I AM A RICH MAN

 

Anyone who has attended Sunday school or catechism has heard that Jesus died for our sins. We heard that when he was raised from the dead he became our savior. But I had no revelation that Jesus was a rich man and he made me a rich man. In fact, religion taught that Jesus was poor and even some clergy members have taken vows of poverty as an act of godliness. This ministered a spirit of poverty to my heart. However, this does not line up with the word of God.

Let's read 2 Corinthians 8:9, "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich." When you study the life of Jesus, you see that he had a house and it was large enough to have many people over for meals. The only time he became poor was on the cross. He took our poverty, as well as our sins and sicknesses, on his body while on the cross. When he came out of the grave he put off sin, sickness and our poverty!

Satan uses poverty to oppress God's children and he does this by twisting scripture. I was taught that "money is the root of all evil". This sounds good and it even sounds scriptural. But it is through ignorance of what is written in scripture that allows us to be deceived. Timothy speaking by the Spirit of God states, (1 Timothy 6:10), "For the love of money is the root of all evil:...". By leaving off these two words (love of), Satan's ministers have perverted the word of God. It is not money in and of itself that is evil, it is love of money. It becomes a god (idol) and all evil that manifests out of a man's heart stems from this love of money.

So, going back to 2 Corinthians, it is not the will of God that we be poor. Jesus did say that we would always have the poor with us, but he also knew that not all men would accept him as Lord. If you are poor or in poverty, you do not believe the gospel. You don't even believe that your sins are forgiven. When we set our hearts on "things", we miss out on the blessings. The Father knows that we have need of housing, clothes and food. And he knows that it take money to purchase these things.

He was speaking through his son Jesus when he said, and it is recorded in Matthew 6:33, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you". You should know that righteousness is revealed in the gospel, and the gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). The Gospel is the power of God (Romans 1:16) and the kingdom of God is in power (1 Corinthians 4:20). We are to seek the power of God, then these things including money will be added unto us.

So, when Jesus was raised from the dead, he made us rich, and this is a blessing! Proverbs 10:22 states, "The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it". We must give thanks for these blessings, but we don't set our hearts on them. We set our hearts on what Jesus did for us on the cross and these blessing will overtake us.

The Father speaking through the Psalmist said in Psalms 49:16-17, "Be not thou afraid when one is made rich, when the glory of his house is increased; For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away: his glory shall not descend after him". The Psalmist also instructs us to not abuse others when dealing with money. In Psalm 62:10, "Trust not in oppression, and become not vain in robbery: if riches increase, set not your heart upon them".

God will prove you with money

Just as God proved Abraham with his son that God gave him, God will prove you with money He gives you. Can you give it up? Or will you hold on to it. You cannot love God and money. One way He will prove you is with tithes and offerings. "Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation." (Malachi 3:8-9). We know that tithes are 10% and offerings are everything else above the tithe. If we cannot give in obedience to what the Father tells us, we are cursed!

As Christians, we walk in the steps of faithful Abraham (Romans 4:12) and in Genesis 14:20, it states that Abraham gave tithes of all and he was a rich man. Bringing this forward to modern day, we too, are to give tithes of all. Not net pay after taxes, but tithes on gross pay plus all that we own (houses, cars, lands, etc). Once we have accomplished this (as led by the Spirit) we break the curses we put on ourselves when we robbed God in our giving.

As stated above, when God delivers our hearts from the love of money and brings us to a point where we enjoy giving as he directs, the abundance of blessings will come upon us. Psalm 24:1 states, "The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein." So being obedient in giving back to God money that is His to begin with, should cause us to rejoice in that we can hear His voice.

We have learned above that obedience brings blessings and it pleases God to bless us. 2 Corinthians 9:7 tells us, "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver." And David in Psalm 35:27 prayed, "...Let the Lord be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant."

Beware of Covetousness

As noted earlier, the Psalmist wrote in Psalm 62:10, "...if riches increase, set not your heart upon them." We are further warned in Proverbs 11:28, "He that trusteth in his riches shall fall:". Jesus, knowing the hearts of man, instructed his disciples in Luke 12:15, "Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth." He also warned us that we can start out in the right way and the lust in our hearts for things will cause the word of God to be of no effect in our lives.

He is teaching us about the hearts of men, when he told the parable of the sower, which is recorded in Matthew, Mark and Luke. The account recorded by Matthew states that the word of God is sown in our hearts and some of the seed fell among thorns. "He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful." (Matthew 13:22). Here he warned us the riches are deceitful.

Timothy was warning us about false teachers who hold out to be men of God because they appear to be highly blessed in the abundance of their riches. He cautioned about, "Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself." (1 Timothy 6:5).

Having every need met

Paul was a rich man who walked in the blessings of the Gospel. Yet he stated in Philippians 4:11-12, "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound:" To walk in the riches and blessings of God is to have every need met, not accumulate riches unto ourselves. We walk as a rich man even if on any given day we may not have money in the bank, but there will be money there when we need it. To have all needs met and to have no wants is indeed to walk as a rich man.

And to walk as a rich man we need to take to heart the words of Jesus that were recorded in Matthew 6:30-34,

"Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."

Believe this and see the salvation of God!

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