"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:" 1 Peter 3:15 (KJV)
Why Do I Have to Suffer? Part 1
The message coming out of the church on the reasons why we suffer afflictions must change dramatically. We must take an inventory on what is being said and take a closer look at what the Scripture is actually saying concerning this topic in particular.
Recently, I had the opportunity to be in the presence of various ministers and leaders in the city and it was no surprise that the main topic discussed was on suffering, afflictions and pain. Everybody in that room agreed that 2010 was a year of great suffering for, perhaps, every believer.
To examine this topic, I want to point out a few things that the Lord is placing in my heart concerning what the main focuses in the messages that are coming out of the church in America is today. One is not addressing the issue of suffering much as it does not match with their theology and the other one is indeed addressing the issue of suffering, but it is not going deep enough. I want to propose a third message that will be released very soon into the hearts of Apostles and Prophets in this nation.
Basically we have two messages in the Body of Christ today:
The one that emphasizes in what we are supposed to have. This is the Prosperity Message.
The one that emphasizes in what we are suppose to do. This is the one that places the emphasis on the need for the Body of Christ to use their God-given gift.
It is important to address suffering because suffering is a Biblical Promise for every believer and if we do not have the proper Biblical prospective, we can find ourselves up-set and away from God.
The message that emphasizes on making the Gospel all about “having,” commonly known as the “Prosperity Message,” is a grotesque, selfish message that not only ignores the message of suffering, but also mocks everything that looks like brokenness as an essential part of the Gospel experience.
There is nothing wrong with “having” and if God blesses you with being rich…praise the Lord! But the idea that you can go above your stewardship ability is not Biblical at all. How can God give you a million dollars when you don’t even know how to be a good steward with the thirty thousand you make a year? That would be irresponsible!
The awesomeness of God is that He will take the time to teach you to be a good steward of what you already have before giving you more. Some of these TV Evangelists actually go on TV and ask the people of God that if they don’t have the money, to make the offering on a Credit Card…can you believe that? They go as far as saying that God told them to tell the people that if they sow a seed of “X” amount, the Lord will bless them with a harvest. I don’t know about you, but that kind of message makes me sick to the stomach.
In the Prosperity Message, there is no room for suffering; everything is resolved by sowing a seed. They have truly milked that message. The Gospel is about dealing with the heart; you can sow all the seeds you want, but if your heart is rotten, your seeds will be rotten, also. You will never hear a Prosperity Preacher preaching out of Philippians 4:10-13
“10 I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. 11I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be contentwhatever the circumstances. 12I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”