I came across a Netflix documentary this weekend called American Gospel: Christ Alone. The film’s website asks the question: Is Christianity Christ + the American dream? American Gospel examines how the prosperity gospel (the Word of Faith movement) has distorted the gospel message.
The film was made in 2018 and is part of a two part series. The documentary features interviews with John MacArthur, Mark Dever, Bryan Chappell, Steve Lawson, the late Nabeel Qureshi, and a host of others. I honestly can’t remember the last time I saw something on a streaming service (or television) which was straight up preaching the gospel and bringing Biblical truths. It was refreshing.
The first 40 or so minutes of the documentary is talking about the gospel message and what it is. Humanity is sinful, unable to live up to God’s mortal holiness, but the good news is that God has made a way for sinful people to be redeemed. God saves people not because we’re good but because he’s good, and for his own glory. The scholars talking about the Bible and the centrality of the gospel was very encouraging and edifying.
In the documentary we also meet a woman named Katherine Berger who became a Christian as an adult and talks of her joy in Christ, in spite of several severe health issues, including a rare genetic disorder. We meet Costi Hinn, the nephew of famed prosperity preacher and claimed faith-healer Benny Hinn who used to work in his uncle’s ministry before realizing the false claims that were being made.