Christian Entitlement

In the book of Ephesians, Paul the Apostle elaborates on the mystery of the church and by preordination God’s intention to engraft both Jews and Gentiles. The one word he uses to identify the church’s association with Israel is commonwealth. At first glance, it reads more like shared wealth or socialism but that is not the intended meaning. According to the Oxford Desk Dictionary and Thesaurus commonwealth is “an independent state or community, especially a democratic republic” with history giving us a peak into its origin. There were certain states previously associated with the British Empire, but the English broke off from being under the British yoke to become independent states. Likewise, those of us who were under Satan’s power separated from the grace of God were made citizens of the commonwealth of Israel by God extending his grace through faith. Upon our acceptance of the Lord Jesus Christ, we broke off from the rule of Satan and became a state independent from the power of Satan with our charter, creed, and moral compass as the Holy Bible.

Therefore, commonwealth is not entitlement. This analogy communicates the formation of the church and its independence as a separate entity governed by the laws of God as citizens of the Most High God. In a natural economy we are employed, work, earn a paycheck, and utilize those funds for our needs and natural provisions. In a spiritual economy, the need is salvation and our provision is Jesus Christ. When it comes to the necessities of life, the priority for a child of God must first be to “seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness” and then “all these things will be added.” (St. Matthew 6:33) The added things come by God’s providence. There is no magic formula. Invoking scripture does not activate the blessings of the Lord. It is our obedience to the Word of God that releases the blessing. Also, let us keep in mind that there are individuals who will have more or less depending upon their level of ability. All will not have the same of everything.

God will not forsake his children as it is his good pleasure to give us the kingdom. This does not imply vacillating from one extremity to the next of extreme poverty or inordinate wealth, but as stewards we with great care watch over God’s property because the “earth is the Lord’s the fullness thereof, the world and they that dwell within.” (Psalm 24:1) An entitlement is a just claim or right to something and if we are undeserving of God’s salvation, how much more his gifts?