I live in a place where there is a lot of teaching that trusting Christ is the means to prosperity. People are told if they are struggling materially or with health, all they need is a little more faith or to say their prayer a little differently. I won’t go into detail but if you have watched some of the many folks on TV you can fill in the blanks.
A Great Message
These past few days I have been with my dad. Today we took him for his quarterly PET scan at MD Anderson. Yesterday we went with him to church. His new pastor spoke on Philippians 3. He did a great job. Philippians 3 is one of my favorite passages. The pastor pointed out, correctly, that in Philippians 3:8 the word that is translated rubbish in the original is closer to feces, poo.
More and Better Poo?
Think about that for a minute. All of the things that Paul had in the world he viewed as poo. In the college ministry when guys were pulled back to the world we called that going back to dine at the commode. Some of those who are sharing the prosperity message are essentially telling people that if they have more faith they will get more poo… Now that is attractive. The stuff that Paul chose to consider poo, we get more? That was a choice by Paul by the way.
More and Better Joy
James talks about another choice. In James 1:2, you know the passage, James tells us that when we encounter trials, and if you have been reading the new testament much you know that trial is a promised reality of the Christian life, we are to count it, consider it, reckon it all joy.
Paul considered the things of the world poo. James considers trial joy. That seems to be a different message than I hear from some people.