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His Only Gift

The Gift Of His Provision

CHAPTER EIGHT

Much of the world's woes come from the ignorance so many have of the fact that the whole universe is full of provision. This is evident if one will only look at the earth produce all the growing things. If one would take a moment to notice how many seeds a plant produces, he would not have much trouble realizing that provision is God's great gift. This great Savior has given us His own life and everything else we need. Jesus said, "...Why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matt. 6:28-33.)

Jesus is saying that only the pagan folks and unbelievers worry about food and clothing. They think they will not be taken care of, so they go to court and fight wars and argue with one another because these believe they are not going to get something. The principle presented in Scripture is that if you seek the kingdom first you will lack nothing. "I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread." (Ps. 37:25.) "Revere the Lord, ye His saints, for there is no lack to those who revere Him." (Ps. 34:9.) I have always seen where God has been faithful to all who trust in Him. He cares for all His creatures.

The World Lacks; The Lord Provides

Again we have to ask the question, "Did God lie?" We can look about the earth and see people starving to death. Some see in their own lives constant lack. The multitudes are in debt to the system because they do not have enough. It is important to recognize the condition for this promise. "Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven." "Revere the Lord." The condition for this provision is that we are Christ-followers. Notice the life of Jesus. He had no apparent wealth but He never lacked. On one occasion, He needed to pay a temple tax because one of His disciples had committed Him to it. He wanted to show that He did not need to pay it and He also showed them with what ease He could. "...Go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee." (Matt. 17:27.)

On another occasion, Jesus found Himself in circumstances of public need. He had had a crowd about Him all day and they had not eaten. Jesus knew the law of God and He proceeded to feed all present. "And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children." (Matt. 14:19-21.) This Son of God starts out with five loaves and two fishes and ends up with twelve baskets-full after feeding five thousand men, not counting women and children.

We Cause Lack

This is also true of all the other sons of God. Provision is a way of life. The lack of earth is directly related to our restrictive causes. We find that men continue to discover ways to take from someone else to enrich their own lives and the end result is that all get nothing. Some assume that they have gained wealth through selfish and cunning ways. Even so, the fruits of that will not bring the peace and satisfaction once thought. Some are raised to believe they need to get a job and make good money. When "good money" is made the object, there is with it a host of other problems. Men get a little money then they have to worry about keeping it. When righteousness is the object, then money takes care of itself. Jesus never had financial concerns. He simply took what He needed when He needed it and there was always enough for everyone. Such simplicity evades modern man.

I remember a time back in my school years when I heard horror stories about how hard it was to get into college without money. Some told me how they were turned away because of it. When I entered college I went right to the registrar and said, "I don't have any money." She said, "We'll find some. Let us see if we can get a loan." After two years of this, I decided I did not want to borrow any more money. After that, the money was provided as a gift from a church who wanted to support a ministerial student. As I view my past life, I can see how it has always been the story of provision, even though, at the time, I did not always see it that way.

I can remember the first time I knew something was amiss, at least as far as my worldly viewpoint went. My total pay in those days was about $350.00 per month take-home. A series of circumstances, which included a traffic ticket, created extra expenses that month of about $350.00. Now this young man lived pretty much hand to mouth. What I received I had to spend. This extra expense was a real perplexity to me, for it represented one full month's pay. Even so, at the end of the month I had $350.00 extra from various sources which handled all the extra financial drain.

That experience was the one that brought me to a realization that someone was out there somewhere. Before that time God was something preachers talked about and that was okay with me, but He had no real significance in my life. I did not know Him and I did not hear Him speak. When I realized that God does provide, I realized that truly God exists.

As I entered the ministry some time later, I found myself in need of a trailer to live in while I was away from home pastoring a small church. As I can remember, this was the first time I had a felt need that I took directly to God. Previously, I simply had needs that were filled and I was thankful for them when they were, but now I was seeing something in advance that I wanted. I shall not go into all the circumstances concerning this provision, but it was provided and without money. Since that time, I have witnessed a small store of needs filled as I had need of them.

I Would Have Given You Whatever You Wanted

One of the most touching scriptures I have ever read concerning provision is found in 2 Samuel, chapter 12. Nathan rebuked King David for his fall in his adulterous affair with Bathsheba. The Lord speaks to David in a pitiful way. "I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; and I gave thee thy master's wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things." The Lord was pouring out His argument before David to bring him to repentance. He was saying, "David, I anointed you king. I gave you wives and lands. I made you ruler over the nations of Israel. If that was too little, I would have given you whatever else you wanted. Why did you do this wicked thing? You lacked nothing." Can you hear his pleading? Can you see where David had no excuse? "And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it." (John 14:13-14.) The only condition asked of me is that I seek first the kingdom of heaven. God provides according to righteousness and not unrighteousness.

Why Should We Have No Other Gods?

Why is it that God said, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me?" (Ex. 20:3.) Was it so that man would stay in line? Was it so that God could get control of us? What a foolish supposition. God would not need to assert His power to make us good. He could have created us that way if it were forced obedience He wanted. He could have destroyed everyone and started over anytime He wanted if that were His nature. No, God gave that commandment so that all might live. The way to starve to death is to have other gods. The way to suffer want is to have other gods. The way to destroy oneself is to have other gods. God is not a manipulator. He does not assert arbitrary control. We have been given absolute freedom to choose whatever it is we want. The Lord suggests that if we want to live and have provision, choose Him.

Some consider this manipulative. They imagine God saying, "If you don't choose me I am going to kill you or starve you." This is not the case. God can only support righteousness. When men choose another way, God does not force them to live. He does not force the unrighteous to be righteous. If they want to die He allows that, but only after doing all to save them. The truth is, only the righteous will live. All others will destroy themselves in one way or another. Besides this, if the unrighteous found themselves in heaven they would be totally unhappy. Imagine a heaven without "earthly pleasures" so many think they cannot live without.

