Obedience is the key. Obedience simply means doing what GOD asks you to do in His Word (the Bible) and refusing to do what He asks you not to do. When you do that consistently, GOD will UNFAILINGLY do His own part and give you increase in every area of your life and not just in your finances.
I doubt if I will ever be able to explain this mystery. Whenever I look back at my encounter with Matthew Chapter 6 for the first time at age 24, I am amazed at how verse 33 in that chapter escaped my attention. Yet, this is one of the most important verses in the entire chapter, if not the most important. And it never caught my attention! How could this have happened?
Let’s go over this all-important verse together and see the big picture that I missed as a young man. It says: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
As with all the promises of GOD to His children, you will easily see that there is what you and I must do if we are to enjoy what GOD has already provided for us. Isaiah 1:19 says it clearly: “If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land.” (NKJV).
The first commandment that we must obey, according to Matthew 6:33, is “But seek first the kingdom of GOD….”
It’s obvious, or it should be obvious, that you must know what “the kingdom of GOD” is before you can go about seeking it. Without a clear understanding of what the “kingdom of GOD” is, how will you know that you have found it, even if you diligently go about seeking it?
So, what is “kingdom of GOD?”
In a very simple and practical term, “the kingdom of GOD” is a kingdom where GOD reigns; where GOD has the final say; where every citizen of this kingdom knows that GOD is Supreme, where there are no rebellious children who will dishonor their Father by worshipping other gods, thereby getting Him jealous. This kingdom will be populated by obedient children who will do only what pleases their Father and worship Him eternally.
According to the Bible, “But nothing that defiles or profanes or is unwashed shall ever enter it, nor anyone who commits abominations (unclean, detestable, morally repugnant things) or practices falsehood, but only those whose names are recorded in the Lamb’s Book of Life.” (Revelation 21:27 Amplified Bible). Read the entire Chapter 21 to catch a glimpse of this kingdom in its glorious color and splendor. You will agree with me that this kingdom is worth seeking with all the resources available to us.
The second part of this commandment says: “and His righteousness ….”
This is to say as we are seeking GOD’s kingdom, we are also to be engaged in seeking GOD’s righteousness. But what is GOD’s righteousness?
In Luke 1:6 (NKJV), the Bible says thus of Zacharias and Elizabeth his wife: “And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.”
Righteousness, or right standing with GOD, is a gift which the Lord Jesus paid the maximum price (His death on the Cross) to obtain for us, and He handed it over to us for free. But you and I must believe GOD by faith, like Father Abraham and Jesus Christ did, in order for them to earn it from GOD the Father.
For the Bible says in Philippians 2: 5-8 that: “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” (Philippians 2:5-8 NKJV).
And of Abraham the Bible says in Romans 4:3 (NKJV): ‘For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness”.’ (See also The Amplified Bible for another translation).
Apostle Paul says further in Romans 6:13 “And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”
From these Scriptures, we come to understand that GOD’s righteousness means walking in obedience to the Word of GOD just like Father Abraham and Zacharias and his wife did. It also means being in right standing with GOD; to be dead to sin and alive unto righteousness (1 Peter 2:24). Being dead to sin means you no longer sin because it no longer has dominion over you.
And when we do that what happens? “…and all these things shall be added to you.”
What are all “these things?” Without any doubt, all these things are those things that we naturally desire, things like good health, riches, career success, marital bliss, protection from your enemies (don’t kid yourself, you do have them); business breakthrough and, yes, longevity of life.
And who adds them? GOD!
Unfortunately, most of us, even believers, pay more attention to getting these things by our own sweat and labor than by relying on GOD to add them to us as He said He would if we obey Him and do what He asks us to do in His Word. If only we would pause a little and, for once, start seeking GOD’s kingdom and His righteousness, then we would discover that we shall get these things cheaply.
Let me share this testimony with you. From when I rededicated my life to Jesus Christ in November 1994, and I started learning to trust in my Father in heaven as my only Source of supplies, my life has turned 360 degrees around in the area of finances.
My other names before this time were Mr. Chronic Debtor. If you read my first book, How to Make It in Nigeria Building Your Wealth from Ground Floor Up, you will see how our bank accounts were dripping with red ink. But more than 12 straight years now, GOD has freed me and our company from owing anyone a kobo. And that includes the banks or any lender, of whatever description or name.
How is that possible? It’s because GOD is unfailingly supplying all our need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 NKJV). And He does that without adding sorrow with it.
But you say, “Brother Emmanuel Sunny, how can you say that when you’ve been sharing the story of how you have been desperately sick on and off for more than 12 years now?” The reason I can render this testimony boldly is because my latest health challenge, which GOD has totally healed me from, is the type that the devil uses to take people’s life away within a very short time. (See my latest book, TESTIMONY OF A KIDNEY FAILURE SURVIVOR: Secrets That Helped Me Overcome Sure Death and Prove the Faithfulness of GOD!”).
But I am sitting here in Lagos in front of my computer, typing this testimony of GOD’s mercy and faithfulness, knowing that He has done what only He can do in my life as He promised me in Psalms 41. Praise the Lord!
The Holy Spirit showed me some things in the Word of GOD which have given me the peace of mind that passes all understanding now. The illumination I have is found in John 9:1-31. There you have the story of the man that was born blind. (I urge you, please read all of these verses. It will bless you!).
The question Jesus’ disciples asked Him was: “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents that he was born blind?” (John 9:2). Hear how Jesus answered them: “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him (the blind man).” (John 9:3 NKJV).
This Scripture tells me clearly that it is NOT always because of sin that we get sick. And GOD is not the one that makes us sick. That’s why we read in Acts 10:38 that “…God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”
Besides, the Word of GOD gives me the assurance in James 5:14-15 where it says: “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.”
In obedience to this scripture, I sought and was laid hands on by the Holy men of GOD. And I believed that I was in GOD’s plan for healing the moment they laid hands on me and anointed me with oil. It could not be otherwise. GOD will ALWAYS honor His Word that we believe.
So, obedience is the key. I pray that as you read this message, you will receive light to become obedient to GOD. As Jesus Himself said in John 14:23 (The Amplified Bible): “Jesus answered, if a person (really) loves Me, he will keep My word (obey My teaching); and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home (abode, special dwelling place) with him.”
Receive the grace to be obedient to Jesus’ teaching now in Jesus Name. And remember, obedience simply means doing what GOD asks you to do in His Word (the Bible) and refusing to do what He asks you not to do. When you do that consistently, GOD will UNFAILINGLY do His own part and give you increase in every area of your life and not just in your finances.
Jesus Is Lord!
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