Monday, February 21, 2022

Redeemed from Poverty and Lack


Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us. For it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” Galatians 3:13 BSB

We've begun a new study looking at our redemption purchased for us by Christ Jesus. Many Christian denominations and ministries will rightly agree that Jesus has redeemed us from sin, but that's as far as their theology will go. In any other area of life, we are apparently offered no promise or guarantee. 

 Is this what the Bible actually teaches? Is this really the full scope of Jesus' redemptive work? Does God offer redemption only for sins and nothing more? If we honestly study Scripture and see Jesus' work of redemption in its fullness we can see just what His death and burial and resurrection purchased and procured for us. 

  In this curse of the Law, we see poverty and lack overtaking those who fall under it. Recall the curse of the Law is threefold; spiritual death, poverty, and sickness. Jesus gave His life for us, thus purchasing our full redemption. We are redeemed from the curse of poverty and lack because of Jesus. 

 Now when the subject of blessings instead of lack is mentioned much controversy rises up. When ministering and proclaiming the Good News Gospel of Jesus Christ I always endeavor to bring Biblical balance to this topic. Biblical balance, not man's so-called balance. I have addressed the excesses and the balance before. You can see the answer to excess in this post here, you can see the balance in these studies here and here.  

 With this foundation laid let's explore our redemption further. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law. Poverty and Lack are part and parcel of the curse we have been redeemed from. Deuteronomy 28 clearly details this curse

 What has Jesus done for us in the New? What has His perfect work of redemption procured for us concerning blessings and abundance?

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. 2 Corinthians 8:9 MOUNCE

 This is Jesus' work of redemption. This aspect of the Cross has been long neglected in most circles of the Body of Christ. Paul revealed to us that Jesus bore our poverty and lack on the Cross. This is His Grace in action. His Grace took our poverty and insufficiency and gave us freely His abundance, His fullness, His supply, and His access to all of Heaven's blessings and riches in glory. 

 I know the word rich in this passage causes some religious traditional ruled minds to seemingly lose their minds. In others, it may trigger concerns about some of the abuses and excesses they experienced concerning prosperity. Let's allow God, His Word, and His Grace to settle the issue.

 Strongs defines this word rich here as to be increased with goods, Mounce defines this word as to abound in, be abundantly furnished with. This is reminiscent of something Jesus said in John 10. 

The thief does not come, except to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10 MEV

 Jesus redeemed us so we can possess, walk in, and have abundant life. Abundant life in this life and in the hereafter is ours through Him. Abundant life is a life that is superabundant in quantity and superior in quality. This is the God kind of life. A life that is enjoyed, a life that is so full it overflows. This life is ours now procured by Jesus on our behalf.

 This doesn't mean, of course, that all believers will become millionaires. It doesn't mean there won't be any challenge in life. It does mean that God desires His riches and best be ours because of Jesus.

 What we must herald and proclaim is that God's Love for us is all-encompassing. Jesus loved us enough that He bore the punishment for all our sins. God loves us enough to have forgiven us of all our sins past and present and future. This is such good news, but child of God there is more. There is much more redemption in Christ Jesus. God also loved us enough that He bore our poverty and lack, and exchanged it with His supply and increase and sufficiency.  

 Where the excess prosperity misses it by teaching that our behavior, our performance, and faithfulness and giving are what causes us to be blessed and not Jesus' Faithfulness and goodness alone, religious tradition also cling to an additive to the Gospel. They reject any message that includes provision and blessing in this life. Just as the prosperity extreme morphed unwittingly into works, likewise religious tradition's "suffering gospel" creates a new standard of what makes someone a real "committed" and "sincere" and "mature" Christian.

 These religious-minded believers when presented with any message that proclaims the good news of blessing in this life quickly point to the early church. They only see early Christians as paupers, who lived in squalor and were tortured and murdered at all times and everywhere. This view is an overstatement of the lives of early Christians.

 We don't want to understate the persecution of the early church but let's not overstate it either. The early Church truly suffered persecution, but they were also victorious. The Church grew and grew despite the efforts against them. 

 Tradition actually teaches the Church grows stronger through the blood of the martyrs. They exalt suffering and death. This is an affront to Grace and the Finished Work. Jesus' Blood is the only blood that makes the Church strong and brings growth. The blood of imperfect men is not the sacrifice God looks for.

Religious tradition in an effort to come against prosperity has created a new gospel where suffering is what makes one a real Christian. Instead of Jesus' words declaring I have come that you might have abundant life, they reject and renounce this as false teaching and instead proclaim God came to give you needy, wanting, and insufficient life. 

Whereas the Good News reveals we can have our best lives here and in the next, religious tradition objects teaching God demands we live our worst lives now. If we want to be counted as God's real committed saints, we must experience some form of suffering. The God kind of life is a meager, depleted and lacking life. 

 Receive the fullness of God's Goodness and Grace. Receive freely the perfect redemption He purchased for us. Yes, this is a fallen and fractured creation. Yes, the enemy is on the loose. In spite of the attacks from the enemy, and the effects of the fall, we can still live victoriously in this life. We can trust God in the midst of circumstances. Many are the afflictions of the Righteous, but thanks be to God He delivers us from them all.

 In summation, Christ has purchased a perfect redemption for us. Not only does He give us new life in Christ and forgive our sins, but He also redeemed us from poverty and made Heaven's blessings available to us. Again religious tradition has more faith that afflictions are many but reject the faith for God to deliver them. Our performance or behavior isn't what causes God to accept us more, and hear this, how much we suffer doesn't either. We are redeemed and accepted and approved because of Jesus. He procured for us abundant life, so freely receive it and gladly walk in it. 

Image by Herbert Bieser from Pixabay 

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