(From the sermon entitled, “Ang Maayos na Pamumuhay ayon sa Pagtuturo ng Biblia” for July 23,2015)
Though the first two people sinned and were taken away from the Garden of Eden, God did not actually let them live a miserable life. In fact, when God created them in His image, they were given the authority to rule over the fish and the birds. They were given seed bearing fruits for food. Basically, they will still have food as long as they work for it (Genesis 3:19). Having food and shelter, which is a major need of mankind is enough to live well and decently.
Speaking of living well, there is no other character in the Bible that experiences a very abundant life than Solomon. Actually, he was the richest and the most popular king in his time among the kings of the lands. There is no other character in the Bible that can explain well about living a prosperous life than him. The Bible tells us how he accomplished many things in order to find pleasure and happiness in life.
The Bible tells us, “I undertook great projects: I built houses for myself and planted vineyards. I made gardens and parks and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. I made reservoirs to water groves of flourishing trees. I bought male and female slaves and had other slaves who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me. I amassed silver and gold for myself, and the treasure of kings and provinces. I acquired male and female singers, and a harem as well—the delights of a man’s heart. I became greater by far than anyone in Jerusalem before me. In all this my wisdom stayed with me. I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my labor, and this was the reward for all my toil.” (Ecclesiastes 2:4-10 NIV)
No one in his time ever accomplished what he has done. However, he learned that everything that gives pleasure in life is nothing, because all things in life will come to an end. One more thing, he learned that we may have everything in life, but the absence of power to enjoy them is another thing. People will never be satisfied with his food and drinks. He learned also that without God in life, nobody could eat or find enjoyment. (Ecclesiastes 2:25)
It is God who gives the ability to enjoy everything we have in life. We may be prosperous or abundant in life, but if we cannot enjoy them, what good does it do to us? The Bible says “God gives some people wealth, possessions and honor, so that they lack nothing their hearts desire, but God does not grant them the ability to enjoy them, and strangers enjoy them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil. (Ecclesiastes 6:2 NIV)”
Therefore, it is from God whom we can find happiness and the ability to enjoy everything in life. However, we need to understand that life is not about food and drinks; it is not about living a wealthy life. Life is all about fulfilling the purpose of our Creator so that we may attain true happiness and wellness in life. If we serve God wholeheartedly and truthfully, He will never allow us to live a miserable life. David says from youth until he grew old, he did not see a righteous person beg for his foods and needs. God will never allow that to happen. God will provide everything specially if we work for it.
In matters of spirituality, God promises to provide His children the wealth of faith through His words and teachings. In fact, He built His church to be the foundation of truth (1 Timothy 3:15), which means all truth and all sound doctrines can be found in His church.
He elected preachers, Apostles and Prophets to guide and lead His people towards the truth (Jeremiah 3:15). Christ even gave the analogy of being the lead shepherd of His flock and all His sheep knew Him and His words, and they followed Him because they recognize His voice and His commands (John 10:16).
Christ even laid His life for His church. He purchased His church with His holy blood to prove His love and His purpose for them. Those who received His mercy and love and became part of His church were sanctified and became righteous heirs of His kingdom.
However, the Bible warns us that the wellness of life offered by Christ can only be realized if we follow Him and make sacrifices by serving Him. Those who turn away from God will never have a true wellness of life. They may find themselves wealthy here on earth, but it is only temporal. It will soon come to an end. They may have everything in life, but what good does it do to them if they would lose their soul and the chance of salvation?
Indeed, life will always be a matter of choice. We can either choose to become holy or unholy before the sight of God. However, if we are wise enough, then we would choose to be obedient to His will. The Bible tells us of this, “Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.” (James 3:13)