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Prosperity is a Fruit of Righteousness

If you’re on the long journey toward escaping financial slavery and mastering your money, I’ve got some great news for you: God wants you to prosper.

That’s right, you’re not in this alone. Though the road may be tough, you have the greatest power in the universe on your side. And He promises that we will succeed with money, as long as we do things His way.

Sometimes we like  to think about money, success and wealth as mysterious forces that bless some humans and curse others at random. But scripture makes it clear that this is not the case. Prosperity is actually a fruit of righteousness. If we do things the right way, we can count on succeeding, because that’s the way that God has designed things to work.

Let’s dive right in to the Bible and begin working on these concepts. There are plenty of places to find these ideas, but we’re going to start in Proverbs 13:21:

Trouble pursues the sinner,
but the righteous are rewarded with good things.

This verse doesn’t deal explicitly with money (we’ll examine some that do in upcoming articles), but it lays a foundation that helps us to understand the way that our behaviors influence our circumstances. The teaching here is pretty simple, and it presents us with two key ideas: 1) Sin gets us into trouble; and 2) Righteousness brings us good things as a reward.

The reason that this proverb is important is that it helps us to do away with that faulty notion that success and failure are random functions of the universe beyond our control. There are some things that we can absolutely count on. If we misbehave, take advantage of people, lie, cheat and steal, we can be certain that it’s going to lead to trouble. Sin may feel good for a while, and it may even seem to pay off… but only for a time. Eventually, sin always catches up with us in the form of trouble. We always reap what we sow.

Righteousness, on the other hand, will ultimately bring us success. Doing the right thing doesn’t always feel good, and it doesn’t always seem like the thing to do if you want to get ahead in life. But God says that righteousness is exactly the thing to do if you want to get ahead in life, because “the righteous are rewarded with good things.”

As I have grown in my Christian walk, this has been one of the most profound truths that I have come to realize. When I see someone in truly terrible circumstances, I can also see the path of sin that helped bring those troubles on. On the other hand, the people that I know who enjoy truly blessed lives are also the ones who walk upright. Perhaps this seems simple to you; for me, it has been a breakthrough.

Here’s where this idea takes us: We don’t really need to worry about money and success (worry, after all is one of the ways that we become slaves to money). What we need to focus on is living the right way. We need to work hard to stay in right relationship with God, to keep His commandments, and to treat other people with His love. It’s amazing how much trouble we can avoid by living righteously and treating people well. And when we avoid the trouble that sin brings, we get to enjoy the blessing and prosperity that God wants to give us. After all, He is a good father, who knows how to give good gifts to His children (Matt. 7:11).

This truth applies to life in general, and it also applies to financial life in particular. Bad habits like overspending, borrowing or hoarding eventually get us into a lot of trouble with money, and can even make us slaves. On the other hand, good habits like budgeting, saving, tithing and giving help us to stay out of trouble, and set us up to succeed in the long term. You may not realize that each little good decision you make is helping you to be successful. But in the end, the sum of all these righteous behaviors and wise practices is a prosperous life.

The Bible has a lot more to say about prosperity, and we’ll examine some of these things in future articles. We’ll also look at some of the ways that Christians get confused about prosperity and the role that it plays in their faith. But for today, I hope you’ll embrace this idea: God wants you to prosper, because he wants you to live right. And prosperity is a fruit of righteousness.

——

Photo by Mari Smith. Used under Creative Commons License.

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Comments

  1. i am born to prosper in the Lord. I Will Keep Righteousness, To Succeed. Amen

  2. Great reading however the contents isn’t.
    Thank you God that you see throught all this and have warned us throught the bible.
    Prosperity gospel has became like a sour taste on the tongue. False teaching of prosperity along with the practice of the kundalini spirit in the church.
    While the leaders live a life of luxury in a state of deluded spiritual falseness. Their followers have to pay the price from this merry go round circus act.
    Basically their is no material blessing esspecially throught this false prosperity gospel. Not from God anyway. So where does this money come from -the people.
    Where do they get the money?
    EIther they get into debt or they end up ripping people of or overcharging.
    I know from personal experiences- One accountant decided to increase her hourly rate by 30% and then overcharge me. Another tried to get even more blood out of the stone concerning my charity.
    What a money loving believers under the spell of these false money preachers. They have to get the money from somewhere or get bankrupt.
    Stay away from this mockery form christianity. Lucky from us true believers there are true churches out there without all the false promises who will help those in need and not buy another privat jet.

    • Bill, your comment is as ridiculous as it is ignorant. I’m not sure what article you think you read, but it wasn’t anything that I wrote.

      This post has nothing to do with the prosperity gospel (an issue that I’ve dealt with in multiple articles on this site). The point of what I’m saying is simple: God is the source of all truth and wisdom in the world, and in that truth and wisdom He gives us the keys to success. He tells us that if we do wise things, we are going to enjoy good results. If we do foolish things, we’re going to suffer. That’s all over scripture, dude — you’d be silly to argue with it.

      I’m not saying that being a Christian exempts you from trouble in the world, or that anyone who says the right prayers is destined to become incredibly wealthy. What I am saying is that if we do the things that God has already told us to do, we’re going to be much better off than if we continue to do dumb things that He has told us not to do.

      I understand that you have issues with some prosperity preachers, and that’s a whole other set of issues. But that’s not what I’m talking about, and your “kundalini spirit” — whatever nonsense that is — has nothing to do with it.

      We reap what we so. Good behavior leads to good living. It’s scripture, man. Deal with it.

Trackbacks

  1. […] the last article in this series, we said that prosperity is a fruit of righteousness. Today, we’re going to dig a little bit deeper into that concept, and find that a lot of our […]

  2. […] seem like there’s a lot of mystery to prosperity, but there’s really no mystery at all. Prosperity is a fruit of righteousness, and God wants us each to enjoy it. Very often, though, we don’t get things right because we […]

  3. […] and to be successful with the financial resources that He has given us. We’ve learned that prosperity is a fruit of righteousness, that obeying God brings financial blessings, and that if we follow God wholeheartedly, He teaches […]

  4. […] where is the truth in all of this? After all, God does say in His word that He wants us to prosper. And yet, the teachings of prosperity preachers often smack of hair grease and smarmy platitudes. […]

  5. […] don’t study it or follow it in this area. That’s too bad, because God promises that prosperity is a fruit of righteousness. If we handle money God’s way, we get God-sized […]

  6. […] I want to review a couple of key principles that help us put wealth into context. The first is that prosperity is a fruit of righteousness — God makes it clear that wealth and blessing come from living good lives in proper […]

  7. […] When we talk about God providing for those who are faithful to follow Him, we’re really talking about righteousness. Sin causes poverty, but the Bible teaches us that prosperity is a fruit of righteousness. […]

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