Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have; for He hath said, I will never leave you or forsake you.
This passage is talking about the love of money. It is not a surface love of money. It is a deeper root of loving money; it comes from your core deep inside you. This type of love is a destroyer of life, and the devil will do anything he can to put you in that state of mind.
If your interested in the Greek; G866, aphilarguros
To show covetousness is to desire more, more money, more things, better things, bigger house, better car. You get my drift.
I have always been a low-income earner. The most I have earned in one year was $50, 000. That was not for too long either. I used to get angry at people who had, I will say, an easier life, whereas I felt I had to really work hard of getting the money I earned. I used to try the quick get rich schemes, such as party plans that promised good money. No matter what I did I was never content. I also gave to my local church more than 10% and I still struggled.
I now know it was my attitude towards money. I had a coveting attitude. Because I had a coveting attitude how was God to bless me. I could not be trusted with more.
At one point, I lost everything, I mean everything except for some clothes. This was due to other areas of sin and brokenness. For that, I paid a huge price in which I became homeless. The first night I slept in my car, which I lost not long after that night, I cried out to God. I had no options; continue to live a life of destruction, or start the road of righteousness. It was this very scripture that God showed me. It was through this process God taught me to be content. The words God said to me was, “if you have nothing or a million dollars, I will show you how to be content”.
I knew right then God was with me. No matter what I have or where I am living, God will not leave me or forsake me. He will meet every need that I have as I continue to honour and uphold Him.
Where are you at today? Are you asking God for more stuff or blaming God regarding your financial status? Do you covet your friend’s house or belongings? Or the life they live. If you are, in my experience, you will never be content.
To be content it is important to let go of everything you own and earn and be continually willing to let it go, give it all away, in other words; hold all you have loosely.
God wants you to be free and the first step is asking God for forgiveness for holding anything higher than God.
Remember that God loves you and He is on your side.
Have you ever had a feeling, that God was going to speak to you and heal your heart? That is what happened to me the other day when I had woken up. I felt a real strong presence of God, and all I wanted to do was read the word.
A I was reading Matthew chapter 11, the Holy Spirit started to speak to me. There were times when I couldn’t see the pages, because I was crying so much; especially Matthew 11:28-30 where it says; “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”. At that moment I felt such a warmth around me; I could feel Gods compassion and presence comfort me, all I wanted to do was to keep on reading. Matthew 14:14 says, “And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed the sick. Again, this part of scripture spoke to my heart. It shows, God has compassion for me through my hurts, and all He wants to do is comfort me in times of difficulty. After I had finished reading the bible; an hour later, my grieving heart had changed to joy.
I am sharing this very personal part of my life because I feel God can heal your heart through His word as He has done for me. I have been reading the bible seriously since the end of 2015 when my life fell apart. From that point onward, God has healed my heart many times through His word. The bible is live and active, sharper than any two-edged sword; Hebrews 4:12. A sword does a lot of damage when it is used properly, let alone a two-edged sword; it does twice the damage. To put this in a positive note, the bible cuts deep into our situation and can heal our hurts, convict us of sin and renew our relationship with God. And that is what happened to me.
During the healing process, it is difficult; it hurts, and it can sometimes feel like a lonely place; It does not have to be, this is when you decide and push into God. When you do this, there will be a breakthrough. As a result of you leaning on God, you will overcome the obstacles of hurt; heartache, and become stronger spiritually. Paul says, “Put on the whole Armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil”. Ephesians 6:11. This is especially important in our Christian walk; as soon as we think we can survive on our own, that is when we stumble and fall. The enemy will do everything he can to destroy us, John 10:10, especially within marriages and, relationships. When I stop reading my bible, that is when I start to go off track spiritually. Reading the word is a vital part in our growth in God. Jesus tells us, “ye are clean through the word”, John 15:3, and therefore we need to read our bibles. Reading the word needs to be part of your everyday life, out of necessity, as you do this you will see a change in your growth in God.
