Rev. Dr. Delesslyn A. Kennebrew, J.D., M.Div. - Visionary Strategist  Faithful Innovator  Inspirational Essayist
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GET RICH QUICK! - Proverbs 10:22


Scripture: Proverbs 10:22

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Our verse for today:
KJV  The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.
NIV  The blessing of the LORD brings wealth, without painful toil for it.

I invite you to think with me for a moment.  I have heard this verse time and time again.  There is no shortness of quoting it when people are struggling financially, or during an offering time as a gimmick to give, or as justification for the dreams so many believers have of being wealthy.  I do think that the misappropriation of this verse has been an intentional means of using scripture to satisfy our carnal desire to gain the whole world and lose our soul in exchange for financial prosperity.  And if you were to ask one of your friends or family members, their response to this verse just might be a shallow interpretation of some televangelist’s prophetic word over their life that God will make them rich because God’s Son, Jesus was rich and we are recipients of this wealth because we are connected to Jesus by the blood and we do not have to wait for our mansion in heaven for it will come right here because God will supply all of our needs according to God’s riches and it is not God’s will for God’s children to be broke. WOW!  Can you even say that in one breath?  MADNESS! 

Ladies and Gents, This is not a rant against being prosperous.  I just believe that we need to have a godly perspective of prosperity which is not measured by the amount that is or that is not in one’s bank account. I am not offering a new revelation but I hope, in some small way, to redeem the text from the destruction it has endured because of the eisegetical manipulations of pulpiteers across this country.  So, here we go…

KJV  The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.
NIV  The blessing of the LORD brings wealth, without painful toil for it.

Let me first begin by saying that we cannot rush to the most attractive words of this verse – rich, wealth, no sorrow, without painful toil – without thoughtful consideration of what precedes these words.  Unfortunately, this is perhaps the reason for the misinterpretation.  We do not take seriously the verse as a whole because we only think about what sounds good and what we want to receive; and in our excitement to discover that this verse with words like rich, wealth, no sorrow, without painful toil is in the Bible, we blatantly disregard the intent of the passage.

The book of Proverbs is a wisdom book of the Old Testament.  This book is unlike most of the books in the Bible because there is no distinctive storyline that one can follow.  It is more like a long series of random statements that the wisest man ever known, King Solomon, shares with his son.  These random statements are words of wisdom that are often not understood upon first reading them.  It actually takes some work in order to understand them – especially those with references to nature and animals.  The verse for our consideration is a verse taken from this book of wise sayings and it is only understood when the reader redirects their emphasis from themselves to God.

Are you ready to know what this verse is really about?  This verse is not about what we are owed by God or what we will most certainly receive from God financially or the hard work that is no longer a part of our lives.  This verse is really about the grace and the mercy of our God being made evident in our lives in tangible and intangible ways.  This verse is one that emphasizes the reverential fear we are to have for our God.  This verse is a reminder that our God is the creator and the initiator of every good and perfect gift.  In other words, in light of the shredded distinctive qualities of the translations of the Bible as we have already read from in the KJV [King James Version] and the NIV [New International Version]; perhaps a fresh reading from a different source of biblical interpretation is warranted so that we can see AND hear it differently. 

  God's blessing makes life rich; nothing we do can improve on God.
God's blessing makes life rich; nothing we do can improve on God.
God's blessing makes life rich; nothing we do can improve on God.
MSG [Message Bible]

Friends, in this verse, a blessing is the special favor, mercy, gift, or benefit bestowed by God.  It is having the approval of God on our lives.  The emphasis is on the source of the blessing and not the blessing itself which is where we usually begin.  King Solomon was the richest man in the world during his day but his wisdom from God has surpassed that of men and women thousands of years after his death.  In sharing his wisdom, his perspective was not from the perspective of one who lacked any resources.  His words of wisdom did not need to rush to the increase of wealth or riches but he did need to share with his son, and with us today, the key to a wealthy life is living with the understanding that everything we are and everything we have is because of the blessing of God.  The key is not acquiring riches that people can see, but the wisdom he shares is that when we celebrate being the recipients of God’s mercy or having God’s approval on our lives, we are rich and nothing else needs to be done in order to secure, stabilize, or solidify God’s blessing.

So, if you really want to get rich quick or be rich and wealthy without sorrow or painful toil, then seek the approval of God.  This means that we must re-evaluate our own lives to see how closely our thoughts, words, and actions reflect that we are chosen by God.  This means that we must reconsider our true motivations for being committed to the service of the Kingdom.  This means that we must renegotiate our own desires to be rich or wealthy without having truly considered that the true source of our wealth is having the mercy of God being extended to us new every morning.

BlogFam, God's blessing makes life rich; nothing we do can improve on God. Let us move forward with a fresh perspective and challenge others to do the same!  I pray that we would not value the appearance of wealth over the approval of God.  I pray that we would never prefer earthly riches over godly righteousness.  I pray that we would not trade biblical wisdom for higher bank account numbers.  I pray that we would refrain from using scripture to support the popular sentiment and seek the Holy Spirit as well as the fellowship of the Christian community as we attempt to rightly divide the word of truth.  I pray that we would all honor the blessing of God upon our lives and refuse to cheapen its worth by equating it with the treasures of this world.  I pray that we would be content in whatever state we are in and that every expectation we have of something more, is fully grounded in the purpose and the plans of God.

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