By: Richard Gazowsky
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When I was in China a year and a half ago, a Chinese prophetess prophesied to me that God was going to give me a revelation that I was to share with the Body of Christ, regarding Isaiah 61. Isaiah’s prophecy came to pass in Luke 4:14, which states that, “Jesus returned to Galilee powerful in the Spirit”. News that Christ was back had quickly spread throughout the countryside. His fame went through the whole region, to everyone’s acclaim and pleasure. Then Jesus came to Nazareth where He had been reared. As He always did on the Sabbath, Christ went to the meeting place. When He stood up to read, He was handed the scroll of Isaiah the prophet.
Unrolling the scroll, Jesus found the place where it was written, “God’s Spirit is on Me; He’s chosen Me to preach the Message of good news to the poor, sent Me to announce pardon to prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the burdened and battered free, to announce, ‘This is God’s year to act!’” Christ then rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the minister, and sat down. Every eye in the place was on Him, watching intently. Then Jesus exclaimed, “You’ve just heard Scripture make history. It came true just now in this place.”
This was an incredibly powerful statement by Jesus, because I’m seeing that it’s the doorway that God will use to open up the moneybags in your life. Let me explain. Over the last year the Lord has been totally cleansing my private life, and if you’ve read any of my blogs during this period you saw they predominantly dealt with God correcting small personality flaws in my life. Recently an unusual series of events brought even more flaws into my spiritual view.
An area that I’ve often shared publicly has been in my personal handling of finances. Whenever I know there are needs, I want to give everything I have away. Because of that, I started delegating those responsibilities to other members of my staff. Suddenly a prophet in Hong Kong prophesied that I was to personally take charge of handling many of the financial responsibilities. At first I started laughing because I knew that this prophet didn’t know anything about my old habits. Then the prophet raised their hand and said, “The Lord knows you’ve made mistakes in the past, but the spirit of poverty has been broken in your life and you are now free to handle money again.”
When I arrived back at my company and I reviewed the finances. I discovered that an employee used a certain sum of money (without first asking permission within the company) and no one was told about it. Instead of being angry I felt very calm. I felt the person didn’t mean to do this and the situation would soon be rectified. When I talked with the person who was affected by the act, I was shocked by how deeply angry they were at first. But they calmed down when they realized that the employee hadn’t been vicious in their handling of funds, but actually had alleviated an emergency. At that point God began to speak to me. He told me the danger in handling money is a result of the spirit of condemnation, and it was that spirit which causes accusations to fly.
In due time, all inappropriate actions will be rectified by God’s prosperity. But it’s during the time of tight finances that the breeding ground of condemnation arises. In Romans 2, Paul shows us that the power of condemnation is found in personal sin. He wrote, “Those people are on a dark spiral downward. But if you think that leaves you on the high ground where you can point your finger at others, think again. Every time you criticize someone, you condemn yourself. It takes one to know one. Judgmental criticism of others is the well-known way of escaping detection in your own crimes and misdemeanors.”
What God was really trying to remove from my personal life was my fleshly desire to condemn others. When that desire was completely gone, there would be no condemnation. In other words, I would be spiritually pure. No wonder Jesus said He came first to preach good news to the poor. All of us would agree that good news to a poor person is that they are going to get money. But if we read the rest of that verse, we see how powerful it’s really going to be.
A person once said to me, “How can you say to me that there is no condemnation to those who have misappropriated funds? Are you going to advocate letting all of the thieves in prison go free?” As a matter of fact, that’s exactly what Jesus alluded to when He said, “To preach deliverance to the captives.” When we understand the dynamics of how legalism works, we can comprehend that condemnation is the tool that make the laws that build prisons for God’s people. And that it’s the prison laws that actually do the condemning. Jesus came to set us all completely free, but I discovered that it begins with me. Wow! This is a big deal because you truly have to be rich to be able to live in this manner.
Let me elaborate. When your finances are tight, it becomes a breeding ground for condemnation. For example, you criticize your wife for paying too much for the hairdresser, new clothes, or beauty products. When you are in abundance and you have plenty of funds, you naturally can afford for her to splurge and buy nice things whenever she wants. There is no need for you to be tight with money when money is no longer an issue. Unless of course, when you were poor the “spirit of poverty” gripped you so tightly that when you became rich the spirit of poverty still ruled and you complained about the misuse of every penny spent.
This is the curse that many wealthy Christians have fallen into. They feel that it’s their responsibility to protect their wealth. Oh, how evil this spirit can be. God wants to free everyone of us from the grips of this spirit, but it can only be done while you are living with tight finances. This is why the Holy Spirit deals with many of us on this issue when we are broke. Remember, when Israel was in the wilderness God said, “I caused you to fast, lo, these 40 years in the wilderness, and live on manna so that you might know man should not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.”
God was giving us the secret to breaking the spirit of poverty. There is only one source of wealth, whether you are rich or poor, and it comes from the word of God. This word is the sole source of wealth. Obedience to His word is to follow this divine treasure vein of prosperity. God taught this to Israel, and Jesus is releasing the same message to you and I. Condemnation is a prison that will keep you poor no matter what your bank account looks like. Paul, standing in the power of this revelation, said, “If the government of condemnation was impressive, how about this government of affirmation? Bright as that old government was, it would look downright dull alongside this new one. If that makeshift arrangement impressed us, how much more this brightly shining government installed for eternity.”
In summation, in order for God to give us moneybags, He must free us from the spirit of condemnation. Judas, who handled Jesus’ moneybag, was not called a thief until after he was “caught” condemning Mary for wasting the $30,000 box of perfume upon Jesus’ feet. It was his act of condemnation that ended up condemning him to suicide. What God is freeing you from is the same spirit that was on Judas. It’s the same spirit that will make you a stingy wealthy person. There are many who might say, “But what is the alternative? Are we to be wasteful?” No, of course not. The solution is that we are to be obedient, just as Moses said, and live from every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.
The purpose of God having us go without money is to make us completely obedient to His still small voice in what we do with our little pennies from heaven. Guaranteed, if we are faithful in little He will make us rulers over much. Before long, the obedient people will be handling billions from heaven.
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Richard Gazowsky pastors a church in San Francisco called The Voice of Pentecost, and is also president of Christian WYSIWYG Filmworks. He has directed the films, “Guardians” and “The Roman Trilogy.”