Prosper is a word you hear frequently mentioned in sermons, books and other teachings.
In order to properly understand why God wants you to prosper. . .it's important to first gain a scriptural insight on what the word actually means as defined in the Bible.
According to Strong’s Concordance there are three primary Hebrew words used for prosper in the Old Testament.
- H6743 is used 49 times and it is translated as:
“to advance, prosper, make progress, succeed, be profitable, to make prosperous”
2 Chronicles 26:5 says:
“And he sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God: and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him to prosper.”
- H7919 is used 8 times and it is translated as:
“to be prudent, be circumspect, wisely understand, prosper”
Deuteronomy 29:9 says:
“Keep therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may prosper in all that ye do.”
- H7951 is used 3 times and it means:
“to be at rest, prosper, be at ease”
Psalm 122:6 says:
“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.”
There are two other words used for prosper (H7961 and H3787) but they are only used one time teach. In Strong’s Concordance they are defined as:
“quiet, at ease, prosperous” and “to succeed, please, be suitable, be proper, be advantageous, be right and prosper”
Interestingly enough, according to Strong’s Concordance the word prosper only appears in the New Testament four times in three verses. It’s the Greek word G2137 which means:
“to grant a prosperous and expeditious journey, to lead by a direct and easy way, to grant a successful issue, to cause to prosper”
3 John 2 says:
“Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.”
And for the record, the word wish is G3172 and it means:
“to pray to God; to wish, to pray, to pray for”
3 John 1:2 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul keeps well and prospers.”
With all these definitions, there can be no equivocation that the scriptural meaning of the word prosper is something extremely beneficial God wants us to have.
Now let’s look at the seven reasons God wants us to prosper.
1. God wants to bless us.
Psalm 35:27 says:
“Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the Lord be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant.”
Clearly, God wants your bills paid, your needs met and your family blessed.
Psalm 84:11 in the Amplified Bible says:
“For the Lord God is a Sun and Shield; the Lord bestows [present] grace and favor and [future] glory (honor, splendor, and heavenly bliss)! No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
God’s WORD Translation says: “…He does not hold back any blessing…”
Psalm 115:14 in the Amplified Bible says:
“May the Lord give you increase more and more, you and your children.”
Personalize this verse.
“May the Lord give <<Your Name>> increase more and more, <<him/her>> and <<his/her>> children.”
2. Jesus came to give us abundant life. . .not abundant lack.
John 10:10 in the New Living Translation says:
“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.”
I know what I’m about to say will have all the nattering nabobs of negativism and poor thinking going nuts BUT. . .the Word is the Word. They need to take it up with Him.
God’s desire is for His children to be rich. . .not just in spiritual blessings but in material blessings as well.
Let me say that again.
God’s desire is for His children to be rich. . .not just in spiritual blessings but in material blessings as well.
The King James Version of 2 Corinthians 8:9 says:
“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.”
There are two different but closely related Greek words for rich in this verse.
When the verse says “…though he was rich…”that particular Greek word is plousios (G4145) which means:
“wealthy, abounding in material resources”
The second reference to rich is when the scripture says: “…that ye through his poverty might be rich.”
This is the Greek word plouteō (G4147) which means:
“to be rich, to have abundance; of outward possessions; to be richly supplied; is affluent in resources so that he can give blessings of salvation to all.”
The Amplified Bible translation of 2 Corinthians 8:9 says:
“For you are becoming progressively acquainted with and recognizing more strongly and clearly the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ (His kindness, His gracious generosity, His undeserved favor and spiritual blessing), [in] that though He was [so very] rich, yet for your sakes He became [so very] poor, in order that by His poverty you might become enriched (abundantly supplied).”
Why does God want you blessed and abundantly supplied? That brings us to number three.
3. God wants us blessed financially so we can be Kingdom Builders.
Deuteronomy 8:18 in the New International Version says:
“But remember the Lord your God. He gives you the ability to produce wealth. That shows he stands by the terms of his covenant. He promised it with an oath to your people long ago. And he’s still faithful to his covenant today.”
Here are four things every believer should understand about Deuteronomy 8:18.
First, remember the Lord thy God. Always remember the One who gave you His all so you can be your all. . .through Him.
Second, the power to produce wealth is a gift from God. He has endowed you with the seeds of greatness. He has given us the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16).
Third, God will never give you something unless He expects you to use it.
Fourth, God is giving us the power to be rich for a reason.
2 Corinthians 8:9 in the New International Version says:
“You know the grace shown by our Lord Jesus Christ. Even though he was rich, he became poor to help you. Because he became poor, you can become rich.”
Why does He want you to be rich? …..to fulfill His covenant…. What is His covenant? ….that we’re “blessed to be a blessing.”
God has given us the ability…the power to be rich for a purpose.
What does it mean to be rich? Webster’s Intercollegiate Dictionary defines rich as:
“having abundant possessions, especially material wealth.”
4. God wants us honoring Him through our financial success.
Proverbs 3:9-10 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Honor the Lord with your capital and sufficiency [from righteous labors] and with the firstfruits of all your income; So shall your storage places be filled with plenty, and your vats shall be overflowing with new wine.”
The Hebrew word for honor is kabad (H3513) and it means:
“be honourable, be weighty, be rich, be glorious, be burdensome, enjoy honour, be made abundant; to get oneself glory or honour, gain glory”
We honor and glorify Him through our financial success.
In reading and re-reading Proverbs 3:9. . .it says honor the Lord with . . .first, your capital and sufficiency [from your righteous labors], otherwise known as your job or anything that produces wealth. But it also says we should honor Him with the firstfruits of all our income. . .meaning we should have several or multiple streams of income.
Let’s look at Proverbs 3:9 in the New Living Translation where it says:
“Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce.”
