By Alan Walker
All references are New International Version
“God must have it backwards,” I thought, “putting the cart before the horse”.
When my wife, Wendy, and I retired from our financial planning practice after 23 years, I had felt led by the Lord to set up a website for a future ministry. The difficulty was that the ministry didn’t exist yet and God had said to name it Kingdom Wealth Ministries.
A number of months later, He gave me another thought: “Write about what Kingdom Wealth is.” You can see why I felt that the Lord had it backwards; you don’t start a business by naming it first, and then deciding what product or service you are going to offer afterward.
Most of us have a vested interest in money. We need it to live, and Jesus spoke about it, perhaps, more than any other topic in the bible. Did He do that because money is so important to the Kingdom, or because it could be such a trap for us?
If you have read books or found articles on the internet about Kingdom Wealth, you may find as I did that the term is loosely used. It is not easy to see how our need for finances and God’s use of them for His purposes translates into Kingdom Wealth. Maybe we are all supposed to be Kingdom Millionaires, as some ministries seem to suggest. Did my wife and I, or any of our financial planning clients, have Kingdom Wealth? Two thirds of our clients were Christians, but it was often difficult to see how their attitude toward money differed from a person without faith.
The bible has as many encouraging scriptures about money as there are warning ones. Job 2:21 says Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you. On the other hand, 1 Timothy 6:17 says Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.
In our North American culture, it seems like we walk on a balance beam, wanting to please God on our left while desiring prosperity on our right. In truth, many of us are building wealth for our own purposes, and wanting God to bless it.
A few months ago, the Holy Spirit shed some new light for me on the subject when He said “Wealth created without a purpose has no value.” To develop this thought further, let’s start with some foundational definitions. A “kingdom” can be defined as a nation or domain having a supreme ruler or King. “Wealth” might be defined as having prosperity, well being, happiness, and joy. If we add the word “kingdom” to “wealth”, we might say that Kingdom Wealth is “assets created for the King by the King for His purposes”. This is different from how most of us have interpreted wealth or prosperity scriptures.
Jeremiah 17:9 says The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? In my financial planner experience, we saw how easy it is to deceive ourselves into believing that we aren’t controlled by money. Usually, it is the lack of finances or the threat of loss of what we have that is ruling our hearts. It is a faith issue.
Years ago, my wife and I gave ourselves a test concerning material possessions, and then offered it to clients, praying this prayer: “Father, if anything I own is an idol in my heart where it takes precedence over You, please take it away. If I lose everything I own on this earth, I know that my most precious possession is my relationship with You”. Then, wait. It could be the longest week of your life! It is not that God want us to lose our possessions. He just wants to know that we would gladly lose them over Him. Devotion is that simple.
To develop this discussion of what we value in our hearts as it relates to money, let me ask two more questions. What if God has a financial plan for the Earth that He has kept a secret up until now? What if He is sharing it with a few trusted people so that His plans for His creation can come to fruition? It will almost certainly look 100% different than what we might expect because we have no paradigm for it. It will be so “God” that we will be thrilled when we realize that it was never up to us to save the environment, solve the energy crisis, or invent how to generate money to feed the poor. It could play a big part in ushering in the Great Harvest.
Let me expand these ideas further by first saying what I believe Kingdom Wealth is not, followed by what I believe it is. My prayer is that you make a heart and head connection to the following:
#1: The building of Kingdom Wealth is not the same as the principle of sowing and reaping.
Malachi 3:8-12 teaches Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. “But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ “In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse—the whole nation of you—because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says the LORD Almighty. “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the LORD Almighty.
If we believe and act on the Scriptures which teach that the first 10% of our increase belongs to the Lord, and that He gives us opportunities to sow seed, giving offerings above our tithe, then we are operating under the spiritual law of sowing and reaping. God’s protection and provision is promised to those who are obedient with their giving. It is prosperity or blessing that comes from the King.
The Lord doesn’t want to direct money our way just to consume it on ourselves. He wants us to be the blessing according to Acts 20:35 It is more blessed to give than to receive. These are Kingdom laws for favour, but not Kingdom Wealth.
#2: Kingdom Wealth is worldly wealth created using God’s methods for His purposes.
Deuteronomy 10:14 says To the LORD your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens, the earth and everything in it. How those assets are grown and where the income will be distributed will be made known by the King in His timing. We may benefit from the fruit of this wealth but ultimately God will determine how this money is to be used for Kingdom purposes.
#3: The coming transfer of wealth, which is part of the design for the creation of Kingdom Wealth, is not for all believers.
Proverbs 16:2 says All a man’s ways seem innocent to him, but motives are weighed by the LORD. Maybe we shouldn’t feel comfortable assuming our own righteousness. A question to ask ourselves is “What is our motive in wanting wealth?” Often, it is not the same as the King’s.
#4: Those participating in the building and distribution of Kingdom Wealth and communication about it will be called to it.
1 Corinthians 12:18 says God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.
In the same way that not all are teachers or prophets or evangelists, I believe that there are those called to the area of Kingdom Wealth. Many will emerge with a Joseph, Daniel, or Cyrus annointing. The Lord has kept them hidden for years, as their character, gifting, and devotion grows. When they are released, the Church will recognize their authority and maturity.
#5: Jesus’ second coming is assured (Luke 21:8-28) but the pending release of Kingdom Wealth is not a confirmation of Jesus’ imminent return.
We should be able to rest in this scripture. He said to the crowd: “When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and it does. And when the south wind blows, you say, ‘It’s going to be hot,’ and it is. Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don’t know how to interpret this present time? (Luke 12:54-56)
Most of us find it difficult enough to determine God’s plan for our life and then walk in it, without trying to understand God’s master plan for the whole earth. At the end of our lives, let us not be heard saying “I wasted my life in fruitless guesses about the meaning of ‘times and seasons’. I should have given more attention to the Gospel of the First Coming.”
#6: Those called to build, manage and communicate about Kingdom Wealth will be servant-stewards. They will serve for the love of the King, and not for a promise of wealth. They will be known for their incredible integrity and ability to follow the King’s plan.
In addition to being builders of wealth, many economic communicators will emerge with a stewardship message of hope. To those who are living by the world’s standards, these “suggestions” will seem like nonsense. For those living for the Lord, this wisdom will bring refreshing like a cool drink on a hot day.
1 Corinthians 2:14 says The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.
To conclude, we have discussed three things that Kingdom Wealth distinctively is not, and three things about it which may shape our future. It is my belief that very soon, there will be an unprecedented release of Kingdom Wealth that has potential to influence all nations. Understanding these principles now will help us to know our role in what the Lord is doing on the Earth.
For the present day, getting closer to the Lord is the only financial strategy that I can suggest. But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love Psalm 33:18.
Perhaps this is your prayer going forward: “Lord, we believe You have a plan for Your Kingdom and the building of Kingdom Wealth, and we ask to participate in it. Would you search our hearts and purify them, to be at peace about our finances and the future. If economic strategies, opportunities or warnings come, help us to be discerning and receptive to hearing wisdom in how to act. Always, we thank you for being our provision and protection, in Jesus name”.