Joseph from Arimathea Was Ready

Permit me to introduce a term that many Christians consider to be a selfish, secular term—financial independence. Let’s define “financial independence” as having the resources on hand that will be needed to obey God’s voice. Too many times we have dismissed or not taken seriously the visions and ideas God has given to us because we do not see a way for them to be financed. Our excuse for not obeying God is a helpless, “That would be great, but we can’t afford it.” It is essential that we permanently delete the words “we can’t afford it” from our vocabulary. These words should be replaced with a positive petition, expecting God’s provision, by asking instead, “How is God going to provide?”

Let’s look at Noah, when God asked Noah to build the ark, He was at a place in his life of sufficient resources to obey. He was financially independent. There are no scriptures indicating Noah awakened one day and the ark was miraculously finished. There is no record of ravens flying in with pre-cut gopher logs to be fitted into place. The ark was built with manual labor over a period of years. Actually, it seems like Noah did not work on the ark much himself because he was busy preaching. So either his family or hired laborers constructed the ark.

It took significant financial resources for Noah to obey God. Could it be that God wants to provide for us in a similar way? I believe He desires that we have the resources on hand to accomplish His purposes as He reveals them to us.

A similar example from the New Testament is that of Joseph from Arimathea. He was a rich man, a member of the Sanhedrin, who was a disciple of Jesus. Joseph was ready and available when called upon to take Jesus’ body and give it an appropriate burial in a rich man’s tomb that had never been used before. This was significant because in Bible times, tombs were used multiple times. His availability and his financial resources played an important role in the death and resurrection of Jesus and the unfolding of the kingdom of God.

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