|This article looks at some of the
teachings of Word-Faith about the Lord Jesus Christ, and they
compare with what the Bible says...
A Created Man
Word-Faith teachers promote the idea
that the Lord Jesus Christ was a created being:
|"This body [i.e. the Lord Jesus
Christ] walking here is a product of the faith of God,
that God has injected in His Word and put it in the
earth, piece by piece, by piece. He's building the
express image of Himself... The faith it took to
make fingers was loosed. The faith that it took to
make arms was loosed in the earth. And now God had
a way to hover over a little woman by the name of Mary.
And there was born of that virgin woman a product of
God. Once again, something has happened from the
insides of God. Listen to me carefully here.
Here's where we're going to depart from ordinary church.
Man, listen, if you all wanted to have just ordinary
church service you're in the wrong spot. Now you
see God is injecting His Word into the earth to produce
this Jesus..." [Kenneth
Copeland, The Image of God in You III, (1989),
audiotape #01-1403, side 2],
"God spoke it. God transmitted
that image to Mary. She received the image inside
of her ... The embryo that was in Mary's womb was
nothing more than the Word of God"
[Charles Capps, Dynamics of Faith &
Confession, (1987), p.86].
These teachers are saying that just
as God's 'faith-filled' words supposedly created the universe, so it
was that God also spoke Christ into being in Mary's womb. But
this thinking is to misunderstand the Biblical meaning of the "Word
of God". The Word of God - the Lord Jesus Christ - is not the
'positive confession' of God the Father, but is the Written
Word made flesh.
Compare the Word-Faith quotes above
with the following scripture from the Gospel of John, and with the
Lord's own words:
|"In the beginning was the Word, and
the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The
same was in the beginning with God. All things
were made by Him [not "it"!]; and without Him was not
anything made that was made" [John 1:1-3),
"Verily, verily, I say unto you., Before
Abraham was, I Am" (John 8:58).
Compare them also with the fact that
Christ appeared to men centuries before His incarnation (Exodus
3:2-6; Joshua 5:13-15; Daniel 3:25).
The Deity of the
|"[G]od has to have a man that is
like that first one [Adam]. It's got to be a man.
He's got to be all man. He cannot be a God
and come storming in here with attributes and dignities
that are not common to man. He can't do
that. It's not legal"
[Kenneth Copeland, The Incarnation, (1985),
audiotape #01-0402, side 1, emphasis in original].
Kenneth Copeland teaches that Christ
did not claim to be God. He even quotes 'Jesus' as telling him
this very thing:
|"They crucified Me for claiming
that I was God. But I didn't claim I was God; I
just claimed I walked with Him and that He was in Me"
[Kenneth Copeland, 'Take Time to
Pray', Believer's Voice of Victory, Vol 15, No 2,
(Feb 1987), p.9].
Yet in truth, the Lord was regularly
attacked by His own countrymen for claiming He was God.
Throughout the Gospel of John, Christ used Hebrew idioms to announce
|"Therefore the Jews sought the more
to kill Him, because He ... [said] that God was His
Father, making Himself equal with God" (John 5:18),
"I and my father are one. Then the
Jews took up stones again to stone Him ... saying ... We
stone thee ... because that thou, being a man, makest
thyself God" (John 10:30-33),
"Now I tell you before it come, that,
when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am [He]"
"Jesus, therefore, knowing all things
that should come upon Him, went forth, and said unto
them, Whom seek ye? They answered Him, Jesus of
Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am [He]" (John
When Christ said "I AM" (e.g. in John
13:19 and 18:4-8). He was using the covenant name of Jehovah.
[NOTE: the word "he" in
these passages is in italics in the King James Bible, which
indicates that it did not appear in the original Greek autographs.
For ease of reading in the English version of the Bible, the
translators of the KJB on occasions added in extra words, but always
italicised them so that the reader would know those words were
additions included by the translators, and not part of the text of
the original Greek manuscripts. This is the case here.]
The phrases 'Son of man' and 'Son of
David' were both epithets for the Messiah, the only begotten Son of
God. As Christ pointed out in Mark 12:36-37, the Messiah is
|"And Jesus answered and said, while
He taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ
is the son of David? For David himself said by the
Holy Ghost, the LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my
right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.
David therefore himself called Him lord; and whence is
he then his son?" (Mark 12:35-37).
Jesus Took Satan's
Perhaps the most horrific teaching
from the Word-Faith movement is that the Lord Jesus became a satanic
being on the cross:
|"Spiritual death means something
more than separation from God. Spiritual death
also means having Satan's nature ... Jesus tasted
death - spiritual death - for every man"
[Kenneth Hagin, The Name of Jesus,
(1981), p.31, emphasis in original],
"He 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 hast thou forsaken
me?' You don't know what happened at the cross.
Why do you think Moses, upon instruction of God, raised
the serpent upon that pole instead of a lamb? That
used to bug me. I said, 'Why in the world would
you want to put a snake up there - the sign of Satan?
Why didn't you put a lamb on that pole?' And the
Lord said, 'Because it was a sign of Satan that was
hanging on the cross.' He said, 'I accepted , in
My own spirit, spiritual death'."
