It’s time for everyone to be totally honest.
Have you ever driven along the highway and seen other people drive by in cars much newer or nicer than yours? Did you wonder why they have a new car when you’re driving a refuge from the salvage yard?
Have you ever ridden through a neighborhood and wondered who owns the expensive houses with the neatly manicured lawns? Did you ever wonder how they could afford such a place. . .with the nice cars sitting in the driveway?
Have you ever wondered why some of the most ungodly people in your office dress in ways you can’t afford?
And, yes, have you ever asked God why it seems that ungodly people prosper while many of God’s children struggle to just get by?
Be honest. . .now. Truthfully, there have been times in the past when I wondered about those things. I think that’s why I was led to write “Seven Reasons The Ungodly Prosper.”
1. The enemy wants to frustrate you...make you question the fairness of God
The enemy has three weapons. . .only three that he can use against you. He has the power to accuse, the power to deceive and the power to tempt. That’s it.
Once you get born-again…the enemy has lost your soul for eternity. So his next tactic and frankly, his only option is to neutralize and render you ineffective for the Kingdom of God.
One of his strategies is to accuse God of being a respecter of persons…of caring for and blessing others even more than He does you. He knows this tactic is even more effective when he continually points out how ungodly people are seemingly blessed far more than you.
Revelation 12:10,11 says:
“. . .Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. Andy they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and the word of their testimony.”
The enemy has a history of deceiving those even close to Jesus. . .he did it to Peter.
In Mark 10:31-33 we read where Peter tried to stop Jesus from going to Jerusalem. To the casual observer this attempt was nothing more than a devoted disciple’s desire to keep his master from being killed. However, Jesus always walked with His spiritual eyes open. He knew Peter was receiving outside interference. Jesus immediately brought charges against the deceptive force behind Peter’s seeming concern. Notice carefully whom Jesus accused.
Mark 10:31-33 says:
“And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.
32 And he spake that saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him.
33 But when he had turned about and looked on his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, Get thee behind me, Satan: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but the things that be of men”
Matthew 24:24 says:
“…they shall deceive the very elect.”
The enemy is trying to accuse God of blessing the ungodly more than you. At the same time he is seeking to deceive you about the real purpose of your mission. And finally, he wants to tempt you to doubt.
James 1:13-15 in the New Living Translation says it this way:
“And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.”
That’s what the enemy is hoping. . .that we allow sinful thoughts to grow. . .so we will experience the wages of sin.
Romans 6:23 says:
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
2. Make your focus on the rich instead of Him and question Him about them
Any time you spend questioning God or talking with others about why the ungodly prosper is time where he’s diverted your focus from what God wants to do for you .... to what’s happening to others.
The enemy knows that focus is either a destiny maker or a destiny breaker. Anytime he has you thinking about things that are not of earthly benefit to you...he can neutralize your effectiveness for the kingdom of God by creating doubt.
When thoughts pop into your head about how the ungodly are prospering. . .what should you do?
Psalm 37:7 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Be still and rest in the Lord; wait for Him and patiently lean yourself upon Him; fret not yourself because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked devices to pass.”
I looked up Psalm 37:7 in 21 different translations . . .and the thought at the beginning of each translation is clear.
Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him.
Psalm 73:12 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Behold, these are the ungodly, who always prosper and are at ease in the world; they increase in riches.”
We should never spend even one second…not one…being envious, jealous or upset when the ungodly prosper or get recognition we don't.
Keep your focus on Him not them…knowing your time is coming. You have the God of creation behind you.
3. Sin created inequality, injustice, unfairness, unrighteousness and suffering
Matthew 5:45 in the Amplified Bible says:
“To show that you are the children of your Father Who is in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the wicked and on the good, and makes the rain fall upon the upright and the wrongdoers [alike].”
Romans 5:12 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Therefore, as sin came into the world through one man, and death as the result of sin, so death spread to all men, [no one being able to stop it or to escape its power] because all men sinned.”
Yes, sin creates inequality, injustice, unfairness, unrighteousness and suffering BUT GOD keeps the books.
John 10:10 says:
“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.”
The word might is mentioned twice in John 10:10 because we have a choice.
We can choose…to experience the abundant life now.
John 10:10 in the New Living Translation says:
“…My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.”
It’s our choice whether we experience the abundant life as it says in the Amplified Bible translation “…abundance (to the full, till it overflows).”
It’s a choice…it’s ours to make by the decisions we make in following after and believing God.
But there’s another choice we might make…whether to spend eternity with Jesus.
Yes, the ungodly can experience abundance here…but the only reward they will get is right here on planet earth. After that, it’s payback time…for rejecting Jesus as their savior.
Regardless of how wealthy or successful the ungodly are…we have a much better benefit package and retirement plan.
4. God has everything under control when we serve Him
There are many verses that prove beyond any shadow of a doubt that God has everything under control. . .but I only feel led to share these five verses.
Proverbs 19:21 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Many plans are in a man’s mind, but it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand.”
Romans 8:28 in the Amplified Bible says:
“We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.”
Isaiah 45:6-7 in the Amplified Bible says:
“That men may know from the east and the rising of the sun and from the west and the setting of the sun that there is no God besides Me. I am the Lord, and no one else [is He]. I form the light and create darkness, I make peace [national well-being] and I create [physical] evil (calamity); I am the Lord, Who does all these things.”
Isaiah 55:8-11 in the Amplified Bible says:
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, says the Lord.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.
“For as the rain and snow come down from the heavens, and return not there again, but water the earth and make it bring forth and sprout, that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
“So shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth: it shall not return to Me void [without producing any effect, useless], but it shall accomplish that which I please and purpose, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
Psalm 115:3 says:
“But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.”
