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It may sound like a contradiction that I am saying to you that one of the hallmarks of citizenship is freedom from buying and selling when Jesus has counselled those who fellowship in the Laodicean church “to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.”[1]

The Kingdom of God is to be free from Canaanites one day. And on that day there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of the LORD Almighty.[2] Free from those who buy and sell on the basis of scarcity with money as the tool by which goods are valued. For the record, Jesus Himself did not buy or sell anything using money during His own ministry. But He did tell the crowds to “sell your possessions and give to the poor,”[3] and the rich young ruler to “sell everything you have and give to the poor,”[4] and to His disciples He said, “if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.”[5] As such, Jesus commands us to sell and buy as well. However, the selling and buying commanded by the Lord is different from the selling and buying of the Canaanites.

Herein lays the difference: In Luke 12, Jesus addresses the little flock. “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the Kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in Heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.”[6] In His instructions to His disciples, it is clear that because we are receiving the Kingdom of God that we should sell our possessions to give to the poor. He does not say, “Sell all your possessions,” no. Just as you feel the desire to, and that you give to the poor, notice that it is because the Father is pleased to give us the Kingdom that He recommends that we sell our possessions. So be very clear, selling your possessions and giving to the poor does not get you the Kingdom of God, but because you have received the Kingdom of God, sell your possessions.

It is, as it was, now that you have received the Kingdom, acquire the currency of the Kingdom so that you may participate in the economy of the Kingdom of God, an economy that is based on creating and giving freely and receiving freely, as well as a Kingdom where the King does hand out rewards to those who obey Him. This is obvious because when Jesus commanded the disciples in Matthew 6 to fast, pray and do their acts of righteousness, He was very clear in commanding us to do it all in secret. “Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”[7] These rewards of God the Father are the treasures of Heaven that are to fill the purse that Jesus said we are to provide for ourselves. Notice, the purse is not provided by God, but by us.

The salvation is clear and simple. The Kingdom of the Father is a gift given to the little flock, given to whom the Father is pleased to give it, but those who receive it must provide purses for themselves to hold the treasures of Heaven. To sell your possessions to give to the poor so that you can provide for yourself a purse that will not wear out means that you are able to value the treasures of Heaven more than earthly treasures. And the way to add to these treasures is to do our acts of righteousness, fasting and praying in secret when our Father is watching. We do not sell our earthly possessions so that we may make a profit on it to increase our earthly wealth. No, the earthly possessions are sold and the proceeds given away because we have, and not that we would get, but we have the Kingdom of God and its treasures, and we need to provide ourselves with a purse to hold them.

Whereas to the rich ruler, Jesus said, “Sell everything you have… and you will have treasure in Heaven.” And in Matthew, Jesus said to the rich ruler, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in Heaven.”[8] In Matthew, Jesus listed six commandments that He recommended the rich young ruler to follow, and in Luke, He listed five. “Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honour your father and mother and love your neighbour as yourself,”[9] which are from the first ten commandments given by God in Exodus 20 and the sixth, “love your neighbour as yourself is from Leviticus 19:18. The rich young man’s answered, “All these I have kept since I was a boy.”[10] It is interesting that Jesus did not include the first four commands of Exodus 20 and the last one, the first four having to do with loving God, not having idols, not misusing His Name and keeping the Sabbath, and the last, to avoid covetousness over other people’s goods, wife and servants. When you learn to listen carefully to someone, you learn to hear not only what they said, but also what they did not say. It is obvious that the rich young ruler could not and did not keep the other five, for to be rich in the way of the world, one could never obey the first four completely and certainly cannot avoid covetousness. For the economy of the world demands that buying and selling is done on the basis of scarcity and that any advance of your own personal wealth will come at the expense of someone else’s because of scarcity. That is a truth that many find unpalatable.

The treasure of Heaven destroys covetousness. You may desire them and seek to acquire them, but the miracle of the treasures of the Kingdom of God is that they carry with them this condition of possession, “Freely you have received, freely give.”[11] The disciples had seen what the Lord did, and they had received the power in His Name to heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those with leprosy, and drive out demons. They had been given a first taste of the basic treasures of Heaven. Now they were to give it away freely… freely.

