Are Your Christian Motives For Success Centered Upon Glorifying God or Yourself?
For the greatest success, it’s important to understand our true motives for whatever it is we do. This is especially true for whatever it is we do for God.
23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.
Sometimes Christians can become mixed-up about why they’re doing anything in the Lord’s Name. This is why it’s wise to check ourselves against Colossians 2:23-24. I’ve confessed verse 23 over the years many times to remind myself that whatever I do it must be for the Lord and it should glorify Him and not myself.
Keeping our motives in check for doing God’s work will bring success in whatever we do because verse 3:24 in Colossians tells us that we will receive the inheritance as our reward. That inheritance is the blessing of Abraham that came upon us because of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross.
We Can Look To Abram (Abraham) For A Model of How To Have The Right Christian Motives For Success
While Abram’s wealth was the result of the blessing of God, it was not the objective of God. God was not making a covenant with Abram for the purpose of making him wealthy or for Abram to be glorified himself through his great wealth. God was making a covenant with Abram for the purpose of bringing redemption to mankind through His son, Jesus Christ. The prosperity Abram experienced was a “benefit” of his obedience to God and putting Him at the center of whatever he did. Within the “blessing of Abram” stated in Genesis 12:1-3, God clearly states His purpose for this covenant – “and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”
When God spoke to Abram in Genesis 12:3, He had Christ in mind because the promise was made to both Abram and Christ. This should prove that the blessing of Abram was not merely a material blessing of wealth. To reduce it to a financial blessing dishonors what God accomplished in Christ for us. Yet, in Christ, we’ve been made prosperous in all areas including money. It’s important to keep reminding ourselves that prosperity was not the purpose for God sending Christ, but for redemption of mankind. However, we do have a financial benefit.
Galatians 3:8 (ASV)
And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all the nations be blessed.
Gal. 3:16 (ASV)
Now to Abraham were the promises spoken, and to his seed. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
We now have the benefit of Abraham’s obedience to God through our redemption in Jesus Christ and His blessing by faith. Galatians 3:13-14 makes this clear.
Galatians 3:13-14 (NASB)
13. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”—14. in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Because of Jesus, we’ve been redeemed from the curse of the Law. Jesus became the curse for us. Because of Jesus, the blessing of Abraham from the Old Testament belongs to you and me. It is our inheritance. WE RECEIVE THE BLESSINGS GOD GAVE TO ABRAHAM THROUGH JESUS. Knowing this truth helps us to understand what our Christian motives for success in all of our Christian endeavors should be.
Romans 8:17 (NASB)
17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.
If we keep in mind that as heirs of God with Christ we are glorified with Him and because of Him, our Christian motives for success will always be true to the Lord and reflect Christ in all that we do.
Every now and then ask yourself what your Christian motives for success are when writing a book, preaching, teaching or representing God in any way. If you detect any thoughts that glorify yourself such as becoming wealthy, showing others how great or wise you are or hoping to get attention off of others and onto yourself, then switch to God’s loving nature and pray for the success of others serving God. Put God at the center of your life and keep your eyes on Him. Thank Him in your obedience for blessing your work through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross.