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Faith does not have to hold on to everything it gets. Faith freely gives...because faith is not in a mind-set of expecting to do without.
There's no question about it. People are made in the image of God. They display God's traits in everything they do. I was vividly reminded of that fact some time ago when I saw a video documenting the maiden flight of an aircraft manufactured by Boeing. It was the big Boeing 777.

This fabulous aircraft took 10,000 people four years to design and build and it was close to perfect when it first rolled out of the factory. As this new Boeing 777 taxied out to take off for the first time, all the engineers, workers and officials who had worked hard on it gathered to watch. Even watching the video, I could feel the excitement and anticipation building inside those people.

When the captain who was at the controls raised the power levers, and those huge engines, with 90,000 pounds of thrust, began to roar and the airplane started charging down the runway, something just about exploded inside those people. As the nose of that fine aircraft lifted smoothly off the runway, nearly every grown man out there, watching, cried. If I had been there, I probably would have, too.

Now, what I want to know is this. What caused those tears? What caused a bunch of grown men to tear up at the sight of an airplane taking off? I believe I know the answer. It was part of the "Godness" inside them. It was the part of that God-inside image in them that has a passion to create, to put part of themselves into something tangible, something purposeful. It was their desire to give.

Live to Give
The Bible says, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" (Gen. 1:1). The remaining verses in Genesis 1 go on to give details concerning all of God's creation and to tell us, as summed up in verse 31, "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good."

Now, we could just stop there and feel real good about ourselves and think, "Well isn't that just wonderful, deep down we're like God. We like to give." But I want us to take this a step further. I want us to examine what is behind this creative force living inside us, so we can understand its purpose in our lives. Let's begin by reading Ephesians 4:28: "Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth."

My friend, we need to be careful not to skim over this passage, thinking of it as simply a bit of advice for a pickpocket or con-artist who's just been born again. For not only does it apply to every believer, it also is a key foundational principle for success on every front of our lives. Notice, Paul didn't tell the Church, "Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him order that he may make a living." No, he said, "Labor so you will have something to give."

So where did we get this idea that we have to make a living? Well, like most other economic principles we apply in our lives today, it came out of the pagan world, or what could be called the Babylonian system of commerce. God never told us to make a living. We just read in Ephesians 4:28 that He's telling us to make a giving.

Taking Uncertainty Out of Wealth
There is another aspect of this giving image of God inside us that I want to examine, and really, if we want to experience the full extent of God's prosperity for our lives, it's vitally important that we understand it. Yes, you and I were created with the need to give, but our need to give is far greater than the need to keep.

Now, I know God gives us richly all things to enjoy, but there is obviously a potential hazard concerning riches - and Jesus helps us better understand what that hazard is. In instructing His disciples, Jesus said in Matthew 6:19-20, "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal."

The truth is, Jesus was telling His disciples about a treasure house, an account, a place of deposit that's not subject to the world's economy, one that's not subject to all the ups and downs of the world, and one from which you can make withdrawals NOW. You see, faith says, I received all riches by believing God, and as long as God is around, there is always more where this came from.

So faith does not have to hold on to everything it gets. Faith freely gives...because faith is not in a mind-set of expecting to do without. Fear, on the other hand, says, "I've worked hard for this. I may not have another opportunity to have this much again, so I'd better hold on to it as long as I can." So fear does not give because the need to give is overridden by the need to keep, and that is because faith was placed in uncertain riches.

Goods and God Don't Mix!
God's people have always had difficulty with prosperity, but God never has. When you think about it, if poverty and God were tied together as closely as religion would have us believe, then God would be poor. But God definitely is not poor. Have you ever seen a law in the Bible against too much? God doesn't have any law against a cup that runneth over. God never walked up to a fig tree and said, "This tree is producing so many figs that some are falling off and rotting on the ground. That's just inexcusable! Destroy this tree because it's overproducing!"

Now, don't misunderstand me. I realize there is such a thing as materialism. I'm well aware that the Bible says, "The prosperity of fools shall destroy them" (Prov. 1:32). But I strongly suggest you go to the Word and find out what a fool is so you won't be one - then go ahead and prosper in God.

There is nothing wrong with you having a fine, brand new automobile unless, of course, you stole it. But if you stole it, it was because of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. Material goods are not the problem. The lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the pride of life applied to those material objects are the problem. Do you see the difference? In contrast, materialism is when we try to satisfy and fulfill spiritual needs such as love, joy, peace, companionship, security, and so on, with material things.

Calling Heaven to Attention
So, now that we're confident God wants us prosperous, now that we're certain He has given us all things to enjoy, the question remains: How do we go about releasing that joy? Go back to 1 Timothy 6:17-18 and you'll find the answer: "Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who gives to us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate."

When you become a giver, instead of a getter, you become a reaper, and not just a keeper - and that's when you really begin to walk in the joy of the Lord. If you really want all the riches and joy that God has in store for you, then stop working for a paycheck, a salary, or an income. Start working for seed. Then, be ready to distribute and communicate that seed. Be ready to sow.

When we live to give there is no culture, no racism, no government, no economy, no person, no devil, or anything else that can keep us down. Because when Jesus catches sight of our giving, He calls all of heaven to attention on our behalf. Remember, in your eyes, you may not have enough to make your dreams come to pass. But I guarantee, you have plenty to help someone else's dream become reality. And if you will give to theirs, God will get very involved in yours. And like those people at Boeing, you will see your dream get off the ground. It will fly.

Excerpt permission granted by
Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc.
aka:  Kenneth Copeland Ministries

Author Biography

Kenneth Copeland
Web site: Kenneth Copeland Ministries
For the last 50 years Kenneth and Gloria Copeland have been passionately teaching Christians all over the world how to apply the principles of faith found in God’s WORD to their lives.

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