United FOR Christ GLOBAL
Bishop Dr. Hanning Mutukirza, D.Div. , D.Litt., D.Min.
Cambridge Theological Seminary Bishop in Unganda
Understanding New Testament Wealth
- Biblical proof
- Old Testament supplement
- Access to New Testament
- I: Anointing upon Jesus Christ
- II: The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ
- III: The Covenant of Jesus Christ
- IV: We are Temples of God
- V: True discipleship
Understanding is cardinal in the things of God.
Wisdom is the principal thing, and with all your getting get understanding. Friend, "Understanding New Testament Wealth" is one of the books written about this great subject. Over the centuries, this subject of wealth has been the main source of contention and major splits among Christians world wide. Through misconception of this subject, religions have been born to either overemphasize it or nullify it completely.
Wealth is a very tricky subject and to read this book to the level of understanding, you need to constantly for revelation. What I am writing is not a mere belief to be debated upon. What I am writing is a conviction; the truth of the Word of God that has set freedom into my life that nothing can match. This book is a well of spiritual information gathered while in dedication to the Holy Spirit.
This is one of the books urgently needed to convey God’s goodness into your hands.
** Oh how God wants to see you in superabundance!
** He wants to see you rich, lacking nothing, as far as material is concerned.
** This is the only way through which He can bring you so close to His Word. When you lack nothing, your appetite for His Holy Word rises beyond all those limitations. Your usefulness increases. You surely enjoy God’s love; you begin to do things, which a few people can afford.
This book is not just about wealth, money and possessions, but 'love, joy, and peace in the Holy Ghost.'
When you understand something it goes very deep into your life. When you get it, no one can snatch it from your life. And yet with it you gain so much confidence that you can dare steps you’ve never taken in life.
However you will find some truth very disturbing.
With the help of God, understanding is granted. These truths have been since eternity. Knowing them is such a privilege and a great opportunity. As you read this book, I see you leave that level of mockery, into a state of envy of the philistines.
I see you get cleared of all debts, and all sickness will leave you alone. Welcome to ‘UNDERSTANDING NEW TESTAMENT WEALTH’.
BIBLICAL PROOF OF NEW TESTAMENT WEALTH:
I am a Ugandan, living in Kampala, Uganda. I have been born again for over two decades now. I have heard quite a lot about this subject of wealth, both in church, and in the secular sector. They surprisingly rhyme together. Both the Church of Christ in Uganda and the secular sector say that in Uganda is a poor country, etc.
Believers have given up all hope of ever seeing wealth come into their hands, much as they crave for it in their subconscious. So I had to take a very long adventurous journey into the Word of God and explore this unknown world of New Testament wealth. I was astounded by what I found.
You see, I had believed the public opinion about wealth: that, we are a poor country, and so tendencies of becoming rich must lead to frustration. I want to share with you some of the discoveries I got from God’s word.
In the gospel of St. Luke Chapter 6 verses 38 says:
“Give and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.”
Now, whenever I read this verse, I used to stop at ‘give’, and then I concluded – ‘I don’t have so I can’t give.’ But, the intention of this verse is not just to encourage you to give, but there’s a powerful revelation about New Testament wealth. Jesus said here that once you do what it takes; you will receive a good measure, which has been pressed down, shaken together so that much can fit in, until it’s running over or overflowing.
In other words, Jesus’ eyes are on the receiving end, not the giving end.
Jesus clearly speaks of wealth here. He’s telling us that it’s possible to get wealth, that we can handle God’s overflows. That it’s possible to get overflows of finances, wealth plus many other things. This is proof that God wants me to have superabundance in the New Testament.
Another discovery I got was from the story of the prodigal son. He had wasted his inheritance through riotous living. He was a total failure. Finally he decided to go back to his father. In Luke 15:22-23 it says:
‘But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: and bring hither the fatted calf and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:’
Now I used to think that this verse meant salvation of the soul only. But we see that after this son had repented, the father commanded abundance to begin flowing in into this prodigal son. Look at what the father said: the best robe, the ring on his hand, the shoes, the fatted calf and all this means abundance.
The father didn’t think of any thing like, Oh maybe my son is just deceiving, he can go back again! Or no, no, l must punish him first – all this he has done to me!
The father believed the words of this son and released the abundance to him in return. This is proof of New Testament wealth. From the time you got born again, you were entitled to the ‘best’, the ‘fatted’ things of God.
