Twenty years ago I began working on a book that would become a runaway best seller. It won the prestigious ```Gold Medallion Book Award for excellence in Evangelical Christian literature. That book was titled Christianity in Crisis. It unmasked the fatal flaws of a movement that threatens to undermine the very foundations of the faith once for all delivered for the saints.
Back when I originally wrote Christianity in Crisis Kenneth Hagin was the prime mover behind the message, while his platform was certainly enormous, and his influence global. There is a new breed of prosperity teachers today that have taken his preaching and his practices to unimaginable heights, or maybe more appropriately unimaginable depths. Indeed men who followed in his train like Joel Osteen or women like Joyce Meyer are living proof that error begets `` error and heresy begets heresy. As such, they have taken the crisis spawned in Christianity by Hagin, and popularized by disciples like Kenneth Copeland and Benny Hinn, and took it to levels I could have scarcely imagined when I wrote the original book in the 20th century.
This is one of the reasons I have now released Christianity in Crisis 21st Century. I believe this book like its predecessor needed to be written. In the end, it’s not as much about the faith teachers as it is about faith followers, who are inevitably distracted, disillusioned, discouraged, and some even die. My heart aches for the parent, who puts his dead baby on ice, and in the midst of tears, drove 350 miles because he trusted the testimony of faith preachers who were touting resurrections from the dead. I equally grieve for the millions who have left faith churches in the midst of failed faith formulas. Some conclude that God must not love them; others question the integrity of the Christian enterprise.
The tragedy is that all too often we look for God in all the wrong places. The real experience is found not in counterfeit formulas but in Christian fundamentals. Think for a moment about prayer, rather than seeking formulas through which we can get things from God, we must be ever mindful that prayer is an opportunity for developing intimacy with the lover of our souls. If we were honest, most of us have learned to pray backwards. We hurry and rush into God’s presence with techniques and incessant babblings, and in the process we drown out the very one who’s voice we so long to hear. All too often we want God to move the fence posts and enlarge our houses and lands, but God wants something far better for us. He wants us to be still, so He can enlarge the territory of our hearts. He sent us sixty-six love letters etched in heavenly handwriting, and the more we meditate upon those Words, the clearer His voice will become when we meditate in the sounds of our silence.
As the original Christianity in Crisis has impacted the lives of literally thousands of people from Nairobi, Kenya to Seoul, Korea, from Beijing, China to Los Angeles, California, it’s my prayer that Christianity in Crisis 21st Century will likewise turn the hearts of millions towards home.