Andrew Wommack’s healing services are not like the services of Benny Hinn, Kathryn Kuhlman, Oral Roberts (in his day) and others. While viewing many of his videos, I have only found one with a call for people to come forward for healing. Instead, his videos focus primarily on his teaching, downplaying the actual healing part of the service.
For the one healing service I found, Andrew did not pray with the people at all; instead volunteers met with those people seeking prayer. I was disappointed because I wanted to see how healing claims were made. I wanted to learn what types of diseases were mentioned, what symptoms were relieved, and how Andrew performed his skills. Because I could not see any of these, I decided to look at the comments made below several of his videos and categorize the comments. Surprisingly, I found this to be every bit as interesting as watching people testify. This is what I found:
- Most of the comments below his videos are written by the “Amen Circle.” These are people who champion Andrew Wommack and want the world to hear the person they believe is an anointed man of God. Some of these people watch the same Wommack videos dozens of times because they love his teaching so much.
- On the opposite end, there is a small group of people who are convinced that Andrew is a money seeking charlatan or heretic.
- There are some comments by people who like to say silly things, but they are rare. One man says, “I am in love.” I assume he is talking about Andrew, but maybe he is just talking about some guy or girl he met.
- There are people who say they are going off medicine or are putting a stop to going to medical doctors. I fear for them. I believe this is the greatest danger for people who buy into faith healing. Kenneth Copeland’s church was the epicenter of a national measles epidemic in 2013 because Copeland and his daughter were downplaying shots and the medical industry in favor of trusting God for healing. As a result, many church members decided not to get shots for their children, and their children got the measles.
Because this church was the center point of and epidemic, the nation looked at them and did not see faith working miracles, but rather they saw that the Copeland’s faith healing teachings were inferior to modern medicine.
The moral of this story is that it is easy to talk about healing and promises from the pulpit (as Andrew Wommack does), and it is easy to share stories (real or not) of people healed; but reality is a whole other story. Several follow up studies from other Christian evangelists and Copeland’s epidemic give us a closer view of reality which is not told from the pulpit. Andrew Wommack might be a much better preacher than most other faith healers, but his teaching is just as destructive and deadly to those who follow them.
5. In comments under Wommack’s videos, there is a very small group of people who testify that they have been healed using Wommack’s principles. I divide this group of commenters into two categories:
- The undefined healing (they don’t give any details of their disease), and
- The defined healing. This group includes people who are sick with diseases that are responsive to placebos such as irritable bowel syndrome or pain. No one in this group had structural diseases.
People who claim unnamed diseases – say such things as “God healed me through Andrew Wommack’s teachings.” Left unsaid is the disease from which such people were healed. Are they healed from a structural disease? That would most likely be a miracle. Or are they healed from a functional disease? That would mean that a placebo could probably do the same healing. Other questions I have are:
- Are these people claiming healing that never took place because they are taught to confess healing?
- Are these people exaggerating in order to accentuate their drama and/or perhaps (in their thinking) give glory to God?
6. The next group of people who comment follow Andrew’s advice and claim healing, but it is obvious that no real healing exists. Here are some examples:
Awesome video. I know this will help me. I was diagnosed with a brain tumor, seizures, severe headaches and nausea, etc. I decree I am healed by the stripes of JESUS! Thanks LORD!
The declaration of being healed is steeped in Wommack theology and not in reality. He doesn’t say, “I am healed,” or “the tumor disappeared,” but he says, “I decree…” He is trying to speak his tumor out of existence; he is trying to use commands and words he hopes will hold enough power to remove a tumor. If by chance his tumor disappears (as it does for many unbelievers and within other religions) he will think that his own spiritual commanding was the reason.
Several people from the Amen Circle responded to this guy’s command by encouraging him and telling him to continue to believe, because he “is healed.”
Another person says, “Please agree with me for my healing.” He was leaning on the faith healing teachings (outside of Wommack’s circles) that say where two or more people agree on something, God will respond in kind. The Amen Circle respond with, “I agree,” or some very boldly say, “I command healing and any sickness and disease be dead in jesus name now body i command you to recover!!” Another tries to teach a lesson and says, “You don’t need me to agree with you on anything! Jesus is more than all the physicians in the world working on you!
All of this shows that people are looking for special authority, actions, and words that will heal. Andrew Wommack promises that his magical formulas are straight from the Word of God and he surrounds his messages with a lot of scripture, going far beyond what his peers do with the Bible.
7. There are comments by people who emphasize or expand Wommack’s teachings. In the following example, the writer tells people that hoping for healing is not good enough and hope alone will not work. He or she writes:
I hope I will get healed = I don’t believe I will be healed
Another person writes under this comment, “never thought about it like that…SO TRUE!”
And the final response under this comment summarizes faith healing very well:
You were already healed 2000 year ago, speak with authority to your disease – claim your healing its already done. You will get the manifestation in Jesus Name. Just Believe
As clear and as seemingly biblical Wommack’s faith healing is, his teachings trouble me. On the one hand, it can help people locked up in negativity, self-pity and depression. Many sick and diseased people can be helped by building a more positive attitude and positive words. But positive attitudes and faith healing can only reach so far. For those people who cannot or won’t be healed, faith healing is heavy burden and a huge and constant disappointment that reaches deeply into the spiritual and emotional lives of the sick and diseased.
Because healing is so important to Andrew Wommack’s followers and to Charismatics, being sick and unable to recover is a constant reminder that one’s faith is not good enough. Wommack offers hope in his teachings by claiming that although you have healing already, it just may take time for the symptoms of sickness to go away. But such hope will not materialize for most, and they will be constantly reminded that they do not measure up to or deserve God’s gift.
8. A few people in the Andrew Wommack comments openly disagree with Andrew and use a Bible verse or two, but this is hardly going to persuade people who have been completely baptized into Andrew Wommack’s view of scripture and his ability to come off as thoroughly competent and knowledgeable in God’s Word.
One person asks “What happened to ask, seek, and knock?” Nobody cared to correct him, scold him or answer him. But it was a simple question taken from Jesus teachings and parables that exposed a fault with one of Wommack’s key teachings which (I am simplifying Wommack’s teaching here) states that we ask once and then thank God from then on, believing that our prayers reached heaven the first time.
ANDREW WOMMACK AND THE BIBLE
Andrew Wommack has memorized a lot of scripture and is very familiar with his subject matter (within the framework of faith healing), so when he talks, he can wow people who know very little scripture or none at all. He impressed me as well, and I have spent years studying the Bible hours a day.
What impressed me most of all about Wommack’s Bible knowledge is that he goes beyond taking one verse and stringing it with other single verses – something many preachers and teachers of all types fall into. His use of scripture tells me that he generally works more with the context of each verse than his peers. He is a deeper thinker as well, but that has not kept him from coming up with some bad teaching.
Andrew has completely built his teachings on the faith healing doctrines developed by previous Charismatic teachers such as Ken Hagin, Kenneth Copeland and others. It is obvious that when he studies the Bible, he does not let the Bible reach outside of these Charismatic teachings.
Andrew Wommack is trapped within the faith healing world and he uses the Bible masterfully within that world. But whereas he has dug into the trenches of those teachings, studying and learning the Bible led me out of those same teachings – not to reject healing altogether, but to a more Biblical view of healing, letting the Bible speak for itself rather than forcing every passage into the faith healing restraints.
For more about the teaching of Andrew Wommack, check out: