Greed, The Prosperity Gospel, & 666

How does greed tie in with 666 and the prosperity gospel? That's what we're talking about in this episode. Bible verses to reference: Matthew 6:24-34; Matthew 19:23-24; 1 Timothy 6:9-10.
10The one who loves silver is never satisfied with silver, and whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with income. This too is futile. 11 When good things increase, the ones who consume them multiply; what, then, is the profit to the owner, except to gaze at them with his eyes? 12The sleep of the worker is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of the rich permits him no sleep. Ecclesiastes 5:10-12 CSB

Testimony of how I got to this topic
  • Independent study of the Word is important; give yourself time with God to allow Him to talk to you
  • Going beyong the material given to you by the Church you attend will do wonders for your relationship with God
  • I was looking for Revelation 17:15 and did a Google search for "Revelation sea people"
  • I found this an article on Revelation and the sea[1] which had an interesting couple of paragraphs that inspired this episode
As for the beast himself: I have come to believe that the number of the beast, 666, is a reference to 1 Kings 10:14. In this passage 666 is the amount of gold that Solomon received annually. Any studied Jew would have recognized that Solomon was doing a number of things that God had said not to do (Deuteronomy 17:16-17). Therefore “666” would be a good metaphor for worldly wealth and for the love of same.

So back to Revelation; we find that the beast of greed for worldly wealth comes out of the people of the world. Then there arises a philosophy within God’s people that it is okay to lust after the greed of the world. This would be the second beast who is also a false prophet. He teaches salvation through wealth.

Jesus' death and resurrection dealt a mortal wound to greed -- or at least it should have been. The resurrection proves the relative worthlessness of seeking salvation from wealth. Nevertheless, greed survived and flourished among both the people of the world and among God’s people until God throws greed into the lake of fire. The International Teaching Ministry of Douglas Jacoby [1]

What are the two beasts?
  • The beasts are talked about in Revelation 13: one beast comes out of the sea and the other comes out of the land
  • The sea represents nations and people (Revelation 17:15) and the land represents God's people (Revelation 12:6)
  • The beast of the land is a false prophet and deceives the people of God
The war between good and evil is about worship.
  • Greek root of the word "anti" from "anti-Christ" means in place of or in opposition to[2]
  • Satan's goal is to be worshipped as a god (Isaiah 14:13); he wants to take Christ's place
  • A false worship system is what Satan has set up to distract people from the Most High God
666 & Solomon?
  • Solomon received 666 pieces of gold (1 Kings 10:14)
  • Solomon stored up tons of wealth and had many wives (Deuteronomy 17:16-17)
  • Interestingly the story preceeding Solomon receiving this amount of gold is that of the visit from the Queen of Sheba when Solomon flaunts his wealth and wisdom.
9But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. 1 Timothy 6:9-10 CSB
The prosperity gospel[3]
  • Most of the voices dominating "Christianity" are prosperity gospel pastors (e.g., Joel Osteen, Creflo Dollar)
  • A little lie in the midst of truth is what the devil uses to get people (Galatians 5:9)
  • People quickly become obssessed with "sowing a seed" and "manifesting"; the message is that you should worship God for your own personal gain/benefit here in this life
  • Greed has people losing sight of God's message
    1. Example 1: a fellow believer refused to rent because they think its giving away money and a waste of money, but their end goal is to buy a duplex and have someone rent it out to pay their mortgage. That's like selling crack even though you wouldn't take it or let your friends/family take it.
    2. Example 2: In high school my friends and I started competing to see who could make $300 on a paycheck; I worked 50 hours a week, worked 6 days a week, and skipped lunch (even though that was illegal). I was completely wiped out when I got home and on my day off. I didn't even get to enjoy the money I made.
  • Warning signs that greed is overshadowing the Kingdom
    1. Not spending time with your family
    2. Not studied the Word, attending Bible study, etc.
    3. Not fellowshipping with your fellow believers
    4. Not spending time doing God's work (e.g., community service)
    5. Not recognizing the blessings you have (many of us are living better than most people in the world)
    6. Forgetting that this Earth is temporary
23Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:23-24 CSB
The mark of the beast is about mentality: what you think (forehead) and what you do (hand)

