[Pastor Bill] Johnson: “Would Satan like to inflict heaven with cancer? Of course, he would. But he has no dominion there. He only has dominion here when and where man has come into agreement.” 1
The conclusion of Johnson’s statement is that Bethelites who are currently battling cancer, Parkinsons, and other diseases not found in heaven, have somehow come into agreement with Satan. Furthermore, Bethel’s declaration concerning cancer has proven to be ineffective: “Often we will receive a reality report and a fruit at the same time. For example, for a number of years now at Bethel Church, we have seen tremendous breakthroughs for physical healing. One ailment that we have intentionally targeted is cancer. In fact, we have declared our city a “cancer-free zone.” 2
Who can forget the tragic death and failed resurrection of Olive Heiligenthal – the two year old daughter of Bethel worship leader Kalley Heiligenthal? Despite all the prophetic words of a resurrection, and the decrees and declarations of Bethelites, the child never came back to life. Bethel’s teaching that healing is guaranteed in the atonement was possibly the motivating factor behind the false hope the child would be resurrected. At the time, Kalley Heiligenthal wrote: “Her time here is not done, and it is our time to believe boldly, and with confidence wield what King Jesus paid for. It’s time for her to come to life.”
Bethel’s most recent awkward moment that made the headlines occurred in 2020. Bethel had to cancel their healing rooms in their sanctuary due to the Coronavirus outbreak, and shifted to online prayer. At the time, the head of the healing ministries Chris Gore said “We’re in impact mode. We’re going after this thing.” The opposite happened, that “thing” showed no respect for Bethelites or the 700 “healers” involved with the healing rooms.
A local news publication carried the headline COVID-19 case spike in college-aged students partially attributed to Bethel. Approximately 123 students at Bethel’s school of supernatural ministry hosted the virus, thereby contributing to the spike in Shasta County.
Now one would imagine that this colossal failure would at least put a damper on the ministry, and open the eyes of deluded Bethelites who imagine that they have dominion over disease. However, delusion is strong – aside from biblical teaching, even logic and facts have failed to penetrate the fog of deception that envelops Bethel. The show must go on!
Johnson’s rationale for healing all the sick: “Jesus healed everyone who came to Him. To accept any other standard is to bring the Bible down to our level of experience, and deny the nature of the One who changes not.” 4
Johnson’s wrong, what he’s doing is elevating man to Christ’s level of experience, and in fact nature – “it would be possible for everyone who believed on His name to do as He did and become as He was.”
Practically speaking, the result is that instead of praying for the sick as scripture instructs (James:5:14), Johnson & company believe that they have the same power and authority as Christ, and simply have to command the sick to be healed: “For example, it’s common for believers to read Jesus’ command to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom, heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, and cast out demons and think, “Well, I might be able to preach the Gospel. But God is the only one who does all those other things. I’ll pray for the sick, but I can’t heal them.” But Jesus didn’t say to pray for the sick. He said to heal them.” 5
“A person with revelation takes authority over the sickness and commands the sick person’s body to be healed “on earth as it is in heaven.” 6