Culture News & Commentary

When Success Is a Curse

"Don't confuse success with blessing."

People rarely, if ever, consider that their success may not be a sign that God is blessing them, but that God has given them over to destruction: 

Proverbs 1:32 says, “For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.”

And Psalm 73:2-5, “But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped. 3 For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. 4 For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm. 5 They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men. 16 When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me; 17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.”

Many people, many believers, prosper in ungodly endeavours, thinking that they are adding to the wisdom of God. Learning from “common grace” and applying worldly wisdom in a novel way that God is honouring. When really God is letting you build up judgement against yourself and giving you time to repent from it as well. 

Don’t confuse success with blessing. Jeremiah was far more blessed than most, and yet he, in no way, can be described as a success in the world’s eyes. Paul said if there was no resurrection he and his team were to be considered the most pitied people possible. Because in a worldly sense he was not successful.

Even in a ministry sense a lot of his churches abandoned his teachings, leaders rose up to oppose him, and then he died in a horrible way. This is why he had to remind his own church plants what true faithful ministry looked like again and again. His reward in heaven will vindicate him. 

If you are ignoring God’s word and succeeding, you are on dangerous ground. And God warned you this could happen. Prosperity is as often, if not more often, a curse as it is a blessing. Because people more commonly take the wrong lessons from it, rather than the right ones.