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Noted televangelist and host of the long-running program "The 700 Club" Rev. Pat Robertson has recently compared faith-healing to Santa Clause.
During a "Bring it on" segment that aired Monday, a viewer identified as "Clark" wrote in asking about whether or not the faith healing done on the show could be done off of the air.
"When we're praying together the word of knowledge the Lord just shows us what He is doing at some point of time, not what we're doing," said Robertson, who cited 1 Corinthians as justification.
"It's a manifestation of the Holy Spirit. I do not believe in 'a resident gift to heal,' I don't think that's biblical. I think it is a word of knowledge."
Robertson then said that "if we had a power to heal anybody, then you should go through the hospital and clean out every…room and heal everybody there."
"It's like Santa Clause. He's got a pack on his back and he has gifts and he's passing these gifts out but they come from God. Only God can heal people," said Robertson.
Robertson is a proponent of faith healing and has been known to participate in events that included the practice in their proceedings.
In another Bring it on question and answer session, available on the Christian Broadcasting Network's website, Robertson explained the process further.
"How do you get it? You have to empty yourself and ask Him. Sometimes it is spontaneous," said Robertson.
"Jesus went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed of the devil and all who were sick. Everyone who came to Him for healing got healed."
Apologetics Index, a Netherlands-based online Christian ministry, has argued that there is a legitimate form of faith healing and an illegitimate form of faith healing.
AI notes that while the "Bible does mention incidences of faith healing" the sacred text also "does not condemn, forbid, or even discourage the use of medicines or other proper medical care."
"Many cults of Christianity preach and practice an unbiblical approach to faith healing," reads an entry on their website.
"Legitimate churches, movements, and individuals do not [equate] using drugs or receiving proper medical attention with unbelief, insufficient faith, or otherwise sinning against God."