5. Short term gain versus long-range reward
Hebrews 11:25-26 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Because he preferred to share the oppression [suffer the hardships] and bear the shame of the people of God rather than to have the fleeting enjoyment of a sinful life.
He considered the contempt and abuse and shame [borne for] the Christ (the Messiah Who was to come) to be greater wealth than all the treasures of Egypt, for he looked forward and away to the reward (recompense).
I love the last sentence of Hebrews 11:26 in the Message Bible where it says: “…because he was looking ahead, anticipating the payoff.”
Over the years, I’ve read a number of books by atheists and new age believers who talk about and practice seedtime and harvest. Oh, they don’t use the terminology that’s scriptural or Christian. However, they know when you give you get a return.
If a raving atheist sows $100…believing that he will receive a hundredfold return…he will.
When you sow…if you expect to receive a harvest you will. If you don’t expect to receive a harvest….you won’t.
Even though the ungodly may receive great returns on their investments while on planet earth…when the last breath goes out of their body…what they had here will be left behind for others and will be of no consequence where they’re going.
In Luke 16:19-31 we read the story of the rich man and Lazarus. The rich man experienced short term rewards but never tasted the cool taste of water or the long-range rewards enjoyed by Lazarus.
By the way, the problem with the rich man wasn’t that he was rich…it’s that he was greedy.
Short term gain or long term reward…no choice. We’re in this for the long haul.
6. Godly principles work even when the heathen work them
“I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked."
We shouldn’t be amazed when the heathen…the ungodly experience financial success because they been utilizing scriptural principles.
If an agnostic or an atheist were to read Galatians 6:7 in the Amplified Bible there is one part of the verse that would stand out to them. One part of the scripture they would actually activate in the lives.
Here’s what the verse says. . .now which sentence do you think they would act on?
“Do not be deceived and deluded and misled; God will not allow Himself to be sneered at (scorned, disdained, or mocked by mere pretensions or professions, or by His precepts being set aside.) [He inevitably deludes himself who attempts to delude God.] For whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.”
If you said. . .the last sentence. . .you would be exactly right.
“For whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.”
Many of the ungodly yet successful people I’ve met over the years. . .also understand the concepts found in Ephesians 6:8 in God’s Word Translation which says:
“You know that your heavenly master will reward all of us for whatever good we do, whether we’re slaves or free people.”
Many New Age Thinkers believe in a Spiritual Presence and they definitely understand sowing and reaping.
7. Realize that the ungodly prospering is actually for your benefit.
The first time I ever met my spiritual mentor, John Avanazini, was at a Christian Booksellers Convention in Denver, Colorado.
We only spoke for a few minutes but I purchased his School of Biblical Economic package.
When I returned home from the convention. . .I vividly remember playing the first cassette tape. Brother John started the teaching with this story.
Some years ago, he was staying at a major hotel near Times Square. He came out of the hotel late one afternoon looking for a taxi ride to where he was going to be speaking that night.
It was raining outside and the doorman offered to help…he held an umbrella over Brother John while he tried to hail a taxi. If you’ve ever been in New York or any other major city….trying to find an available taxi during rush hour on a rainy afternoon is almost impossible.
After about ten minutes….a taxi pulled over to the curb…as the doorman started to open the door for Brother John…the revolving door of the hotel produced a young man screaming at the top of his voice…demanding that the taxi be held for him.
This young man was wearing an Armani suit and as Brother John said “a pair of alligator shoes so fresh they were snapping as the man ran through the puddled water.”
The doorman said, “Sorry, sir, this taxi belongs to this gentleman, if you’ll be patient I’ll call a taxi for you.”
The young man was insistent, indignant and somewhat rude. He said, “You don’t understand I’ve got to have this taxi now. I’ve got a multi-million dollar deal waiting for my signature and I can’t be late.
The doorman sternly objected and said, “Sir, you’ll have to wait.”
Brother John smiled and told the doorman to let the young man have the taxi. The doorman said, “Sir, it may take another 10-20 minutes to get you another taxi.”
Brother John said, That’s okay, let him have it.”
The young man threw his briefcase in the back seat while barking orders to the taxi driver. He never looked back…never said thank you or any in way acknowledged the kindness of Brother John.
As the taxi sped away…the doorman looked at Brother John and with a somewhat quizzical look asked, “Sir, did you know that man?”
Brother John said, “No, I don’t.”
The doorman then asked what seemed to be a logical question. “Then, Sir, why did you let that man have your taxi?”
Brother John smiled and said, “I don’t know him personally but he is working for me.”
Proverbs 13:22 says:
“A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children's children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.”
The New Living Translation of Proverbs 13:22 says:
“. . .the sinner’s wealth passes to the godly.”
Ecclesiastes 2:26 in the New Living Translation says:
“God gives wisdom, knowledge, and joy to those who please him. But if a sinner becomes wealthy, God takes the wealth away and gives it to those who please him. . .”
When will this wealth transfer come to pass? James 5:13 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Come now, you rich [people], weep aloud and lament over the miseries (the woes) that are surely coming upon you.
“Your abundant wealth has rotted and is ruined, and your [many] garments have become moth-eaten.
“Your gold and silver are completely rusted through, and their rust will be testimony against you and it will devour your flesh as if it were fire. You have heaped together treasure for the last days.”
I’m going to repeat something that was said earlier in this teaching. . .never be envious, jealous, or upset when the ungodly prosper. . .because after all. . .they’re working for you.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS