God wants us all to be rich
You have maybe heard this from TV preachers or those who preach the so called “Prosperity Gospel.” I would say I completely and whole-heartedly agree! God wants us to be rich. And not only that I would say if you are not rich you cannot be a Christian!
Disagree? Think this sort of assumption cannot be grounded in Scripture?
First of all, I admit I was purposefully being provocative in my opening remarks. I agree with this statement, but let me explain how I am defining this word “rich.”
I believe God wants us to be prosperous. God wants the best for us. However, there are loads of facets to life in which we can prosper, and lots of things which are for our good and benefit which are better for us that God does in our life which we may not see the purpose in. Does God want us to prosper in everything? Clearly if that was the case we’d all find sinning an easy one!
First and foremost God’s plan and purpose for His Church is not that we should be financially better off. If that were true the poorest of countries where more and more people are becoming Christians should in essence no longer be poor. That is clearly not the case so that is clearly not what God wants. When you become a Christian God does not then make you wealthy.
What should naturally happen when you become a Christian is that you become rich. Not financially rich but rich in good works; rich in humility; rich in love; rich in forgiveness; rich in worship; rich in mercy; rich in grace; rich in goodness; rich in kindness; rich in patience; rich in joy; rich in peace; rich in self-control; rich in faith; and rich in character.
Those are the areas in His word we are told we should prosper in, because these are the fruits of someone who has truly been born again. There is no example in Scripture where God increases the wealth of someone as a result of their Salvation. If people were Christians and rich it is because they already were. Paul tells us he knew what it was like to have plenty and knew what it was like to be in want. If God wanted Paul financially better off why was he ever in want of anything? Because monetary wealth is not what is on God’s agenda for His people. It is a wealth of character; of faith; of love and all the things I have previously stated. Its these things he wants us to be rich in because it is these things that are eternal.
The Bible says that you will know Christians by their fruit. If you do not show evidence of these attributes in your life and call yourself a Christian it is may be time to examine your heart and see if true repentance has actually took part. There is a great kids song we use to sing when I was little:
“The things I use to do I don’t do them anymore, there’s been a great change since I’ve been born again”
You should be able to see a change. It may be little just now but as time passes as you walk with the Lord the change should be more and more apparent. Your love should become fuller, your grace deeper, your joy overflowing and your goodness indisputable. Yes we may fail in aspects but our Salvation is the process of becoming more like Christ. Some things will take more work for some than others. For some it is instant. But you should be able to mark the difference from when you began walking with Lord until now. If no wealth has been gained in these areas I have mentioned at all maybe you need to think more about genuine repentance, humble yourself before God, and seek Him while He may be found.
Do not get me wrong, it is not about works. True faith in Christ, believing He is the Son of God incarnate who was made manifest to pay for the price of our sins on the Cross and then rose again from the grave so that we can stand before God as a people redeemed buy His Son’s blood is what we need to do. But the evidence of that faith is in what we do. We don’t love to be saved we love because we are saved. Same for all the aspects I have mentioned.
So yes, God does want us to be rich, and if we are not we should question our Salvation. But it is not the temporal things He wants us to be rich in, it is the eternal. That is the true treasure and wealth God imparts to is in these fruits of the Spirit.