Guaranteed Results?

A few quotes from Robert Morris’ book, The Blessed Life, subtitled The Simple Secret of Achieving Guaranteed Financial Results. I am currently a part of a class that is studying this book. Some of us have reacted very positively to the book, some have had a mixed reaction, some negatively. But on the whole, I sense that the conversation itself is very healthy and open.

These are the things this book says that really got my attention. Those of you who know me probably have a pretty good idea about how I’ve been reacting to them, but I’m going to eschew editorial comments right now and just lay the ideas out for you.

I should also note that I don’t think any of these quotes are removed very far from the overall context/thrust of the book, though some may disagree with me.

Here they are:

Generosity doesn’t give to receive, but generosity is always rewarded by God. If you give, God is going to bless you…That’s just the way it is. You can’t get out of it.” (p. 191) (In case you think he is talking about spiritual blessings here, you may be interested to know that he goes on to illustrate with a story about a friend of his who – after giving away everything he had – received much more than he had originally given).

“…these truths, faithfully applied, will produce guaranteed financial results for you. That’s right, I said ‘Guaranteed financial results.’ I have chosen those words carefully and deliberately.” (p. 195).

“…I can tell you without hesitation that if you will apply the principles I’ve outlined in these chapters, you will get remarkable, positive financial results – guaranteed!” (p. 196)

“…when we give with pure motives and hearts for God, He will immediately reward us and increase us so that we can give even more.” (p. 199)

Yes, we are laying up treasure in heaven, but God also guarantees us financial results on Earth when we give with pure hearts.” (p. 199)

I know many sweet Christians who have never seen their finances multiply. And often the reason is that the money hasn’t been blessed. When you give it to the Lord first and the Lord puts his blessing on it, then, and only then, does it have the ability to multiply.” (p. 71)

You don’t give extravagant gifts out of your own thinking or planning. You need to hear God.” (p. 193). (He pretty much believes that God will specifically direct you to make a gift – and here he seems to be excluding doing so without such a direction).

“…my personal observation has been that the rich are often treated much worse than others [by churches], usually because of envy, jealousy, or greed.” (p. 140)

In reality, people who do well [financially] over the long haul tend to be people who do things God’s way…” (p. 140). I think it should be noted that the context of the word “people” here probably means “Christians”. I don’t think he’s trying to talk about wealthy non-Christians.

So let me ask you, Why would we put down someone whom God has blessed? Why would we consider something that came from the hand of God to be evil or shameful? It borders on blasphemy.” (p. 141)

As I have already said, people who have the gift of giving don’t appreciate being put down or criticized for having a successful lifestyle… For them, its not about extravagance or being ostentations; it’s about enjoying some of the fruits of God’s blessing. Nevertheless, on many occasions, I have heard pastors deride, criticize and generalize about people who have nice possessions, apparently unaware that they are ridiculing people whom God has blessed with the gift of giving.” (p. 147)

Have you ever lamented the fact that it seems that the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep getting poorer? We’d better get used to it. As the parables show, a version of that happens in the kingdom of God.” (p. 155) (Can’t resist here: I have an exclamation mark beside the place where I have marked this one).

Is there any truth to any of this? Has Morris discovered a way for us to achieve guaranteed financial success? What are your experiences with God’s “blessing” of wealth?

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