The Price of Luxury

Many in the church are disillusioned with religion, because they feel like they have been waiting and believing on promises of wealth and material success that never seem to materialize. The song comes to mind, "truth is I'm tired, options are few, I'm trying to pray, but where are You?" If you're like this songwriter, wondering where God is, as you desperately believe, hope and pray for a more successful life - I have good news: God is here to answer your concerns!

First, you must agree that God's word is the final authority in our lives; no situation, circumstance or relationship has the right to exalt itself above the knowledge of God. Consider this verse in Deuteronomy 28:2:- "And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God"

The Lord promised the nation of Israel an abundance of blessings if they obeyed Him. Their crops and farms would prosper; their enemies would be destroyed; their baskets and storehouses would overflow with provision. But when Israel disobeyed God, He made it clear that the old covenant (agreement) which He made with Israel would one day be replaced with a new and better covenant. In Hebrews 8:8-10, it says,

"For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people".

As this scripture reveals, God's greatest intentions were never to make his people prominent in this world; His desire was to have people who would have his laws engraved into their very nature. He ended that old covenant with Israel, which contained all the material blessings, just so that He could establish this new one - with the spiritual Israel called "The Church". In this new covenant, God would use His son Jesus Christ to not only die for sins, but to come and live inside of our hearts.

All the blessings that God grants to His Church are contained in Jesus Christ, and the only way to access them is to accept Him not only as Savior, but as Lord and Master. This means that Christ has an agenda of his own when He comes to live in us, and the only way to partake of the glory that comes from being used by God, is to do away with our own agenda. If you find yourself waiting on God to make you prosperous, you're still living by that old covenant that God made to Israel, and you're expecting Him to live by it too. You are asking God to go against His word just to make you happy; but this will not happen, and hence, your frustration.

I want to turn your attention instead to the riches that God has promised you, and allow you to choose:

2 Timothy 1:9 - Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began... Before the world began, God had already earmarked you as a part of what He wanted to do in the world.

Hebrews 12:22 - But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels... You are now part of a spiritual kingdom that the natural man cannot see nor understand yet you've been given the privilege to understand

1 John 3:1 - Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not... You are the son of a God! You are part of the only kind/species that can entreat God as Father

1 Corinthians 2:9-10 - But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God... The Holy Spirit within you reveals the deep things of God, that a normal man cannot comprehend

Ask yourself, is it worth risking all that I've already been given by God, just for the pre-eminence and recognition that comes from earthly riches or success? Would it be a fair trade to get all of these things but then your soul be lost? Let your heart submit to Christ today.

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