Pastor Roger Anghis
April 17, 2011
Our next verse is Luke 5:4-6 And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. (6) And when they had this done, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. In studying this story we see that Jesus had just used Peter’s boat so that He could teach the people. In an example of sowing and reaping, Peter had allowed his boat to be used to help teach the people the Word of God and immediately there was a return on that seed. Two things we need to understand in this story. First, you did not fish that sea in the daytime. That is why Peter was cleaning his nets when Jesus used his boat. Notice that he stated that they had fished all night and caught nothing. The second thing is the proof of the 100 fold return. Peter may have used his old nets that were not as strong, but the fact that they caught so many fish that it began to sink not just his ship but his partners as well is an indication that Jesus believed in reward for service to the gospel. This was probably more fish than Peter would catch in a week or two. That is a substantial increase caused by Jesus Himself. This translates into wealth no matter how you look at it.
Our next verse is Luke 6:38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. This was spoken by Jesus and is essentially part of the Beatitudes. He spoke of the self-centered people of the day and how they have received their reward and He spoke of those that were treated poorly by those that were well off. Keep in mind He was opposed to their character not opposed to their wealth. Also note that He spoke of sowing a seed once, yet He spoke of the harvest six times. The Greek word used for “Give” is didomi and it means bestow, deliver up, grant, minister, offer. The lexicon defines this word in this verse as to give something to someone of one’s own accord, i.e. a free will offering.
This is a gift that has no strings attached. How many times has someone done a favor for you with the full expectation of YOU being the one that will repay them for the favor. God doesn’t work that way. When you do something for someone that is a seed and God will bring that harvest to you. We are not supposed to expect the person that we did the favor for to be the one to repay us. The Greek word used for “good” is kalos and it means worthy, distinguished. The lexicon states its definition as excellent in its nature and character. The Greek word used for “measure” is metron and is defined in the lexicon in this verse to mean the measure of the benefits which one confers on others. This is speaking of the return you will receive. A worthy return. Webster defines worthy as possessing worth or excellence of qualities; virtuous; estimable; The Greek word used for “pressed” is piezo (pee-ed-zo) and it means to pack tightly. The Greek word for “shaken” is saleuo (sal-yoo-o) and it means to shake. I’m sure that you all have experienced buying a box of cereal or flour and the contents have settled. The box will even state that the weight is guaranteed though some settling may have occurred.
This is what this is referring to. The Greek word for “running over” is huperekchuno (hooper-ek-khoo-no) and it means to overflow, to run over. This is an indication of too much. So the return on your giving will be worthy and distinguished and come in a great quantity to the point of overflowing. This could mean that you may need to have two or three or more different bank accounts. I say this because the last part of the verse refers to the return on your giving will be determined by what you give according to what you have left over. If you give a little, what you see returned to you will be little. If you give big, then your return will be big. One person may give $100.00 and it will be much according to what he has left. One person may give $100.00 and it will be little according to what he has left. The point of this verse is that God rewards us for our generosity to others. God is not cheap and He will repay with a very high interest rate. For this harvest of your seed the return is determined by your giving and God has set no limits on the return.
Our next verse is John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. Jesus is giving a direct difference between Himself and Satan. Satan is a thief. He takes what is not his. He takes possessions. He takes lives. He ruins relationships. He does whatever he can to destroy a human being. He doesn’t care who they are serving, him or God. Destruction is his nature. Jesus is life, life for all areas of our life. Life for our health, life for relationships, life for our businesses, life for our prosperity. Jesus stated that He came to give us life. The Greek word used for “life” is zoe and means more than just life as we understand it. The lexicon defines it as a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, blessed, the portion even in this world of those who put their trust in Christ, but after the resurrection to be consummated by new accessions (among them a perfect body) and to last forever. Notice the word blessed. In the Old Testament we learned that to be blessed of God was to be empowered to prosper. In the New Testament to be blessed of God means pretty much the same.
The primary word used is makarios and it means to be supremely blessed, fortunate, well off. This is the kind of life that Jesus came to give us. Yes, eternal life is part of what He came to give us, forgiveness of sins, perfect health and any other thing that makes our life heaven on earth. He even states that He came to give us life more abundantly. The Greek word used for “abundantly” is perisseuo (per-is-syoo-o) and means excessive, superfluous, to abound, to cause to superabound. The lexicon defines it as to furnish one richly so that he has abundance. Webster defines superfluous as more than is wanted; rendered unnecessary by superabundance; This is a direct reference to earthly possessions, prosperity and wealth. Notice that it means that so much has been given that what was given is rendered unnecessary for personal use. Some may doubt this concept but in Solomon’s day silver was stacked outside the city gates because there was so much of it in Israel that it was not worth having.
