Tuesday, November 01, 2005

In response to a reader question, Michael Spencer dishes out some helpful information about fads in Christian retail, and especially issues surrounding The Prayer of Jabez, by Bruce Wilkinson. Although he certainly does not discredit the book in and of itself, he sheds some interesting light on tendencies to elevate such works to a superstitious level. Even though the entire article would be worth your time to read, the following quotes sum up his opinion rather succinctly:

"It starts with the fact that Jabez is another one of the publishing fads that the church has to deal with. Every year, Christian booksellers tell us that the Holy Spirit has anointed a new book, and if we will buy it and do what it says, the Lord will powerfully move. I don't know how long this has been going on, but long enough that someone should have noticed there is no great wave of miracles, the church is more worldly than ever, ignorance of the Bible is appalling and the Gospel is hardly heard in many churches right here in America."

"I'm a pretty simple person. I think the Bible is about Jesus. Yes, there are a lot different kinds of passages in the Bible, but I am one of those people who believe that, in the end, it's all supposed to add up to Jesus. He, and he alone, is the point, the focus, treasure and the message. Not Jabez or anything else. Not secret Bible codes or hidden principles or unknown prayers. The key to the Bible isn't hidden in the Prayer of Jabez. It's right in plain view in the New Testament: Jesus is God's final word and ultimate word to us. Believe in him and follow him."

posted by Christie