“We want you to know, brothers,about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord”
If the above text (2 Cor. 8:1-3) should be true of all believers, I am sensing an issue with the majority of Christians. The issue is a disguised version of the Prosperity Gospel.
What is the Prosperity Gospel
It’s a false gospel that focuses on money, success, power, and fame. The Prosperity Gospel promotes, “come to Jesus, and you will get rich,” or, “come to Jesus and you will have major success.” Usually to do so, you must give money to the false preacher. It’s not the Gospel. It’s not good news. It focuses on gifts, and not the Giver!
Disguised Prosperity Gospel
This disguised Prosperity Gospel is when good things happen to someone, he or she praises God! When bad things happen, they neglect God. When a person has financial success, God gets praised. When a person loses a job, God is not even mentioned.
When a student is doing well, praises to Jesus emerge. When he is struggling in school, no mention of God anywhere. Why is it that Christians only like praising God when we have some form of success?
This is not worshiping Jesus.
What is the issue?
The issue is that our sense of what is “good” is determined by what we wish or want. The focus is me! This is not what is meant by Romans 8:28. If God is God, then shouldn’t He determine what is good for us? We may not see the reason, but God is faithful (1 Cor. 10:13)!
How do we make war against this? For starters, give thanks always (1 Thess. 5:18). God is the giver of joy. Success and fame can be generous gifts from God, but our aim must be on God and not solely on His gifts that He gives (for this easily becomes idolatry). When good things happen–praise God and let it be known; but also rejoice when tough circumstances surround you since God is sovereign. Let God be glorified in whatever situation you find yourself in. God is the Creator and defines what is good in His timing.