The enemy wouldn’t work so hard to convince you that you were nothing if you were not something. Consider this for every detour he sets up to keep you from hitting the target it is only proof that Yah has an awesome plan that the enemy is determined to keep you from knowing. He will use good or evil to keep you from fulfilling your purpose. To distract you from obedience to the one choice that will lead you to the Promise land. The enemy has no new tricks just new victims. That being said I want us to really re-evaluate the abundant life scripture teaches us that Yahushah came to give us. In order to do this we have to know how to approach scripture when we study. So the first trap of the enemy I am going to address is this business concerning questioning the word of God.
Questioning the word of God and asking questions as you read the word are not the same thing. One questions the words validity the other seeks answers. Asking questions as I read the word means chapters, verses, and books do not determine when I am done. Acquisition of the answer determines when I am done. The bible says we do not fight as one who beats the air. (1 Cor. 9:26) Yet we can read as one who does. Aimless and without direction as isolated sound bytes providing no cohesive direction or instruction and many seek that path so they comfort themselves in Psalms and proverbs hoping to get all they need in a few verses to avoid the commitment that a bible study requires. Let me caution you that if you find yourself always needing encouragement from these books it could be your unwillingness to obey Yah in the convicting passages of the other books that has you in that position. In spite of what many may believe repentance is not a dirty word. It is humbling but cleansing, and freeing.
On most websites there exist a page called (FAQ) which means frequently asked questions. Many of us who find ourselves on a website that peaks our interest or is necessary for the provision of instruction in the use of a product we possess will find ourselves scouring this page for answers. The bible has all the answers we need for how to live a successful as well as an unsuccessful life. Those who live a successful life follow the instructions of the manual that leads to blessings. Those who seek an unsuccessful life follow the pages that lead to inevitable troubleshooting issues. When you focus on doing what the manual says you shouldn’t do you void the manufacturer’s warranty. Thus when our lives break down instead of blaming ourselves we blame the manufacturer. Taking the wrong path may get you to the desired position you want to be in, but usually at a considerable cost. The manufacturer knows this and thus we run the risk whenever we do that which is discouraged to be done with any product purchase we increase the chances that later on we will have a problem. That loss may even be shelf life, where you would have gotten twenty years you only have ten. The bible is our manual and to the degree that we ignore its warnings and take creative excursions from its instruction we decrease our shelf life.
Again, some of us may follow the instructions exactly and still find ourselves checking out early. In that case no worries, my scripture reveals to me that this was the path many of the Apostles took, yet they completed their purpose. I’d much rather die fulfilling my purpose early and enter into my rest with Yah, then to live a long life having not come close to it leaving with nothing but regret.
The goal of a product is to fulfill its purpose. The scripture teaches us in Hebrews of those who didn’t live the long plush life that many of us seek after as our goal. We have been erroneously in many cases taught that the acquisition of status and material things is somehow a sanction or sign of God’s favor upon us. Yet, what I read in Hebrews is how those who quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, who out of weakness were made strong, were waxed valiant in fight. It goes on to mention women who received the dead raised unto them, while others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might receive a better resurrection. (Heb. 11:32-40) God’s standards are not ours by any stretch of the imagination. Let’s not stop here but Hebrews goes on to tell us about others who were mocked, and scourged, moreover in bonds and imprisoned, some stoned and sawed asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword, wandering in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, and tormented yet their end was not said to be connected with those who were cursed of God. These are the believers and we know this because right after those who were afflicted and tormented it says of these the world was not worthy. This is God’s cream of the crop. This flies directly in the face of those who would say the more abundant life that God desires for us to have is to seek after the riches of this world. The very example of the Father was emulated in the person of Abraham who had the mentality when offered riches after defeating five kings in Genesis 14 of refusing their spoils, making it clear that it would not be said of him that man has made him rich. (Gen. 14:23)
We clearly have the wrong focus. Yahushah himself stated for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of things which he possesseth. (Luke 12:15) The book of Psalms tells us that the man who didn’t make God his strength trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthens himself in his wickedness. (Psa. 52:7) The focal point revealing that the issue is what he trusted in. See Abraham though he had things and riches didn’t trust in them, nor did he strengthen himself in it, but not so for the man who doesn’t make God his strength. Many people have all the food they could desire, yet Ecclesiastes tells us of a man who labours who whether he eats little or much sleeps sweet, yet the abundance of the rich can’t sleep. (Ecc. 5:12)
These scriptures makes me really have to go back and get a better understanding of a scripture I myself like to quote, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10)
Could this abundant life be understood in the scriptures of the Psalms and Proverbs?
Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her. (Pro 3:13-18) Emphasis mine
Riches here come as a result of seeking wisdom, not seeking riches, interesting thought. Especially when we consider that the Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. (Psa. 111:10)
But where shall wisdom be found? and where is the place of understanding? Man knoweth not the price thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living. The depth saith, It is not in me: and the sea saith, It is not with me. It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof. It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the precious onyx, or the sapphire. The gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold. No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls: for the price of wisdom is above rubies. The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it, neither shall it be valued with pure gold. Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding? Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living, and kept close from the fowls of the air. (Job 28:12-21) Emphasis Mine
Now we should see just how significant 1 Corinthians is when Paul tells us, “who hath known the mind of the Lord (which without doubt is wisdom), that he may instruct him, but we have the mind of Christ.” (1 Cor. 2:16) So what does that mean? In Philippians we see the following, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Php 2:5-8) Emphasis Mine
Notice this walk is going to cost you something, your life. Bringing even greater understanding of what it means to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice as we are instructed to in Rom. 12. The goal of life isn’t to live long, or to acquire things, or to make a name for ourselves, it is to make a name for Him. To take upon ourselves His identity as a wife takes on the identity of her husband so are we to take on the identity of Christ. To the point of death, to sum it up in one word we are called to be obedient. Our obedience reveals our wisdom and understanding, it is the treasure that will have the eternal value that all those substances that are compared to it has. Just as the word of God is eternal, having no expiration date hence heaven and earth will pass away before one jot or tittle does. Yet we understand that the world will be without end as a new heaven and new earth enters in. (Matt. 5:18; Eph. 3:21; Rev. 21:1). Just as gold may change form but never be destroyed, or rubies may be shaped and molded but never cease to be, wisdom and understanding continues on. It is the treasure we can only receive as we commune with God, as we get into that secret place where man can’t pervert it, and time can’t change it.
Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold. For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions. (Pro 8:10-12) Emphasis Mine
This scripture is outright telling us to receive instruction and not silver, knowledge rather than gold, that wisdom is better than rubies and nothing we desire can be compared to it. I hope I am painting a clear picture to my readers that the abundant life Messiah is talking about is a far greater substance than what backs our currency. How much of our lives is spent on acquiring money rather than wisdom? How is our nation suffering for it? So I will ask again, why are we willing to comfort ourselves in Psalms and Proverbs rather than seek the wisdom of the Torah (first five books of the bible)?
Why are we ignoring the convicting words of our Messiah who said clearly in Matthew not to even think that he has come to destroy the law or the prophets.(Matt. 5:17) I would submit to you it is because we’d rather believe there is more value in titles and status, and in the acquisition of stuff rather than in the wisdom of the Word. We’d rather be distracted by that which allows us to have a comfortable place to lay our heads rather than be led by the Head of the church which is Christ. We have outright ignored all the wisdom of the word of God to chase after that which has no value.
Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. (Pro 31:10)
I shutter to think where Abraham would be without Sarah’s witness to him concerning Isaac had he not come back to remembering that Yah had declared that Isaac would be the promised seed. So often we as women have allowed the world to convince us that God either has no plan or has no value of us in his kingdom. This could not be further from the truth. I watch as so many of our sisters assume the abundant life requires us to compete with our men on every level. Equal pay, equal say, we are killing ourselves trying to fill shoes that were never given to us to walk in.
In studying the scripture on this topic I find it absolutely amazing that the only physical substance that is compared to that which has an eternal value is compared to a woman, but not just any woman a virtuous woman. This virtuous woman she is not your career woman, your independent woman, your prophetess, or apostolic woman, and certainly not your contentious woman.
His description of this virtuous woman can be read from the book of Proverbs 31 and though she does the work of many and has the strength, intelligence, and administrative skills of many men she is known by what she does behind the scene. It is the things that she does at home that allows her husband to be known at the gates. It’s the way she keeps her house that causes her children to praise her. It’s the delicate way she treats her servants that causes her to be a joy to work for. This man wants to come home at night because of her. He is satisfied with her such that nothing out in the world can measure to her. How many of us view these scriptures as the model for being a successful woman? How many of us see this model as the abundant life that we should obtain? If we don’t why aren’t we? Remember what I said from the beginning the enemy doesn’t want you to value what the word of God says concerning you. He wants you to disdain being the virtuous wife, he wants you to bypass and devalue the things and ways of God.
Sisters if we can ever get a vision for God’s plan for us we could win the world for Christ. Like this wife’s husband people will know our husband Yahushah at the gates because of what we do in obedience to Him. In a society that belittles and disdains motherhood and that is seeking so diligently to erase the roles of men and women we need to begin asking ourselves the question, why? Why is the enemy working overtime to keep us from embracing something that the scripture defines as virtuous? Again, we must begin asking ourselves questions as we read the scriptures this will echo through many of my articles so get used to it. Not to question the scriptures, but to ask questions when we read them, because in doing so we will find wisdom, and wisdom is much more desirable than gold. The fear of YHVH is the beginning of wisdom and the knowledge of the Holy understanding. (Prov. 9:10) So I beckon you to have your mind renewed and your life transformed by His word.