"Enter through the narrow gate..."
It's hard for me to see how a "Prosperity Gospel" could ever flourish when Jesus seems to spell out, so clearly, just the opposite. How can churches promote the notion that believing in Jesus can result in riches and wealth, when that seems not to be the case when we read what Jesus actually said? Could it be the difference in believing in Jesus and following Jesus? These are two completely difference things, I think. Believing in Jesus is relatively easy compared to following Jesus. See, if we follow Jesus we end up in the trenches, working and helping people who may not be able to help us back or even appreciate what we're doing. Believing in Jesus may mean saying prayers, going to church on Sunday, throwing a ten-spot in the collection to help those far-away people we never hope to meet. But following Jesus means getting our hands dirty, rolling up our sleeves, sticking our neck out. That could be why the narrow gate is so...narrow. And that could be why there isn't a rush to get to it. Jesus never preached a Gospel of Prosperity. His words clearly tell us that we don't need stuff, we don't need words alone. We are to leave the luggage and empty words behind and come through the gate with just the clothes on our back and hands willing to help. Love, heidi