Bizarre assertions can be made in the name of Christian Belief. A man of principle once researched and personally viewed the work of Evangelist Reinhardt Bonnke. He found that the healings and signs were real and that people really were being set free from demons. But he was puzzled. Our researcher could not understand why the come power of God so imbued the evangelist’s efforts given ‘his doctrine.’ ‘His Doctrine’ our researcher believed was deficient.
But there were no anomalies in the evangelists doctrine; nothing to see in the way of false doctrine there – not according to the gospel of Christ, the apostles and the witness of the new testament. For this man and his team His gospel was not only one of grace and power. It was the gospel of Jesus and the apostles. Bonnke’s doctrine was no off-shoot or aberration. It was authentic Christian teaching. Following Paul this gospel was new covenant life being released by people practising the apostles teaching.
THE WRONG FRAME
There were enough anomalies in the mind of this researcher to sink the Bismarck. He lived from an old covenant mindset and from a hybrid gospel – a gospel in which the law continued following the cross and in which the new covenant was not the new covenant but the old dressed up as the new. In this researcher’s doctrine Jesus lives to enable folks to ‘keep the law.’ In his view, Jesus is seen as an adjunct to the law. The consequences of this are not good for the expansion of the Kingdom. This kind of ‘Jesus’ is not God – not unless we are returning to Arianism. Such a diminished christ cannot be God, because the law, being seen as higher than Jesus, reduces Him to a subordinate of the law. But the writer of Hebrews tells us that Jesus is fully God and that all things are under His feet.
SUPREMACY OF CHRIST
‘The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven’ Hebrews 1.3 NIV.
In Galatians Paul declares the folly of maintaining a life in the law. ‘Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by obeying the law of Moses? Of course not! You received the Spirit because you believed the message you heard about Christ’ Gal 3.2 NIV.
God does not micro-manage people by multiplying laws, rules and ‘good advice.’ God incarnates Himself in people in order to be their life by the Spirit of Sonship.
The Christian Message is that Jesus is your way, your truth and your life. This is God’s message in Jesus today and forever. There is no other message and certainly no message that endorses an unfinished atonement along with assorted legalisms. The witness of the Bible, of Christ and the apostles is that we belong. The invitation is to embrace this gospel of the Kingdom as it is without additions and humbugs.
MIND OF CHRIST – BODY OF CHRIST
People can be healed even if we are inadvertently attached to false doctrine. It’s happens because of God’s grace and love. But Paul is stating clearly in Galatians that the power of the Holy Spirit – the power that Jesus has without limit has its source in our realised union with God. We have this union in our new covenant inheritance. We have what belongs to Jesus. We and Father are one. As such we are able to exercise the authority of sons that far exceeds the authority of religious and legalist operatives who are forced to exchange the Spirit of Christ for the lesser life of a ‘health message.’ No friends. Pastor Bonnke and team heal the sick, raise the dead and cast our demons because of their doctrine. Not in spite of it.