Again I took another adventure into God’s word and discovered this in Matthew 22:2. It says:
‘The kingdom of Heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, and sent forth his servants to call them that were hidden to the wedding: and they would not come.’
Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them, which are hidden, Behold, l have prepared my dinner: my oxen and fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.’ Now much as this scripture carries a spiritual truth that as children of God, but this portion has a very deep revelation of the New Testament wealth.
Jesus said that the Kingdom of Heaven is like a certain King.
In otherwise, even in the kingdom of God there are wedding parties. Now see how it’s prepared: it is a prepared dinner, where oxen, fatlings and all other things have been made ready. Doesn’t this show you that when we are in Christ, we have access to oxen, fatlings and all good things? It surely does.
I am amazed that the whole New Testament is full wealth but so many Christians don’t see it! Just like a worldly king prepares a wedding, so our heavenly father has prepared for us such good things, beyond our imagination. Whether our country is poor or not. This New Testament wealth comes from heaven.
God wants us to spend our lives here in a dinner lifestyle. He has prepared oxen, fatlings and wealth: when I read this truth, I found myself arguing with myself, can this be so?
I found it hard just to believe it. It took time for me to swallow this truth. It’s because I had filled my life with all the rest, that the rich are going to hell! And now, I wonder whether the poor are going to heaven! I urge you to begin struggling and striving to let this truth enter your life. Likewise, in Matthew 14:19 -20
“And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples and the disciples to the multitude. And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.”
What a miracle!! We all exclaim. We are astonished at the greatness of our Lord. But I had never thought of the main intention why such a miracle happened. And more so, what was God’s purpose for this to be written. I discovered that at the back of his mind, God wanted to prove that there’s super-abundance in the New Testament.
He is able to fill His children with all to the overflow.
It amazing that Jesus didn’t beg God to multiply bread. Our Lord simply released a blessing into this bread. According to Genesis, the blessing causes multiplication. So, Jesus released these forces into bread and thousands ate and were filled.
Does this indicate that God is more than willing to see you filled? Of course. This miracle is proof that God in the New Testament wants His children to have superabundance.
Friend, this truth changed my life.
I ceased thinking of my country as a poor country. I began to see the big God I have. I began to see supplies, not lack. I began to think abundance, not poverty. And so, of late, my story has changed greatly. Poverty has fled our camp.
You see, it’s the truth that sets free, not prayers. The truth that you know – sets you free. And yet l am not through. I discovered another scripture, which gave me insight of New Testament wealth. In 11 Peter 1:3, it says;
“According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue!”
Now, this is a powerful discovery. God’s divine power has given us all things, all things, all things. Does this include wealth? Of course.
Now, for someone to say that wealth is of the devil, is to express ignorance of a rare fibre! The scripture has put it clear, - ‘According as his divine power,’ not devil’s power. God’s power when in operation, makes available all things that pertain into life and godliness.
He’s not talking about spiritual things only, but all things, and wealth is part of all things. Aren’t you surprised that we have such truth in God’s word and yet many born – again Christians are languishing in great lack?!! God’s calling for us is to ‘glory and virtue,’ now where is glory in poverty?
Where is virtue in debts? Don’t you see? The New Testament is loaded with your wealth. If we get to know Jesus very well, there will be amazing deliveries of such things. Now another scripture, which goes along with 11 Peter 1:3 is found in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, 11 Corinthians 9:8-9, It says,
“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
(As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth forever.)
Friend, does this scripture suggest to you of the New Testament wealth? To me it does. God is able to make all his grace abound toward me, is that I can get all things that I may have sufficiency of all things. I believe that God’s grace is here on earth particularly for that. But I will come to this portion of this scripture later in another chapter.
But God wants me to have all things. He wants me to have sufficiency and much more. More money, more peace, more wealth. Yes, God wants me to have wealth. And God chooses this portion of scripture with an Old Testament scripture. This is in II Corinthians 9:9. He has said that, ‘as it is written,’ quoting Psalms 112:9 of the Old Testament.
This has prompted me also to look at the Old Testament scripture and bring them in to supplement this powerful New Testament truth. And just at a glance into the Old Testament, you are shocked by the truth you find.
First of all, I have never come across any person that God used while that person was poor.
[NOTE: Dr. Hanning is not saying that God doesn't choose and call poor people, but He is saying that He blesses them before he uses them greatly.
