Dealing With The Spirit of Poverty, Part 6


June 1, 2018


We’ve been talking about the Law of Sowing and Reaping, and how it is so integral to the Law of Prosperity.  As noted last week, it is the absolute antithesis of the Spirit of Poverty.  Let’s see how far we can get in today’s discussion in understanding the poverty mindset and the spirit that drives it.


Matthew 6:24: "No man can serve or be in bondage to two different controllers and opposing systems of [mind] control: for he will rather detest and persecute the one and be consumed with desire for the other; or else he will adhere to and care for the one and detest and think in opposition to the other.  You cannot serve and yield to God [and His mode of thinking and operating], and at the same time be in bondage to [and have confidence in] the Spirit of Poverty and Avarice." (RAC Translation and Amplification)


Poverty and avarice do go together.  The spirit of poverty is part of the curse that came upon mankind and the world as a result of Adam and Eve's partaking of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil -- God's holy portion in the Garden, reserved to Himself.


The Spirit of Poverty & Avarice was born when Adam & Eve ate of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.  They robbed God of His portion.  They went from a divinely-supplied economy to a work-based economy where they had to engage in hard, painful toil and sweat just to eat.


See Genesis 4:5-8:  Abel brings "the firstlings of his flock, and the fat thereof."  This is the first, the best of what he has.  The term "and the fat thereof" in the Hebrew is a metaphor for the absolute finest.


Cain, on the other hand, "brought of the fruit of the ground an offering."  The Hebrew word used here for "offering" is minchah: a bloodless, costless donation or tribute.  He didn't bring the firstfruits of his harvest: he brought that which was left over, that which wouldn't cost him anything or take away from his own supply.


Consider the following:


1. The Spirit of Poverty is totally self-centered.  It only thinks of its own needs or desires.


2. The Spirit of Poverty is Avarice.  It is the personification of greed.  It is never satisfied with "enough."


3. Corollary to greed is hoarding.  People driven by this spirit have the need to store up "for emergencies" -- but not just normal "storing up."  They hoard, they gather to excess, they put away extra food, extra groceries, extra money, extra tools and supplies, extra anything, to the point that things spoil, they rot, and they decay in storage.


Luke 12:15-21:  And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.  And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?


And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.  And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.


But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?   So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.


4.  The Spirit of Poverty is totally driven by the Fear of Death.  The Fear of Man works hand in hand with the Spirit of the Fear of Death to keep one from appearing to be in need or dire straits to those around.


5.  The Spirit of Poverty robs people financially.  It is a thief who comes to steal, kill and destroy.  It deprives them of trust in God and in His Word.


6.  The Spirit of Poverty causes Christians to short-change God at every hand.  When they tithe, they tithe on the "net" rather than the "gross" paycheck, and then wonder why their money never increases or multiplies to more than supply every possible need.  They only see the actual amount of what they get to deposit in the bank or receive in cash instead of recognizing that the money deducted for payroll taxes, insurance and social security is still part of their income.  Thus, when they pay their tithe, they make God wait in line until the taxes are paid, their life insurance or health insurance is paid, and their social security retirement has been paid.


Because this isn't money they get to spend -- at least right now -- they treat it as though it isn't income.  It is a relatively small portion of their total income, but it is still part of it.  Hence, they cheat God of a portion of His money.  It isn't any different than Adam taking one bite of one piece of fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.  He didn't take the whole tree: just one bite of one piece of fruit.  The curse came nonetheless.


7.  The Spirit of Poverty brings and promotes doubt and unbelief.  It tricks you into doubting God's Word; and specifically, Matthew 6:30-34.


8.  The Spirit of Poverty stands in direct opposition to the promises of God.  It opposes the Blessing of Abraham.  It opposes and exalts itself above the name, the authority, the power, the character, the personality and the very essence of the Lord Jesus Christ.


II Corinthians 10:4-5:  For the weapons and instruments of our war and executed actions [against Satan] do not have their origins and [weak, impotent] operation in natural flesh and human abilities, but they are skillful, potent and powerful – like dynamite – through God to the demolition and extinction of all fortified and guarded places of opinions in opposition,


Bringing down violently and demolishing (to total extinction) all mental reasonings and thought processes, and every mental barrier or arrogant and self-elevated attitude that justifies itself in opposition to the knowledge of God; bringing into captivity and making a prisoner every perception of the intellect and every mental purpose or determination to the compliance and submission of Christ and His anointing [in the same way that He complied with the will and desire of the Father]; (RAC Translation and Amplification


Let me pause momentarily to talk about something that is still very real in the body of Christ and how it cooperates with the spirit and mindset of poverty.


There is a doctrine that has permeated the body of Christ during the past roughly 150 years that is rooted in the Fear of Death.  It is the “Tribulation/Rapture” theology.  Because of the Fear of Death, many Christians fear a period commonly referred to as “the Great Tribulation,” despite the fact that there is no such phraseology anywhere in the Word.  Based on a misunderstanding and misinterpretation of some things that both Daniel and John witnessed, this so-called “tribulation” period could last anywhere from 3 ½ to 7 years.


