A few short years ago there were quite a lot of people in the United States that were having difficulty finding full time work, a position with an employer that would enable them to continue working a forty-hour a week job. Many had to resort to two or more part time employment positions that would permit them to provide for the needs of their families, but trying to maintain a standard of living that they were accustomed to became a thing of the past, much less the discretionary funds that were available with their previous employer. While some took whatever positions were available and adjusted their living habits, others just gave up, got on the system, the welfare state, and sadly fell into a kind of ‘continual depression,’ from steak to spaghetti, from fine bourbon to cheap beer, from designer dresses to inexpensive jeans. A large part of the problem of some of these individuals was, and still is, an incredible financial debt load, everything from a large house loan, school loan debt, automobile and credit cards to name just a few of the self-inflicted burdens they had and have amassed. A belief that life is long, nothing will really change that much overnight, and everything will work out eventually was the trap that many fell into and still to this day do.
For the vast majority of these people the principles of Proverbs 22:7 were either ignored or completely unknown, and they sauntered happily into slavery, instead of applying the Biblical financial principles laid out in the Word of God. They wanted everything, all the time, and they wanted it right now. It is how Satan has set up the worlds system, the things of the world, “The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life” (1st John 2:16) “are what really matter, and besides, you work hard so you deserve it, go on, get whatever you want.”
For those of you that are spiritually discerning, that contemplate the Word of God each day, Genesis 3:5 just came into your mind, “What God has given you isn’t enough,” said Satan, “God’s just being stingy, there’s so much more you could have, but He just doesn’t want you to have it.” Satan’s plan from day one has not changed one bit, “Go for all the gusto,” “be all you can be,” “you deserve a break today.” These and so many more have led to the inevitable conclusion that they have always led to throughout all of history, to disagree now means to be disagreeable, everyone deserves a trophy, and those who have should give to those who do not have. While coercing those who will follow him into believing that the “Age of man” is upon us, and all will be perfect under him, what the world is calling ‘globalization,’ the obedient servants of God see it for what it is, sin against a Holy God that will conclude this age in the tribulation period, ordained long ago by our Lord.
In Luke 18:18-27, Jesus spoke with rich young man who wanted to know how he could attain to eternal life. Our Lord’s answer for the time period was quite clear, for all then were still under the law, and the young man responded that he was in compliance with what Jesus has told him was necessary. Yet there was one more thing, actually two, that Christ told him that he needed to do, not what he should do, but had to do. When our Lord speaks to us in His Word, He speaks to each of us individually, one at a time and always very personally. If you are studying, not just reading the Scriptures, you know exactly what our Lord was intending here in this account. The wise servant understands that Jesus was not telling everyone of His children to live a life of extreme, continuing poverty, but He was telling this young man that his priorities were skewed, for in his case, he wanted everything, all the time, and in his own mind and the worlds view, he had achieved just that.
Did you notice in the account that he didn’t walk away because our Lord told him to follow Him? No, it was the temporal that the young man wanted to hold onto, He wanted, as the old saying goes, ‘to have his cake and eat it too,’ he wanted everything, all the time.
We are to store up our treasures in heaven, (Matt. 6:20) and only those who truly apply this verse in their heart are the ones that God has blessed with the “riches” of this planet, for they mean nothing to them but greater opportunities to serve our gracious God. These individuals use the Biblical principles of finances in every area of their lives, and if they lose everything, their character does not change, is not diminished, for circumstance do not change the man of God and his love for Him.
Ask Job about this when you meet him.
Do we complain and protest when the Lord allows these drastic changes into our lives? Of course we do, for we are but dust, but when we re-focus our hearts back on to the beautiful face of our Savior, we willingly submit in joy to His leadership, knowing that our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. (Rom. 13:11)
My friends, if you are an obedient servant of the Lord our God, if your faith rests in Christ alone, you have everything, all the time, for the Lord supplies all of our needs, and a great deal of our wants. Those of you that understand these words understand that generally, if we want something, we need to give something else up. And after many words, that leads us to the main topic, what God wants from us, and I can guess you know what that is. Everything, all the time.
Not only does He deserve it, He alone is worthy, and if you think about it, everything belongs to Him, not only each breath you take, but the very air we breathe He has created, the food and water we need to survive would not be here if He had not spoken the words, “Let the earth bring forth…,” (Gen 1:11) God has created all of reality, from the smallest molecule to the expanse of the universe, and for His pleasure He has created all things. (Rev. 4:11) We are all here at God’s good pleasure.
You can blame Satan if you want for sin entering this world, but when we all give an account on that day, (Rom. 14:12) that excuse will not hold water when we are being questioned by the Lord Jesus Christ for our actions. If you can envision in your mind our Lord asking you when you stand before Him “Why did you do what you did,” perhaps it will help you to ask yourself today, “Why am I doing what I am doing.” Is what you are doing glorifying God, or is it self-serving; are you laying up treasures in heaven, or seeking temporal, fleeting pleasures; are your thoughts being held captive for Christ, (2nd Cor. 10:5) or do they wander to your own selfish desires; are you keeping your body in subjection, (1st Cor. 9:27) or do the continual wants of the flesh control you?
Everything, all the time, that is what He wants from all His children.
I will guarantee you one thing, we must keep the word of God in our hearts, (Psalm 119;11) we must be obedient to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, and we must be willing and obedient servants, or we will not prevail in this endeavor, for in His grace he has blessed us with a choice, a free will choice to serve, to allow Him into the totality of our lives. Read Proverbs 16:4 and see the path that the lord has made for the wicked. For those of us that are saved by Grace through faith (Eph. 2:8) the path is clear, crystal clear, and it is His love for us that keeps us on that path. (Prov. 3:5-6)
Everything that has ever been created belongs to the Lord our God, including our very souls. In joy, in humbleness and great humility, with a willing, submissive spirt we should give all that we are to Him, everything, all the time.
Memorize Psalm 16:11, bow before His wonderful Throne of Grace, give reverence to His Holy name, tell Him that you love Him, give all glory to Him, seek His face daily, and the things of this world will fade away, and He will lead you on a straight path through the narrow gate to His Kingdom. Then, my brothers and sisters, you will have everything, all the time.