Some would take issue of this with David killing Goliath and Moses in the Wilderness, and Elijah needing to be fed by ravens and widows, but God does promote many people first - from Noah, to Joseph, to Daniel, etc.]
I haven’t discovered any individual, prophet, king or priest or any other figure of the Old Testament, man or woman that served God and was poor. This sends very powerful messages to my mind, which had been filled with a poverty mentality. And yet from the very beginning, we find very graphic description of the earliest abode of man – Adam.
OLD TESTAMENT SUPPLEMENT:
Genesis 2:8 it says,
“ And the Lord God planted a garden eastwards in Eden, and there he put the man whom he had formed.”
Now from this verse on, a graphic picture emerges from those verses of the great, prosperous garden that Adam and Eve lived in. a place of abundance. If God doesn’t change, and of course, He never changes, then l believe the New Testament wealth is not just luxury, but God’s perfect will.
The first man never prayed or fasted to receive this garden. It was God’s initiative. After all, even the creation of man is God’s initiative. So, my whole being is because of Him. This makes to believe that for sure, the New Testament wealth is for all born-again.
From the Garden of Eden, we went to Abraham, whom God called at the age of 75. It is written of Him in Genesis 13:2 that,
“And Abraham was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold." Gen 13.2
If God called Abraham at such an age, and then it was even recorded that afterward he was very rich, then I believe that in my calling to be born-again, being very rich is included. If the one God called in the Old Testament, He made him rich, then I believe that the New Testament wealth is for all those called according to his purpose. (Read Romans 8:28.)
Friend, this Old Testament truth thrills me, because real as the things seemed during their days, their covenant was a shadow of ours. It was a shadow of the covenant we now have. So, if greater things happened in the shadow-type covenant how much more in our real covenant of the New Testament? Well, time and space may not suffice now to tell of Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, Solomon, all the prophets, the men of God, the woman of God, who excelled both the things of God and in great prosperity. But this one thing stands out clearly that even in the Old Testament, people of God carried great wealth.
To think contrary today, is to deny God of His perfect will in our lives. In Joel 2:24-25 it says:
“And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil. And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpillar, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.
Actually in verse 26 God adds,
“ And ye shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, that dealt wondrously with you; and my people shall never be ashamed.”
Now, this Old Testament scripture puts it out very clearly, that God is able to restore all that the devil stole because of Adam’s rebellion. That, the moment I get born-again,restoration of the New Testament wealth begins.
If God did it in the Old Testament, a shadow of the New Testament, how much more, will He restore it in the new covenant? He says that they will never been ashamed, because He meant that poverty causes shame, He wants us to be full and then praise the Lord. Praise should be a sign of fullness, this makes me believe that the New Testament wealth is real and is at my disposal. This makes me to believe that wealth is not just for the worldly, the heathen. Wealth does not belong to the devil. It’s the Lord’s.
Now, from here we must go on a journey, to discover how we can partake from God’s table of wealth. We are taking a journey into God’s policies of wealth distribution. God’s wealth system. This journey once again, I have limited myself it to the New Testament, to help, to help those who think that wealth is an Old Testament thing; that, now we have just to be spiritual and that, since we are going to heaven, we really don’t need to have this New Testament wealth. So, our journey will be through the commonly preached, celebrated portions of scripture, but l believe that God will open your eyes to see amazing things. The truth is, the New Testament wealth is a reality, just like your salvation is.
ACCESS INTO NEW TESTAMENT WEALTH:
I: THE ANOINTING UPON JESUS:
Now, before we consider anything else, we have to see the anointing upon Jesus. You see this is the one whom God sent to redeem the world, to save mankind. And Jesus never began His ministry until he was anointed. So, in Luke 4: 17-18 it says,
“ And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, “ the Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor…”
Now, I stopped just right there to make you see something. According to prophecy, Jesus was anointed first to preach the gospel to the poor. So, the first work of the anointing upon Jesus is for the poor. Those who lack, the indebted, those who have no wealth. They have very little for upkeep. They can’t eat to the full, they are never satisfied, their clothing is second hand, etc…
The anointing of Jesus was to deal first with this class of people. This opened my eyes to see that the anointing of Jesus I can get God’s wealth. When this anointing gets to the poor person, every yoke and burden of poverty is broken and removed. This anointing of Jesus is upon every born-again child of God. This scripture shows me that God, surely has wealth on His mind for His people.
