GODLINESS, CONTENTMENT AND GAIN 2
Please click on hyperlinks for greater detail on phrase underlined.
In our article last week, we saw that it is the will of God that we be rich or have GREAT GAIN, however, it MUST be with GODLIKENESS AND CONTENTMENT so we do not fall into the snare of covetousness and so be enriched by satanic wisdom and power.
Incidentally, it is instructive to note that it was covetousness that led to the original fall of Lucifer who became Satan (Is. 14:12-15; Ezk. 28:12-19).
Ezekiel 28:15-16 KJV: Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. (16) By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
Truly the love of money is and has always been the root of all evil (1 Tim. 6:10)!
This why God instructs us to overcome covetousness with contentment.
Hebrews 13:5 KJV: Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
How can we define covetousness?
It is desiring more material and financial possessions than your present level of God’s character can handle.
This is why God has tied our material prosperity to our spiritual prosperity:
3 John 1:2 KJV: Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.
How then do we let contentment overcome covetousness?
By learning contentment through perfecting God’s character, which is, love.
Philippians 4:11-13 KJV: Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (12) I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. (13) I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me.
Observe that Paul tells us that HE LEARNED CONTENTMENT: it is NOT AUTOMATIC; it has to be practiced and developed THROUGH THE STRENGTH THAT CHRIST GIVES.
In other words, it has to be developed by the power of the fruit of the Holy Spirit or simply by perfecting the love of God. Since God is love, the fruit of the Spirit is God’s character, which is love.
Love is discerning by wisdom, desiring by compassion and doing by power what God would do in every situation because God is love.
We perfect the love of God by consistent application of the blood (Heb.13:20-21), the Word (1 Jn. 2:5) and the Spirit (1 Jn. 4:12-13).
The consistent application of the blood gives us access to great measures of the life and power of God, which enlighten our minds to receive the wisdom of God to walk in love and empower our emotions and bodies to have God’s compassion and power to do what God would do in every situation.
As we perfect the love of God, God will gradually and increasingly give us great wisdom and ability to have GREAT GAIN, like He did for Joseph (Gen. 41:38-44), Solomon (1 Kgs.4:29-34) and Daniel (Dan. 1:8,17,20; 5:20).
Proverbs 8:12 KJV: I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions.
Proverbs 8:17-21 KJV: I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me. (18) Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness. (19) My fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold; and my revenue than choice silver. (20) I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment: (21) That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.
In our article next week, we will look at GREAT GAIN in more detail.