Christian Research Service
Becky Dvorak, a self-proclaimed prophetic healing evangelist and author of The Healing Creed, was recently interviewed on Sid Roth’s It’s Supernatural!TM He introduced Becky as having “the most ferocious faith for miracles that you’ve ever seen” and asked her how she went from being a “normal” Christian to being “normal according to the Bible.” She explained she wanted a different level of faith and intimacy such as the prophets and disciples had with God. Wanting a lifestyle that would cause her to walk “naturally in the supernatural,” she asked the Holy Spirit to teach her to have “this type of an intimate relationship” and “to walk in the power of [His] spirit (sic) like they did.”
This is where spiritual and doctrinal error starts and/or increases for many who desire signs and wonders, thinking they can go from a misperceived normal Christian walk to a supernatural one. The missed point for many who seek “more” is that every believer walks in the supernatural reality of Christ as new creatures.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ . . .” (Ephesians 1:3; see also 1:4-14, 2 Peter 1:3-4).
All believers are normal in Christ and heirs of salvation in the grace(s) we have been freely given. Why then this push for more on the part of those who think they can have a higher level of spirituality?
“Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed” (Acts 8:13).
Simon wanted more and was heartily rebuked by the apostle Peter when he sought to illegitimately obtain authority to perform signs and miracles. His heart was not right before God and he needed to repent of his wickedness. Yes, money was also involved then as it is today in profiting from the miraculous. Wanting more gifts, authority, and power reveals a discontentment and misunderstanding of the Holy Spirit “distributing to each one individually just as He wills” (1 Corinthians 12:11). We are to be gracious receivers from God, not opportunists for something more than what has been appointed us.
The apostle Paul states in 1 Corinthians 12:7, “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” Believers in Christ have the same Holy Spirit but are granted differing gifts to profit those receiving their ministry.
“But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet show I unto you a more excellent way” (1 Corinthians 12:31).
The “best gifts” mentioned here refer to those which are most useful. The Corinthian believers were desiring the gifts that would bring them the most acclaim and prestige among their fellow brethren in Christ (e.g., the gifts of tongues, prophecies, and knowledge, cf. 1 Cor. 13:8). Instead, Paul urged them to “covet” (earnestly desire) the gifts that would best benefit the cause of Christ, not themselves…
“Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away” (1 Corinthians 13:8-10).
It is clear from these verses that tongues no longer continue today. The phrase “when that which is perfect is come” refers to the written revelation of Scripture. When this revelation was completed, there was no need for the temporary gifts…which were given in order to substantiate the message that the apostles were preaching. (The Complete Word Study New Testament by Spiros Zodhiates, Th.D., pp. 571-572.)
The charismatic continuation paradigm of apostolic sign gifts divides believers between the haves and the have-nots. This misguided distinction elevates and makes elitists of those claiming these gifts. In Becky and Sid’s exchange about what is “normal according to the Bible,” we find approval of this elitism in that grace and faith among believers should be eclipsed by a deeper ferocious faith demonstrated by supernatural signs and miracles. Never mind that those who don’t operate in these gifts have sound biblical justification not to. What good is any kind of faith based on an unscriptural interpretive error or paradigm?
One of these errors involves Isaiah 53:3-5:
“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”
In an article titled “Is Physical Healing a Guarantee in the Atonement?” posted at The Christian Apologetics Alliance website, the author notes:
Many folks who like TBN and the Word Faith teachers get excited about “healing” and often misapply this passage by directing it to the person who has a physical disability. However while there is a substitution being carried out by Christ, “the Suffering Servant,” the primary purpose of that substitution is not toward a physical healing. In fact that act of substitution is for something more important than our physical well being. It is for our sins.
This Suffering Servant was not wounded, beaten, and battered for our physical well being. He was crucified after those beatings and bruisings for the real reason, the sins of mankind. That means one must look at this passage in light of the finished work of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for sin. There are a few reasons for this.
First of all, while ultimate healing is in the atonement, it is a healing that we will enjoy ultimately in our resurrection bodies. Physical healing, while we are in our mortal body, is not always guaranteed in the atonement. Can God heal physical ailments? Yes. Will He heal? He will heal according to His will but He will also receive glory in our infirmity. (Emphasis mine.)
Can God heal however and whenever He desires? Absolutely yes! Is He obligated to heal? Absolutely not! Yet, people like Becky would read this and debunk it in favor of the misleading blanket statement that “Jesus is both willing and able to heal” as if there are guaranteed blank checks from heaven to be cashed in by every believer for their physical healing, in some cases many times over. There are also plentiful “dreams and visions” to support their message, such as the following by Becky:
The other night, I saw in a dream a tall, barren tree planted by a brook that flowed with life in the midst of a bountiful meadow. Beneath the tree sat many of God’s people, and all were bound to their wheelchairs. They leaned to the side because they lacked the strength to sit upright. They were pale and lifeless, but what disturbed me the most was the look of despair on their faces as they looked up toward Heaven convinced that God was not willing to heal them and even doubtful that He was able.
Psalm 1:3 clearly paints a picture of the blessed man or woman of God “Like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers” (NASB). This is how we are to be—blessed because we live and have our being by the Living Water, nourished by His benefits, and producing fruit to give to others.
