If Jesus Was Rich, Why Do I Have To Be Poor (5)?

Recently I've had a number of people tell me that the gospel of Jesus Christ is not a "Health and Wealth" gospel. Heard at a meeting, I gather.

Now I would understand this stance if the claim were being made that the gospel was only about "Health and Wealth", but why think the gospel excludes these things, even for those whose priority is the kingdom of God.

And has it not been said that, "If Jesus was rich, why do I have to be poor?"

So, Is "Health and Wealth" included in the gospel, or not? Should ministers be making requests for rich people to contribute to the proclaiming of the gospel of Jesus?

Let's look at some of the people who supported Jesus as He proclaimed the gospel.

Luk 8:2-3 And the twelve were with him, (2) and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, (3) and Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s household manager, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their means.’

I want you to notice, "Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod's housold manager", was only one of the women, and presumably men also, who supported Jesus' ministry out of their means!

The life and times of Jesus' day being what they were, it is very unlikely that Joanna had a huge income independent of her husband from which she could suport Jesus without her husband's knowledge.

The passage also tells us that she was one for whom Jesus had performed a great health miracle. This would not have gone un-noticed by her husband who must therefore have acquiesed to her support of Jesus even though he was high up in Herod's court.

So we see that rich people were financially supporting Jesus in His earthly ministry from their means. It's not unreasonable then that His ministry would need a full time treasurer and that would explain why Judas was appointed.

So if Jesus and God the Father can use the support of wealthy people to advance the preaching of the Gospel in Jesus' day, then surely there is nothing wrong with His ministers today getting similar support for preaching the good news and doing the ministry to which they have been called.

As an example, have you ever heard one of those stories where a man of God is doing vital work like running an orphanage, but cannot provide the food and clothing from regular income? You know the one, where the man of God gets everyone around the table and gives God thanks for the meal even though there is nothing to put out in the plates? Then, just as he finishes praying there is a knock on the door and a stranger brings them food because he had a word from God that it was needed?

Now when you have been told one of those true stories of God's provision, which man of God would you have preferred to be? The one needing the food, or the one who had taken advantage of God's blessings and so God could use him to help his needy brother?

Both godly men are required to keep the orphanage running until the man running the orphanage learns to walk in the blessing of God, or the orphanage is no longer required! Then God can use the rich man to help someone else!

Jesus needed similar provision for a section of His ministry and then the job was completed. The principles God uses have not changed!

Now, just because some people misuse or abuse the principles God gives to us, does not mean that the principles are wrong! You should still do the things that God says bring His blessings, and expect the results God says we should get.

Mark 10:29-30 Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.

If you're going to believe the things God says in His word, why only believe the 'judgements against sin', 'wrath', 'persecutions' and other such stuff? Why not believe the good stuff, like in Mark 10:29-30, also? Shouldn't we have faith in God in all things? Shouldn't we be believers who fully believe? That would surely please our good God; if we actually believe He's as good as His word!

And what does God want of us as Christians. What does He give us wealth for? Like the rich man in the story above, God wants us to be a blessing to others. He wants us to be a blessing to His outreach programs in the world and to be a blessing to our families! As an example, from His word this time, of what God blesses His people for, we can read Proverbs 13, verse 22...

Prov 13:22 A good person leaves an inheritance for their children's children, but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous.

I trust that you realize that all the gold and silver belongs to the Lord? But, God doesn't need them for Himself! For which people do you think that He put them here? Satan's or God's?

The way they speak, I would not be surprised to find that most believers belong to a church with pastors who teach them that it's their lot to just get by, at best!

On the other hand, God has planned that His people have wealth to provide an inheritance clear through to their grandchildren! Many have physical children and grandchildren, and some have spiritual children and grandchildren. Are you interested in taking part in God's plan and leaving them an inheritance? Do you have a heart (and faith) to do God's will as He reveals it?

Psa 37:3-5 Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.

Don't limit God - Do it!

Best wishes for Grace and The Peace of Jesus.


Another thought....

If Jesus was rich - 1 2 3 4 5 6 7