Even As Thy Soul Prospereth
You can be prosperous in many areas. However, most of us don't realize that our worldly prosperity and health is measured by the prosperity of our soul.
'3 John 1:2 'Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.'
First, lets understand prosperity. Most people think of prosperity only in terms of material things. Prosperity means to succeed (to turn out well; to attain a desired object or end) or to thrive (to grow vigorously: to gain in wealth or possessions: to progress toward or realize a goal). You can be prosperous in many areas. The most popular with most people is financially. Most of us want to have all of our needs met, our bills paid, and money in the bank. There is nothing wrong with that, we should want that. You can have prosperity on your job, in your home, your friends, abilities and talents, etc. However, most of us don't realize that our worldly prosperity and health is measured by the prosperity of our soul.
'even as thy soul prospereth.' 'Even as' means in or to the same degree; in the way or manner that; in accordance with what or the way in which.
WHAT IS THE SOUL?
A person's total self : an active or essential part : the moral (conforming to a standard of right behavior) and emotional nature (the inherent character or basic constitution of a person or thing) of human beings : the quality that arouses emotion and sentiment: character (the complex of mental and ethical traits marking and often individualizing a person, group, or nation) : main or essential nature, personality, psyche; conscience;
In your soul is all the things about you that make you you. Your emotions, desires, morals, etc. So the kind of person you are, your characteristics and desires determine your level of prosperity. Where can we find out what kind of characteristics, desires and morals we should have? The word of God of course. He is very clear about it.
'Psalm 15:1 'LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart;'
'Romans 5:3,4 'but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.'
Colossians 3 goes into great detail about the character of a Christian life and Christian home.
'1 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. 5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, 7 in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. 12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. 18 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter toward them.20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. 22 Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God. 23 And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. 25 But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality.'
Our obeying God's word, living as He instructs us to live, and being and doing what He wants determines our level of prosperity. Most of us have that backwards. For most of us, our personality, character, how we treat other people, even how we serve God, is determined by our level of prosperity. We are a lot nicer and easier to get along with when we have money. We praise God more readily when we have what we need and things are going ok. When we don't have much, we're mad all the time. We snap at people. We walk around depressed. We don't offer to help people. We are not hospitable. Prosperity can change the character of a person. Where you were once humble, you can become proud. Where you once were able to depend on God, you then depend on your prosperity. Where you once credited God for your very being, you then can feel that you really don't need him. To ensure that we remain righteous and live according to God's word, He will not allow us to be prosperous above 'who we are.' If our character doesn't line up with the word of God, our desires, will, emotions, morals, and nature, we will not be made to prosper. The word of God also makes this clear.
'Deuteronomy 5:33 'Walk in all the way that the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.'
'Deuteronomy 6:24 'The LORD commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear the LORD our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive, as is the case today.'
'Deuteronomy 29:9 'Carefully follow the terms of this covenant, so that you may prosper in everything you do.'
'Joshua 1:8 'Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.'
'2 Chronicles 24:20 'This is what God says: 'Why do you disobey the LORD's commands? You will not prosper.''
'Psalm 1:2,3 'But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.'
'Proverbs 13:21 'Misfortune pursues the sinner, but prosperity is the reward of the righteous.'
If you don't have prosperity and good health, take a look at yourself, start from the inside out and make sure you life lines up with the word of God. Find out how he wants you to walk, talk, think, and live. When you live by God's word, you will prosper the way His word says you will!
About the Author
My name is Rudelle Thomas and I currently reside in the Metro Atlanta area. I write Inspirational non-fiction, fiction, poetry and devotionals. Some of my devotionals are featured on shelovesgod.com, ideamarketers.com, and sermoncentral.com. I have poetry published with the International Library of Poetry and am in the process of writing two books, one fiction and one non-fiction. "In The Midst Of It All" is the story of one woman's journey through life's struggles, and how her faith in God gave her the strength to keep fighting. "Able To Stand!" is a book that teaches us that the only way we can "withstand in this evil day" is to equip ourselves with the armor of God. It also teaches what the armor of God is, why we need it, and how to put it on.
My greatest achievement is my online magazine. I am the Editor and Publisher of an online magazine titled, "Divine Eloquence Ezine". Divine Eloquence is devoted to not only spreading the Gospel, but also to promoting your writing and published works. We have recently been presented with a number of Web Excellence awards. I am also the CEO of my own Desktop Publishing company, "Divine Designs 777, Inc. We specialize in Administrative needs, Webdesign, Logo design, Business cards, etc.
It is my desire use the gifts and talents that God has blessed me with to be a blessing to others!