Scriptural Principles of Prosperity – Depend Upon God to Supply Your Needs

Text – Luke 12:23-34

 

  1. Introduction
    1. We are starting our year hoping and expecting to prosper.
      1. We have made a distinction between prosperity and wealth.
        1. Prosperity is being content with enough.
        2. Wealth is having more than we can consume.
      2. We started off by looking at blessing and saw how that to be blessed is better than to be wealthy.
      3. Given the beliefs of our culture we saw how that in scripture prosperity is to be earned.
        1. We are not entitled to it.
        2. God does not give it as a reward for serving Him.
        3. Furthermore, those who are wealthy are not obligated to have what they have earned taken from them and given to those who have not been as diligent or focused or wise.
      4. Today we introduce the basis for contentment with enough. It is trust. Principle #3 is: Depend upon God to supply your needs and meet your obligations.
  2. Explanation of the text
    1. Jesus begins this portion of his sermon saying “. . . do not worry. . .”
      1. Worry – (N) a state of anxiety and uncertainty over actual or potential problems. (V) To give way to anxiety or unease; allow one’s mind to dwell on difficulty or troubles.
      2. Worry is a choice
    2. Antidote:
      1. Consider how God feeds the birds and clothes the flowers
      2. Refocus your attention. Seek the kingdom; focus on the kingdom and these things will be given to you.
      3. Change your heart.
        1. Your heart is the center of your affections.
        2. If your heart is centered on God, you won’t need to worry and you can be content.
  3. Trust God to supply your needs
    1. Exodus 16: manna was given and gathered daily.
      1. Exodus 16:17-18; 21, “The Israelites did as they were told; some gathered much, some little. And when they measured it by the omer, he who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little. Each gathered as much as he needed. . . Each morning everyone gathered as much as they needed. . .”
      2. This was a lesson in trust.
      3. The trust of daily food pointed to a trust to get to the Promised Land.
    2. Matthew 6:11, “Give us today our daily bread.”
    3. Much of our anxiety comes not from what we have today, but fear of what might happen in the future.
  4. Trust God to meet your obligations
    1. The other thing we tend to worry about is being able to pay our bills.
    2. Matthew 17:24-27, After Jesus and his disciples arrived in Capernaum, the collectors of the two drachma tax came to Peter and asked, “Doesn’t your teacher pay the temple tax?”
      “Yes, he does,” he replied.
      When Peter came into the house, Jesus was the first to speak. “What do you think, Simon?” he asked. “From whom do the kings of the earth collect duty and taxes – from their own sons or from others?”
      “From others,” Peter answered.
      “Then the sons are exempt,” Jesus said to him. “But so that we may not offend them, go to the lake and throw out your line. Take the first fish you catch; open its mouth and you will find a four drachma coin. Take it and give it to them for my tax and yours.
    3. Prosperity involves trusting God to supply our needs; we also must trust him to meet our obligations.
  5. The best indicator of your trust is tithing your firstfruits.
    1. Proverbs 3:9-10,
      Honor the Lord with your wealth,
      with the firstfruits of your crops;
      then your barns will be filled to overflowing,
      and your vats will brim over with new wine.
    2. Giving the firstfruits means that you will trust God to meet all your needs and obligations even though the harvest is not completed and you are uncertain if your needs will be met.
    3. Most of us tithe out of our abundance
      1. Luke 21:1-4
        As he looked up, Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “I tell you the truth,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”
  6. Conclusion
    1. Prosperity is more about attitude than possessions.
    2. Prosperity is more about dependence upon God to give the means to earn. Dependence upon God means to trust Him to supply the skill, the knowledge, the job and the health to work hard.
    3. Prosperity is being content with enough for the present and trusting that God will continue to supply in the future.
    4. If you want to prosper, consider the lilies.