Not surprisingly, almost all military organization on planet earth, at some point or another made a daring claim that they are the best in the world. Some have call themselves the elite, or the professionals, some say they are the proud and the few, and other have adapted the title “Special Forces” or “the Mercenaries,” whatever.
However, during the Old Testament, there was a nation of military might, a super power that was feared by all; no king and kingdom dared to lift a finger against her. No doubt this nation was fearless in wars and strong in battle. Her men of valor are unsurpassed even to this present age. They are the chosen people of God – the nation of Israel. Indeed, the Lord of Host has lead them in every campaign and conquered their enemies swiftly and decisive.
On the other hand, there is another group of people who is mighty and strong. And they are the children of God, the body of Christ – the church. As believers in Christ, they possess the life and nature of God, therefore, they have become overcomers of the world, they are more than conquerors through Christ, and the gates of hell cannot prevail against them. Nevertheless, many professing Christians fail to see this truth. Instead, they are blinded and fail to recognize that as children of God, they belong to a peculiar breed of people. It is a tragic that they have no clue of who they are as believers in Christ.
In spite of having the knowledge of God’s grace, many have never live to the utmost as supposed, because they have frustrated or set aside the grace of God. As a result, the church has become divided on many issues; they limited the goodness of God regarding salvation, divine healing and prosperity, etc. It seems that God is placed in a box, and men have set up reasons on what God is supposed to be.
Actually, the apostle Paul knows what is at stake here if God’s grace is treated as meaningless. As he states in Galatians 2:21 (NKJV), “I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.” It is shocking to know that Paul compares it to Christ’s death on the cross as useless.
The point here is to understand the Biblical context of grace in relation to our set of beliefs in order to have a fulfilled life.
- 2 Corinthians 8:9 (KJV), “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.”
No doubt, the context of this is verse is giving of material substance to somebody, although Paul mentions about some sort of giving of spiritual substance. Evidently, Paul never uses the word money, gold or silver in this context, however, he is talking about love gifts, or love offerings. Therefore, when Paul stated that Jesus is rich, he also meant rich in material substance, because God owns the earth and the things of the earth; no wonder our God is rich.
Therefore, God wants you to be in financial prosperity so you can use your money for God’s cause. It is amazing how the unbelievers pour billions of billions of dollars just to win a cause. It is a challenge to us Christians. We should continue what the first generation church had done. They sold all their belongings and gave the profit to support a cause – spreading of the Gospel, the good news. Now, the point of argument here is not to get all your money and give it to someone else.
However, there are three reasons why God wants you to be in financial prosperity:
- God wants God wants you to be self generating, self supporting individual, and not a burden to anybody.
- God wants you to help those who are in financial needs.
- God wants you to support His cause.
The third reason on the above list is where the devil hates to see. That is why he wants you to stay poor, or have a negative conviction regarding money when it comes to your relationship with God. A website for men once said, “Cash is king.” They are absolutely right base on the context of the issue. When you have a lot of cash, you feel like a king.
- Acts 14:3 (NLT), “But the apostles stayed there a long time, preaching boldly about the grace of the Lord. And the Lord proved their message was true by giving them power to do miraculous signs and wonders.”
According to the verse above, God has to prove that the message of the grace of the Lord was true by giving the apostles do signs and wonders and miracles. Even at present time, God perform signs, miracles and wonders in order to prove that the grace of our Lord is true in a believer’s life. However, some declare that signs, wonders, and miracles are over with, that they belong to the apostles days and therefore not applicable now. But they are wrong. Signs and wonders and miracles are here to stay, it is one way God runs His business – He does it as He pleases. Dispensation has nothing to do with it, because God is not in the box.
In addition, the issue on the above verse (Acts 14:3) is not the signs, wonders and miracles, but the issue is that God wants to prove that His (word) grace is true. God has always been in the business of proving His word (grace) to be true; He never stopped, or retired or somethin’. He always says, “If you do or obey my word, I’ll do this and that.” Or, “If you disobey my word, I’ll do this and that.”
The Book of Malachi reveals that God said to His people, “Try me on this and I will …” Also, many times Jesus has challenged His disciples regarding their faith. He said to them, “If you have faith…” “If you believe…” then the Father God will do this or that.
- Romans 5:17 (NKJV), “For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One Jesus Christ.”
Verse 5:17 is a straight forward, down to earth advise from the Apostle Paul. Basically, if you have received God’s abundance grace, then, you will reign in life. Therefore, as a believer and a child of God, you will reign in this life. Reign means to be in power, to rule, to control, to have supremacy in life.
A believer shall not be beneath, or be the tail, but always on top. That is the only place where a believer should.
- 2 Corinthians 9:8 (NKJV), “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.”
When Paul stated the above verse, he was assuming that a believer has obeyed and followed God’s principle on giving. The statement is the result of the believer’s doing something according to God’s way of doing business. Therefore, the believer becomes prosperous in everything and capable of doing some goodwill to his brethren. Ultimately, he is not the only one who got blessed, but his brethren also.
To summarize, grace is the unlimited, inexhaustible goodness of God given to a believer. As John 1:16 (NKJV) says, “And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.” The Apostle John is telling us that we have God’s fullness (complete) of abundance through grace.
Here is another word of encouragement from the epstles of Paul:
As a child of God, the devil has nothing to do with you. He has lost his power and dominion over you, he is under your feet and he cannot touch you. He can only tell lies for he is a liar. He lies from the beginning and still does today. But keep in mind, your enemy is a defeated foe.
Besides, Christ has stripped him of his power, and he has no authority over the church – over you. And he cannot put fear, sickness, poverty, even death in you. For God has delivered you from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His Son Jesus Christ.
Moreover, know who you are in Christ, discover what Jesus did on the cross. Meditate on the Apostle Paul’s writings, because the mystery of the church was unveiled to him. At first, nobody knew that there would be “the church.” Even the disciples of Jesus were ignorant of the birth of “the church.” After awhile, the apostle Peter had to learn the existence of Christ’s body – the church.
And where is the mighty church now? The church is alive and well, moving mightily in spreading the good news of Christ, and living what suppose to in Christ. Indeed, the church is changing from glory to glory, conforming into the image of Christ without wrinkle or blemish. Being washed and cleansed by the word of God, ready to be caught up in rapture in a twinkling of an eye.
Obviously, Paul’s account of the church is beyond description. He was under the inspiration of the Spirit of God, and was moved by the power and wisdom of God as he writes the letters. Evidently, Paul has deep revelation of the church’s identity. No wonder his writings are difficult to understand. That is why Paul earnestly prays that the eyes of our understanding will open to see this marvelous grace of God.
Paul knew that the church is blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. Here, spiritual blessing is spiritual blessing, however, in most instances everything that occurs in the material world is the result of something that happened in the spiritual world. The fact is we are blessed!
Second, the church is complete in Christ. Paul meant the church is not lacking any thing in Christ. The church is not broke, not disabled, not light-duty, not abnormal, and not paralyzed. The church is complete period.
Third, the church is co-heirs of Christ. Again there is nothing mysterious in this statement. It means whatever things Christ possesses, the church has them, either in this present age or the future. The church is not empty handed in Christ.
Lastly, as member of the church of Christ, there is no way to act defeated, stumped, perplexed, poor, confused, pitiable, destitute, deprived, impoverished, sickly or whatever.
We always triumph in Christ.