God on the box

Yesterday was the first time I ever saw “God TV”, simply out of curiosity. I must say, it has put a whole new complexion on “missions”. I never knew the principal thing about missions was money — I thought it was Jesus. How naive could I be?

Still, if you can make $12 million from gullible people in the name of religion you must be doing something right. Balaam would certainly have been broadcasting on the channel — he loved the gain (2 Peter 2:5; Jude 11). But sadly it wasn’t the “great gain of godliness with contentment” (1 Timothy 6:6), more the great gain from gullibility.

OK, I’ll come clean. I’m miffed because the Holy Spirit didn’t tell me I was one of the twelve instant millionaires Mike Murdock was praying for, or even of the twelve millionaires within a year. (I’m not sure whether the odds were better than the lottery.) Strange how the Holy Spirit told him he would be one of the twelve!

It’s really strange how the Lord never tells me things like that. Maybe it’s my bad theology. I thought God’s way of supplying our physical needs was though daily provision, not money in the bank. I thank God for my daily bread which he provides (Matthew 6:11). I revel in fresh strength (Isaiah 33:2), and fresh mercies every morning (Lamentations 3:22,23). That’s how God supplies. The manna came daily to God’s people in the wilderness. It couldn’t be hoarded. And grace doesn’t come in battery packs — it’s mains only.

And if I want to be like Abraham or Job, I don’t want to respect them because of their special “financial anointing”, I want to emulate their faith. Abraham wouldn’t take a shoelace from the king of Sodom, and Job didn’t cry when God removed his wealth. The only account that interested Abraham was the one he had with God, denominated in righteousness (Romans 4:3-5).

I suspect that the lord doesn’t tell me about the great financial blessing he’s going to give me because he just doesn’t tell anyone that — ever! Not that I’m not thankful for his financial provision. But the greatest blessing he has ever bestowed, or ever will, is the priceless blessing of redemption that, though it cost me nothing, cost God dearly. It was paid with the currency of heaven that never can be devalued, and is never traded on the stock markets of earth, for its value is incalculable. The price he paid was reckoned in blood, the precious blood of Christ (1 Peter 1:18,19). That’s the greatest transaction ever made, or ever can or will be made. And in the ledgers of heaven it cleared my debt to God, and credit my account with righteousness, so I join with David to sing,

Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven and whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.

(Romans 4:7,8; Psalm 32:1,2)

The blessing simply doesn’t get any better than this. Oh, there’s great gain in godliness with contentment.

Now none but Christ can satisfy,
None other name for me;
There’s love, and life, and lasting joy,
Lord Jesus, found in Thee.

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