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An Irrepressible Prosperity

Thu, May 30, 2013

Featured, Hope

One Yellow Flower in the Desert“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  (Jer 29:11, NIV)

God said this to the Israelites who were carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon.  And while God indeed planned to deliver the Israelites and restore them to their promised land at the appointed time, his will was for them to prosper even in their exile.  He said to them:

“Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.  Marry and have sons and daughters… Increase in number there; do not decrease.  Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile.  Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”  (Jer 29:5-7, NIV)

From the beginning, God has wanted his creation to prosper – to be fruitful and to multiply.  And while there may be seasons of fruitfulness, prosperity ultimately does not need an appointed time.  In describing a righteous man, the psalmist said:

“He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither.  Whatever he does prospers.” (Ps 1:3, NIV)

There is something extraordinary about a person walking so closely with God that his “leaf does not wither”, even in the most dire of situations.  We can see this most clearly in Christ, who even on the cross overflowed with life: he took care to entrust the welfare of his earthly mother to a faithful disciple (Jn 19:26-27), he prayed forgiveness for those who crucified him (Lk 23:34) and gave the promise of paradise to one of the criminals crucified at his side (Lk 23:40-43).  In the darkest hour, the Light of the world still shone; his soul still prospered; his goodness still overflowed to those around him.

That same prosperity is reflected in the ministry of Paul and Timothy.  They described themselves as “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.” (2Cor 6:10, NIV)

Real prosperity overcomes external conditions, overflowing from deep within to make others rich, in all the ways that matter.

— Joey

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    A Question of Law

    Fri, Apr 12, 2013

    3 Comments

    In a dispensation of grace, what kind of law – including penalties and punishments – should Christians apply among themselves?

    And with the separation of Church and State, what kind of law should Christians promote for their country, that would govern both Christians and non-Christians?

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