1 CORINTHIANS 3:21b LB 21 For God has already given you everything you need.
(We don’t claim prosperity, or anything, from God. We are not making any demand on God.)
God has already made provision for us in every area of life. He created enough abundance for all mankind. Yet many Christians struggle with financial problems. But the problem is not that God is withholding from us.
Throughout the New Testament, we are told God has already given us everything we need, for example see: 2 Peter 1:3, Romans 8:17, Romans 8:32, Galatians 4:7, Ephesians 1:3.
The problem is that we’ve been allowing the devil to steal what belongs to us. We must quit allowing this to happen. We must stand in faith and claim what is ours. After all, Jesus paid a great price for us to have it!
Jesus came to redeem us from the control of the devil and set us free from the curse. Jesus paid the price for us to have abundant blessing in every area of life.
2 CORINTHIANS 8:9 ESV 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.
But the devil is a thief. So we must claim prosperity from the devil who has stolen from us — and continues to steal from us if we let him.
Of course we should not be selfish or greedy. We should not serve money or let it control our decisions. But how can we help others if we are in poverty?
ISAIAH 53:5 ESV 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.
Jesus’ suffering brought us peace. (But unless you understand Hebrew it is unlikely you would realize all this means.)
Peace — shalom — means wholeness, nothing missing, nothing broken, nothing wrong. It definitely includes the idea of prosperity — every need met and having more than enough.
Jesus suffered so you could have this shalom — peace and prosperity. Part of the curse that Jesus redeemed you from is poverty.
And what a curse poverty is! It causes misery, disease, ruined lives, and destroyed families.
The devil has tried to convince Christians that poverty is a blessing because it will make you humble and more godly. While it is true that many rich people are arrogant and ungodly, that does not automatically mean being poor makes you godly. On the contrary, God is the richest being in the universe, and riches have not corrupted Him.
The devil is a thief. He has stolen money that belongs to you. You need to say, “That’s mine! Jesus paid for me to have abundant provision. Turn loose of it devil!”
That is what I mean by claiming prosperity.
After you receive legal notice that something is yours, you can claim it whenever you desire. God’s Word is our legal notice of what belongs to us as a gift because of the wonderful grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. It’s time we quit letting the devil steal what belongs to us.
LUKE 12:7 NIV 7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
Have you ever wondered how God has time to keep count of how many hairs you have today?
God probably built a program into your brain that tracks your total hair count, which He can quickly scan without having to spend much time on your hair. (Your life might also be better if you spent less time on your hair. 😉
(Or, maybe He assigns each of us a hair angel to do the job.)
The point is not that God spends all His time counting hairs, but that there is nothing about you God is not fully aware of at all times.
If your hair count is important enough for God to monitor — however He does it — surely He monitors everything else that concerns you, also.
Think of that! God is aware of the smallest detail of everything in life that affects you. It matters to Him.
You are His child. Every detail of your life concerns God.
Knowing that, Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid.”
1 THESSALONIANS 5:18 NLT 18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
When you don’t know what to say or do — say “Thank You!”
Sometimes we feel like we don’t know what to do. We wonder what God’s perfect will is.
Certainly the will of God is not for us to start worrying and being fearful about missing His will. Instead we should stay in faith, knowing that God is working and guiding us even when we are not aware of it.
God is not responsible for the bad things that come our way in life — the devil and people are to blame.
But when we start complaining and criticizing, we step out of faith, joy, and peace. These spiritual forces (the “fruit” of the spirit) are for our protection.
So we can, and should, always thank God at all times. We should develop the habit of having an attitude of gratitude.
Our God is amazing! He can turn bad things around and take the sting out of them.
When we stay in faith, always being thankful, the sting is removed from the evil that comes against us. Then, instead of destroying us, it can become a stepping-stone to take us to a higher place of blessing.
So while God is not actually responsible for any of the bad things that happen, we should be thankful always — no matter what happens.
An attitude of constant gratitude provides a shield of faith protecting you and allowing God to freely act in your life, bringing blessing and deliverance.
So when something bad happens in your life, don’t complain. Don’t criticize God, or people. Don’t beat yourself over the head. Just begin (and continue) to say things like:
Thank You Lord that you are with me to guide me and help me, that You love me, that You are working in my life, that You protect me and preserve me and deliver me from evil, and that no weapon formed against me shall prosper or prevail!
The most appropriate words you can ever speak are “Thank You!”
ROMANS 15:7 NIV 7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
We have only two choices, accept people, or reject them. When you realize this, it may change the way you treat people.
When we criticize or condemn people, we communicate rejection. When we try to change people, it communicates that they are not good enough for us, that we don’t like them.
“But what if they are not perfect? What if they don’t believe everything I believe?”