So, from that scripture, let’s follow Jesus and see the miracles he did first. Of course, l know he cast out devils, healed the sick, etc, but I want to find out whether he ever touched any poor with his anointing as laid out in the book of the prophet Ezias. In Luke 5:1-10, Jesus came and stood by the lake of Gamesaret, to preach the word of God. As people pressed upon him, he decided to use one of the boats, he found at the shores. And after preaching to the poor in us for it says,
“Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.”
Now, I thought he was going to call the sick to heal them, or cast out devils, since he had just preached the word. But do you see what He did? He told Peter to launch out and throw the nets. Of course in verse 6 it says,
“And when they had done this, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes and their net brake.”
Wow! What do you call that friend? Well, to me, this was the anointing of Jesus in action: making the poor rich through the gospel. This was the anointing’s very first manifestations: making the poor rich. The nets almost broke because of the abundance.
This assures me, that Jesus’ anointing with work in my life by bringing New Testament wealth first. And this is according to the written prophetic order of his anointing. Apart from that, we again find another confirmation of the same point in the gospel of St. John. In John 2:11 it says,
“This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and hid disciples believed on him.”
Now what was the miracle? Did He cast out a devil? Healed a sick? No, no! He supplied good wine to a poor couples’ wedding in Cana of Galilee. You can need the miracle story yourself from verse 8. This miracle confirmed the scripture of Luke 4:18, which shows that his anointing works on the poor first. Water turning into good wine was the first miracle to prove that this anointing deals with poor people first.
So, if I allow his anointing into my life, it will show its effects in me by manifesting the New Testament wealth first. And throughout the NT, it’s very clear, his anointing brought wealth, supplies and abundance. In Acts 10:38 it says,“How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good…”
Now, again allow me to cut that scripture at that point because I want to show you something. Am surprised, it’s not demons mentioned first. But he went about doing good, which means the first work of the anointing is to do good. They are poor people that need good things, not healing or casting out demons, they need good things. So, Jesus went about doing good to the poor.
Now, concerning the early church, in Acts 4:33 it says,
“And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ:”
This shows that they were heavily anointed to preach the gospel. Now in verse 4:33 it says,
“Neither was there any among them that lacked.”
So, they haven’t said, that there was none sick among them first. But,” there was none that lacked,” again showing us clearly that the early church allowed the anointing of Jesus to do it’s first work – to make the poor rich. So, the anointing of Jesus is heavily upon him to effect God’s great New Testament wealth. This is the manifestation of Jesus’ anointing in my life – ‘The New Testament wealth.’
Now, this means that as we grace for God’s anointing let’s open up our minds for this anointing to begin its work with our poverty – mentality. Let’s allow God to change our mind – sets, so we may be fit for God’s superabundance to flow.
II: THE GRACE OF OUR LORD JESUS:
The grace of our Lord Jesus is another avenue where God’s wealth has been piled. The NT wealth is found in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now just like the anointing upon Jesus, His grace is very clearly written about in scriptures. In John 1:15-17 it says,
John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.
Now what excites me is that part which says, "And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace." In otherwords all of us without exception have received the grace of our Lord Jesus. And He was full of it, so we must have received a good measure of his grace each one of us.
Of course, we are saved by grace. Every one is born again by the grace of Jesus, not our works nor our strength. But am so glad that his grace doesn’t end in getting me born-again only. Because remember we are talking about NT wealth. His grace extends further into an avenue of NT wealth. In II Cor. 8:9 it says,
“ For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.”
Now, this is very amazing! Very few people have seen this extended dimension of our Lord Jesus. So many get born again and stop there. The Lord opened my eyes to see this extended dimension of his grace. This extension is what delivers NT wealth. By Jesus’ grace, you can partake of this superabundance wealth. Jesus deliberately kept himself in poverty, so we may be rich by his grace.
This thrills me because it means that acquisition of wealth is not an option but a must, since Jesus was poor. I can’t remain poor because this will mean that his poverty was in vain. I can’t imagine mocking God to that level. So, l should humble my self and accept his offer of grace – his wealth. Now, if we are to look at the early church, we will be surprised. In Acts 4:33-34 it says,
“And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sol them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold.”
Now this grace is very rare in our days. That’s why born again are crying poverty wherever they go. Apostles going abroad instead of witnessing the resurrection. Do you see that? It says that great grace was upon them all and neither was there any that lacked.
