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In this daily Bible reading is the continuation of genealogies: those recorded in the days of King Hezekiah and King Jotham of Judah and King Jeroboam of Israel. Of note in these genealogies is a man named Jabez. This account says that Jabez was more honorable that his brothers and that Jabez called on God saying, “Oh that Thou would bless me indeed, and enlarge my borders, and that Thy name might be with me, and that Thou wouldst keep me from harm, and that it may not pain me!”  God granted what he requested.

Many ‘prosperity’ preachers today use this verse to tell people how to get rich. Just ask God like Jabez did. For the Bible does say, “Ask and you shall receive.” But these preachers are ignoring the part where Jabez was more honorable than his brothers.

Prosperity is conditional on one’s obedience to God. The Bible says that if a person delights in the Lord and meditates on His Word, then he or she will prosper.  Additionally, the Bible  says that if a person fears the Lord and walks in His ways, he or she will prosper.

The Bible also says that if you delight yourself in the Lord He will give you the desires of your heart. For then the desires of your heart will be in line with what is good and right. Evidently, Jabez was such a person. God prospered him because of his character.