Subscribe via RSS Feed

A Social Anthropologist’s Analysis of Contemporary Healing, Part 1

11James M. Boice, “A Better Way: The Power of the Word and Spirit,” in Michael S. Horton (ed.) Power Religion: The Selling out of the Evangelical Church? (Chicago: Moody Press, 1992), p.127.

12Lewis Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., pp. 276-283.

13For further medical details, see pages 221-228 of my book Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit.

14E.B. Chung and F.M. Enzinger “Infantile Fibrosarcoma,” Cancer, 38 (1976), pp.729-739.

15He cited an article by P.W. Allen entitled “The fibromatoses: A clinicopathologic classification based on 140 cases,” American Journal of Surgical Pathology (1977), pp.255-270, 305-321, which mentioned the possibility of remission among the ‘fibromatoses’. However, Allen recorded no cases of ‘spontaneous remission’ among the tumors of the type which this baby had. In his article he classified them as ‘congenital fibrosarcoma-like fibromatosis’ but after his article was submitted for publication Allen read Chung and Enzinger’s article (cited above, note 14) and then added a footnote to his own article stating that the tumor should now be re-classified as an ‘infantile fibrosarcoma’ rather than as a fibromatosis. Therefore Allen’s remark about the possibility of ‘spontaneous remission’ in the ‘fibromatoses’, which this baby’s consultant quoted to me, is not in fact applicable to this case.

16See note 1 above.

17David C. Lewis, “Signs and Wonders in Sheffield,” in John Wimber with Kevin Springer Power Healing, op.cit., pp.248, 250-259.

18Lewis Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., pp.132-135.

19Lewis Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., pp.155-157. Owing to the relatively small numbers who received prayer in response to highly specific words of knowledge, the correlation is statistically ‘noticeable’— meaning that it is almost statistically significant but would need a larger sample to confirm if this is the case.

20Peter Masters “The Texts all say No!” in Sword & Trowel, 1987 No.1, p.21 and passim.

21Differences in psychological and other characteristics associated with Christian and occult involvements are shown by my research among a random sample of 108 nurses in Leeds: those nurses whose principal spiritual experience was the ‘presence of God’ ranked higher than average, and those who had consulted spiritualist mediums ranked lower than average, on scales of psychological well-being, satisfaction with life, and two different measures of altruism. Using a statistical technique known as the analysis of variance, this difference turned out to be statistically significant. Details are given in my chapter on “‘Spiritual Powers’—Genuine and Counterfeit,” in Michael Cole, Jim Graham, Tony Higton and David Lewis What is the New Age? (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1990), pp.112-120.

22Lewis Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., pp.140-142; id., “Signs and Wonders in Sheffield,” op.cit., pp.251-259; id., “Is ‘Renewal’ Really ‘New Age’ in Disguise?” in Michael Cole, Jim Graham, Tony Higton and David Lewis What is the New Age?, op.cit., pp.127-133.

23See David C. Lewis “Spiritual Powers—Genuine and Counterfeit,” in Michael Cole, Jim Graham, Tony Higton and David Lewis What is the New Age?, op.cit., pp.122-123. (Stokes sent free tickets to a woman who had consulted her over the telephone. At the meeting Stokes then announced details of the row in which the woman was sitting, the name of her dead son—with whom Stokes claimed to be in contact—and other previously ascertained details. Although the woman in question was asked to stand up, she was unable to say in public that she had already told Stokes these facts over the telephone.)

24Examples are given in Lewis Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., pp.139-140, 148-149, 351.

25Don Matzat Inner Healing: Deliverance or Deception? (Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House, 1987), pp.48-57.

26John Wimber with Kevin Springer Power Healing, op.cit., p.276.

27Matzat Inner Healing: Deliverance or Deception?, op.cit., pp.63-75.

