"If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable."
It is common this days to hear an entire sermon based only on worldly solutions. The usual ministration trend of: 'That baby you are looking for, you will get it' 'That husband you are looking for you will get' etc, is now becoming more and more the only Gospel preached in the end times Church compounds. The arena of this type of teachings if I may call it 'teachings' is often packed and overflowing with people. And just as expected, the gathered crowd who in their majority are undoubtedly undergoing problems of one sort or the other, usually respond to the flesh edifying 'worldly solutions centred' messages coming from the so called 'teachers of righteousness' with a very loud, Amen!
The key question we all need to ask ourselves to begin with in regards to this trend of 'problem centred' ministration approach is, what happened to preaching patience, long suffering, perseverance and remaining faithful to God no matter what for the sake of eternal life abiding with Him? (Matthew 5:1-12, John 15:18-27 & 16:33, Romans 5:1-5, Ephesians 4:1-3 & 6:8, James 2:4, 1 Peter 4:12-19, Galatians 5:22-26,). And what about making a disciple out of people by preaching repentance from sins and the blood of Jesus as the only means for overcoming sins and consequences of sins's which is death? Is the whole essence of the Gospel to do with what God can give us here and now or is it about what He has done for us through Christ on the cross of Calvary to ensure we receive His forgiveness for our sins and become saved from eternal damnation of hell fire? Is the Gospel all about focusing people's attention on the world or on Christ Jesus who as the Author and finisher of our faith is our only means of making it safely to God's eternal life kingdom? Is God only worthy of our worship if and when He gives us our worldly wants and desires? Is He only God unto those who supposedly receive from Him, that 'husband' they are looking for or that 'financial breakthrough' they are after? Is evidence of God's presence in a person's life all to do with having the things that are physically desired as and when one desires for God to supply it? Can it really be true that the evidence of God's blessings and favour upon a person's life are all to do with a person's marital or financial status? If yes, does that then mean that everyone who has a wife, husband, money, fame and what have you, are all blessed and highly favoured by God? If so, will it then be right to then say those early disciples who were rejected by the people, beheaded, killed and all the genuine saints of God who are currently experiencing all sorts of trials in their lives right now despite their diligent service to God are not truly of God?
My only answer to the above thought provoking questions is, if indeed our mindsets for following Christ are to do with expecting Him to solve all our physical worldly problems as and when we desire for Him to, then we will indeed for all intent and purposes be of all men, most miserable!
The Gospel is a message of salvation for the soul. Yes, God is interested in our here and now problems. But the Gospel as power of salvation itself is not a message that is meant to concentrate our minds on what God can do for us now but on what He has already done for through Christ Jesus (Romans 1:16-17). The message of the Gospel is a message that is meant to activate our faith in God not just for the sake of the things of now that we are desperately yearning for Him to do for us but for the sake of receiving the eternal life promises He paved the way for us to have through Christ's finished work of remission and atonement of our sins on the cross of Calvary.
The Gospel is Good News because it is the good news of the fact that resurrection from death has been made possible for man through Christ Jesus who is resurrection and life itself (John 11:25-26). It is only in our faith of resurrection that we can maintain a lively hope of eternal life. A hope centred on the world is a hope rooted in vanity. And the only thing a hope centred in vanity can give the soul is nothing but frustrations, miserableness and worse of all fleshy anger towards God. Our only means of remaining in good cheer is by walking in daily remembrance and understanding of the fact that, Christ did not simply die and suffer on the cross just so that we can have all the things we consider as here and now blessings. But, mainly to ensure that we receive the promises of God, which is eternal life. It is only if our eyes is centred on the promise and our eyes fixed on Christ who as Author and Finisher of our faith suffered on the cross to ensure we receive the promise, that we will continually remain in good cheer in our souls and not end up as the 'most miserable' as the devil would rather have us to be (Hebrews 12:1-3).
"I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry."
~ 2 Timothy 4:1-5