This kind of grace, which you have, was on them and through it, no one lacked a thing. Doesn’t this show you that through grace God has packaged our wealth? And yet salvation would be enough. After all in heaven abundance is waiting for us. Well, the one who has prepared in heaven, is the same who has prepared for us on earth. His will in heaven is the same will here on earth, or else we should begin to pray, ‘Lord let thy will be done here on earth, as it is in heaven.
Friend, through the grace of Jesus, God expects us to be filled with wealth which I call New Testament. It’s by his grace just like salvation we don’t deserve it. We don’t have to do anything to deserve it, it comes on the ticket of grace. As long as you are born again, whoever you are, this grace is there to do its work in your life. By his grace we must be rich, wealthy, filled with good things.
Let his grace unfold its extensions of wealth to you. Don’t limit it to salvation alone. In 2 Corinthians 9:8 it says: “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:’ So, be comforted, God is able to extend his grace, he can expand it and make it produce all sufficiency in all things always. These are very powerful words.
Having all sufficiency in all things means super-abundance, it is New Testament wealth. God is able to make it produce whatever you need to live, everything that has to do with this life. So you need to cross the borderline of the saving grace into the grace that delivers the New Testament wealth. If God is able to make all grace abound, then it’s not your effort to become wealthy. So, your heart shouldn’t be on wealth at all.
It should be on the Lord Jesus. His grace will deliver the New Testament wealth. No wonder long ago, someone sang, ‘Amazing grace, how sweet the sound…..’ His grace is such powerful that it fetches all that heaven has to deliver to you while still here on earth. Let His will be done, become rich in Jesus’ name. I see you graduate from poverty to wealth in Jesus’ name.
In Ephesians 2:5 - 7 it says, “Even when we were dead in sins, hath he quickened us together with Christ,( by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.” What a wonder of scripture! While we were still dead in our sins, by his grace He came and gave us life, and then lifted us to sit together with His Son.
All this he did by his grace, not our merits or works. Then in the ages to come He will show the exceeding riches….I like it…..exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us. In other words His grace will deliver wealth to us beyond any imaginations of man. And God does all this by his grace, not what we have done or not done.
This confirms to me that God’s New Testament wealth is as real as Himself. It shows me that irrespective of my education, my height or background, I must be filled with this wealth, these exceeding riches from his grace. These riches can be shown, and it’s God to show them, so am confident that he will show them. He is not a man to lie.
Such wealth the world will never handle at all. This makes me sigh with relief. It is no longer survival for the fittest, or the highly educated only, no, I have my portion also. So I can boldly say, “I can’t be poor, I can’t be a slave of debts, I can’t be a borrower anymore.” I have discovered that we have more than we need. It is time to rise up and receive what has been delivered by grace.
III The Covenant of Our Lord Jesus Christ:
Now the word ‘covenant’ stands for ‘agreements’, ‘partnering’, it also means, a relationship, which is made between two people, and it is impossible to break. In Matthew 26:27 it says, “And he took a cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
Praise God we are in a covenant relationship with God by Jesus Christ, in a relationship that cannot be broken. Just like in any covenant, there is exchange of rights, as in the case of a husband and wife, the things that belonged to the husband now belong to the wife and the other way round. In our covenant with Jesus, he became sin that we become the righteousness of God.
He took all our infirmities, He became a curse for us and we got Abraham’s blessing, He died for us so we get eternal life and also enact the covenant. Better shout a good Amen! So all that I had as my tormentors, those struggles of poverty, have already been taken care of by the covenant. In Hebrews 8:6 it says, “But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which is established upon better promises.”
Now as for the old covenant, it produced untold wealth to whom it was made. Shouldn’t the covenant of Jesus produce exceedingly above ? It true Jesus has an excellent ministry as the mediator of the new covenant, delivering to us exceeding wealth. In Galatians 3:13 – 14 it says, “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, cursed is everyone that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ: that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
Friend would you like to know what the blessing of Abraham is all about? God blessed him so he could be a blessing to all the families of the earth. And as Jesus hanged on the cross, the blessing of Abraham broke loose upon us the Gentiles who believed. And the blessing of the Lord makes rich and adds no sorrow with it (Prov. 10:22).
