RECESSION, THE ONE WORD HAS SHOT TO THE FORE OF EVERY NATION, BUSINESS AND FAMILY; and that irrespective of whether they fully understand the meaning or not. The word has come to paint a picture of pain and dread – stock crashes, business closures, job losses, income depreciation and debt burdens. Economists worldwide are caught gaping as to where they all got it wrong. And like cancer or the HIV/AIDS epidemic, no one is sure of the cure.
But quite typical of every phenomenon, it is so easy to view recession just in terms of economics; recession occurs also in the emotional and spiritual realms. After all, what is recession is not a decline in growth and output? So when, as believers, we no longer love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength; when we lose our “first love” for the Lord, we are experiencing a spiritual recession. And when our hearts no longer find joy and excitement in our relationships, especially our covenant relationships, we must be experiencing emotional recession. We need a stimulus plan, the Bible calls it REVIVAL!
There are as many causes of economic recession as there are economic theories. But recession, economic recession, wherever it occurs in the Bible days was attributable to three main things:
- Wicked, ungodly and corrupt leadership in a nation (1Kings 17-18; 2Kings 6, 7)
- Unfaithful stewardship on the part of God’s people (Haggai .1:1-11)
- God’s judgement on either or all of the above (2Sam.24:1-13)
And so, recession is never just a measure of economic indices, it is also usually a measure of God’s pulse towards a people, especially for those nations and people that lay claim to His name. The consequences, like those of sin, may spread to others but the root cause could be traced to God’s verdict on our stewardship of power, responsibilities and resources.
The Bible offers two prescriptions: REPENTANCE and FAITHFULNESS…
- When our love for God begins to wane, the Bible enjoins us to repent and return to our first love – Rev.2:4,5
- Whenever we run short of joy, we must look into our lives and see where we have fallen short of the glory of the Lord – Psalm 51:10-12, KJV
- Whenever economic recession sets in, it’s time to labour for national repentance and individually re-examine our stewardship of our God –given resources (2Chron.7:11-14; Prov.3:9,10; Haggai 1:7,8)
- Lean times must not be mean times, we must learn to sow generously in good deeds and invest heavily “offshore” (in God’s kingdom) – “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where they will never become moth-eaten or rusty and where they will be safe from thieves. Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be” – Matthew 6:19-21, NLT
This post was originally published in Sept. 15, 2009 by buti Sam KPUTU – a guest author on this blog. Sam has a passion for the Lord, His word and His world. His desire is to see God’s word’s taught simply, believed entirely, lived practically and shared powerfully by God’s people to as many in God’s world that are yet without the basic truth of the word. Sam and Roli, his wife, serve as missionaries with CAPRO MISSIONS, a leading African missionary organization, and are currently based in Pretoria with 2 of their 3 children – Wase, Ruby and Robert. Sam is also on the International Faculty of the Haggai Institute. See more articles on Sam’s blog Basic Truth
Tithing … still relevant?
I have also summarised below the emerging trends to date from the poll you may have particpated in…
Malachi 3 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.  Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.  Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it .  And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.  And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the LORD of hosts.
Matthew 23  Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
God bless you