Pastor Roger Anghis
March 6, 2011
I have always found it amazing that a Christian with wealth is chastised and berated for that wealth but a sinner is only envied. The true Christian will be generous with his wealth as a recent survey found that Christians are more generous than any other segment of society in the world. Christians are very rarely congratulated on their charity but a sinner is considered worthy of praise and honor for funding a new wing on a hospital but a Christian that builds an entire hospital is lightly recognized. Such is the society that we live in, but at the same time we should not withhold our giving and our generosity because society only wants to recognize the unbeliever. Our purpose is to do God’s work whether we get recognition or not and to do His work we must have substance. We have to ignore what society says and believes and live according to God’s Word.
Our next verse is Ecclesiastes 5:19 Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God. This verse again confirms that God gives wealth. King Solomon wrote the book of Ecclesiastes so this is information directly from God.
Word used for “given” is nathan (naw-than) and means bestow,
bring, distribute, recompense. It also carries the implication of without
fail. The word used for “riches” is osher and it means wealth,
riches. Webster defines riches as wealth; opulence; affluence; possessions
of land, goods or money in abundance splendid sumptuous appearance.
This is not the position that most of the church takes on prosperity.
Most churches will speak of the ‘prosperity message’ as
akin to greed.
There is no doubt that greed can and will effect some people, but that does not mean that prosperity is to be shunned like a disease. Greed is to be shunned like a disease. Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:24 that we are not to serve money, as many people do. Money is their god. Making money is their only purpose in life. They serve money. All we have learned so far in these lessons is when you serve God, the prosperity will come to you by the hand of God. This is how God wants us to live. Seeking His face and as He did for Solomon, He will do for us. The word “wealth” is used in the KJV where the Hebrew uses ‘treasure’.
This is the Hebrew word nekec (neh-kes) and it means to accumulate riches, wealth, property, gain. God has given the faithful believer material possessions, money, honor, prestige, lands and He has given us the power to enjoy it all. The Hebrew word for “power” is shalat and it means to have dominion, govern, to rule. Webster defines dominion as sovereign or supreme authority; the power of governing and controlling. Power to direct, control, use and dispose of at pleasure; right of possession and use without being accountable; as the private dominion of individuals. This is being the head and not the tail, above and not beneath as we learned in Deuteronomy 28, WHEN we hearken unto the voice of the Lord our God. The problem we see today is that not that many hearken unto the voice of the Lord. Most people live how they want to live and expect God to rain down His blessing on them and He can’t do that. He has set out the rules and He cannot break them. God also states that we have been given a portion. The word used for “portion” is cheleq (khay-lek) and means inheritance.
lexicon defines it as portion, award of profit from God. We are also
told that we are to rejoice in our labor. This is the Hebrew word sameach
(saw-may-akh) and means gleeful, joyful, merry. How many people are
joyful in the work that they do? I believe that our attitude towards
what we do in our everyday life is very important. I have worked with
people that do nothing but complain about their job. They never have
a good thing to say. There is always somebody out to get them. Somebody
is always against them. Complaining is the only thing they can do. These
people are usually miserable at work and at home. They hardly ever advance
and are stuck at the same level. When we rejoice in what we do, the
whole picture changes. The last line of this verse, “this is the
gift of God”. The word “gift” is the Hebrew word mattath
and it means present. Webster defines present as that which is presented
or given; a gift; something given or offered to another gratuitously;
We do not earn this. It is freely given to us by God. But the key point
here is it is prosperity, money, lands, all good things from God!
Our next verse is Isaiah 1:19-20 If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: (20) But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it. There is a key point in this verse and that is being BOTH willing and obedient. Kenneth Hagin once told the story of his ministry and he complained to God about not enjoying the good of the land and he reminded God of this verse and God told him that he, Kenneth Hagin, was obedient, but not really willing. Kenneth Hagin said it took him about 15 seconds to change that. From that point on, he began to experience the “good of the land”. The Hebrew word for “willing” is abah and it means consent, be willing. Webster defines it as determining; resolving; desiring. The word used for “obedient” is shama and it means to hear intelligently with the implication of obedience. In other words, doing what you are told to do. To rephrase this to understand in today’s language, when you are determined to do what you have been told to do by God and His Word, you will enjoy the good of the land. The good of the land is what is available to man; food, shelter, and other resources that cause you to increase. These you will possess and consume and enjoy. And it is all the best the land has to offer. Today in this nation we have the best of everything available to us, automobiles, homes, clothes, healthcare.
God has nothing against us having these things as long as these things don’t have you. One problem with people having RV’s, yachts, vacation homes and other things is they begin to spend more time with them and less time with God. This is the situation that God does not want us to do. Paul wrote about this to Timothy in 1 Timothy 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertaine riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; This is the big thing that the church seems to ignore. Paul didn’t say don’t be rich, he tells the rich not to be high minded.
The Greek word for “rich” is plousiou (ploo-see-os) and it means abounding in material things. Also keep in mind that Paul is writing to the church, not the world. So these ‘rich’ people are people in the church, they’re believers. These people with money are instructed to NOT be high-minded. Webster defines high-minded as proud and arrogant. How often do we see people that have a lot of money look down on people that are not of the same economic class as they are? This is what Paul is warning Timothy about. Webster defines arrogant as assuming; making or having, the disposition to make exorbitant claims of rank or estimation; giving one’s self an undue degree of importance; haughty; conceited. We are not to be ‘stuck up’, as some would say, nor are we to “trust in uncertain riches”. The Greek word for “trust” is elpizo (el-pid-zo) and it means hope, trust.
The lexicon states to build hope on as on a foundation. The Greek word for “riches” here is ploutos (ploo-tos) and it means abundance of external possessions. Scripture calls worldly wealth ‘uncertain’ riches. Webster defines uncertain as doubtfulness; dubiousness. By ‘worldly wealth’, I am referring to mans economic system. We saw in September 2008 how dependable mans economic system is. Hundreds of thousands of people lost their entire life savings depending on ‘The System’. Many people lost their retirement funds. This is why we are not to depend on the world’s economic system but on God.
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Then we see again Who is the one that gives us these riches, “the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy” Where the word ‘giveth’ is used in the KJV the word ‘offered’ is used in the literal Greek translation and that is the Greek word parecho and it means to furnish, to bring, to afford. The lexicon states that it means to render or afford from one’s own resources or by one’s own power. This simply means that it is God who is supplying to us all that we need and in many cases just simply want. As a parent blesses his/her child with a special present on occasion, God also blesses the believer with things that they simply want because it is something that they desire and God rewards faithfulness.
� 2011 Roger Anghis - All Rights Reserved
Pastor Roger Anghis is the Founder of RestoreFreeSpeech.org, an organization designed to draw attention to the need of returning free speech rights to churches that was restricted in 1954.
President of The Damascus Project, TheDamascusProject.org, which has a stated purpose of teaching pastors and lay people the need of the churches involvement in the political arena and to teach the historical role of Christianity in the politics of the United States. Married-37 years, 3 children, three grandchildren.
Web site: RestoreFreeSpeech.org