The rich young ruler in Mark 10:17 was locked into earth-bound, natural thinking and Jesus wanted to bring him out of it. To give on the level Jesus asked of this man was not natural. This man would have to let go of everything he had known and trust and take hold of God’s promises for natural, as well as spiritual blessings.
Some have interpreted Jesus’ comments to mean He required the young man to become poor before he could follow Him. But Jesus does not expect a person to be poor to follow Him. Proverbs 19:17 says, “He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord, and He will pay back what he has given.”
Jesus knew that if this man gave to the poor, God would pay him back just as the Word promised. He would not remain poor, and the wealth that came to him would be the result of God’s promises and not human effort. This man would be living proof that God was Lord even over his money.
The problem was that this young man’s thinking was still tied to his wealth. Instead of trusting and obeying Jesus, he walked away from Jesus sad. His sadness was due to his wrong perspective. He saw his giving as a loss and not a gain.
When we only see giving in the light of having less, we have missed God’s purpose in our giving. Giving our money is our link to bringing God’s provision into our lives. It unlocks the windows of heaven and brings God into every financial part of our lives.
God is the great giver. He so loved that He gave. Yet, God gave with purpose; He expected to receive back more than He gave. He gave His Son and would receive many sons. His giving was the means to a greater end.
The great evangelist F.F. Bosworth said, “The only purpose of God’s promises is their fulfillment.”
God’s purpose in promising to prosper us is so that He can fulfill His Word. First Kings 8:56 says, “There has not failed one word of all His good promise…” (NKJV). God is committed to His Word. Jeremiah 1:12 says He watches over His Word to perform it.
Notice what the Apostle Paul said regarding prosperity: “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19 NKJV). He will supply our needs on every level. That includes both natural and financial.
When God’s people were delivered from generations of slavery in Egypt they came out with wealth and health. “He also brought them out with silver and gold, and there was none feeble among His tribes” (Psalm 105:37 NKJV).
To the one whose heart delights in the Word of God, Psalm 112:3 promises us, “Wealth and riches will be in his house, and his righteousness endures forever” (NKJV).
Now notice what Job 36:11 says, “If they obey and serve Him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures” (NKJV).
The Lord wants us to spend our days in prosperity. It is His delight to supply all our needs so we are able to begin to supply the needs of others. In this way, the world will see the goodness of our God and want to serve Him.