The book The Prayer of Jabez has some serious problems, in my humble opinion. Among them, it... a) Demonstrates poor biblical interpretation skills by ripping a passage out of context and using it in a way that was not intended.
b) Legitimizes wacked-out, "name it and claim it," theology in the evangelical world.
c) Totally bypasses Jesus and the gospel.
I just finished listening to a fascinating interview with Derek Webb in which he gives some of the reasons for the break-up of Caedmon’s Call. Believe it or not, Derek says that Bruce Wilkinson and The Prayer of Jabez were in part to blame for the band’s demise!
Derek explains that his first solo album was inspired by an encounter that Caedmon’s Call had with Bruce Wilkinson at a trade event. At this event, Wilkinson was supposed to speak for about 20-30 minutes, and then Caedmon’s was to perform a few songs when he finished. Wilkinson held forth for about an hour and a half telling the crowd that if they would pray the prayer of Jabez, then God would bless them. According to Derek, Wilkinson never once mentioned Christ or the gospel. Derek was so outraged, that he wanted to speak out against the gospel-free message of Bruce Wilkinson. When the rest of the band demurred, Derek struck out on his own.
Maybe this story is common knowledge, but I had never heard it before. But don’t take my word for it. Go listen to Derek tell the story himself in this interview with the RUF director at Belmont University: Derek Webb episode 12 (from the Derek Webb podcast).