Dear Pastor Gallups,
I see and hear so many preachers that have become so possessed with teaching that God wants Christians to be wealthy in money and material things that I can't help but wonder are they really trying to lead people to Jesus or are they more interested in increasing their own wealth? -
H.H.E., - Bagdad
I find nowhere in scripture where God declares that he wants "all" of His Children - in this world - to be wealthy and "healthy".
There ARE promises in God's Word that indicate that the Lord often blesses His Children with wealth or even "healing" and health when His children live by certain Biblical principles. However, common sense (and God's Word!) makes clear that health and wealth are very relative terms and are practically indefinable.
How does one define "wealthy"? Usually it means someone who has more money that YOU do! An average American family is far "wealthier" than 75% of the rest of the world. What is "health"? We are ALL dying. Eventually, "health" will run out for us ALL!
ALL of the disciples of Jesus died poor and martyrs' deaths. Jesus didn't have a place to "lay his head". He had no home or fancy wardrobe. Someone else kept his money and he turned out to be a thief! Many of God's dearest children all over the world suffer from poverty, malnutrition, disease and even starvation.
Eventually we will have the ultimate in health and wealth when we are with the Lord Jesus.. All we are promised in this life is an opportunity to live for Jesus and bring glory to His Name - regardless of our health or wealth.
In short, the "health and wealth, prosperity" teaching coming out of today's modern “television evangelist world” is simply a LIE! We need to be like Paul, who said that he had learned to be content in ALL THINGS - healthy, not healthy, wealthy or poor. He simply wanted to glorify Jesus with his life. That is the goal of my life as well. I think that a Christian will find their life to be much happier if lived by this Biblical truth.