“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing…” (Revelation 3:17)
The Laodicean church Age is the last church Age and we are in it today – and if ever was a time that people are physically “rich and increased with goods” it is today. There are still many that are physically poor, but in many places those who call themselves poor, are rich compared to what their predecesors had. It is far better to be rich towards God, than to be financially comfortable in this life.
- “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” (1 Timothy 6:6-10)
- “But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” (Luke 12:20-21)
- “Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?” (James 2:5)
- “A GOOD name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold… …By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life.” (Proverbs 22:1 & 4)
- “There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches.” (Proverbs 13:7)
- “They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him:” (Psalms 49:6-7)
Being rich and increased with goods can bring a snare on your life. When Jesus told of the parable of the different types of ground (or the hearts of men) where the Word of God was sown to bring forth fruit (in Mark 4:3-20), he noted one of the grounds or hearts as having “thorns” growing in it. These “thorns” became a great hindrance to the spiritual life of those who had them: “And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful” (Mark 4:18-19).
If physical thorns are all around you, they can be painfully effective in restricting your movement in any type of work you may try to do. So too, the same is true if you carelessly allow cares, riches, lusts, entertainments, personal goals, etc. fill your life and time. Doing much for God will become “painfully” inconvenient and wearisome. Love first for God and lost souls will not be your primary motivator. You will become “unfruitful” for God.