Tuesday, June 2, 2015

God's Wealth

God wants us to have a successful, thriving life! The problem many have is that they hear that and think of the flesh of this boot-camp life. What our fallen nature considers "success" or "blessing" is always material things and physical comforts. So many "pastors" will say that God wants you to be "happy" or to live a "bountiful" life. And they get all sorts of support from people who like to hear that.

Who doesn't like to get a cool fortune cookie sermon that claims God is going to pamper us with wealth and health here and now. But, we know that AT NO TIME IN THE BIBLE did any of the true followers of Christ or the faithful prophets of the O.T. EVER enjoy health and wealth in their lifetime. Actually, quite the opposite.

Quick shout-out to Hebrews chapter 11 and the reference to those of whom the world is not worthy.

No, God isn't promising wealth, health, prosperity in the way the world expects. God isn't that cheap.
Satan, now he's the villain who points to the forbidden fruit of self-gratification and says, "God actually WANTS you to have this, but he's testing you to see if you'll reach out and take it." And once we've bought the lie that this life is about being "comfortable," we're pierced with so many sorrows and faith becomes a fairy tale that we use to shield ourselves from a harsh reality.

What God actually is giving us is far greater. God wants us to live for real.

What does that mean?

It means that we recognize how sinful we are, by our nature. It means we confess our pitiful state, which is actual death, an inability to raise a finger to please God (which is the purpose for which He created us).It means we let Jesus' perfect sacrifice pay for our debt of sin and rebellion against God, pinning our sinful self to the cross with Him. It means dying to those natural impulses of sinful behavior that used to rule us before we awoke to our deathly state.

It means rising again with Him in true life, pure, spiritual life that has new ambitions of glorifying God.

Finally, it means ascending with Him, being in the very presence of God by virtue of our representative, Jesus Christ.

When this is a reality, the things of this world (money, fame, worry, concerns of longevity or physical needs) fade away. We know who has bought us. We know the intense love of God that will provide for us, even during poverty, suffering, terminal sickness and persecution. We know that our future is secure.

No pithy fortune cookie faith can compare to such a powerful wealth that God has given me.

He's offering it to everyone.

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