Prosperity theology

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Philistines nowadays ... twist the Gospel teaching to serve earthly appetites, compelling it to be the slave of human ambition and to enhance their own discreditable gains and their despotic rule. ~ Erasmus

Prosperity theology (sometimes referred to as the prosperity gospel, the health and wealth gospel, or the gospel of success) is a religious belief among some Christians that financial blessing is the will of God for them.

Quotes[edit]

  • Nor are we quite free of Philistines nowadays, who get more pleasure from earth than from fountains of living water—those people, I mean, who reek of earthly things and twist the Gospel teaching to serve earthly appetites, compelling it to be the slave of human ambition and to enhance their own discreditable gains and their despotic rule.
    • Erasmus, Handbook of the Christian Soldier (1503), in The Erasmus Reader (1990), p. 139
  • To countless generations of religious thinkers, the fundamental maxim of Christian social ethics had seemed to be expressed in the words of St. Paul to Timothy: "Having food and raiment, let us be therewith content. For the love of money is the root of all evil." Now, while, as always, the world battered at the gate, a new standard was raised within the citadel by its own defenders. The garrison had discovered that the invading host of economic appetites was, not an enemy, but an ally. Not sufficiency to the needs of daily life, but limit less increase and expansion, became the goal of the Christian's efforts.
    • R. H. Tawney, Religion and the Rise of Capitalism (1926), p. 248
  • The shrewd, calculating commercialism which tries all human relations by pecuniary standards, the acquisitiveness which cannot rest while there are competitors to be conquered or profits to be won, the love of social power and hunger for economic gain—these irrepressible appetites had evoked from time immemorial the warnings and denunciations of saints and sages. Plunged in the cleansing waters of later Puritanism, the qualities which less enlightened ages had denounced as social vices emerged as economic virtues. They emerged as moral virtues as well. For the world exists not to be enjoyed, but to be conquered. Only its conqueror deserves the name of Christian. For such a philosophy, the question, "What shall it profit a man?" carries no sting. In winning the world, he wins the salvation of his own soul as well.
    • R. H. Tawney, Religion and the Rise of Capitalism (1926), p. 249

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External links[edit]

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