So through the covenant based on better promises of God, make us extremely wealthy minus sorrow. This is awesome! This is also New Testament wealth. It is based on new covenant of better promises. It is a covenant loaded with great riches, better than what Abraham saw. It is the reason Jesus became a curse, so we may receive the blessings of Abraham.
This is the covenant in which God’s part is to fill us with wealth. If you surrendered your sins, your sicknesses, your failure, your death, your curses, then you are the right person to get these riches. This covenant stands forever. It is for us and our children, and as many as will get saved. The blessing is now full gear operating on better promises and on a better covenant. So that, promises like ‘whosoever’, make me to shout. ‘Whosoever’ means you and me without partiality.
Everyone is welcome to enjoy it. Whosoever will, let him come. Halleluya.
In 2 Peter 2;9 – 10 it says, “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out darkness into his marvellous light: which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained the mercy, but now have obtained mercy.”
We have been chosen, though before we were not a people, but now we have obtained mercy to receive what we don’t deserve so we may show forth the praises of the Lord. So let poverty leave you alone. It’s too late to be poor. Thank God the covenant is in force.
IV. WE ARE TEMPLES OF GOD:
I want to go on a journey into God’s Word as regards the temple of God. The Bible declares clearly that we are the temple of God. In I Corinthians 3: 16 – 17 it says, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? I f any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.”
This scripture shows that we the temple of God and that the Holy Spirit is resident in us. We are holy temples. God will not allow any man to defile this temple before he is destroyed himself. I think that is worth noting. If we are the temple of God then we are to be enviable people, glorious people, and a people that can’t be matched.
In John 2:19 – 21 it says, “Jesus said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it in three days ? But he spake of his body.” It is true therefore that if we are like Jesus, then we are the temples of God. Jesus referred to his body as the temple of God. I am persuaded that Jesus knew very well what he was talking about when he mentioned the word ‘temple’.
The temple of Solomon for example, in I Kings 6: 21 – 22 and verse 29 – 30 it says, “So Solomon overlaid the house within with pure gold: and he made a partition by the chains of gold before the oracle; and he overlaid it with gold. And the whole house he overlaid with gold, until he had finished all the house: also the whole altar that was by the oracle he overlaid with gold.” Verse 29 – 30 it says, And he covered all the walls of the house around about with carved figures of cherubims and palm trees and open flowers, within and without.”
Here a very clear picture comes to view of how temples of God look like. It was overlaid with gold all over, within, and without. I f you had an opportunity to look at it all you saw was gold. And when you entered inside, all you saw was gold still. So God associated himself so much with gold. God uses gold to build his temples – the places He dwells in. So God associates His presence with those temples built with gold.
Well, today gold is taken to be of the devil !! It is referred to as the god of this world, you can hear saints ignorantly singing “…..gold and silver…..to hell….” If we are the temples of God then the building materials have not changed since God has not changed, his building pattern remains the same. In these last days we are both the temple and the bride, so gold must come in to beautify the bride until she shines.
We therefore have access to God’s wealth because we are the temples of God. If we carry this light of the truth of God to every dark place where riches are hidden, then it will be delivered. This gold means to live a life that is wealthy, affluent, living above poverty and debts.
In John 10:10b it says, ‘…..I came that they might have life and that, they might have it more abundantly.” If this is what Jesus affirmed, and then we should have it otherwise, his mission would have aborted if we didn’t have it. As temples of God, we are to be exceeding magnificent.
In I Chronicles22: 5 it says, “….and the house that is to be builded for the LORD must be exceeding magnifical, of fame and of glory throughout all countries: I will therefore make preparation for it. So David prepared abundantly before his death.” As for the new covenant temples Jesus himself prepared abundantly before his death. That is very clear in John 10; 10. We are the temple of God therefore we must be decked with abundance.
We must be shining, exceeding magnifical and unique in the entire world. We are to be admired; we are to be envied, a famous and glorious people. Friend, it is not that I am after material things. But when the church of Christ languishing in the midst of God’s promises of abundance, I get offended. You see someone can spiritualize all these scriptures to mean spiritual gold, spiritual abundance, and that it is only in the old covenant that God used material things.
Well that simply sounds excusable; it is not the truth. They used to give physical offerings in the old covenant. In the new covenant, I see physical offerings still being given. They prayed to God in the old covenant. In the new covenant, prayer is at the forefront of every believer. In the old covenant, God was a Spirit. In the new covenant, God is still a Spirit.