John 5:14 Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
When I look up the phrase, “a worse thing” in the Greek, it is quiet confronting.
χείρων cheírōn, khi’-rone; irregular comparative of G2556 from an obsolete equivalent χέρης chérēs (of uncertain derivation); more evil or aggravated (physically, mentally or morally): —sorer, worse.
When I look up G2556 it uses the word pernicious. Here are the synonyms.
harmful, damaging, destructive, injurious, hurtful, detrimental, deleterious, dangerous, adverse, inimical, unhealthy, unfavourable, bad, evil, baleful, wicked, malign, malevolent, malignant, noxious, poisonous, cancerous, corrupting, ruinous, deadly, lethal, fatal;literarymalefic, maleficent; archaicpestilent, pestilential, baneful, pestiferous
After reading that, why would anyone want to sin? It makes me sick in the stomach knowing the destruction sin causes.
When I read Jesus’ comment, “lest a worse thing come unto thee” it is a powerful statement. Jesus did not make this statement straight away; it was later in the temple that Jesus said it to the man. We do not know the full story of why Jesus made this comment, but Jesus could have seen the man doing something that was not pleasing to him. Maybe he was sinning and so Jesus warned the man, if he goes to a life of sin, there will be consequences.
I believe the consequences Jesus was talking about was eternal hell. He was warning the man, if he sins after receiving the fullness of Jesus, he would end up in hell. This should be a warning for us. There are so many Christians who continue to live a life of sin and think they are going to heaven, and we can see in scripture that someone who has received Jesus can end up in hell. The reason for this, is because they have not made Jesus their priority. They continue to live the former life, a life of sin rather than a life that is pleasing to God. Hebrews 10:26 says, for if we sin wilfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins. If we continue to deliberately sin, Jesus sacrifice can no longer cover you, there will be a judgment, and we should have fear falling in the hands of God. “The LORD will judge His people.”
God does not want us to stop having confidence in Him. He wants us to endure to the end because it has much reward, a reward to receive the promise. We need to remember, the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, your soul has no pleasure in him.
Spending time with God is important for our spiritual growth and being distracted from spending time with God can lead to sin. When God does not become a priority in our life, the devil will subtly prod us to do other things, trying to keep us away from growing spiritually. This can lead to a path of destruction. The devil knows that spending time with God grows us Spiritually, that is the last thing he wants, because it empowers us to overcome him.
Or how many of us have taken our Christian walk for granted? We go about our daily lives; we go to work; do family things; go to church meetings; spend time with friends, and the result is forgetting about our own personal walk with God. It is like we are on automatic pilot; we do not think about what we are doing, we just do them. Before you know it, our life has become a priority rather than spending time with God.
I used to complain all the time because my life was a mess, nothing seemed to be going right, or I would be sick all the time. When we continue to sin, Gods protection can no longer be upon us. God sent prophets to warn Israel. He wanted them to be gathered under His wing, but they would not listen to the warnings, instead the house became a house of desolation. Matthew 23:37-39. Please do not misunderstand me here. God is not wanting your life to be a life of destruction. He warns us that living a life of disobedience and sin leads to a life of destruction. God has given us a choice. We either live a Holy life pleasing to Him, or we live a life that can lead to destruction.
I do not know about you; Jesus has warned me before regarding sin. He warned me about not spending time with him, he warned me regarding the consequences. The thing is, there have been times I have listened, and times I have not. When I did not listen and continued to live a life of sin there were consequences, and Gods chastisement. Hebrews 12:6-7 .
Have you ever asked yourself, I want to be closer to God; I want to feel His presence more; I want to experience the same Holy Spirit power as Jesus; I want to overcome sin. If you have, then it requires you to spend a lot of your time in the presence of God worshiping, reading your word, and praying. It takes a relationship to know someone, and to know God you need to spend time with Him. More time than watching TV. or spending it with friends, going out, and even your hobbies Matthew 10:39 KJV He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. If you want to overcome sin, then change your priorities.
Blessed are you when men hate you,
And when they exclude you,
And revile you, and cast out your name as evil,
For the Son of Man’s sake.
This to me sounds like an oxymoron. How can someone be happy when people hate you and exclude you? No person on earth could achieve this task without the help of God and truly allowing the work of the Holy Spirit to be at work in that person’s life.
This hatred is a spiritual hatred. It’s a hatred against the believer for what they stand for and believe in and witness to. The hatred can be a deliberate act, or it can be passive. Today I was walking on a platform at a train station. A man looked at me and tried to trip me. I didn’t know that man, and he didn’t know me. The devil knows me, and he can influence anyone who isn’t walking in close relationship with God. Was it because I’m a Christian? I don’t know, it could be, I’ve had this happen to me a few times, people who I don’t even know have literally snarled at me like a cat. I believe they sense the Spirit of God in me and they react. Likewise, we see so many murders and hatred towards Christians because the devil uses people to act either verbally or physically towards them who take a stand for Jesus. There have been many martyrs for the gospel of Jesus. Two men stand out to me, Richard Wurmbrand and Brother Yun. These two have gone through horrific afflictions because of the Gospel of Jesus. Even today we see on the news Christians being beheaded because of their faith, when they won’t renounce Jesus’ name.
We have an instinct to have relationships with family, friends, work colleagues, and church friends. God also created us to have a relationship with Him, it’s built into our DNA. Nobody likes to be lonely and when we lose relationships it hurts. It also hurts when you’re ignored or isolated because of your faith, and this can happen at work, school, any social activities, and from strangers. Feeling excluded isn’t nice, but if it’s to take a stand, Jesus said, be happy about it, you are blessed because of it. To have the attitude of Jesus requires us to immerse ourselves in Him. For some, it may feel like hard work, for others it will come naturally. If you have that relationship with God it should come naturally, and when you feel excluded because of Jesus, it won’t matter because in God you have joy and peace, and you’re walking in the Spirit rather than the flesh.
Nobody likes to feel criticised, abused, angrily insulted, and considered being evil. Jesus said you are blessed because of it. Because of the stand you have taken for my sake, you are blessed. When someone insults you, yells at you becomes angry at you because of me. Remember, our reward is not here on earth, it’s eternal.
Where ever we are, we need to take a stand for the gospel, at church, home, school, when we go to the shops, drive the car and work. People may not like the stand you have taken. They may find it an insult because you won’t take part in something that’s against God’s word. Christians may find it an insult because they will think you are being “super religious”. It’s necessary.
Galatians 1:4, who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father.
Therefore, Christianity sets us free from this world, this evil age, and those who are Christians are to live contrary to everything and every nature different to this evil world. In John 18:36 Jesus said His kingdom is not of this world and in 1 John 4:5-6 speaks that we are of God. Then we need to do everything that pleases God, if we are to be a believer in Jesus Christ and be a Christian as the scriptures talk about rather than what man wants.
Jesus never faulted and yet he was spat on, ridiculed, his beard pulled out, punched and crucified. The church did this, i.e. the religious leaders and everyday folk.
If we are taking a stand for the sake of the gospel, expect ridicule, abusive language, exclusion. We need to act like Jesus and turn the other cheek. If you are sharing the gospel from your own flesh, rather being led by the Spirit, it will be harder to overcome the ridicule than if you were walking in the Spirit. There is a difference, because when you walk in the Spirit, nothing else matters except for who you are in Jesus and pleasing Him. When there is conflict it will be like water off a duck’s back. Not only that, there will be an outcome of something great, a seed sown, or eternal rewards.
It’s important as a Christian to have a total dependence on God in whatever you do. God is in total control over your life. It’s important to trust God and rest in Him. I have explained once before, it’s a total assurance of who you are in Christ. It’s like someone sitting in a hammock and it relaxes your full body weight in the hammock. Therefore, if something happens, there will not be a reaction. Stay true to God’s word and don’t compromise your faith in Jesus.
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