The Biblical end of the world and climate change are basically the same thing—mankind's greed (sin) is the root of our planet going haywire
  • Earthquakes (Revelation 6:12—among others)
  • Pestilence (Matthew 24:7)
  • Famine (Revelation 18:8)
The Word says that there will be "birth pangs" (John 16:21; 1 Thessalonians 5:3) before the end and 2020 has definitely been giving us a taste these signs:
  • Wars and rumors of wars (Matthew 24:6-7)
    • Azerbaijan vs. Armenia[4]
    • US vs. Iran[5]
    • China vs. Hong Kong[6]
    • China vs. India[7]
    • China vs. Taiwan[8]
  • Earthquakes[9]
  • Hurricanes [10]
  • Murder Hornets[11]
  • West coast fires[12]
  • Locusts[14]
  • COVID-19
Financial literacy is important but be careful not to let money matters become an idol in your life.
There will be a time when you have to choose between material wealth and God—you cannot serve both God and money.
No one can serve two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. Matthew 6:24 CSB

Now it the time to be focused on the Kingdom, not the world
Invest in your relationship with God
Invest in your relationship with your fellow man (family/friends)
Invest in your community
25“Therefore I tell you: Don’t worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26Consider the birds of the sky: They don’t sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth more than they? 27Can any of you add one moment to his life span by worrying? 28And why do you worry about clothes? Observe how the wildflowers of the field grow: They don’t labor or spin thread. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these. 30If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t he do much more for you—you of little faith? 31So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. 34Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:25-34 CSB

References & Footnotes

  1. Douglas Jacoby. "Q&A 1486 – Why is there no more sea in Revelation 21?". The International Teaching Ministry of Douglas Jacoby.
  2. "Strong's G473. αντι". Blue Letter Bible; visited September 29, 2020
  3. "Prosperity Theology". Wikipedia; visited September 27, 2020
  4. Lucian Kim. "Fighting Between Armenia And Azerbaijan Threatens To Spiral Into Full-Blown War". NPR. September 28, 20202
  5. "Iran crisis: US 'ready for serious negotiations' with Tehran". BBC. January 9, 20202
  6. John Ruwitch. "As China Imposes New Hong Kong Law, U.S. And Allies Take Steps To Retaliate". NPR. July 2, 2020
  7. Indrani Bagchi. "India shoots down China’s 1959 Line". Times of India. September 30, 2020
  8. James Griffiths. "When it comes to international recognition, even when Taiwan wins, it loses". CNN. September 29, 2020
  9. "USGS Magnitude 2.5+ Earthquakes, Past Day". United States Geological Survey; visited September 29, 2020
  10. Chris Dolce. "All the Records the 2020 Hurricane Season has Broken So Far". The Weather Channel. September 22, 20202
  11. Mike Baker. "‘Murder Hornets’ in the U.S.: The Rush to Stop the Asian Giant Hornet. The New York Times. May 2, 2020
  12. "California and Oregon 2020 wildfires in maps, graphics and images". BBC. September 18, 2020
  13. TruthUnedited. "Did You Know All This is Happening?". YouTube. September 18, 2020
  14. David Njagi. "The Biblical locust plagues of 2020". BBC. August 6, 2020
  15. Associated Press. "Many Venezuelans Struggle to Put Food on the Table in Crisis". US News. February 28, 2020

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Author Image Author Image I love reading the Word of God. With prayer God's Word reveals so much: from comfort to temperance, from perspective to affirmation. Digging into the depths of the Word, cross-referencing history, language and time differences, is a passion of mine. In March of 2015 I decided to go back through the Bible doing an in depth study on each section I read. Eventually I decided to share my journal of notes as I partake in this journey. I hope you are blessed by God and inspired to pursue a deeper relationship with Him. I love reading and learning about God, nature, and science. I am interested in how it all connects. The Creator's fingerprints are all over his creation. We can learn so much about Him and how we came to be by exploring the world around us. Join me as I explore the world and draw closer to the One who created it all.
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