Yet the interpretation of the dream is revealing that the body of Christ is opposing God’s health plan. Even though the planting of the tree is by streams of water and it should be flourishing, it is not. Instead it is rotting at the roots, decaying from the inside to the outside, and losing the beauty of God’s benefits.
Why? What’s wrong? On the whole, the Church is spiritually crippled and will not take the first step of faith. Many people who profess to be Christians, whether they are laypeople or in Church leadership, are more comfortable to walk in the counsel of the wicked, stand in the path of sinners, sit in the seat of scoffers, and blame God for their trouble. But instead of this they should meditate on the Word of God and do what it says to do, “Believe!” (See Psalm 1:1-2.)
As a prophetic healing evangelist, I have never seen so many of God’s people as sick as they are today. This isn’t right. The body of Christ needs to learn how to believe once again, exercise their authority as true believers, take a stand against the enemy and all of his wickedness, and overcome the situation that has them bound. (Emphasis mine.)
Becky thinks people are confused about what to believe about healing because “the standard of God’s Word” (i.e., her Word of Faith interpretation of it) has been removed. “When we, the Church, align ourselves with God’s healing message, the bondage of suffering is broken, and God’s people are healed in spirit, in soul, and in body.” But, is this truly so?
How many people go to healing crusades—perhaps one of hers—and do not get healed? It’s easy to go on a show like It’s Supernatural!TM and recount various healings, with the added benefit of actors portraying those healings for the audience, and sound convincing. Besides, what accountability is there? Not one shred of fact-based evidence was provided for any of the so-called healings talked about. It was anecdotal at best and false teaching propaganda at worse.
Becky strikingly states “the body of Christ is opposing God’s health plan.” Her faith healing paradigm doesn’t seem to include the apostle Paul’s attitude or declaration of “count[ing] all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8). God’s people have always suffered “in spirit, in soul, and in body” to follow Christ. Indeed, He said, “Take up your cross and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24; Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23) calling His disciples to absolute surrender of everything. “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it” (Luke 9:24).
Another thing to consider is the spin used to make scriptures mean something other than what God intended. Becky seems to have a knack for it, and for the most part, the one who controls the meaning of words controls the argument making her case for healing compelling to many. Her healing narrative is controlled by defining the interpretation and application of various scriptures, statements, and dreams to support false presuppositions. For instance, Becky contends “when unbelieving leaders—such as pastors, elders, board members, and the like—stop the move of the healing power of the Holy Spirit, it is deadly to the members of the congregations and just plain evil in the sight of our Lord.”
According to Becky, unbelieving church leaders are blame-worthy and guilty of evil. When the “faith” of faith healers doesn’t deliver healing, the apparent lack of faith of the sick and dying or those around them are at fault. Therefore, false assertions—in defiance of what the whole counsel of God in His Word actually teaches about physical healing—are managed by making faith (or lack thereof) the focus and culprit.
Becky rails against unbelieving brethren using unbiblical teachings to beat them over the head. She further claims, “those who are in a battle for their life…need to use every bit of faith they have and fight the main devil warring against them—death. They should not have to take on your little devils of doubt and unbelief. But, you see, your little devils of doubt and unbelief strengthen the bigger devil, death, that fights to take them down…We who declare that we believe in Jesus Christ must find our way back to the truth of His healing word so that those in our midst can receive their healing.”
Her thought process begs the question: When is death literally abolished in the sense that people no longer die because of it? When the end comes and Christ delivers the kingdom to His Father the “last enemy that shall be abolished is death” (1 Corinthians 15:24-26). Until then, as much as Becky would object, we have to live with death no matter our doubts, fears, faith, and declarations or how it comes upon us. It is inevitable in this life “inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). Physical death cannot be overcome here and now, creating a niche for faith healers because they come along and cast an illusion for the desperate and needy that death can at least be deferred if you receive healing. This is not to say they can’t or don’t bring comfort in the illusion they offer, but it is decidedly misleading and ultimately harmful.
The Lord Jesus Christ has freed His people from the dread of death allowing them to see beyond this world to the triumphant joy that awaits them in eternity (see Hebrews 2:14-15). Barnes’ Notes on the Bible states:
Death conducts them to heaven. A Christian has nothing to fear in death; nothing beyond the grave. In no part of the universe has he any thing to dread, for God is his friend, and he will be his Protector everywhere. On the dying bed; in the grave; on the way up to the judgment; at the solemn tribunal; and in the eternal world, he is under the eye and the protection of his Saviour – and of what should he be afraid?
Are we not to believe that “the day of one’s death is better than the day of one’s birth” (Ecclesiastes 7:1) and that “to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8) is more preferred? Who would attempt to derail us from these truths (and others) with a false faith paradigm to take our focus off the Lord and the eternal glories we have in Him? The answer is Satan, of course, and all those knowingly or otherwise working on his behalf to lead us astray.
Becky asks, “So with the responsibility of a free will, do we welcome or reject Jesus and His healing power?” I think the better biblical question to ask is: Do we welcome Christ’s sovereign will in suffering and accept His purpose for it in our lives?
“See now that I, I am He, And there is no god besides Me; It is I who put to death and give life. I have wounded and it is I who heal, And there is no one who can deliver from My hand” (Deuteronomy 32:39).