Were you born believing all you do now? Or did you go through a process of learning over time? Should we throw out people because they still have something to learn?
What happens when you don’t accept people as they are? It feeds the lie that they are no good and have no value.
We can accept people and celebrate their value without approving of their sins. But when we refuse to accept people until they are perfect, we communicate rejection.
When someone feels rejected, they tend to reject those who reject them, and what they represent. So when Christians communicate rejection to sinners, they assume God is rejecting them, and tend to reject God because they think He rejects them.
Whenever you reject someone, you have set yourself up as their judge, something only God is truly qualified to do.
To walk with Jesus you will have to treat people as Jesus would treat them. You may not like the way they look, talk, act, think, or smell, but if they are a human being you must acknowledge that Jesus Christ loves them enough to die for them.
Jesus is our perfect example, and He is not rejecting people (John 6:37). Instead, the Bible reveals that Jesus Christ is our Advocate, (our defense lawyer), not the one who condemns (1 John 2:1, Romans 8:34).
People are hurting. Usually they know they need to change, to be better, and to do better. What they have not discovered is a way they can change. They have probably tried, but given up in defeat.
Only God’s unconditional love can give them the strength they need to have hope. Most people realize that if they must earn God’s help there is no hope for them.
This is the main reason why so many people shun Christianity and want to have nothing to do with God. They have accepted a wrong image of God, thinking He is a stern Judge who is against them, instead of realizing the truth that He is a loving Father like the father in the story of the Prodigal Son that Jesus told us about in Luke 15:11-32.
God accepts people as they are. So should we. Christ died for the ungodly (Romans 5:6). God so loved the world that He gave.
People crave love. Unconditional love will draw people. It is God’s goodness that leads people to repent (Romans 2:4).
Every time we meet someone, we are faced with a choice: love them — or judge them, accept them as they are — or attempt to change them, make them feel respected — or despised, make them feel valuable and precious — or make them feel worthless.
You might as well accept people as they are instead of trying to change them. You can’t change people anyway. Only God can really change people. Our job is to love them and help them.
Also remember that God made people to be different. So don’t expect everyone will be exactly like you.
ROMANS 14:17 NKJ 17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Here is a description of the Kingdom of God: righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Righteousness means everything being right.
God has given us the gift of righteousness (Romans 5:17). That means He has put us in right standing with Himself. He has said that everything is right between us and Him. Sin no longer separates us from God, because the precious blood of Jesus has cleansed us and we are forgiven by God.
Because we have right standing with God (righteousness), we have peace. There is no more struggle. God is not mad at us. God is on our side.
Peace means more than the absence of conflict. Peace means nothing broken and nothing missing. Peace includes the idea of prosperity — having everything needful in abundance with no lack.
When you are right with God and have peace — nothing missing and nothing broken — you will have joy.
You can look at this as a progression, righteousness produces peace, and when you have righteousness and peace, joy will result.
God’s Kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. It is a kingdom of love. It is a kingdom where everything is right. In it there is no imperfection and no lack. It is a kingdom of peace. There is never any conflict because there is no selfishness. It is a kingdom of joy. Everyone rejoices because of the goodness of God.
God’s kingdom includes everywhere God reigns. In the world there is trouble (John 16:33). But by faith in Jesus, it can be overcome (1 John 5:5).
1 PETER 4:12 ESV 12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.
Don’t be surprised when your faith is tested! And don’t be afraid! Jesus — who promised to never forsake you — is still there to help you.
The test of faith is the devil trying to steal your faith. The devil wants you to believe something other than God’s Word.
MARK 4:15 ESV 15 And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them.
The devil wants to steal God’s Word out of your life, to stop your faith. So you have to hang on to your faith! You have to say “NO!” to the devil!
Our enemy could never steal faith in God’s Word away from us unless at some point it seems like God’s Word is wrong. Or that God has forgotten us and forsaken us. This will happen to you sometime! When it does, trust God and His faithfulness more than you trust your present circumstances.
HEBREWS 10:23 ESV 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.
HEBREWS 4:14 NLT 14 So then, since we have a great High Priest who has entered heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we believe.
No matter what it seems like — Jesus is faithful. He cannot lie! Our problem is our limited perspective. We don’t know the future, but God does.
1 PETER 1:7 ESV 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith — more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire — may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Genuine faith is very precious to the Lord. When you overcome tests you grow spiritually, which causes joy in Heaven, and should encourage you to rejoice, too.
JAMES 1:2-4 ESV 2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
LUKE 22:32 ESV 32 but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.”
HEBREWS 11:6 NKJ 6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Faith is often preached from the human perspective: believe God and get your needs met. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s a one-sided perspective.
