Pressing Into the Land of More Than Enough
In Matthew 6:31-33, Jesus promised that our needs would be met. “Therefore, do not worry saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things [What things? What you eat, what you drink, what you wear] the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things [What things? The things you need] will be added to you.” (explanation mine)
Most people have needs in their lives. The only reason we would need something is because we lack something. God wants us to attack the lack in our lives. He does not want us to be living in the “land of not enough.” He wants us to be living in the “land of more than enough.” He wants us to be living in the “land of abundance.” That’s what God wants for us.
Christians want that too. I don’t want to be living in the “land of needing my needs met.” I want to be living in the “land of more than enough.” I want to be living in the “land of abundance.” I’m sure you do too!
We can live in the “land of not enough,” “just enough,” or “more than enough.” During the time the Hebrews were in Egypt in captivity, they were living in the “land of not enough.” When you are a slave to something, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you are a slave to sickness in your body, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you are a slave to the payment book or the credit card company, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you owe somebody anything, you are living in the “land of not enough.” You do not have your needs met. This is not meant as a condemnation. However, if you owe money to anyone, you are living in the “land of not enough.”
God wanted the Hebrews to move out of the “land of not enough.” He wanted to get them over into the land that was flowing with milk and honey. He wanted them to live in the “land of more than enough,” in abundance and overflow. That’s where He wanted them to be. He wanted them to live in His glory. But they were stuck in the “land of not enough.” Then, as they started to go to the “land of more than enough,” they got stuck in the “land of just enough.”
When they were in the wilderness, they had food, but only enough for one day. They did not have enough for tomorrow or the next day. They couldn’t store it up, because it would rot. Remember the story of the manna? They couldn’t store it. They had just enough for one day at a time. That’s the area of having your needs met. They had shelter and they had food and water. Their clothes wouldn’t wear out. They had enough to get by. They had “just enough.” That’s the “land of just enough.”
Some Christians have moved out of poverty and settled into the land of just enough. Because they have their needs met, they think they’re living in abundance! They think they are prosperous! But they aren’t. They have “just enough.”
God wants us to move from the area of being in need, and move through the area of enough and beyond that into the area of true prosperity. He wants us to press through to where we can pray and believe for our dream. Beyond that, He wants us to press through to where we can live in divine health, divine prosperity and live walking in the glory of God – the place where we give no thought to our needs. As long as the devil can keep us caught up in the area of “we need our needs met,” then we are not going to be thinking about the abundance of God and the ministry of God because we are going to be so caught up with thinking about the bill that is due.
How much time do you spend in a day thinking about, working toward, and figuring out how you are going to get your bills paid? How much time do you spend going to the doctor? How much time and money and resources do you spend taking care and trying to get up to the level of just getting your needs met? Let’s learn how to press past the “land of not enough” into the place where God wants us to be – the “land of more than enough.”
Never seek to just get by, but always press in for all that God has for you.
Job 22:28 “You will also declare or decree a thing, and it will be established for you; so light will shine on your ways.” (NKJV)
Will you dare to take God at His Word and lay claim to the Covenant Promises of health and boldly declare to the devil and hell that you will not be held down by your present situation, but will instead have the reality of the blessing of health established within you! Say it out loud if you believe it – “I will have health – I refuse and negate this sickness to stay within me – By His stripes I am and I was healed – it’s mine and I will not be denied, I say by faith that I have it now!!!” One of the most powerful things you can do is to set your will in line with the Word of God.
HYPER GRACE CAN BE DANGEROUS
The ministry gifts that Jesus gave to the Church (Eph. 4:11) bear the primary responsibility of equipping the saints for works of service so that the body of Christ may reach maturity and will no longer be children tossed to and fro by “every wind of doctrine”.
“Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth” (Eph. 4:14 – NLT).
The “hyper-grace” message emphasizes the God-side of redemption while nearly refuting and dismissing the man-side. It rightly brings emphases to what God has wrought in us through the grace of God in Christ, but it de-emphasizes the human side and responsibility of walking it out.