Why Can't We Just Sin?

One may suggest, "Then why doesn't God just leave everything like it is, except have men live forever and enjoy sin if they want?" First of all, that would insure eternal suffering. I have not met a single man or woman yet who loves the world the way it is and is completely happy in it, unless they love and obey God. Do you complain? Would you like a world to complain about for eternity? I wouldn't want it. Look at the earth. Is that how you want forever to be? One might say, "Well, just take all the suffering out of it." That's what righteousness is. "No, I mean take all the suffering out and let me have all the lust I want and all the sin I want. You know? As long as there are consenting adults." One would then be asking God to continue to support broken laws and to break laws to do it. If He did that, you would leave your house one morning and go floating off into space, because the law of gravity was taken away for a moment so someone could sin.

Christ is even now interceding for us in the heavenly sanctuary. He is pleading for us and He must suffer for us even now. To have an eternity of sin would be to guarantee an eternity of suffering for the Son of God. Can you picture the Son of God who knew no sin in anguish for eternity so you might enjoy an eternity of lust? This is an impossible question since those trapped in their lusts do not enjoy life. They must continue to drown their lustful souls in vice to hide themselves from themselves. To ask God to support sin would be asking Him to be a sinner like all others. This is a most unthinkable thing, for our God is a God of righteousness.

Considering all this, God has made laws of provision for all who will live within those laws. There will not be lack for those who are Christ-followers. God has as His only goal that which will give you peace and prosperity in all that you put your hand to. "...Believe in the Lord your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper." (II Chron. 20:20.) There are those who imagine if they trust in God something will happen and they will lose something. These have it backwards.

When we trust in God we gain something.

The Counterfeit

When a thing is a counterfeit it closely resembles something original. You can hear advertisements abound, "Let us give you that new thing." You are invited to come in and get all that money. You sign the paper and get all that money. This is debt. Debt is made to look like provision. Some call it "renting money." When money is returned, it is returned with interest. In Scripture this procedure was known as usury. One was instructed not to loan money this way to one's brother. "Thou shalt not lend upon usury to thy brother; usury of money, usury of victuals, usury of any thing that is lent upon usury...." (Deut. 23:19.) The Lord goes on to show His benefits to those who do not lend at usury. "He that putteth not out his money to usury, nor taketh reward against the innocent. He that doeth these things shall never be moved." (Ps. 15:5.) It was permitted to exact usury from the world but not from a brother. God also instructed His children to be kind to the poor.

It is not difficult today to see how the world is under a pressing debt. All nations are under obligation to the great international lenders. These, in reality, control the world. The man who controls the money controls the press and the world. Great upheavals are now in the world because men have been made slaves of other men through debt. If we shun debt like a plague, we shall find that debt will never be necessary. We will learn that God's only gift is to supply us with all we need continually.

Even The Birds

While watching out my window one morning, I noticed the robins out for breakfast. They eat every day and the worms never seem to run out. I have always wondered how they keep finding things to eat, but, at last, I can see that God feeds all His creatures. Those things that "just happened" to supply our needs did not "just happen." If man would understand that God is a supplier of those who love Him, then the great evils associated with provision would be at an end. It is the blindness of the mob that will soon destroy the earth. Evil forces continue to convince billions that there is not enough. What a catastrophe!

This will not be so, however, for those who know the gift of God. "He shall dwell on high: his place of defence shall be the munitions of rocks: bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure." (Isa. 33:16.) This is the gift of God. All who believe in Him will know and understand the provision of God. The creatures of the wood all expect to have all that they need, but somehow that has missed those who are considered a higher order. Men may say they believe there is enough, but the way these men build bombs and buy insurance policies, one soon suspects that they live in terror of not having enough. If one would just believe that God will give him all he needs and care for his every desire, his practical daily life would look far different.

Believe First

"Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. " (Mark 11:24.) This is one of the most difficult things for men to know. The carnal-minded man cannot accept this, for it is foolishness to him. How can one believe he has something before he has it? Yet, this is the condition of all faith. "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Heb. 11:1.) When we believe in provision first, then provision is given. Believe that you have it and you shall have it. Could we say that the little animal believes that there is food in the ground for him? I would say so. If this law is perfect, and I believe it is, would it not also work the other way around? If one believes he must borrow, will he not have to borrow? If one believes he will starve to death, will he not starve to death? If one believes he will not have enough, isn't that what he may expect? Since the children of God know the promises of God and have received the spirit of God, they will understand the provision of God. These sons will not fear, for "They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied." (Ps. 37:19.)

While the world perishes, the sons of God will have their provision because these have already believed that they will have it. This is not based on their belief, but on the promise of God. This provision will come wherever their abode may be. They believe before their eyes see. Then their eyes will see the glory of God. The mystery is why all men would not want to have this gift. Alas, it is only for the believer. It is true that all men could become believers if they wanted, but only a remnant of men desire the riches that come from God.

I would like to invite the reader to accept His only gift. God does not place men in deep despair. He does not burden men with heavy burdens. He said, "For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." (Matt. 11:30.) You, too, can have this great experience. You, too, can believe and be fed. What is your other choice? It is burden and frustration. It is war and loss. It is economic depression. It is discouragement and sorrow. You may trade all that for the riches of God's only gift. You may have Him lift off your shoulders all the filthy rags you have carried as your clothing and He will give you His most magnificent robe. In this robe you shall not want. You will never fail. You will know that the Lord is your shepherd. You will know that there is always enough.


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