In the Vision of the Christian City, notable was the building and rebuilding and the flaunting of wealth – to no avail.  That’s also the prophecy concerning Laodicea in Revelation 3:14-18. That’s our age, where we think how to get riches is all that matter. We hear it in every sermon and books drag you down, move you into this abyss of hope that leads to nowhere. If only we know that Money is a god, and it’s not a good god. Jesus said so in Matthew 6:24,

“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”

Mammon is from the word, Mammonas, a Chaldean word i.e not found in original Hebrew, because it was something picked up from the Babylonian captivity; you find it implying riches (where it is personified and opposed to God).

It is something you have confidence in, instead of God. No wonder Jesus used the word “serve” – a word that had been used in the Old Testament to mean “WORSHIP”. DOULEUO in Greek, i.e to submit to; be a slave to a base power.

Now you see why Jesus said, when you choose to seek wealth outside God, you are on dangerous grounds, because to God, you are now worshipping a demon – that’s what it was in Babylon. Now you see why Paul said, the love of money is the root of all evil (1Tim. 6:10). It killed Achan and caused Israel loss of lives and defeat in the battle against Ai. God told them not to take any spoil at Jericho personally, even stressing He had cursed the land and the spoils, yet Achan took the spoil (Josh 7:20-21)

Israel from the time of Moses was told how to dress (Deut. 22:5, 11-12; Num. 15). So, the Babylonish garments could only be taken to look better than the others wearing this “drab” clothing designed by God.

And for the money, same reason – to be better than others – Be as gods.

That’s been the story of the Church since prosperity message began hitting the pulpits in the late 1980s, to drown the gains of the holiness movement that flourished before then.

So how does God see wealth/money? The answer is found in the following scriptures: (1) Ephesians 4:28: “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.”

There it is: simple and direct. Money is to be used by God to service others. I thought people steal to have the lifestyle of those who work hard; here you see God telling a person to stop stealing, to now work hard, at a good work and when he earns money, give it to the needy/poor. Doesn’t make sense, to the ordinary mind that has not learnt to submit to God. It’s like a man of God telling his congregation, ‘Hey, guys, I had a special visitation from the Lord. He said we should have a special program that would move Him to give us open heaven. We are to have 7 days fasting program, the last day will even be a night vigil. But please note, when the open heaven starts and you get opportunities to make money, you must bring the money to the altar, we gather all and give to the needy, the orphans and the widows!

How many people do you think will come for the meetings? Few, the Pastor would even come late and many members won’t show up. Why? Because that’s not why they seek prosperity. They seek prosperity to meet their needs and wants – to be better than their neighbours.

Let’s learn from the scriptures, that’s God’s standard for all things; His route to the city of God. He wrote it before we were born because He knew what will be the state of the Church in this end time.

Abraham was set up for our learning – God shamed his riches – all he made in disobedience, in Haran. Consider the description of Abraham’s wealth: In Gen. 13:1-5 and Gen. 24:34-35

“And he said, I am Abraham’s servant. And the LORD hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses.” 

That’s a very rich man being described, yet God told him, He would give him allowance –maintenance money, as if He didn’t know the man was rich. That came from the Hebrew meaning of SAKAR – I am your exceeding great reward in Gen. 15:1.

The disciples understood the mind of God and gave up wealth to follow Jesus. See the stories in Luke 5 and Mk. 10: 28-30.

Peter was a fisherman with ship and net and workers, that means he was rich. He left it.

Levi as a tax collector was rich – he did a party for a great company (at least 200 people) – that means he was rich. Yet, he left all this to follow Jesus.

“Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee.” That “all” was later explained by Jesus in vs. 29 & 30. “And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, there is 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 gospels. But he shall receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.”

Why is the church today pursuing what the early disciples dumped? Answer: Prophecy is catching up with the church to tell us where we are in Prophecy – very close to the Rapture – the return of Jesus to take His own home:

“Likewise, also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded.” (Luke 17:28)

What is the significance of the days of Lot? Many discussion points, but chiefly one word stands out – GREED. The word for lack of contentment. He walked out of his uncle, Abraham to seek more grazing lands for his sheep.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with seeking greener pastures. But there’s everything wrong if your attitude is bad and you have to move on to Sodom, of all places! Gen. 13:13 says, everybody in the world knew how sinful and wicked Sodom and Gomorrah were, yet that was where Lot headed for. He thought he was moving for gain, but it was to his loss. He never ate with God like Abraham did; and he never had enduring wealth like his uncle. He went in rich, he left poor; and that even happened because Abraham prayed for him. Sodom – the world is not our home. Peter caught the revelation, calling us strangers and pilgrims (1Pet. 2:11). That’s the lifestyle that takes us to the city of God.

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