“Jesus Promised a Hundred-Fold Return on Our Giving”

Jesus did promise a hundred-fold return to those who make certain sacrifices. Let’s read exactly what He said:

Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life (Mark 10:29-30).

Notice that this is not a promise to those who give money to preachers, as is often claimed by prosperity preachers. Rather, this is a promise to those who leave their homes, farm and relatives to go preach the gospel far and wide. Jesus promised such people “a hundred times as much now in the present age.”

But was Jesus promising that such people would become literal owners of one hundred houses or farms as some prosperity preachers claim? No, not any more than He was promising that such people would acquire one hundred literal mothers and one hundred literal children. Jesus was only saying that those who leave their homes and families would find that fellow believers would open their homes to them and welcome them as family among their families.

Notice Jesus also promised persecution and eternal life to such people. This reminds us of the context of the entire passage, in which the disciples had watched a rich young ruler who wanted eternal life walk sadly away as Jesus declared, “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (Mark 10:25).

The disciples were shocked at Jesus’ statement, and wondered then about their own chances of entering God’s kingdom. They reminded Jesus of what they had left behind to follow Him. That is when Jesus spoke His “hundred-fold” promise.

All of this being so, it is incredible that any prosperity preacher would attempt to persuade us that Jesus was promising a literal hundred-fold material return that would soon make us incredibly wealthy in a short time, in light of the fact that, seconds before, Jesus had told a rich man to sell everything and give the proceeds to charity if he wanted eternal life!

There are many other scriptures that prosperity preachers twist besides the ones we’ve considered, but space limits us in this book. Beware!