28However Jn. 5:19 suggests that in all his ministry activity Jesus looked for and saw what God the Father was doing: “The Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees (ti blepēi) his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (cf. Jn. 3:34; 7:16; 8:28; 12:49-50; 14:10, 24, 31; see W. Grundmann, TDNT, vol. 2, p. 304; W. Michaelis, TDNT, vol. 5, p. 343 and n. 152; C. H. Dodd, The Historical Tradition in the Fourth Gospel [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1963], p. 386, n. 2). Jesus also tells his disciples in Jn. 14:19, “Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me (theōreite me). Because I live, you also will live” (cf. Jn. 14:23; Heb. 12:12; 13:5; Mat. 28:20; Rev. 1:10, 13-18; cf. W. Michaelis, TDNT, vol. 5, pp. 362-363).

29The same confusion has arisen concerning words of knowledge and prophecies, because the methods (visions and strong ‘intuitions’) can be used both in spiritualism and in Christian contexts. In the same way, apparently similar methods for healing hurts from the past can be documented from both Christian and secular sources.

30See Gardner Healing Miracles: A Doctor Investigates, op.cit., pp. 175-184; Francis MacNutt Healing (Notre Dame, Indiana: Ave Maria Press, 1974), pp.327-333.

31For further discussion of these issues, see chapter two of my book Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact?, op.cit., or pages 133-141 of my chapter “Is ‘Renewal’ Really ‘New Age’ in Disguise?” in Michael Cole, Jim Graham, Tony Higton and David Lewis What is the New Age?, op.cit., from which most of the above material has been reproduced.

Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the NIV®.

Note from the Editor: The chapter, “Revival and the Spirit’s Power: A Psychiatric View of Behavioral Phenomena Associated with Healing and Gifts-based Ministry” by John White, will not be featured as previously announced. This chapter may be found in Gary S. Greig and Kevin N. Springer, eds., The Kingdom and the Power: Are Healing and the Spiritual Gifts Used by Jesus and the Early Church Meant for the Church Today? A Biblical Look at How to Bring the Gospel to the World with Power (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 1993) and adapted from John White, When the Spirit Comes with Power: Signs & Wonders Among God’s People (InterVarsity, 1988).

This chapter is from Gary S. Greig and Kevin N. Springer, eds., The Kingdom and the Power: Are Healing and the Spiritual Gifts Used by Jesus and the Early Church Meant for the Church Today? A Biblical Look at How to Bring the Gospel to the World with Power (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 1993). Used with permission.

Pin It
Page 9 of 9« First...56789

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: Fall 2008, In Depth

About the Author: David C. Lewis [as of 1993] is a cultural anthropologist and is currently a Research Associate of the Mongolia and Inner Asian Studies Unit at the University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England, where he received his Ph.D. (Anthropology). He also serves as a Consultant Anthropologist for several Christian mission organizations. He has conducted research projects at Nottingham University and the Oxford Hardy Research Centre (Religious Experience Research Project, 1984-1985). He has written numerous scholarly articles and books, including Healing: Fiction, Fantasy or Fact? (Hodder & Stoughton).

  • Connect with PneumaReview.com

    Subscribe via Twitter 1329 Followers   Subscribe via Facebook Fans
  • Recent Comments

  • Featured Authors

    Amos Yong is Professor of Theology & Mission and director of the Center for Missiological Research at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena. His graduate education includes degree...

    Jelle Creemers: Theological Dialogue with Classical Pentecostals

    Antipas L. Harris, D.Min. (Boston University), S.T.M. (Yale University Divinity School), M.Div. (Emory University), is the president-dean of Jakes Divinity School and associate pasto...

    Then, Now, and Later

    Craig S. Keener, Ph.D. (Duke University), is F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. He is author of many books<...

    A Keener Understanding of the Bible: The Jewish Context for the Book of Revelation

    Roscoe Barnes III, Ph.D., is a prison chaplain, former award-winning journalist, and independent scholar of church history. He holds a doctorate from the University of Pretoria, S...

    F.F. Bosworth and the Role He Played in the Ministry of T.L. Osborn: An Interview with Dr. LaDonna Osborn