Posts Tagged ‘Prosperity’


Deuteronomy 2 “Then at last the LORD said to me, ‘You have been wandering around in this hill country long enough; turn to the north. Give these orders to the people: “You will pass through the country belonging to your relatives the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir. The Edomites will feel threatened, so be careful. Do not bother them, for I have given them all the hill country around Mount Seir as their property, and I will not give you even one square foot of their land. If you need food to eat or water to drink, pay them for it. For the LORD your God has blessed you in everything you have done. He has watched your every step through this great wilderness. During these forty years, the LORD your God has been with you, and you have lacked nothing.”’… “Then as we turned north along the desert route through Moab, the LORD warned us, ‘Do not bother the Moabites, the descendants of Lot, or start a war with them. I have given them Ar as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.’”… “When all the men of fighting age had died, the LORD said to me, ‘Today you will cross the border of Moab at Ar and enter the land of the Ammonites, the descendants of Lot. But do not bother them or start a war with them. I have given the land of Ammon to them as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.’”… Moses continued, “Then the LORD said, ‘Now get moving! Cross the Arnon Gorge. Look, I will hand over to you Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and I will give you his land. Attack him and begin to occupy the land. Beginning today I will make people throughout the earth terrified because of you. When they hear reports about you, they will tremble with dread and fear.’” Moses continued, “From the wilderness of Kedemoth I sent ambassadors to King Sihon of Heshbon with this proposal of peace… “Then the LORD said to me, ‘Look, I have begun to hand King Sihon and his land over to you. Begin now to conquer and occupy his land.’ “Then King Sihon declared war on us and mobilized his forces at Jahaz. But the LORD our God handed him over to us, and we crushed him, his sons, and all his people. We conquered all his towns and completely destroyed everyone—men, women, and children. Not a single person was spared. We took all the livestock as plunder for ourselves, along with anything of value from the towns we ransacked.

One aspect of the Israelite story that is hard to digest is God’s authorization for murder for the purpose of establishing His people in the promised land. Is that not cruel and self-serving and what can we learn out of this passage? (more…)


Exodus 36:2-7 Then Moses summoned Bezalel and Oholiab and every skilled person to whom the LORD had given ability and who was willing to come and do the work. They received from Moses all the offerings the Israelites had brought to carry out the work of constructing the sanctuary. And the people continued to bring freewill offerings morning after morning. So all the skilled workers who were doing all the work on the sanctuary left what they were doing and said to Moses, “The people are bringing more than enough for doing the work the LORD commanded to be done.” Then Moses gave an order and they sent this word throughout the camp: “No man or woman is to make anything else as an offering for the sanctuary.” And so the people were restrained from bringing more, because what they already had was more than enough to do all the work.

If anyone doubts God’s ability to know the hearts of His people, this passage clearly shows evidence that what God directed through Moses actually came to pass. God asked the Israelites to give specifically and they did, without ceasing, so much that Moses had to forbid them from giving anymore.

Is the purpose of today’s passage not clear and why then do we need Jesus if God the Father was all sufficient Himself? (more…)


Genesis 41:12,15,16,28-31,39-41 “Now a Hebrew youth was with us there, a servant of the captain of the bodyguard, and we related them to him, and he interpreted our dreams for us. To each one he interpreted according to his own dream… Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I have had a dream, but no one can interpret it; and I have heard it said about you, that when you hear a dream you can interpret it.” Joseph then answered Pharaoh, saying, “It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer”… “It is as I have spoken to Pharaoh: God has shown to Pharaoh what He is about to do. “Behold, seven years of great abundance are coming in all the land of Egypt; and after them seven years of famine will come, and all the abundance will be forgotten in the land of Egypt, and the famine will ravage the land. “So the abundance will be unknown in the land because of that subsequent famine; for it will be very severe… So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has informed you of all this, there is no one so discerning and wise as you are. “You shall be over my house, and according to your command all my people shall do homage; only in the throne I will be greater than you.” Pharaoh said to Joseph, “See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.”

Talk about a windfall gain and Joseph comes to mind. From the dark pit of a dungeon to the throne of Egypt, Joseph saw it all happen in a couple of hours!

When such miraculous events are reported, it seems easy for us to scoff at them as just fables and ignore them but one has to remember that this same story is in the Bible, the Torah and the Quran with slight changes.

What is God speaking to us through the life of Joseph and is there such hope for us too? (more…)


Genesis 39:2-4,7-9,16-18,21,22 The LORD was with Joseph, so he became a successful man. And he was in the house of his master, the Egyptian. Now his master saw that the LORD was with him and how the LORD caused all that he did to prosper in his hand. So Joseph found favor in his sight and became his personal servant; and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he owned he put in his charge… It came about after these events that his master’s wife looked with desire at Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.” But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Behold, with me here, my master does not concern himself with anything in the house, and he has put all that he owns in my charge. “There is no one greater in this house than I, and he has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do this great evil and sin against God?”… So she left his garment beside her until his master came home. Then she spoke to him with these words, “The Hebrew slave, whom you brought to us, came in to me to make sport of me; and as I raised my voice and screamed, he left his garment beside me and fled outside”… But the LORD was with Joseph and extended kindness to him, and gave him favor in the sight of the chief jailer. The chief jailer committed to Joseph’s charge all the prisoners who were in the jail; so that whatever was done there, he was responsible for it.

Joseph was sold into slavery, bought by Potiphar, given charge of everything Potiphar had, enticed by Potiphar’s wife to sleep with her but refused, falsely accused and sent into prison and again finds favor in the sight of the chief jailer only to be put in charge of the entire prison!

Remarkable story of how an honest and upright man of God was blessed for his righteousness and is that God’s message to us today? (more…)


Luke 16:25-31
“But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’ “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’ “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

Over and over again, Jesus keeps warning us about worldly riches and it’s effect on our lives. The issues are not about having or accumulating wealth but rather understanding the purpose of it. In the passage above, we see the end result of the lives of the rich man and the poor man, Lazarus. On earth, the rich man lived a life of luxury that the world envied and in death he lived a life of pain and disaster. On the flip side was the poor man Lazarus who lived a life of pain and longing for his basic needs but in death he lived in the presence of God by the side of Abraham. What is the Lord asking of us today? Are we expected to live lives of beggars or rich men and what is the outcome of our lives?

Several people mentioned in the Bible grew in wealth, became prosperous and were spoken highly about including King David, Abraham, Job, among many others. Therefore Jesus is not condoning prosperity. At the same time Jesus tells the rich young ruler that to attain salvation, over and above living a life of perfect adherence to the law, he needed to sell his riches and give it to the poor. So what then are we expected to do? The issue being highlighted by Jesus here was not the riches that the rich man had but obviously his lack of understanding as to why God blessed him with much. Jesus came to give his own life for our salvation and that is the greatest sacrifice known to man. He does not expect us to sacrifice our lives but to share what he has blessed us with so that we can help share his love in a real and physical way. Jesus said earlier in this chapter that those who can be trusted with little shall be given more and I hope this Christmastime, you are again encouraged to share your joy with those less fortunate without an expectation back and he will bless you with more in his time and ways that you can use for his glory more and more!

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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