Do not listen to false teachers who would have you believe God can be used like a genie to grant your wishes. Don’t ever put a dollar in a church offering hoping to get more back. God is grieved by that kind of false teaching and by the parishioners who embrace it. Our prayer can’t be, “Lord, bless me,” but rather, “Lord, align me. Set my heart right. Make straight my path. Then no lion can devour me and I’ll have Your authority to do the works of Your kingdom.”
It’s always best to run from corruption before it can happen. Over and over in the Bible we see God removing His people from corrupt situations. When He commanded Noah to enter the ark, it was to remove His servant from a corrupt world. When He led Israel into the Promised Land, He was removing them from Egypt’s oppressive bondage.
Yet it’s not just a fallen world or false church leaders that corrupt. There is the issue of our own sinful hearts. When popular preachers tell us, “You can have a prosperous life today,” something inside us stirs — especially if we feel our life has been disappointing. But our motive for approaching God cannot be, “Can I get something from Him?” If it is, we are pursuing the wrong god.
I don’t say things like this very often. But I can’t backtrack on anything I’ve written here. Friend, run from the Bible study that exists only to make you feel good. Avoid the relationship that takes you deeper into pleasure-seeking and away from Christ-seeking. Find a different faith community if yours labors to get you inside the building and then fails to train you to take Jesus everywhere. Run — and know that God is pleased with your obedience.