Friday 5 June 2015

The Other Side of Prosperity - Friday June 5, 2015

The Other Side of Prosperity - Friday June 5, 2015
Memorise: Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: - Proverbs 30:8
Read: 2 Chronicles 18:1-3 (KJV)

1 Now Jehoshaphat had riches and honour in abundance, and joined affinity with Ahab.

2 And after certain years he went down to Ahab to Samaria. And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people that he had with him, and persuaded him to go up with him to Ramoth-gilead.

3 And Ahab king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat king of Judah, Wilt thou go with me to Ramoth-gilead? And he answered him, I am as thou art, and my people as thy people; and we will be with thee in the war.

Bible in One Year: 1 Kings 9-10, Luke 3:7-22


Prosperity is good, and it is far better than poverty. As a matter of fact, God wants His children to prosper (3 John 2). However, we cannot wave off the words of Agur’s prophecy in today’s memory verse. One may wonder why he would make this strange utterance. The answer lies in Proverbs 30:9:

“Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.”
The first part of his reason for this statement is what I consider to be the other side of prosperity. When you become so prosperous that you forget the God who prospered you in the first place, you are in very serious trouble. My prayer for you is that the prosperity that will make you forsake God will not come your way in Jesus’ Name.

In our Bible reading, we see how God prospered King Jehoshaphat with abundant riches; but after he experienced prosperity, he made a military alliance with the wicked King Ahab. He would have lost his life through this evil association with Ahab, but for the mercy of God (2 Chronicles 18:31). You must be very careful of the people you associate with as you climb the ladder of prosperity (Proverbs 19:4). Some people suddenly become clubbers after they start commanding wealth. They now enjoy the world of vanities, and no longer value time for fellowship with the brethren. The story of King David in 2 Samuel 11:1-2 is an example of what prosperity can do to a one-time valiant warrior. David had no time for extra-marital affairs when he was running for his dear life from cave to cave. But after the crown came, at a time he was supposed to lead Israel to battle as he used to do, he was busy enjoying a sinful holiday.

Should we then conclude that prosperity is evil? Not at all; all we need to do is to follow the pattern of prosperity management used by the fathers of faith like Abraham. No matter how wealthy you become, keep standing out as a lover of God who trembles at His commandments. Your wealth has a purpose, which is to serve the interest of God and His Kingdom through the machinery of the Church. You cannot imagine that God will bless someone with a car, when the motive is to use it for seducing innocent girls to defile them. This is the reason why some children of God are yet to receive their promised prosperity: God knows they cannot handle it yet.

Prayer Point: Father, grant me the wisdom and the spiritual maturity to handle wealth.

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