It is with this conviction that I surely believe that God still uses material to build His Temple. And therefore get ready to be filled with God’s goodness. It has been a trick of the devil to keep gold away from God’s children through deception. The enemy has been using even some preachers of the gospel to keep God’s people from what belongs to them.
But this is your time child of God. You can rise up and proclaim your liberty. You are God’s temple. Remember that none of those preachers ever died for you, or even forgave you your sins. Rise up now and take the gold to overlay within and without your life. Of course gold within signifies your prosperous life, while that without signifies the expansion of God’s kingdom through financial support and the like. Surely this is the New Testament wealth.
V TRUE DISCIPLESHIP:
True discipleship also provokes New Testament wealth. Wealth is another God’s mark of true discipleship to all those who believe in the body of Christ.
In Matthew 28:18 it says, “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
So from this scripture we learn that our Lord never spent time with the twelve, only to make very special, unapproachable, etc. He taught them, demonstrated to them, tolerated them, so that the very things they received from him, and saw in him, and learned, should be passed on to those who believed. They were to transfer what they had become to other people. Now some of the things that Jesus taught them, with the intention that they also will teach the nations, were concerning New Testament wealth.
So let’s check out some scriptures here. In Luke 14: 25 – 27 it says, “And there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them, If any man come unto me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.” It appears here that Jesus was discouraging the multitudes from following him.
Or else he was making it very clear, the terms of his follower-ship. In other words Jesus was spelling out to them the cost of discipleship. Jesus was after people who would follow him without any reservations, people who would put him first in their everything. A people willing to forsake all for him.
A committed people. But if someone reads this scripture on the surface, he is likely to conclude that disciples of Jesus after forsaking all things they are the poorest. I mean if someone has surrendered everything, to follow Jesus, what else will he have on earth? And this view has led many to poverty in the church. It must be the reason God’s servants go visiting, to solicit some funds for the ministry. Following Jesus to some means to be poor.
In Mark 10:28 it says, “Then Peter began to say unto him, lo, we have left all and have followed thee. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There’s no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.” You ought to be shouting alleluia by now.
While it appeared so hard to forsake all those things for the sake of following Jesus, the reward that is paid back to such people is beyond comprehension. When Jesus tells us to forsake what we esteem highly, it is that he has on his mind the New Testament wealth. This wealth goes for all those who are dedicated to the Lord Jesus wholly. For everything you forsake, you provoke a HUNDREDFOLD RETURN TO YOURSELF.
And that is wealth beyond. The moment I make up my mind to leave all those things to become a true disciple of Jesus, he is on the other side multiplying everything only to return all to me. True disciples of Jesus therefore are very wealthy people, they can’t be poor. They are distributors not consumers, givers not beggars, lenders not borrowers. True discipleship is what makes me qualify for God’s New Testament wealth. No amount of prayer can equal true discipleship, which is forsaking all things for the sake of Christ. Fasting is not it.
Only food is forsaken there. So the apostle Paul said in Philippians 3:7 that, “But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.” This means that even Paul to become a disciple he had to forsake all. God therefore is no respecter of persons. The cost of discipleship is the same at any time. This also means that Paul was no mean man. He must have received the promise of Jesus to those who forsake all. Paul therefore was a prosperous man and an apostle of no mean stand.
No wonder he went all the then known world preaching the gospel.
And at one time he mentioned of thieves attacking him. Well, why would thieves attack a poor man? The cost of discipleship he paid rewarded him powerfully that he could say to the Governor who was called Felix in Acts of the Apostles 24: 17, that, “Now after many years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings.”
Which poor apostle will ever bring gifts to his nation, leave alone his brethren? But Paul brought alms and offerings to his nation. This man was heavily rewarded as a result of paying the cost of discipleship. I want to conclude that true discipleship brings about such New Testament wealth that no child of God has ever known.
This is such a great opportunity to share with you the word of God concerning New Testament wealth. I am so persuaded that as God has opened your eyes to see this mystery, He will also bring you into that place of fulfillment of his promises. God honours his promises more than any thing else. T o answer your prayers, he focuses on his promises.
To do anything, he focuses on his promises. So once you discover anything from his promises, that’s what he will be committed to fulfill. This discovery, of the New Testament wealth will put into your hands what is required to live a life that is pleasing to God. Don’t say that it is too late to see his goodness. Don’t just read and throw it away. Believe God and his word, you will surely see his goodness. God bless you.
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