With all the teaching that continually goes on in the Christian community today about prosperity one might think that money is the only thing that matters. That if you have money, or enough of it, you can buy anything even the blessings of God. I witnessed a minister on television trying to sell Gods blessings. You know what? People were actually trying to buy them.
Dont misunderstand me, I have nothing against godly prosperity; it is the prosperity message circulating today that is in question. Although many teach the message the way it should be taught there are still those who want to dwell on it day in and day out, never dealing with any other issues in the Christian walk and leaving many under nourished in the Word of God.
I have been told
What a minister constantly preaches about is an indication to what stays on his mind. If this is true, then a few people need to be delivered from the obsession with money.
The Bible declares this
1st Timothy 6:5, "Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such with draw thyself." Verse 6, "But godliness with contentment is great gain."
This scripture makes it clear, those who teach the message that gain is godliness are in error.
What should be taught is how to seek the Lord because if we put Him first in our lives everything else will fall right into place.
Matthew 6:33, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
People are in need of help
The reason I say this is simply because I know people who are having problems. They need help and theyre NOT getting it. They are NOT being taught how to receive healing in their bodies, how to get their lost loved ones saved or even how to have and maintain a sound mind. When theyre troubled they have no one to turn to. The pastor at their church is talking about money. The evangelist on television is talking about money. The prayer request line they call for help asks for a donation as soon as the prayer is said. Everybody wants money while the sick and hurting go unnoticed.
Of course these ministries need money, but couldnt they ask for a donation at a more appropriate time instead of while taking a prayer request on the phone?
Our Mind Should Stay On God
Not On Money
Isaiah 26:3, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."
The above scripture tells us that keeping our minds on God will bring us perfect peace. It doesnt say, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peacÿÿe whose mind is stayed on money. No, it doesnt say that. Money may bring a certain amount of contentment but not real peace. Yet the prosperity message that is being taught us today has everyones mind on money. And anything that redirects our minds away from God is sin.
Why do I say this? Well, have you read the Ten Commandments? The first one states clearly, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." If your mind is continually on money and not on God, then money has become your god.
1st Timothy 6:10, "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."
The Bible will never become outdated and this scripture is a clear indication of that for many today are coveting after money and erring from the faith.
I was watching a local telethon a year or so ago and a not too well known minister, helping raise funds, was taking pledges to get people saved and healed. Yes, you read this right! I was never so appalled in all of my Christian life. He just kept saying, "If you want your loved ones saved and healed, make a pledge to this station. People starting sending in money because as they were reading the pledges on the air, many were pledging $50.00 a month to get their loved ones saved and others were sending in money for healing. It was so absurd I couldnt believe it. If this isnt erring from the faith, I dont know what is.
Jesus has already paid the price for our salvation, which by the way includes healing, and our money isnt worth a hill of beans in such matters. Where people get this junk is beyond me because its certainly not in the Bible.
Name it and claim it
There was a popular message taught in the eighties called, "name it and claim it". Well, I decided I was going to name something and claim it so I went down to a car lot, laid hands on a new car and claimed it. I went back a few days later and bought the car.
The payment on that car, which was high for a car payment then, was three hundred and twenty-five dollars, which came out of my husbands hard-earned paycheck each and every month. I named it and claimed it all right but my husband paid for it. You just dont go around claiming things expecting God to pay for them. He doesnt honor requests like that.
God wants us to prosper and be in health but His blessings are not for sale. Dont you believe otherwise!
Dont jump in and buy things you cant afford because some preacher said God wants you to prosper. Wait on the blessings of God and dont force His hand.
Sowing and reaping doesnt necessarily mean that if you need a car you must sow one before you can reap one. I actually heard someone say if you need a car sow one. Well, my theory is, If you need a car that is a clear indication that you dont have one to sow in the first place. And, if you already had a car to sow, why then would you need one? Yes, we do reap what we sow, but this is referring to spiritual matters I believe, not material things.
I heard a well-known minister say, "I sow down to reap health and up to reap money." He explained if you need healing give to the poor, if you need money, give to the wealthy.
First of all, he was referring to the poor, as being looked down upon by him and God is not going to honor a gift given under those circumstances. Second, he was giving to get something in return, which makes it clear he was in the wrong.
Luke 6:35, "But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil."
Did you notice what it said here? "Do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return". This means, dont set around thinking to yourself, "I gave this and this so God is going to give me this and this."
Listen, if we give to the poor God is going to bless us but we aren't supposed to give to get. And another thing, Jesus took stripes on His back for our healing. Healing is already paid for and can not be purchased. Say what they may, we are healed, saved, and set free by the work done on Calvary. We can't buy the blessings of God.
Dont Become Materialistic in your Giving
Pay your tithes to your local church and your offerings to whomever you will, but in all your giving keep your mind on God and youll be blessed. Dont give to get, give to help and great will be your reward. (Remember Luke 6:35 above)
Copyright 2001 by Darlene Osborne (Revised Jan 2008)
(Darlene Osborne is the Publisher of The Chrisitan Online Magazine)