God Wants You Healthy, Wealthy and Wise
"EARLY to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." This saying, attributed to Benjamin Franklin, has often been quoted, and although I can't personally vouch for its accuracy, it does bear a certain amount of common sense. However, this I do know for a certainty: It is God's will and desire for us to walk in health, prosperity and wisdom. You'll find this indicated in many places throughout Scripture, but let's consider Proverbs 3, where it is laid out all in a row: health, wealth and wisdom.
God wants to bless you with health!
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the LORD and depart from evil.
It will be health to your flesh,
And strength to your bones.
"Do not be wise in your own eyes." Our eyes give us a very superficial understanding of the world. There is more to life than what our physical senses can tell us, or even what our ability to reason can show. The Bible says,
"My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD.
"For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts."
Wisdom does not come by what we see, or even by what we think. Paul said that we walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). This means that some things are known only by revelation-that is, God must show us.
Do not be wise in your own eyes, but "fear the LORD and depart from evil." How different God's way of wisdom is from our own. We judge externally, with our eyes. Consequently, our wisdom is shallow. But the Bible says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom" (Psalm 111:10). Fear of the LORD is an action of the heart and is based upon God, not on our own understanding.
To fear the LORD is to treasure His favor above all else and avoid His displeasure at all costs. It is to love what He loves and hate what He hates. It is total dependence upon Him, turning away from evil and everything that does not come from Him.
The fear of the LORD is like the breathtaking awesomeness of seeing the Grand Canyon for the first time. Or the healthy respect an electrician has for electricity, recognizing the great benefit it brings, but also aware of how risky it is to treat it lightly.
The fear of the LORD, is a pathway of healing. "It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones." The Hebrew word for "health" comes from the word rapha, which means "to heal." There is, of course, healing for the inner man-the forgiveness of sins, and release from bondages and strongholds. But God also promises healing for the body: health to the flesh and strength to the bones. The flesh includes all the soft tissues and internal organs, and the bones are the structural framework. God wants to heal every part.
Jesus is our healer. Speaking of Messiah, the prophet Isaiah said, "Surely He has borne our griefs [literally "sicknesses"] and carried our sorrows [literally "pains"] ... He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:4-5).
God wants to bless you with wealth!
Honor the LORD with your possessions,
And with the firstfruits of all your increase;
So your barns will be filled with plenty,
And your vats will overflow with new wine.
"Honor the LORD with your possessions." God wants to bless us with wealth, but first, He wants us to bless Him with our substance. The word for "honor" (Hebrew kabad) means "glory" and literally refers to weightiness. God's glory is the weight of His goodness.
To honor God is to glorify Him. There is a substance, or tangibility to it. It is not merely a thought or intention, but a bringing of tribute. We honor the LORD with our possessions, "and the firstfruits of all [our] increase." Increase is fruit that has been produced, or income that has been gained.
The Bible says, "And you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers" (Deuteronomy 8:17). God gives us the ability to get increase and wealth because He has a promise to keep, a covenant to establish in the world. We remember Him by bringing Him our "firstfruits." This is not just a portion, but the first portion. It belongs to the LORD.
Honoring the LORD with our possessions is a pathway to abundance and prosperity. "So your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine." A barn is a storehouse. The Hebrew word comes from a root which means "to heap together."
When we give God our first and best, He fills our storehouses, heaping them up to overflowing. It is just as Jesus said, "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you" (Luke 6.38). Paul added, "God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. (2 Corinthians 9:8).
The riches of our wealth come through the Lord Jesus Christ. "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich" (2 Corinthians 8:9). "And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).
God wants to bless you with wisdom!
Happy is the man who finds wisdom,
And the man who gains understanding;
For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver,
And her gain than fine gold.
She is more precious than rubies,
And all the things you may desire cannot compare with her.
Length of days is in her right hand,
In her left hand riches and honor.
Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
And all her paths are peace.
She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her,
And happy are all who retain her.
"Happy is the man who finds wisdom." There is nothing on earth like the wisdom of God. It can do more for you than the sum of all the silver, gold and precious stones on the planet. It excels all things. See the reward it brings:
- Length of days. This is life-long life, and full of health.
- Riches and honor. Wisdom brings forth the substance of heaven, transfusing the tangible riches of earth. This is the same kind of honor with which we honor God. When we honor Him, He honors us.
- Pleasantness. Wisdom is a pathway of beauty, delight and sweetness.
- Peace. This is the shalom of God-wholeness and well-being.
- Tree of life. Wisdom is life-giving, offering fruit for every season and situation.
- Happiness. The Hebrew word for "happy" is asher. It means to be straight and level, honest and right, to go forward and prosper. The wisdom of God causes us to go forward and prosper.
"Happy is the man who finds wisdom ... Happy are all who retain her." But how do we find wisdom? And how do we retain it?
True wisdom comes from God and is imparted to us by the Holy Spirit. Paul prayed for the Ephesians that God would give them "the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him" (Ephesians 1:17).
God is happy to share His wisdom with whoever wants it-just ask! James said, "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him" (James 1:5). God gives His wisdom freely, no questions asked. But you have to ask in faith, for James continued, "But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind" (v. 6).
We continue in wisdom by continuing in the fear of the LORD, by walking in His ways and depending upon Him. We continue in wisdom by faith in Jesus Christ. "But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God-and righteousness and sanctification and redemption" (1 Corinthians 1:30).
God wants you to be healthy, wealthy and wise, and He has already made every provision for you. The Bible says,
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
The LORD will give grace and glory;
No good thing will He withhold
From those who walk uprightly.
This provision is found in the Lord Jesus Christ, who said, "I have come that [you] may have life, and that [you] may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). It is through Him that we are made righteous with God, and made eligible for every blessing and promise.
"For He [God] made Him [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him" (2 Corinthians 5:21).
I thank You that Your will and desire is for me to be healthy, wealthy and wise. I thank You for the Lord Jesus Christ, who bore my sin that I might be made righteous before You. Who bore my sicknesses and pains, that I might be made healthy and whole. Who was made poor, that I might know every provision of heaven upon the earth. Who has become for me the very wisdom of God in my life. I receive Him now, by faith.
In Jesus' name, Amen.
© 2003 by Jeff Doles.
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“JEFF DOLES is a Christian author, blogger and Bible teacher. His books include The Kingdom of Heaven on Earth: Keys to the Kingdom of God in the Gospel of Matthew and Praying With Fire: Change Your World with the Powerful Prayers of the Apostles. He and his wife, Suzanne, are the founders of Walking Barefoot Ministries. Visit their website at www.walkingbarefoot.com.”