Please excuse my tardiness. I am usually quite punctual; however, I was preoccupied this week with something of monumental importance: university application. Since I am applying to an American university, there are certain guidelines that I must comply with, such as scanning a copy of my passport and attaining a student visa. Ah, the life of a college-bound teenager.
We have discussed the spiritual warfare and the enmity of the evil one. Now, we will ascertain the will of God for your life.
8. Although God has a different plan for each and every one of His children, there are certain things that God wants for you regardless of your colour, race, background, or gender (as in female or male). Despite that God may have a different calling for you than He does for me, there are things that God wants and desires and has given us when we received His Son that are worth mentioning.
a) Before I begin this segment, please, please, please do not begin your argument by saying, "I have seen many Christians who have lived this way." One thing that is part of God's plan for His children is wellness: complete and total wellness. In fact, God does not want His children to be sick; He has sent His Son so that we no longer have to be sick. Now, I know what you're going to say next: "I know lots of Christians who are/were sick"; "but if Jesus came to heal the sick, then why are so many people still sick?"; "I know lots of people who died from their disease, claiming it was the will of God"; or, perhaps the biggest lie of all, "I know lots of Christians who believe that they are healed, believing the Word regarding their healing". Ah, what are they acting upon the Word? Mhmm...different story now, isn't it? First of all, allow me to be perfectly blunt and honest when I say that Christians who die or live in their sickness are shallow, shallow, shallow! God's plan for His people is wellness, not sickness. Then why are so many in the body of Christ--a staggering 80%--sick? Because of lack of knowledge. What knowledge? The Word of God. Hosea 4:6 says, My people [referring to the body of Christ] die from a lack of knowledge (emphasis added). Notice that it doesn't say that people die from lack of love, trust, of faith for that matter. No, Christians die from a lack of knowledge of what God's Word says about their predicament. But, some say, God's healing Scriptures (predominantly referring to Isaiah 53:5) is a literal interpretation; God heals us spiritually. To that I say that there is no such thing as spiritually healed. God restores, but there is a difference between spirit and soul (perhaps you should learn the difference before speaking about it in your so-called argument against God's will for us to be healed). Let me shed a light on a heavily confused situation: The reason why many unbelievers (and believers for that matter) believe that being sick for Christ is godly is because the majority of Christians are sick. When they look around, all they see is sickness, sickness, sickness, so it would natural to assume that this is God's will for us. Only that would be a wrong presumption. The right thing to do is look at what God says about this in His Word. Mark 16:17-18, And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name . . . they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover; Psalm 34:19, Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all (this certainly includes healing); Jeremiah 30:17, For I will restore health unto you, and I will heal you of your wounds, says the Lord. As you can see, God desires for us to be healthy spiritually first, of course, but then mentally, emotionally, and physically. Why in that particular order? You must understand that healing is a choice; you either want it or don't. Secondly, healing is a mindset; it's a way of thinking. When you see a sprained toe, a cracked limb, or a disfigured part, you look at that body part (in faith) and you speak the Word of God over it, claiming your healing, working the Word. You can't believe something without putting it in action. If you believe that it's not going to rain, then surely you would spend time outside, would you not? In the same principle, if you believe that God is working His healing power as you speak His Word over you life, circumstances, and illness, you act as if you are not even sick. In fact, you reject the symptoms and the allegations the enemy is attempting you to believe (that you are sick, or if you are sick, then you are never going to get well and that the Word doesn't work). One thing that you should be absolutely certain about is the assurance of the Word. Isaiah 55:11 clearly decrees this: My word, which comes from my mouth, is like the rain and snow. It will not come back to me without results. It will accomplish whatever I want and achieve whatever I send it to do. The Word brings results, so speaking the Word over your physical body brings results. Perhaps not right away, but it does. If you have lived with a certain ailment for more than half your life, speaking it a few times per day will not make it disappear in two days. But speaking it whenever you remind yourself of that ailment, the result will come quicker. It all depends on your faith. Jesus spoke these words: your faith has made you well (Mark 10:52). You can't just think about your healing; you have to speak it. Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross was not in vain and it was not only for sin. It was for everything. Galatians 3:13 says, Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law...Jesus paid the price for us in full and for everything. Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, or in Hebrew translation, the curse of the world. What is the curse of the world? Sickness, poverty, brokenness, etc. Don't look at the Christians or people around you; don't focus on how sick they are and how broken they are and how poor or how stingy they are regarding money. Don't look at how your best friend, who is saved, complains about her pain yet rejoices in the Lord. Get this truth imprinted in your mind: God's plan for YOU is health and wholeness. Healing is a choice; healing is a mindset that must be worked at; and healing is working the Word in faith. Don't become discouraged when you see no results in a week, month, or even a year. God works behind the scenes; even when you think He isn't working, He's working. Think of this way: If God didn't want you to be well, then why would there be so many healing Scriptures in the Bible if God, the Creator and Author of the Word, didn't want you to be well? It's because He does. Why? Because He loves you. Matthew 6:10, says, ...Your Will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. In Heaven, we don't need healing; Heaven is perfect and we'll be perfect, so there is no need for physical wholeness. On earth, however, where it's full of flaws, imperfections, and brokenness, healing is something that everyone wants and essentially crave. No one wants to be sick. So, God's Will here on earth, as it is in heaven (wholeness of the physical kind as well), is healing. And if you find anyone who says that they don't want to be whole, well then, the only thing you can do is smile and say, "I will be well for my entire life and have nothing more severe than a cough." It will leave an impression that will have them thinking even after you leave because you rise above the brokenness of the world, which is exactly what Jesus overcame and redeemed us from. Then why are so many Christians still sick? Simple, because it is hard work. It takes discipline, renewing one's mind constantly, and to shed the old way of life. When you tell Christians that God's plan for you is to be well and they retaliate horrendously, they are offended because you are challenging their way of living. They think the way they lead their life is fine because they have Jesus. They don't realize that the Blood of Jesus was invested in their healing. Jesus' 39 whips was for the major diseases (such as cancer) and from those major diseases branches off to other ailments, thereby covering all diseases known and unknown to man. Since many hold that testimonial is the most convincing argumentative concept, who will unsaved people rather believe: a sick Christian or a physically whole and well Christian? I think the evidence speaks for itself.
b) In this life, we can't live without money. We need money and thus money is a necessity because it provides the essentials in life: food, water, clothing, shelter, and stability. So what is God's opinion of money? Or rather, financial prosperity? Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health [another Scriptural reference to healing and God], just as your soul prospers (3 John 1:2). Now, you must understand that prosperity isn't just about money; it's certainly part of it, but it is not the only thing. It is truth that you cannot serve two masters: God and money (Matthew 6:24) and the desire or yearning for money alone destroys a man's soul. However, money by itself is not a bad thing. In fact, money is a tool that is designed to glorify God. Unfortunately, there are many Christians who believe that having just enough, just to get by, or not asking for little, is okay with God. "We have to be humble and modest," many will say, but regrettably, they fail to realize what good things money will bring if brought on good and godly intentions. They want to buy the cheapest food, cheapest clothing, cheapest everything because they have to be "modest". Only they misconstrue the meaning between modesty and cheap. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean it's good. They have the poverty mentality, thinking that they are being poor for Jesus. Here are some biblical evidence for prosperity:
Jesus Christ "became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich." (2 Corinthians 8:9)
God has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant. (Psalm 35:27)
"The blessing of the Lord makes one rich." (Proverbs 10:22)
God is not selfish or stingy but "gives us richly all things to enjoy." (1 Timothy 6:17) If God didn't want us to have nice and rich things to enjoy, He would have said, "poorly things to enjoy". There is a reason why God says all these things in His Word. If you don't like it, then what are you going to do, scratch it out?
"The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord." (Psalm 33:5) Why did God create such abundance and give it to us unless it is His will for us to have it?
"The earth He has given to the children of men." (Psalm 115:16)
Christians are joint heirs with Christ. (Romans 8:17)
With Him God also freely gave us all things. (Romans 8:32)
We will reign (as kings) in life through Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:17)
The rich rules over the poor (Proverbs 22:7) so it can not be God's will for His people to be poor.
God "gives (us) power to get wealth." (Deuteronomy 8:18)
"For all the promises of God in (Christ) are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us." (2 Corinthians 1:20)
God teaches us to profit. (Isaiah 48:17)
God gave us instructions on how to be prosperous and have good success. (Joshua 1:8 & Psalm 1:1-3) Why would He tell us how if it was not His will for us to prosper?
God desires that we prosper. (3 John 1:2)
You should have "all sufficiency in all things" so you can "have an abundance for every good work." (2 Corinthians 9:8)
Christians have been called to freedom. (Galatians 5:13)
Whom the Son of God sets free is free indeed. (John 8:36) If you do not have financial freedom you are not truly free.
Human parents desire the best for their children. God is our Heavenly Father so surely He desires for us to have things at our disposal simply because He wants to bless us, just as parents bless their children with nice things.
Jesus said "how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things." (Matthew 7:11)
We are to ask the Father and receive that our joy may be full. (John 16:24) Being full equals abundance.