The Bible is a mixture of positional truths and the practical application of those truths. We need both. The apostle Paul tells us to put off the old man’s deeds and put on the new man. He exalts the finished work of Christ in the heavenlies, but he also instructs us on how to practically live out that truth in our earthly walk.
Why do you suppose Paul gave that kind of instruction to born again, Spirit-filled people if it was just supposed to happen automatically? And the other New Testament writers followed the same pattern, often reminding these early saints not to sin, lie, steal, commit adultery and fornication, to make their calling and election sure, to maintain good works, etc. The epistles are full of such admonitions.
Even though God through His grace was working in the believer to will and to do of His good pleasure Paul reminded them to work out their salvation with fear and trembling (Phil. 2:12-13).
What some advocates of hyper-grace call the mixed grace message is simply the God-side and man-side of our redemption and sanctification.
It is true that God has already sanctified us. It is true that Jesus Christ is our sanctification (1 Cor. 1:30). That is a high and lofty positional truth expounding on the legal aspect of our sanctification. But the Word also tells us to sanctify ourselves and reminds believers of their personal responsibility to apply that sanctification to their lives. That is called the vital or the experiential aspect of our redemption and sanctification.
So in essence, what I’ve observed in the “hyper-grace” teaching is error through simple overemphasis of one glorious truth at the expense of an almost complete dismissal of another equally important truth. We need the mixture of the God-side and the man-side of our sanctification.
Paul was sanctified and separated from his mother’s womb (Gal. 1:15), but he also sanctified himself lest he be disqualified (1 Cor. 9:24-27). The imagery in these verses is that of a Grecian Olympic athlete who trained rigorously for 10 months to compete in the games. That doesn’t sound too effortless to me, and yet when we yield to the inward grace it seems effortless. That is understood.
Because Paul sanctified himself he admonished Timothy to do the same (2 Tim. 2:21-22). “Purge yourself” is a part of the language Paul uses – yet another example of the man-side of our sanctification. The problem has been that we are asking God to do many things for us which He tells us to do ourselves.
Of course He supplies the grace and the Holy Spirit to help us, but He will not do it for us. The Holy Spirit is a Helper, not a doer. There are perhaps hundreds of examples in the New Testament of this sort of cooperation that exists between God and man, and between grace and works.
I think it’s high time in the body of Christ to heed the wise old maestro’s sound wisdom: “Avoid the ditches, and stay in the middle of the road.”
In doing this, you will not be tossed by winds of doctrine, and the grace of God won’t be received in vain (2 Cor. 6:1).
the “mixed grace” message with the “hyper-grace” message.
Mixed grace is grace + effort; you’re saved by grace and kept by works.
Hyper-grace is grace alone; you’re saved by grace and kept by grace.
Now what is wrong with that comparison? There is actually truth in both statements, but because the book is emphasizing the hyper-grace message it de-emphasizes the other perspective. Here he rightfully declares that we are saved and kept by grace, while minimizing the importance of effort and works. The Scriptures, however, have so much to say concerning the importance of our works, the truth of it being so obvious, that it is ridiculous and an insult to true Christian intelligence to elaborate on it in any great depth here.
It is like asking, “Does obedience save you or keep you saved?” Yes and no. We’re saved by grace through faith, but faith without works is dead. Actually, imbalances constantly occur when we isolate certain scriptures at the expense of the sum counsel of the Word.
For example, by isolating the following scriptures we could conclude that we are indeed saved by works and obedience.
“You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only” (Jam. 2:24).
“And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him” (Acts 5:32).
“And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him” (Heb. 5:9).
But the middle-of-the-road truth is that works and obedience are outflows of an inward grace and faith. They are evidence of our salvation.
Here’s another one of his comparisons:
Mixed grace says forgiveness is maintained through repentance and confession.
Hyper-grace says forgiveness is a done deal; in Christ we are eternally forgiven.
Once again there is truth on both sides, but the error is spawned from overemphasizing one at the expense of the other.
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