So let’s also try to look at faith from God’s perspective. Would you get any pleasure out of people who doubted you? Surely God gets no pleasure out of people doubting His Word, either.
Does God deserve respect?
To doubt what someone says shows disrespect. While humans can be wrong, God only speaks absolute truth.
Many people only think of acting on God’s Word from their perspective, without considering God’s feelings. Their motivation is completely self-centered, thinking only of what it will profit them.
Let’s decide not to act this way!
Do you desire to please God? If you don’t desire to please God, you don’t know Him. God is so wonderful, so great, and so good, that if you really know Him you cannot help but desire to please Him.
But how can a human please God? How can we, in any way, operate on God’s level and impress Him? The Bible reveals that God is pleased with our faith.
JOHN 6:28-29 NKJ 28 Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”
Of course you cannot separate what you believe from your actions, because you always act on what you really believe. To illustrate, if someone told you the building you were in was on fire, if you believe them you will act by leaving. If you do not try to leave the building, then you do not really believe what they said.
HEBREWS 10:38 NKJ 38 Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.”
Even if our walking by faith in God has not yet seemingly produced many results — is it not worthwhile to continue simply in order to bring pleasure to God?
What higher accomplishment could a human have than to please God?
Our life on earth is a learning process. We are in “school” whether we realize it or not.
What are the main lessons we are supposed to learn in life?
God is trustworthy.
PSALM 118:8 NKJ 8 It is better to trust in the LORD Than to put confidence in man.
TITUS 1:2 NKJ 2 in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began,
1 CORINTHIANS 1:9 NKJ 9 God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
GALATIANS 5:14 NLT 14 For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
1 JOHN 4:21 NKJ 21 And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also.
1 JOHN 3:23 NKJ 23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.
1 THESSALONIANS 5:18 NKJ 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
COLOSSIANS 3:15 NKJ 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.
EPHESIANS 6:2 NLT 2 “Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise:
1 PETER 2:17 NLT 17 Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and sisters. Fear God, and respect the king.
ROMANS 13:7 NLT 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.
ACTS 2:36 NIV 36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
“Boss” is a modern meaning of the word “Lord.”
Somebody has to be the boss. Somebody has to make the final decisions.
It’s not a hard thing to let Jesus be your boss — it’s a wonderful privilege.
Jesus knows more than you do. And Jesus loves you more than you love yourself. So He desires the very best for you and knows how to make it happen. Therefore letting Jesus call the shots in your life is the smartest thing you could do.
Of course, if you choose, you can go your own way and do your own thing. You can try to do the best you can on your own — and see how it works out.
If you owned a large important company, who would you rather run the company for you, a brilliant executive with a perfect track record of running many other companies successfully, or someone who has never run a company before?
You have control over something much more important than a company — your life. Who do you want to run it for you? Jesus, with a perfect track record. Jesus, who knows more about the future than you know about the past. Or, yourself?
Without the wise, loving, experienced, guidance of Jesus, you will almost certainly crash in life.
Sure, you may get along fine for awhile. But, eventually, it will all crash around you. Trust in yourself, and you will be disappointed. Trust in God and obey Him, and you will not regret it.
Most people are asking God to give them things that God says already belong to them.
Many are still hoping God will forgive them. But Scripture tells us God has already forgiven us, and He is no longer holding our sins against us.
2 CORINTHIANS 5:19 NLT 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.
Instead of begging God to forgive us, we should be thanking Him for already forgiving us! And we should tell others they are also forgiven!
Just as God has already forgiven us, He has also already blessed us. He has given us every blessing.
EPHESIANS 1:3 GWN 3 Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Through Christ, God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing that heaven has to offer.
God HAS blessed us with everything Heaven has to offer. Spiritual blessings are the reality behind all physical blessings. They are what cause the physical manifestations.
God has already given. Now we need to learn how to receive His blessings, and to keep the devil from stealing them from us and our families.
Once we truly realize God has already given to us, we will rise up and stop the enemy stealing from us.
Scripture says God already gave us all things when He gave us Christ Jesus.
ROMANS 8:32 NKJ 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?
WITH Jesus He freely gave us ALL things!
Can you imagine God saying, “I will give you my Son, but you can’t have ________.” Ridiculous! With Jesus we were given EVERYTHING God has. Every blessing.
God has not held back on us.
2 PETER 1:3 NKJ 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
All things that pertain to life and godliness are ours through the knowledge of Christ. Whatever pertains to you having a full, satisfying, joy-filled life — God has already given you.
Jesus is the heir of all things, and we are joint-heirs with Him (Hebrews 1:2, Galatians 4:7, Romans 8:17).
God has given healing. God has given prosperity. God has given peace. God has given joy. God has given us all the blessings Heaven has.
We don’t need to convince God to help us. We only need to learn how to receive what God has already given to us.