Joseph Prince - How To Know If You're Following God's Path
This excerpt is from: Prosper God’s Way During Recession, preached on Nov 6, 2022.
Don't give up on God's ways and use the world's ways. Genesis 26: "Then the Lord appeared to him and said, Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land of which I shall tell you. Dwell in this land, and I'll be with you and bless you; for to you and your descendants I give all these lands, and I will perform the oath which I swore to Abraham, your father". So don't go down to the world's ways!
Now the world will offer you a lot of things. Immediate gratification. And we got a whole generation of people who want quick money. They want quick returns. They're not interested in: "He that gathers by labor shall increase". They are not interested in honoring the boss and the company, which is the spirit of what Colossians writes about. "Knowing that of the Lord you shall receive the reward". Somehow impatience has come in. They're not looking for that job anymore. "I believe that I'm called by God to prosper". Now this is extreme, alright? They're not going by the Bible way. All that I'm going to teach in the weeks to come, will be on God's kind of prosperity, which is not the world kind of prosperity. Now, you might be sitting here: "Pastor, I don't need all this. I have many millions in my bank".
You know, I think Billy Sunday was the one who said: "He who has no money is poor. But he that has nothing but money is even poorer. Truly poor". You have nothing but money. No, I'm not talking about that. There are poor people with plenty of money. I mean God blessing you in every area of your life, every area of your life. What the Bible calls in Joshua 1:8—good success. What the Bible calls again, and again: "Whatever he does prospers. Whatever he does prospers. And the Lord will bless you. And you shall lend unto many", Deuteronomy 28 right now, "And you shall land unto many nations, and you shall not borrow. And the Lord will make you the head and not the tail". Amen. All this is part of the blessing of Abraham! So the first thing God says is: "Don't go down to worldly ways".
Now, worldly ways—you say: "Pastor, is this wrong? Is this right? Is this wrong? Is this right"? Look at the principle. Is it taking a lot of your time? Are you losing your health, your sleep over it? Are your eyeballs swollen? Are you stressed over it? Are you looking at the prices all the time to see the fluctuations? So principles like this. I can't say this is right, this is wrong. It's principles. God doesn't bless with all these sorrows. There's a verse that says: "The blessing of the Lord, maketh rich," and listen, "and adds no sorrow with it". Read what it means in the Hebrew. It doesn't accompany with toil, painful toil, He adds no sorrow. The pain is not there. Are you listening people?
He adds no painful toil. No painful toil. So when God blesses you, amen, even though you're working hard, there's a pleasure. You know your body builders, those body builders, I think we have one or two in front. Enough of showing them, huh? Camera on me. Alright. I mean, you know they say: "No pain, no gain," right? But actually, what they will tell you is that the pain cannot be excruciating. It cannot be like sharp pain. It's got to be a pleasant kind of like exercise, it's got to be a pleasant kind of like exertion, not painful exertion or else you're hurting yourself.
Now we begin to discover that. Alright? When your exercise, yes there is labor, there is sweat and all that but it should not come to a place of breathlessness. And a pain that is acute, alright? So, friend, when God blesses you, everything in your life is blessed. So God says: "I'll bless you". Then God says: "Dwell in this land". That was Gerar. "Dwell in this land and I will bless you". So what does God mean? The argument about blessing: "Is this blessing from God or what"? You know what is blessing? "Oh, Pastor Prince, blessing means you have peace in your heart". And when you say peace, where did you get the words peace in your heart from? Peace is in the heart and in the mind, yes. But where did you get it from? You got it from the Bible. Amen.
The Bible talks about peace. Amen. You got it from the Old English word "peace". Where did you get it from? The Bible. Amen. And you have the Greek word in the New Testament for peace. It is "irene". You have the Old Testament word for peace. Which is what? Shalom. Now the word "shalom", if you ask any Hebrew person, if you go to Israel, many of you are going to Israel already. Alright. Ask them what "shalom" means. "Does shalom only mean peace of mind and heart"? No. "Shalom is health". They'll tell you that. "Shalom is prosperity". When they say shalom, they are saying: "May all things go well with you. Inside and out, and all around you". Amen.
"Now, Pastor Prince, you're just saying that... Okay, or they are just saying that. Maybe the Bible meant something else". Okay. Let's look at a scholar. Okay? And this is shalom, the definition is from Mounce's Complete Expository Dictionary Of Old & New Testament Words. Mounce is a Hebrew expert, okay? If you're looking for an expert, I put this down for you, right? It's not just Pastor Prince saying it. Okay. So "shalom" is one of the most important words in the Old Testament, in addition to peace, it can be translated as prosperity, well-being, health, completeness, safety. Now, isn't that a mouthful? So when I say shalom, what does it mean? Amen.
And by the way, you cannot say: "It's changed." because the only thing that changed in the New Testament is the word is changed to Greek. When Paul speaks to the Jewish people in the New Testament in the church and all that, do you think he spoke Greek with his fellow Jew? No! Amen. When Jesus appeared to John, and says: "I'm the first and the last". The first letter, I'm Alpha and Omega, the first and last letter of the Greek alphabet. But then when He talks to a fellow Jew, do you think He said: "Alpha and Omega"? No! It is translated for us. He will speak Hebrew. What is it? "I'm aleph and tav". The first letter and last letter of the Hebrew alphabet. "Aleph tav" when put together, is the fourth word of the first sentence of the Bible.
"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth". He says: "In the beginning, God," three words there. The centre one is left untranslated. "The heavens and the earth", three words make a menorah. The centre, which is untranslated, is a signature of Jesus Christ. Right from the beginning, He says I am the "aleph tav". He revealed that He is the Creator. Amen. Are you with me so far? Alright. So very clear "shalom". So when Paul says "shalom", to his fellow beings, fellow human beings, right? What is it? What does it mean? It's a mouthful. Do you see it, people? Alright, it's not just peace of mind. "Yo. Peace, bro". Peace. We mean peace. Peace of mind. Right? Peace, bro. Don't go in pieces. Amen. Yeah, it is there. It means complete, completeness, alright completeness. Not in pieces. Hello. How many want peace? Bible peace. Right. And every time Paul opens up his letters, he says: "Grace and peace". Shalom. In the Hebrew. Right? Alright, in the Greek for peace. It's the same. Same, same Bible. Different language of the same word.
Okay, so God told Isaac: "I will bless you". Alright, let's look at the word "bless". "Dwell in this land. I'll be with you. And I'll bless you". The word there is "barak". "Barak". Now what is "barak"? The noun is like how God told Abraham: "I'll bless you and you shall be a blessing. I will barak you and you will be a beracah". The Valley of Beracah. You shall be a blessing. So blessing is the noun, right? Barak is the verb. Okay, so this barak, what is barak? So I say God will bless you in every area of your life. Where it really matters. Number one relationship with God. You are the righteousness of God in Christ. The blessing of Abraham has come on us. In our context, what does it mean? Our business, our ministry flourishes and increases.