One of the basis by which Jesus will also say to those who have prophesied in His Name, done miracles in His Name, and driven out demons in His Name, that He never knew them and that they are evildoers[12], is because they did not do it freely. Indeed, if they did know Jesus, they would have known that they were to give away freely what they received. Give the ability and the power to prophesy, drive out demons and do miracles freely, not just the prophecy, the deliverance and the miracle freely, no, even that very ability is to be given freely, by making disciples of those who are chosen, discipling them to “listen to Jesus” and to follow Jesus instead of following after themselves.

It is indeed a temptation to covert the ‘anointing’ of another minister by asking God for it, coveting is not just desiring someone else’s possessions, but desiring it in such a way that it enriches only you is covetousness. That is exactly what happens in the economy of the world, enrichment of a few at the expense of the multitude. The economy of the Kingdom is enrichment of the many at the expense of the One, Jesus Christ, who poured out His life that we may have life and gave up His throne that we may be seated on thrones. If indeed we are to be like Him, we have to live a life of enriching the multitude at our expense, and not the other way around.

Jesus said, “…the worker is worth his keep.”[13] That is, worth his wages, salary and reward. If Jesus never said, “I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in Me will do what I have been doing…”[14] to His disciples, then we cannot hope to enrich many by the sacrifice of a few, but because He did, then we can enrich many by what we have as He did.

There is nothing wrong in wanting to have the largest church in the land for the Lord’s glory, provided your ambition does not cause those who are assigned to the smaller flocks to starve because you are sucking in all the resources. But that such a situation can only exist as it does now, large works causing small works to starve, because both the large and small works lack the most important ingredient of the Kingdom of God, as Jesus said to the rich young ruler, “You still lack one thing…”[15] Indeed, we can say this to every ministry, large and small, ourselves included, “You still lack one thing,” which is the miraculous power that comes from the Holy Spirit given to those who have learned to listen to Jesus better than Mary did, no, not just as Mary did, but better than Mary did.

The covetousness that is being practised in the ministries is an attitude that you have to be specially called, chosen and anointed before you can receive the power of God, but God showed us that the Holy Spirit through whom the power came was poured out on all disciples on the day of Pentecost. “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit…”[16] not just the apostles.

The refusal to freely give what we have received is covetousness and we justify it with our regulations and doctrines of holiness and worthiness, disobeying the command given, “Freely you have received, freely give.” No, there is a selling and a buying for those who listen to Jesus. It is a selling of your possessions to give to the poor, not for worldly profit so that you may provide for yourself a purse to hold the rewards that the Father gives you for all the fasting, praying and righteous works you have done in secret. Then, with treasures in Heaven, you are wealthy enough to follow Jesus because you have obeyed the other five commands as Jesus said, “If you want to be perfect…” The rich young man had only obeyed five out of the ten of the commands of Exodus 20. He had passed, but he was not perfect. Ten out of ten is perfect. For the rich young man, selling his possessions fulfilled the other five and gave him the riches to follow Jesus, and not just to follow Jesus, but to buy from Jesus the “gold refined in the fire… and white clothes to wear… and salve to put on your eyes…”[17] The gold of Jesus refined in the fire are His words and deeds that are confirmed by the power of the Holy Spirit and the fire of God’s word, words that are truly true, deeds that are truly true. The white robe covers the nakedness exposed by sin, that is, no effect of sin can appear in your life and body, and the salve opens your eyes to see the Kingdom of God and even the Father.

Jesus said, “Buy it,” yes, but He has never said, “Sell it.” The truly rich have sold possessions to give to the poor so that they may have treasures in Heaven with which to buy from Jesus so that they may give it away freely. Selling worldly possessions to receive heavenly wealth to give it away freely is the economy of the Kingdom of God, and when your worldly wealth is all gone, you will be welcomed into heavenly dwellings.