God loves a cheerful giver and most people need more than just what is necessary to really be one. (2 Corinthians 9:7)
He is the God of peace. Peace means "prosperity in every way" in both the Hebrew of the Old Testament and the Greek of the New Testament."The chastisement for our peace was upon Him (Jesus Christ)." (Isaiah 53:5)
"Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law" (Galatians 3:13) which includes poverty and lack.
The blessing of Abraham is supposed to come upon those who are in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:14)
"The Lord blessed Abraham in all things." (Genesis 24:1) (Abraham) was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold." (Genesis 13:2)
"God shows no partiality" (Acts 10:34) and He made several people in the Bible wealthy. Even today, there is no one who has had a great surplus than Solomon. In fact, the most richest man in America is not Bill Gates; it is a Christian man in Texas. But the devil doesn't want you to know that because he doesn't want you to know that God desires for you to have financial prosperity.
God says wisdom is the principal thing and commands us to get it. (Proverbs 4:7)
Jesus has been made unto us wisdom. (1 Corinthians 1:30)
Riches and honor come with wisdom. (Proverbs 3:16 & 8:18)
Instructions are given that you may lack nothing. (1 Thessalonians 4:11-12; James 1:4)
God "has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness." (2 Peter 1:3)
Jesus told us to pray that God's "will be done on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10) Heaven is a place of abundance.
See how evil the enemy is? He actually wants you to believe that God wants you stay poor or be limited by your corrupted way of thinking (i.e. we have to carry our cross, we have to be poor of Jesus, having nice things means that I don't love Jesus, or any other load of BS). Ask any Christian if they want to become rich? Most likely, the answer will be yes. (If they say no, punch them in the fact because they're lying.) Then, ask them, by the Lord's way? Then they will start arguing about the financial will of God for them. God's kingdom isn't based on the world's economy, so going to the bank, asking for loans, or borrowing from friends isn't the Lord's way of being prosperous. God doesn't want you to survive, but to thrive. In fact, God prefers you not to go to the bank because that means you don't fully trust Him and having an unbelieving heart in His eyes is wickedness (Hebrews 3:12). Psalms 118:8 clearly says, It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man. Every person wants a Chanel or Louis Vuitton (for women, hopefully), a nice car like a BMW or a Mercedes, a nice house, nice clothes, and have a reputation of merit. But doing it God's way? Well...I don't think so. And thus, many flee to the bank, as if the bank is God, and they wonder why they're not progressing. Or, many Christians want only enough, enough to get by. To that I say, you are selfish! You are only thinking of yourself! There are children in Africa dying for food and water (or lack thereof) and people don't do anything because "the Christians are doing something about it". Are they? No, of course not, because they are stuck in their own personal bubble squandering about their own petty problems, such as only having enough. Having money is not a sin. Having money means you can sponsor many children in Africa, proving them a future and the knowledge that God loves them; you can provide orphans in Haiti a home. Do you not think that requires money? If Christians worry only about having enough just to get by, then they are selfish heathens. When you acquire money, you can help make a difference to one person. You should get money so you can help more people and thus lead more people to Christ. When people are in a crisis, people are willing to listen...especially when what you're doing is bringing results. One thing that I should also say is that tithing does not mean giving your money to God begrudgingly. In fact, sowing money in the kingdom of Heaven is a seed that will provide a harvest. Malachi 3:10, "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this," says the LORD of hosts, "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. When you sow your seed (money) in the kingdom of Heaven, God will provide a thrice-, seven-, even a hundred-fold blessing. (Fold means multiply; seven-fold means seven times the blessing.) God wants you to have money, desires for you have money in His way and without greed or selfishness. The will of God is for us to be fruitful in every way. (In case you have any questions regarding this field, go to www.creflodollarministries.org. He is known as the prosperity preacher because what he does achieves results.) Jesus Himself was not poor and if we are imitators of Christ, then we ourselves should not be poor either. How was Jesus not poor? First of all, He had a treasurer (a corrupted treasurer, but a treasurer nonetheless). A poor person doesn't have a treasurer because they have nothing to treasure. Ask a homeless person if they have a treasurer. Yeah, I thought so. Secondly, for the entire duration of His ministry, Jesus never worked to earn money to travel. From that, you should gather that Jesus already had more than enough to sustain Himself whilst going out on His mission on earth. Jesus never had to work in little shops along the way to earn money. Jesus had the riches in Heaven and He tapped into that on earth, just as we Christians should do as well. I will conclude as I ended the previous segment, who will unsaved people rather believe: a poverty-stricken Christian or a wealthy Christian who loves God more than all his assets and money combined (which many rack up to exceed a million)? I am confident that the evidence, once again, speaks for itself.