October 1, 2014

Is Preparedness A Sin?

Is Preparedness A Sin?

As is the case with many things in life, preparedness could be a sin. It depends on why you do it and where your heart is. God is calling some believers to preparedness, while others may seek it out on their own. Both might be able to prepare with perfect submission, others might not be able to prepare without it soon taking over. At that point they are no longer being prudent, but are consumed with the “what if’s” and the “just in cases”, giving in to fear and letting the enemy take ground.
This is not solely about prepping. It’s about anything that we put between Jesus and ourselves. Any time there is something in our lives we refuse to lay down, to turn from if the Lord asks, or simply put as more important than Him, we now choose to walk in pride and in sin.
There have been times when I wasn’t sure if I was acting out of my own flesh. Psalm 139:23 comes to mind:

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.”

If you’re not sure if you’re being led by your flesh, ask for the Lord to search you. Be willing to hear the answer and be listening for it.

 

Self-Reliance

There have been times in my life when I’ve found myself in a bad place, spiritually. I was living in the flesh and didn’t want to listen to the still small voice, so I didn’t give it a chance to speak.
If you close yourself off and do not give God a chance to convict you, or you know you’ve been convicted and you choose to ignore it, this is when self-reliance becomes pride. To prevent this, make Him the center of it, ask and rely on Him for guidance. I pray often to make sure His will is done, not mine; that He blesses me with wisdom to know how to prepare and keep me from reacting out of fear.

In Mark 8:1 the disciples watch as Jesus breaks the seven loaves and few small fish and feeds four thousand people. Just fourteen short verses later the disciples realize they had only brought one loaf of bread with them in the boat. They take Christ’s warning to “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod” as a complaint that they had forgotten food. Jesus then reminds them that he had already fed five thousand and later fed four thousand; that He is fully capable of feeding them.

The reason I bring this up is that it is okay to be self-reliant and provide for your family (true self-reliance is all but a myth, but that’s another story). However, pushing God aside because you don’t need Him and will do it yourself is prideful and we all know how God feels about pride.

While I’m talking about this verse, there are also those who take the verse the other way. They say that God worked miracles and provided food for so many. Yes, yes He did and He could again at any time. But let me ask you this, how many meals did those people listening to Jesus preach that day miraculously get from God in their life? My point is, we should prepare, being wary of self-reliance and leaving room for miracles, but not counting on them.

 

The Gift and Curse of Fear

There are many modern believers who think it is a sin to have any fear, but I think they’re only half right. I believe that fear is a gift given from God to keep us safe. When we let fear rule our lives it becomes a curse and we enter into sin.

We should use fear to motivate us to take action when faced with danger. When I started preparing I did so because I was afraid that in my situation, if there was even a medium sized survival situation, I could not provide for my family for very long. I could have responded other ways. I could have let the fear shut me down or turn me into an Ostrich. I could have also let it take over, going into debt to purchase things I will never use or need but only gave me a false sense of control.

In short, don’t be afraid of fear. Use it and don’t let it use you.

 

“Does storing food, water or other supplies show a lack of faith?”

For the vast majority of human history, humans have had to store food in one fashion or another, to make it through a season. The grocery store and the refrigerator are more recent options for storing food.

If it is a sin for us, was it a sin for humans that lived before the modern age?

Another question; what amount of food being stored would be considered a sin? Many people have enough food to last one to two weeks. Is that a sin? The point that I am trying to make is; is there a line that needs to be drawn and, if so, where do you draw it?

I personally don’t think there needs to be one drawn. I thank God for the food I eat, every time I eat. What does it matter if I bought the food five minutes ago or five years ago? The point is my gratitude for it.

 

How do we know that this compulsion to prepare is from God and not from us, or from satan?

Here is an acid test that you can use on any topic that you have this question on.

 

Pray and ask for wisdom and guidance

Pray for His will to be done and that He give you the wisdom to see what that is. James 1:5, 6 (NIV)

“If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.”

 

Ask for confirmation

Ask, if it is God, that He keep pushing and not relent. If it is not Him, to please cast the concern far from you. Ask for confirmation from sources outside of yourself. This eBook could be one such source. On a related note, I have seen thousands of people come to PreparedChristian.net looking for answers to preparedness and faith. I know God is stirring people.

 

Who does it bring glory to? Mathew 12:25 – 28

25. Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26. If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27. And if I drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 28. But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Does it bring anyone glory? If so, whom? When applying this question to preparedness, most Prepper’s prefer to keep things quiet. If no one knows you’re preparing it doesn’t bring you glory. By being prepared there is a chance you could use your preparations to bring God gory at a later date, by helping someone in need.

Satan won’t ask you to do things that bring God glory. If there is no glory involved or, it gives God glory or, there is potential to bring God glory, it is probably safe to move forward. If it only brings you glory or could bring God shame, I, personally, would not move forward.

I have Asperger Syndrome. This makes it hard for me to “hear” from God. I bring this up because, most of the time, I get no direct answer from God. With the above test, I think you can determine if moving forward on anything is a sin or not.

My rule of thumb is that if it brings God glory or has the potential to, I move forward. If it brings me glory, but God is still glorified, I still move forward. If it only brings me glory or brings God shame, I don’t move forward.

 

Aren’t we to look to God to provide?

This is one of my favorite questions because when I asked myself the following question, I could have hit myself on the forehead and said “duh!” That question was simply, “am I looking for God to provide now?”

I answered yes, but all of my food is purchased at a grocery store. My clothes wear out and new ones are purchased at a department store.

If God is keeping your clothes from wearing out or providing you manna everyday then praise Him and keep doing what you’re doing. However if you believe all of the money you earn is His and you use it to purchase your daily needs, then He is providing for you now. If you purchase supplies to prepare for the future, He is still providing for you. Just like He provided for Egypt with the seven years of stored grain during the famine that Pharaoh dreamed of and Joseph interpreted.

Here is a quote on the subject that I really like:

“If God gives you a watch, are you honoring Him more by asking Him what time it is or by simply consulting the watch?” A.W. Tozer

 

 

Comments

  1. teresamoore says:

    thank you for this site. I am sharing it w/family & friends.I have been a preper for 2 yrs now with the same ideas you have. asking GOD to guide me. HE has shown me in my quest that no matter what we go thru we need food & water. the person who prpared in the multitude prepared & that is what HE used I know HE honors all that we do to sustain others & our selves during hard times. It is not if but when things will happen (HE is showing the world even now, w/all these natural disaster)where we will need stored food & water

    • Chris Ray says:

      I’m honored that you would share the site with friends and family. God is good; He has guided me through many decisions, with prepping and with this site. He really deserves the credit. I just do the typing.

  2. To NOT prepare is a sin. To become a Hurricane Katrina-like burden because we relied on Welfare (big government or cosmic) is not a virtue all of a sudden.

    The Bible, I beleive, when it alludes to how the birds have no worries and that Jesus was homeless, signifies we should not be caught up “keeping-up-with-thejoneses”. Advocating voluntray simplicity is not the same as saying to be unprepared!

    http://www.naturalnews.com/034404_preppers_collapse_bugging_out.html

    South America is famous for their culture of not preparing for anything, for they RELY on socialism and a police state!

    Christians prepare but they are also prepared to share too (not with all the zombie/grasshoppers who scoffed at preparing, though)… Putting up home-canned goods were the norm for country folk and generations past.

    Have faith in God, but tether your camel first. This old arabic phrase is at the crux of the matter. Having faith in God doesn’t have to come at the expense of Common Sense. And in ww2 we said,”Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.”

  3. I have enjoyed reading soome of your material. I to believe that God is providing by having me buy in advance. Either way he has given me and my family the common sense to know something will happen. And I agree, no matter a pre or mid tribulation rapture leave information on what you know is happening. I’ll keep up with your site.

  4. When I read the questions above, I am reminded of the wisdom and insight God provide to Joseph when he was in Egypt. His wisdom motivated the Pharaoh to allow him to oversee the storing up of food during the plentiful years to prepare for the lean years. Not only did it save people in Egypt, it also saved his own family that came in desperation to Egypt from his homeland because of the famine. When Jesus fed the multitudes in Galilee, he had his disciples find those who had come prepared, and multiplied the benefits of their foresight to provide for the others.

  5. I personally haven’t had a problem reconciling my Christianity with prepping. We felt led to start stock piling a little food, maybe 3 months worth about 2 years ago. Last year, my husband broke his leg really badly and was out of work for 2 months. At the time we were paying 2 mortgages because we owned half of his parents’ house, and they still lived in it. Not only did we keep up with all our bills (on only his military retirement) but we didn’t have to default on a loan and have his parent’s house taken away. SHE however, is telling my son that we don’t trust God to take care of us. If He didn’t take care of us for those 2 months, by telling us a year earlier to put up food, I don’t know what happened. I equate it to this: If you feel things could get bad (not end of the world bad, as we won’t be here if that happens, I do believe in the rapture) financially and DON’T prepare, it’s like walking off a tall building and expecting God to catch you. Maybe God is taking care of you by allowing that over-time so you can put away a bit extra. The only debt we have was due to having to pay her a couple thousand because when the house sold and our mortgage got paid off, we owed some to make up half. My human-ness wants to say, if things do go south, don’t come to my house for free food. I emailed a link to this page, hopefully she’ll actually read it, but I sort of doubt it.

    • Chris Ray says:

      I believe as you, that God had you prep for a reason. Your mother in law has a very common and mislead belief. I’m going to send you an email and a copy of my eBook for you to send to her. That and prayer are about all you can do.
      My thanks to you and your husband for your service.

  6. denise merilatt says:

    Do you have study guide materials for leading biblical study on prepping? Or know where they can be found? I love this site. So informational.

  7. I really appreciate your website. We (my mother and myself) have had several dreams and visions concerning the future. Many friends and family think we’re crazy when we bring up preparing and future events. The common remark is, “I plan on being raptured out before things become to bad.” Who says it has anything to do with the rapture? We have devasting natural disasters all the time.

  8. i dont know where to start or where to store my prepping goods

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