[Kenneth Copeland, What Happened From
the Cross to the Throne?, (1990), audiotape
#02-0017, side 2],
"...the serpent is a symbol of
Satan. Jesus Christ knew the only way He would
stop Satan is by becoming one in nature with him ... He
did not take my sin; He became my sin ... It was
sin that made Satan. Jesus said, 'I'll be sin!"
... I'll be the totality of it!' ... Think about this:
He became flesh, that flesh might become like Him.
He became death, so dying man can live. He became
sin, so sinners can be righteous in Him. He became
one with the nature of Satan, so all those who
had the nature of Satan can partake of the nature
of God" [Benny Hinn, The
Person of Jesus, Orlando Christian Centre's Sunday
Morning Service, (2 December 1990), emphases in
Each of the above quotes points to
the brass serpent that Moses lifted up on the pole in Numbers 21:
|"And the people spake against God,
and against Moses ... And the LORD sent fiery serpents
among the people, and they bit the people; and much
people of Israel died. Therefore the people came
to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken
against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD
that He take away the serpents from us. And Moses
prayed for the people. And the LORD said unto
Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a
pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is
bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. And
Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole,
and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any
man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived"
As is obvious from this passage, what
Moses created and lifted up was not a real serpent; it was
made of brass. It looked like a serpent on the outside,
in the same way that Christ on the cross looked like a cursed
being to the onlookers, but the serpent (like Christ) had no venom,
no poison. It did not have the 'nature' of a serpent
even as Christ didn't.
The spotless Lamb of God remained
holy to the Lord even after death - just as any sacrifice for sin
did under the law:
|"And the priest shall burn them upon
the altar for an offering made by fire unto the LORD: it
is a trespass offering ... it shall be eaten in the holy
place: it is most holy" (Leviticus 7:5-6),
"This shall be thine of the most holy
things, reserved from the fire: every oblation of
theirs, every meat offering of theirs, and every sin
offering of theirs, and every trespass offering of
theirs which they shall render unto me, shall be most
holy for thee and for thy sons. In the most holy
place shalt thou eat it; ... it shall be most holy unto
thee" (Numbers 18:9-10).
Christ was only "made sin" in the
sense that He took upon Himself the burden, the punishment, for our
|"He was wounded for our
transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the
chastisement of our peace was upon Him; ... All we like
sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his
own way; and the LORD hath laid on Him the iniquity of
us all" (Isaiah 53:5-6),
His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree,
that we, being dead to sins, should live by His
righteousness" (1 Peter 2:24).
He was made the offering for
sin, not the sin itself.
The effect of this teaching that
Christ became "the very essence of sin"
[Paul Billheimer, Destined For
the Throne, (1988), pp.83-84]
is that demons "dragged Him down to the
very pit of Hell itself"
[Frederick K.C. Price, Ever
Increasing Faith Messenger, (June 1980), p.7],
where they tortured Him for three days:
|"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', Believer's Voice of Victory, Vol 19, No
9, (Sept 1991), p.3],
"And I'm telling you Jesus is in the
middle of that pit. He's suffering all that there
is to suffer, there is no suffering left apart from Him.
His emaciated, little wormy spirit is down in the bottom
of that thing and the devil thinks he's got Him
destroyed. But, all of a sudden God started
talking" [Kenneth Copeland,
Believer's Voice of Victory, programme on TBN, (21
According the the Word-Faith
teachers, the Lord Jesus died spiritually and was then begotten or
reborn (i.e. born again) in Hell:
|"Jesus had to go through that same
spiritual death in order to pay the price. Now it
wasn't the physical death on the cross that paid the
price for sin, because if it had have been, any prophet
of God that had died for the last couple of thousand
years before that could have paid the price. It
wasn't physical death - anybody could do that"
[Kenneth Copeland, What Satan
Saw on the Day of Pentecost, (No Date), audiotape
"That Word of the living God went down
into the 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. He was literally
being reborn before the devil's very eyes ... Jesus was
born again - the first-born from the dead"
[Kenneth Copeland, 'The Price Of It All',
Believer's Voice of Victory, Vol 19, No 9, (Sept
But this all requires no small amount
of Scripture-twisting, not least to explain away just about every
word the Lord said on the cross - to the malefactor bedside Him, to
His Father, and to all of us down the ages:
|"Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt
thou be with me in paradise" (Luke 23:43),
"Father, forgive them" (Luke 23:34), and
"into Thy hands I commend my spirit" (Luke 23:46),
"It is finished" (John 19:30).
Not only does this Word-Faith
teaching deny that it was Christ's body and blood and thus
His physical death that paid the price for our sins:
|"Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are
become dead to the law by the body of Christ" (Romans
"For Christ sent me ...
to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words; lest the
cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For
the preaching of the cross is to them that perish
foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power
of God" (1 Corinthians 1:17-18),
"But now in Christ Jesus ye who
sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of
Christ" (Ephesians 2:13),
"Blotting out the handwriting of
ordinances that was against is ... nailing it to his
cross; and having spoiled principalities and powers, he
made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it"
...but it also denies these words of
the Lord Jesus Himself:
|"I have power to lay down my life and
I have power to take it up again" (John 10:18).
The Lord Jesus Christ, God the Son,
cannot die spiritually: He is:
|"...the same yesterday, and today,
and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).