Oral Roberts, a Christian televangelist and self proclaimed faith healer may be one of the most successful frauds ever. With a university to his name, Oral Roberts has been cited as a major leader of the Charismatic Movement. Ironically, Oral Roberts became a faith healer after dropping out of college. The Charismatic Movement is an evangelical movement that focuses on the gifts of the spirit: speaking in tongues, faith healing, and other abilities that are allegedly supernatural. Faith healing was popularized largely thanks to Oral Roberts 1950s televangilizing.
Roberts has told of and acted out several fraudulent "faith healings". In his biography, Roberts claims that he was healed of tuberculosis by a traveling preacher, and he even provides evidence by showing medical records of his healthy lungs, unfortunately he never showed any documented evidence that he had tuberculosis. In another instance a women appeared on Robert's show claiming to be miraculously healed of cancer, apparently she wasn't because she died less than 12 hours after the taping. They same thing happened again when a women with spinal cancer claimed Robert's had healed her on his show, only to die three days later of the disease.
Oral Roberts clearly is not a gifted faith healer. He has shown no actually ability to heal the sick, and he has been publicly exposed several times. The fact that this man has a University named after him displays that people will believe anyone if they want to, no matter how rediculess the character is. Unfortunately this is not always comical. In 1959, after hearing Roberts speak, diabetic Wanda Beach threw away her insulin. She was dead within hours. At another Roberts rally, three people reportedly died from similar circumstances.
The listed examples are deaths that are directly tied to Roberts preaching. The belief that prayer and meditation is a better cure for severe illnesses than western medicine is a dangerous one. Who knows how far Roberts has spread that belief, Roberts may actually be indirectly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of people. Now thats what I call preaching the word of Jesus.