Beware of This Popular Blasphemy

Many Christians believe the name-it-and-claim-it philosophy. It's doing serious damage in the Church. This 1-minute devotion explains.

When I wrote about the error of using Proverbs 18:21 to claim that our words have power to bring health or death, a man sent me a list of Scriptures claiming that the Bible taught that our words save, heal, and forgive.(1)

What a serious blasphemy!

We are not saved by words. 
We are saved by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus (Romans 5:9). 

We do not receive salvation by words. 
We receive it by faith (Romans 1:17). 

We are not healed by words. 
We are healed by the power and purpose of Jesus (James 5:15). 

We are not forgiven by words. 
We are forgiven by the mercy of God (Psalm 103:10-12), and when we forgive another person, they are forgiven by our mercy, not our words (Ephesians 4:32).

"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power." 1 Corinthians 4:20

Words can reflect a person's beliefs (Matthew 15:18) or disguise them (Matthew 15:8).

The only words that always accomplish their purpose are God's words (Deuteronomy 32:39; Isaiah 55:11).

Our words matter, but they have no magic power.

Beware of this popular blasphemy often called name it and claim it or word of faith. 
(1) See The Power and Limit of Words.
See also: A Proverbial Mistake

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Many Christians believe the name-it-and-claim-it philosophy. It's doing serious damage in the Church. This 1-minute devotion explains.

Many Christians believe the name-it-and-claim-it philosophy. It's doing serious damage in the Church. This 1-minute devotion explains.


  1. Gracias por recordarnos y por tenerlo en cuenta pues hoy día,muchos quieren al igual que nuestro adversario torcer las escrituras.

  2. Gail, This is a good word. :-) I was also thinking that if we were saved by our words, besides all the theological problems with that, that the mute man would be forever damned. Doesn't sound much like a loving, all-powerful God to me.

  3. Words matter. We confess with our mouth Jesus Christ is Lord. James says there is power to bless and to curse. Proverbs 18 says there is power of life and death in our tongue. Ephesians 6, the sword of the spirit which is the word of God means we have to speak GODS WORD when praying, and during warfare. Matthew 7 Jesus said ASK seek knock. Believers better use the word. Not our words but HIS WORD, the word of God. Name it claim it, no. But there are promises in Gods word that we can confess by faith until we see its fruition and let’s not forget, Call those things that are not as though they were. You needs words for all of it. Everything I wrote is in Gods word. Some just misinterpret and twist for their own gain and they will answer to God but we most definitely have to speak, pray, ask, war, with the word of God.

    1. Hi Connery,
      You're right that our words matter. But there is no magical power in them.

      Many people have made a confession of faith in Jesus but they have never actually had faith in Jesus. Their words are meaningless. We must confess our faith, but it is faith that saves us, not words.

      Proverbs 18 is a very misused verse. It means that lies, slander, true and false testimony can cause a person's death. It does NOT mean our words have power of life and death beyond that. Nor do they have that power unless God allows it.

      If we claim that our words have the power of life and death beyond our testimony for or against another person, then we are calling God a liar because God says:

      "See now that I myself am he! There is no god besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand." Deut.32:39.

      That and every other Scripture you've included in your comment is taken out of context. I encourage you to read the links in this devotion which supply more information.

      But, you will have to do it with an open mind. I've found that this false teaching often takes people captive so they can no longer see what Scripture actually teaches. And even when they realize that their words don't have the power they claim they have, they refuse to give up this false teaching.

      I pray you will see the truth in this area.

  4. Also James 1:21 it is the implanted WORD of God that is able to save your souls.

    1. That is God's Word, not yours or mine. Our words cannot save anyone, not even ourselves. Please be careful not to compare your words with God's Word. That is blasphemy, my friend.

  5. Gail,
    I read your devo’s everyday. They are fantastic. Your exegesis of scripture is so encouraging. Thank you. I need these solid insightful teachings from scripture. Context is so critical for our growth. So thank you so much

    1. Thanks so much, Rodney. God knew I needed this encouragement today! God bless you.