But the truth is this: paradoxically, anyone who uses worldly wealth to gain friends, not for themselves but for Jesus, can never run out of worldly wealth, for to them will be given the power to create, acquire and produce even more wealth. You see, Jesus said, “I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.”[18] And He also said this to disciples, “If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.”[19] If those who use worldly wealth to gain friends for themselves are welcomed into eternal dwellings, what is the reward of those who use worldly wealth to gain friends for Jesus and His Father? What will the Holy Spirit do for those whom He sees thinking, planning, conspiring, desiring and working to acquire worldly wealth that they may gain friends for Jesus?

Therefore, the one who gives is truly more blessed than the one who receives. For the one who gives is under no judgment, but the one who receives is under the command, “Freely you have received, freely give.” Woe then to those who have received, yet will not give it away freely but charge a price for it.

Disciples, Jesus did not just give us a prophecy, healing or deliverance. He gave us the means and the ability by which we can be prophetic, by which we can do miracles and by which we can drive out demons. He gave us the Holy Spirit who tells us what is yet to come and gives us the power to enforce the authority that is in Jesus’ Name. Therefore, we had and we continue to have an obligation to give freely what we have received… the Holy Spirit. We are not called to give out prophecies, miracles and healings as much as to give freely the ability to do what Jesus has done, freely to all who seek to receive it. In the same manner as we have been taught to listen to Jesus, so that we can recognise the voice of the Holy Spirit, likewise, we are to give that ability away. The miracles that accompany us are merely to confirm that we have received the power of the Holy Spirit, but the freedom with which we give the revelation away is what sets you and I apart from those who will still preach, “I am the Christ” in His Name, and yet will not give away their ability freely, but will sell it to those who align themselves with them for a price.

Those who like us have received the power of the Holy Spirit to do far more miracles, deliverances and deliver more prophecies than we have, but yet have coveted the gift so that they at best give away the product and not the secret to producing the product, or at worst, they sell the product, are candidates ripe for the Beast. The False Prophet is such a one who is in our midst, who will freely receive his share of the power even to call down fire in the sight of men[20] and he will enforce others to receive the mark of the beast to buy and sell and help the Beast so that “he will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land for a reward [at a price]”[21]

That is how you will know those who are sincere and those who are not in our midst. Those who are not sincere will seek to sell their possessions to give to the poor so that they may have riches in Heaven, and will even buy from Jesus the gold refined in fire, the white clothes to cover their nakedness and the salve to open their eyes, but they will not give away freely what they have bought.

“Freely you have received, freely give” was the command Jesus gave to the disciples on their first adventure out into the world, a basic command for the children to follow, not a command given to those who have been battle proven. But then, if you are battle proven, you would know what is expected before it is commanded.

If those who claim to be disciples cannot even observe this first command of ministry to the world, then what can they expect from the Lord when they call out to Him, “’Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your Name, and in Your Name, drive out demons and perform miracles?’”[22] It is not just about doing your job as His servant; it is about giving the ability you have received to others so that you are not enriching just yourself with heavenly treasures, but giving others the same ability to enrich themselves freely. It is not about you having the largest congregation but everyone else having the larger and more powerful congregation so that the Lord is glorified all the more.

Blessed is the servant who knows his Master’s business and pours himself out to enrich the Master.

For you, it is not only to freely give what you have freely received, but to freely give what has cost you to buy from Jesus. Against such disciples, even the Beast has no recourse. AMEN


 

[1] Revelation 3:18

[2] Zechariah 14:21

[3] Luke 12:33

[4] Luke 18:22

[5] Luke 22:36

[6] Luke 12:32-34

[7] Matthew 6:4

[8] Matthew 19:21

[9] Matthew 19:18-19

[10] Luke 18:21

[11] Matthew 10:8

[12] Matthew 7:21-23

[13] Matthew 10:10

[14] John 14:12

[15] Luke 18:22

[16] Acts 2:4

[17] Revelation 3:18

[18] Luke 16:9

[19] Matthew 5:41

[20] Revelation 13:13

[21] Daniel 11:39

[22] Matthew 7:22

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