love audiotape
That Adam was God manifest in the flesh.
“God’s reason for creating Adam was His desire to reproduce Himself. I mean a reproduction of Himself, and in the Garden of Eden He did just that. He was not a little like God. He was not almost like God. He was not subordinate to God even. . . . Adam is as much like God as you could get, just the same as Jesus. . . . Adam, in the Garden of Eden, was God manifested in the flesh.” – Following the Faith of Abraham I, side 1
God and Adam are the same size
God spoke Adam into existence in authority with words. These words struck Adam’s body in the face. His body and God were exactly the same size.” – Holy Bible, Kenneth Copeland Reference Edition 1991, 45, emphasis in original
Adam looks the same as Jesus and God
“[Adam] was the copy, looked just like [God]. If you stood Adam upside God, they look exactly alike. If you stood Jesus and Adam side by side, they would look and sound exactly alike.”
Authority of the Believer IV 1987, audiotape #01-0304, side 1
“Adam was made in the image of God. He was as much female as he was male. He was exactly like God. Then God separated him and removed the female part. Woman means ‘man with the womb.’ Eve had as much authority as Adam did as long as they stayed together.”
Sensitivity of Heart KCP Publications, 1984, 23
“As a believer, you have a right to make commands in the name of Jesus. Each time you stand on the Word, you are commanding God to a certain extent because it is His Word.”
Our Covenant with God [Fort Worth, TX: KCP Publications, 1987], 32
Death on Cross was Insufficient, had to go through ‘spiritual death’ as well as physical
Set aside diety as a man, then was re-deified by taking on satan’s nature, being tortured in hell, then was ‘born again’ as god
“When Jesus cried “It is finished!” He was not speaking of the plan of redemption. There were still three days and nights to go through before He went to the throne. He was referring to the Abrahamic Covenant. Jesus’ death on the cross was only the beginning of the complete work of redemption” (Kenneth Copeland, “Jesus – Our Lord of Glory”, ( Believer’s Voice of Victory, April, 1982, p. 3).
“He [Jesus] is suffering all that there is to suffer. There is no suffering left apart from Him. His emaciated, poured out, little, wormy spirit is down in the bottom of that thing [hell]. And the Devil thinks he’s got Him destroyed.” – Believer’s Voice of Victory” program [21 April 1991]. This message was originally delivered at the Full Gospel Motorcycle Rally Association 1990 Rally at Eagle Mountain Lake, Texas
“He [Jesus] allowed the devil to drag Him into the depths of hell….He allowed Himself to come under Satan’s control…every demon in hell came down on Him to annihilate Him….They tortured Him beyond anything anybody had ever conceived. For three days He suffered everything there is to suffer.” (Kenneth Copeland, “The Price of It All,” 3.)
“For three days He suffered everything there is to suffer. Some people don’t want to believe that. They want to believe that after His death, Jesus just stayed in that upper region of Sheol that the Bible calls paradise, but they’re mistaken! If He had simply stayed there, there would have been no price paid for sin.” (Believer’s Voice of Victory, Vol. 19, No. 9, Sept. 1991)
“… Jesus died two deaths. He died physically and He died spiritually. When Jesus was made to be sin, He was separated from God… When His blood poured out, it did not atone. It did away with the handwriting of the ordinances that were against us… Jesus spent three horrible days and nights in the bowels of this earth getting back for you and me our rights with God…” (doctrinal statement dated March 12, 1979)
“That Word of the living God went down into that pit of destruction and charged the spirit of Jesus with resurrection power! Suddenly His twisted, death-wracked spirit began to fill out and come back to life. He began to look like something the devil had never seen before.” – The Price of it All,” Believer’s Voice of Victory 19, 9 [September 1991]:4
“He [Jesus] was literally being reborn before the devil’s very eyes. He began to flex His spiritual muscles. . . .Jesus was born again–the firstborn from the dead the Word calls Him–and He whipped the devil in his own backyard. He took everything he had away from him. He took his keys and his authority away from him.”(Ibid., 4-6.)
“It wasn’t the physical death on the cross that paid the price for sin..anybody could do that” – What Satan saw on the day of Pentecost
“Every prophet that walked the face of the earth under the Abrahamic covenant could have paid the price if it were a physical death only” “When he said ‘It is finished’ on that cross, he was not speaking of the plan of redemption. The plan of redemption had just begun, there were still three days and three nights to be gone through.” “[Jesus] accepted the sin nature of Satan in His own Spirit, and at the moment that He did so, He cried ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’.” “He [Jesus] was down in that pit and there he suffered the punishment for three horrible days and nights for Adam’s treason… There is a new birth takes place in the very depths of the earth, when the command of God says ‘That’s enough, loose him and let him go’.” – What Happened from the Cross to the Throne
God has no right to the earth at all, he needs an invitation
“God had no avenue of lasting faith or moving in the earth. He had to have covenant with somebody. . . . He had to be invited in, in other words, or He couldn’t come. God is on the outside looking in. In order to have any say so in the earth, He’s gonna have to be in agreement with a man here.”
God’s Covenants With Man II 1985, audiotape #01-4404, side 1
God is the greatest failure in the Universe
“I was shocked when I found out who the biggest failure in the Bible actually is….The biggest one is God….I mean, He lost His top-ranking, most anointed angel; the first man He ever created; the first woman He ever created; the whole earth and all the Fullness therein; a third of the angels, at least–that’s a big loss, man. . . – Praise-a-Thon program on TBN [April 1988]
God lives on a mother planet
“Heaven has a north and a south and an east and a west. Consequently, it must be a planet.”
Spirit, Soul and Body I 1985 audiotape #01-0601, side 1
“You don’t think earth was first, do you? Huh? Well, you don’t think that God made man in His image, and then made earth in some other image? There is not anything under this whole sun that’s new. Are you hearing what I’m saying? This is all a copy. It’s a copy of home. It’s a copy of the Mother Planet. Where God lives, He made a little one just like His and put us on it.”
Following the Faith of Abraham I, 1989 audiotape #01-3001, side 1
Word of Faith
Word of Faith Teachers – Origins and Errors of their teachings