Just saying … that sounds like multiple streams of income to me.
5. God wants us to be a consistent tithers and givers.
There was a pioneer in the teaching on biblical finance and getting out of debt who passed several years ago. I remember the first time I ever heard him teach. It was on a VHS video at First Assembly of God Church in Goldsboro, North Carolina.
On this particular video. . .he said if you’re coming out of debt it’s okay to tithe what you can. Start tithing with two or three percent and work up as you get blessed. He went on to say that God would understand.
At the time it sounded good and noble. . .even compassionate. . .but it was wrong then and it’s wrong now.
Malachi 3:10 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Bring all the tithes (the whole tenth of your income) into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and prove Me now by it, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
Bring all of your tithes. . .the whole ten percent. If you don’t bring the entire ten percent then you are still robbing God. There is no asterisk or special conditions at the bottom of the page when we read Malachi 3:10.
The Word of God is not conditional on the basis of the mess you’re in. . .but when applied as written. . .it will deliver you from the mess you’ve made.
The gentleman on the video later changed his position and taught tithing as the scripture presents it.
There is another well-known teacher on finances who once taught the same mistaken principle. . .only to realize his success would be limited by teaching principles contrary to the Word of God.
I love the last part of Malachi 3:10 in the Message Bible which says:
“. . .Test me in this and see if I don’t open up heaven itself to you and pour out blessings beyond your wildest dreams.”
6. God wants us to care for the poor, the widows and the orphans.
Proverbs 19:17 says:
“He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.”
James 1:27 says:
“External religious worship [religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.”
The New Living Translation of James 1:27 says:
“Religion that pleases God the Father must be pure and spotless. You must help needy orphans and widows and not let this world make you evil.”
The way I read the scriptures . . . helping the widows and the orphans is not optional. Rather it is the example of Christian love and compassion we show the world.
In fact, God is pretty serious about how we treat the widows and orphans. God even ordained certain Old Testament laws to protect the widows and orphans.
Exodus 22:22 says:
“Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child.”
The scripture goes on to say in Exodus 22:23 that God will know if we don’t follow His instructions.
“If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto me, I will surely hear their cry.”
Lest there be any mistake. . .God clearly laid out what the penalty would be for ignoring His instructions in the law.
Exodus 22:24 says:
“And my wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless.”
The Message Bible translation of Exodus 22:22-24 says:
"Don't mistreat widows or orphans. If you do and they cry out to me, you can be sure I'll take them most seriously; I'll show my anger and come raging among you with the sword, and your wives will end up widows and your children orphans.”
I’d say that God is fairly serious in His desire for His children to care for the widows and orphans then and now.
So here’s the bottom-line question. . .can you do more for the poor, the widows and the orphans when you’re poor or when you’re prosperous?
7. God wants us to be the head not the tail.
Deuteronomy 28:10-13 in the Amplified Bible says:
“And all people of the earth shall see that you are called by the name [and in the presence of] the Lord, and they shall be afraid of you.”
All the people of the earth. . .not just those in your family, neighborhood or even your local church. All. . .means everybody you come into contact you. . .shall know that you are called by God’s Name.
You can’t be a closet Christian and expect to prosper.
You can’t be Wishy-Washy about who you are in Him.
When you spent time in His presence. . .you can walk into every situation with boldness which will create confidence in who you are in Him.
Deuteronomy 28:11 in the Amplified Bible says:
“And the Lord shall make you have a surplus of prosperity, through the fruit of your body, of your livestock, and of your ground, in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers to give you.
The Lord will make you have a surplus of prosperity. . .not a government stimulus package not even an inheritance from a rich relative. Notice the scripture doesn’t say He will give you a surplus of poverty. No, He will give you a surplus of prosperity.
This verse even shows a variety of ways in which God can get money to you.
Why is He blessing you so much? It’s simple. . .He promised our forefathers.
“The Lord shall open to you His good treasury, the heavens, to give the rain of your land in its season and to bless all the work of your hands; and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.
Over the years, I’ve walked into over a half-dozen different bank vaults. I’m sure these bank vaults all contained millions and millions of dollars. . .but none of them can compare with the Bank of Heaven. . .which our Heavenly Father wants to open up to us.
He will bless the work of our hands. However, He can’t bless what we aren’t doing.
I’m catching a new revelation of this verse even as I’m writing this. I like the idea of lending money to the nations from the Rich Thoughts Bank. Hallelujah!!!
“13 And the Lord shall make you the head, and not the tail; and you shall be above only, and you shall not be beneath, if you heed the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you this day and are watchful to do them.”
The reason so many believers are yet to walk in the promises and provisions of Deuteronomy 8:10-13 is because, like an ostrich, they have their head in the sand . . . afraid to take a stand or a risk … content to hide themselves from life and everybody passing them by.
The problem with having your head in the sand is that it means you’ve exposed another part of your body for somebody to kick.
God wants you to be the head. . .so you’ll use it. Not the tail because He doesn’t want you sitting on it when you should be about His business.
Yes, in verse 13 we’re told to “heed the commandments of the Lord your God” but it’s the next six words which should provoke our thinking.
“…which I command you this day…”
Every day. . .not just on Sunday or Wednesday night. . .or when you get in trouble or when you feel like it . . . but every day. . .God will tell you what to do. He will instruct you on how to accomplish the vision. . .the dreams. . .the goals. . .He has birthed within you.
Every day we should look with expectation for His direction. . .then follow His instructions.
President Ronald Reagan said:
“Within the covers of the Bible are the answers for all the problems men face."
Or as we like to say. . .READ YOUR BIBLE. . .DO WHAT IT SAYS.
As we begin to prosper. . .we will more fully understand that. . .affluence creates influence.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS