Friday, 12 August 2011

Truth or Heresy: Does God Want You To Be Rich?

There is a debate going on in the Church as to whether God wants us (Christians) to be rich or not. The issue had even gone farther lately as some Christians have started calling names and tagging preachers as false prophets and their churches heretic just because they preach what the accusing Christians call “prosperity gospel.” The aim of this article is to try to look at the issue from a scriptural perspective. Does God want you to be rich? What do you think? And what does the Bible say about your being rich? Let’s get into it! 

The Elders of Faith Were Rich
Abraham is seen as the father of faith. He gained that reputation through the faith he professed in God all the days of his life. In essence, God promised to make him the father of many nations. Those nations are now the many Christian churches who are following the example of Abraham, by professing the Abrahamic faith in the Almighty God. God blessed Abraham and he was a very great man in his day. Perhaps he could have been among the world’s richest men if were around then.

After Abraham’s death, God moved unto his son Isaac, and he was also greatly blessed. Here’s what the Bibles says about Isaac’s blessings:
      And the LORD appeared unto him, and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of:
Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these countries, and I will perform the oath which I sware unto Abraham thy father;
And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed;
Then Isaac sowed in that land, and received in the same year a hundredfold: and the LORD blessed him.
– Genesis 26:2-4,12

Job was also a very rich man and yet a great man of God fearing the Lord in all he did (See Job 1:1).  Job was such a great influence financially during his days. He was adjudged the richest man in the east. Let’s see what the Bible said about the riches of Job:
His[Job] substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.
-         Job 1:3

In fact, Job’s wealth was so much that it drew the attention of the devil himself. Find below a glimpse of the conversation that ensued between God and satan about Job.
      And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?
Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.
-         Job 1:7-10
Job was a very faithful servant of God and he was also worth millions because the Lord blessed the work of his hands.

King David and Solomon his son were also very rich. The Old Testament’s rich men list could go on and on. But I want us to move to the New Testament. Yes, there were rich men in the Church during Jesus’ days too. The rich man of Mark 10 and Zacchaeus are some notable examples.
So what is the Bible saying? Does God want you and me to be rich?

Yes! God wants you to be rich, but…
But what? – Someone might ask. Being a Christian does not justify poverty. From the examples of rich men in the Bible discussed above, it is evident that God does not desire poverty for His children. The truth is that He desires that we will prosper. In 3 John 1:2, the LORD said, “Beloved, I wish above all things that you will prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospers.”

That is not all; Jesus promised a hundredfold blessing to those who leave everything to follow Him.
      And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel's,
But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.
But many that are first shall be last; and the last first.
-         Mark 10;29-31
The hundredfold blessings in the above is for all Christians; you and me and everyone who has left everything to follow and trust Jesus Christ our Lord. Hello Christian friend, greater is your reward with God for believing in His son. As Christians we are aware of the great blessing of everlasting life with our Lord Jesus in Heaven, but God also has plans to prosper us and ensure that we have the best life here on earth. The phrase 'in this time' in Mark 10:30 is referring to our current life here on earth.

In addition to the above promise from our Lord Jesus Christ, there is also a blessing of Tithes and offerings. God promised to open the windows of Heaven and pour us a great blessing when we obey Him by giving our tithes and offerings.
      Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.  And all nations shall call you blessed.
-         Malachi 3:10-12.

In effect, it is evident in God’s Word that he wants the best for His children. Dear Christian friend, poverty is not your portion. You may be going through some difficulties right now, but you need to understand that God has great plans to prosper you. No condition is permanent and surely your condition will never remain the same. As God lives, He will surely come to your aid and give you what you need. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and he shall direct your path.

That God want you to be rich, and that He wants you to have all you need is truth and not heresy. God has made it clear in His Word that He desires the best for His children. Jeremiah 29:11 reads “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”
Related posts:
How to Receive Abundant Blessings from God 
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