Because of the pictures that John draws in the book of Revelation folks draw the conclusion that there is no way they could survive a period like that.  They fear death because they’ve been contaminated by that spirit and fail to take into account the first chapters of Revelation which draw a crystal clear picture of an overcoming Bride who is able to overcome, and as a result they look for a “Rapture” event that will snatch them out of the ongoing doom and gloom.


They neglect all the pictures that John uses in wrapping up the book of Revelation as he talks about a very victorious Bride of Christ.  They ignore John’s statement, which reads as follows:


Revelation 19:6-9: And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.  Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.  And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.  And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.


Are you seeing it?  “Let us be glad and rejoice and give honour to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come and His wife hath made herself ready!”  What did she have to do to make herself “ready?”  Overcome Satan.  Overcome all the pressures (Greek: thlipsis - tribulation) that come upon the world.  Overcome the three families of Fear.  Overcome their flesh.  Walk in love and purity.  Be the true representation of Jesus Christ’s counterpart and other self.


OK.  Enough of my digression.  Back to our list of characteristics.


9.  The Spirit of Poverty rejects the fact that Jesus' death on the Cross cancelled out its very existence.


10. The Spirit of Poverty revels in want, in need, in doing without, in living an austere, sub-normal life on the bleeding edge of death.


Before we continue this list, let’s reprise Jesus’ statement in Matthew 6:24.


Matthew 6:24: "No man can serve or be in bondage to two different controllers and opposing systems of [mind] control: for he will rather detest and persecute the one and be consumed with desire for the other; or else he will adhere to and care for the one and detest and think in opposition to the other.  You cannot serve and yield to God [and His mode of thinking and operating], and at the same time be in bondage to [and have confidence in] the Spirit of Poverty and Avarice." (RAC Translation and Amplification)


Before we try to finish the list of characteristics that describe the Spirit of Poverty, let’s touch on perhaps what we can describe as the root of this spirit, and that is a Spirit of Deception.


Jesse Duplantis has a phrase the Holy Spirit has given him which accurately describes the results that come from the Spirit of Deception – “Genetically Altered Bible” or “Genetically Altered Scripture.”


We have a term for this.  We call it “philosophy.”


One of the ways in which the Spirit of Deception works is to get folks to focus on the traditions of man.  Perhaps the best description of the “Traditions of Man” is this:

The traditions of man are nothing more and nothing less than the accumulation of ideas formulated from one generation to another (and passed on down throughout the generations) derived from experiences which resulted from the contamination of doubt and unbelief, and resulting in personal failure to see and experience the promises of God established by His Word.


Let me put it another way.


Let’s say that someone a hundred years ago prayed for healing from some particular disease or affliction.  Their prayer was contaminated with doubt or unbelief, and the confession of their mouth following their prayer for healing was an expression of hope that God would hear their prayer and perhaps feel kindly enough towards them to grant them their request.


They didn’t receive their healing.  They told their friends or family members that “it must not have been God’s will.”  The friends or family members took that statement as Truth and began to repeat it; and when they themselves needed healing and failed to receive it because of negative confessions or expressions of doubt, “it must not have been God’s will” became etched in stone.


Subsequent generations picked up on it and repeated it.  It became a tradition and a doctrine which subsequently became embedded in the teaching and preaching of ministers.


And it was a flat-out lie which completely ignored all of the Scriptures containing God’s promises of healing, deliverance, restoration and wholeness.


That same kind of tradition got picked up in the lie that “God doesn’t want you to prosper and be in health.”  In III John 2, the word translated “prosper” is the word eudoo, which means: to succeed in reaching, to succeed in business affairs.  The lie is part and parcel of the mindset and Spirit of Poverty.  That lie is what has led many to vow a vow of poverty because they believe that God wants them “humble,” as though poverty has something to do with true humility.


Take a look at some of the things Jesus said, as well as both Paul and Peter.  Let’s begin with an event in which Jesus was confronted by the Pharisees:



Matthew 15:2-3:  Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread.  But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?



Matthew 15:8-9:  This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.  But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.



Mark 7:8-9:  For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.  And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.



Colossians 2:8:  Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.



I Peter 1:18-19 (NASB):  Forasmuch as you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, such as silver and gold, from your empty and profitless manner of living (vain conversation, KJV) which came by keeping the traditions of your fathers;  But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:



Still more territory to cover so let’s see if we can finish this up next week.


For those of you who’ve participated during the past three years in our Monday night Healing Prayer Conference Call, this is just a reminder that the calls have resumed on a once-a-month basis, the first Monday of each month.  If you have a need for healing, or you have friends in need of healing, here is the number to call: (712) 775-7035.  The Access Code is: 323859#.


At the same time, in case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about 10:45AM Pacific.  That conference number is (712) 770-4160, and the access code is 308640#.  We are now making these gatherings available by Skype.  If you wish to participate by video on Skype, my Skype ID is regner.capener.  If you miss the live voice call, you can dial (712) 770-4169, enter the same access code and listen in later.  The video call, of course, is not recorded – not yet, anyway.


Blessings on you!



Regner A. Capener

Temple, Texas 76504

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