When we set the eyes of our hearts on things of the earth, we use scripture to help us satisfy our soul hunger in a fleshly way in our few years here, instead of how it can help us glorify God as we prepare for eternity in His Presence.
If that sounds like pious pontification it’s because we’ve accepted the worldly mindset that is based on Satan’s lie. Healing and prosperity are two key areas.
I Peter 2:21-25 (from Isaiah 53) is a prime example. Some put the emphasis on the “for by His stripes you were healed” of v24b and adopt a dogmatic approach to physical healing here and now, while missing its context of suffering, and the true healing of our spiritual return to the Shepherd and Guardian of our souls. https://biblia.com/bible/esv/1-peter/2/21-25
Elaine’s and my agony of soul in processing her illness has been sanctifying. Fleshly interests, thought processes, fears and imaginations rush to the surface in such trials and we have opportunity to invite God to skim (scrape) them off.
This repentance contributes to the sanctification process that leads to greater intimacy with Him, which produces freedom and joy that counteract the pain. Suffering is a servant of joy. I wish I could get that end-result without that process but it doesn’t work that way.
And yes, God does want to “prosper us in all things” as in 3 John 1:2, but focusing on spiritual prosperity in our walk with Jesus leads to authentic prosperity now and forever, while focusing on things of the world can only lead to earthly prosperity for our few years here. According to Jesus, God or mammon (treasure that is trusted) becomes our god. https://biblia.com/bible/esv/matthew/6/19-24
The contentment of Philippians 4:11-13 is worth more than millions of dollars. Or shillings. https://biblia.com/bible/niv/philippians/4/11-13
Let’s pursue the pure faith that comes from setting our eyes on Jesus and empowers us to trust Him through suffering and need, not the earthly, selfish, conjured up “faith” that insists that we can escape the pain and suffering that God would use to sanctify us. We’ll need such faith in the Day to come.
Col. 3:1-4 is a good place to conclude. https://biblia.com/bible/esv/colossians/3/1-4
Kidron, Ohio USA
Dec. 18, 2021
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