The next verse we are going to look at is 2 Corinthians 8:7 Therefore, as ye abound in everything, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also. Paul, in this chapter, is writing to the church in Corinth about God’s grace. The Greek word for “abound” is perisseuo (per-is-syoo-o) which we saw used in the last verse we studied and it means excessive, superfluous, to abound, to cause to superabound. The Greek word used for “everything” is pas and it means all, every, the whole. This gives the meaning of everything that touches your life. Then Paul lists some of the things that he is referring to. The literal translation used the word earnestness for the word “diligence” and the Greek word is spoude (spoo-day) and it means business as well as diligence. So Paul is saying that a believer should be abounding, to be excessive, superfluous, to abound, to cause to superabound, in business. This means that your business is not just successful, but super successful. That means that you are not just profitable, but super profitable. Again, wealth is just one aspect of the Salvation afforded us by Christ’s work on the cross and God has a work for you to do for Him with the wealth that He gives you.
Next verse is 2 Corinthians 8:9 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. This is one of the verses that many preachers use to declare that believers should be poor, like Jesus was. They will also claim that His ‘riches’ are ‘spiritual riches’. When we ‘study to show yourself approved’ , as Paul tells us, we find that this concept of spiritual riches’ is non-existent. Looking at the Greek word used for the word ‘rich’ we find that it is the Greek word plousios (ploo-see-os) and it means wealthy, rich, abounding with. The root word for plousios is ploutos (ploo-tos) and it means money, possessions, richness, valuable riches. Up to His arrest, Jesus was rich. Think about it. He had a treasurer. Who needs a treasurer when you are poor? The next word I want to look at in this verse is the word “poor”. This is the Greek word ptocheuo (pto-khyoo-o) and is defined in this verse by the lexicon as to be weak, afflicted. What this verse is saying is that because of Christ’s afflictions, not His small bank account, we were made rich. Here is where word study opens our eyes to the truth. The Greek word used for “rich” is plouteo (ploo-tey-o) and means to become wealthy, be increased with goods, be made rich, wax rich. It has nothing to do with spirituality. Jesus was wealthy materially but because He was afflicted, this is the beating, the whipping, and ultimately the cross, because of these afflictions we are afforded the right to wealth. Religion has taught what it thought was the right way to be humble and that is living without. Humble has nothing to do with wealth. It is not a virtue of poverty. Being humble has everything to do with a person’s character.
We have to remember that the body of Christ is supposed to be the light of the world. Being the light includes living a proper, godly lifestyle. But it goes beyond that. Just as Abraham lived by God’s commands and became a force to reckon with because he increased not just with people but with material wealth as well. David was not just the most powerful king of Israel, but one of the wealthiest as well. Solomon was the wisest and the wealthiest. Now that we have a better covenant, with better promises (Heb. 8:6), what they experienced as a reward for seeking after God is the minimum that we should have. God does not deal in lack. He only deals with increase. Nowhere in scripture do we read where a person who follows God, seeks after God, and lives a godly life suffers from lack. I’m not saying that there won’t be times that will trying, but to live your whole life in the land of want is not God’s plan. Many preachers use Job as an example for this, but all his lack was because he was operating in doubt and unbelief, opening the door for Satan to come in and create disaster in his life. But he repented, stayed faithful to God and God rewarded him for his faithfulness double of what he had before.
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This series was designed to get you to understand the relationship between wealth and the born-again believer. Wealth isn’t really the issue but how you handle that wealth is the issue. This series was to show that our dependence is to be on God not on money. Again, as stated earlier in the series, prosperity is part of God’s salvation package and should be considered as important as the forgiveness for sins. Because of the centuries of neglect that this subject has experienced the true understanding of this relationship has been lost. I hope that this series has shed a light on this subject so that it can be better understood.
Not all will agree with this assessment, but it would be a benefit to the body of Christ to look at this the same way God does.
© 2011 Roger Anghis - All Rights Reserved
Pastor Roger Anghis is the Founder of RestoreFreeSpeech.org, an organization designed to draw attention to the need of returning free speech rights to churches that was restricted in 1954.
President of The Damascus Project, TheDamascusProject.org, which has a stated purpose of teaching pastors and lay people the need of the churches involvement in the political arena and to teach the historical role of Christianity in the politics of the United States. Married-37 years, 3 children, three grandchildren.
Web site: RestoreFreeSpeech.org