Did prosperity thinking play a role in the real estate bubble? Sue argues that it did.
Prosperity theology is an unsustainable belief system. At a personal level, I am setting myself up for profound disappointment if I believe that prayer changes God, that the tangible world can be controlled by personal manipulation of the supernatural world. Because if I fail to fulfill my desires, then I am living my entire life in error – I am a bad person, unfavored and unloved by God.
At the level of a religious practice of millions, author Jackson Lears argues that prosperity theology generates a culture of recklessness.
Worse, she explains, subprime lenders used religious leaders to pitch wealth-building and real estate ventures and that the areas most decimated by subprime closely track that of prosperity gospel churches, the exurban middle class and urban poor.