The Ten Commandments of Biblical Success
It’s important that as you pursue purpose you define what success looks like to you. It can be easy to get caught in the numbers game when you think of success. To some, the number of followers, clients, degrees, and dollars are their idea of success, and to the world, this makes a person pretty successful.
According to the world’s definition, success is a culmination of accomplishments, the attainment of wealth, prosperity, popularity, or status. It’s a definition that is clothed in self-glory and personal pleasure, but when you’re pursuing the things of God, success takes on a deeper meaning.
King Solomon can testify to this truth. He spent most of his life chasing what is known to be “success.” He built a successful empire, had several hundred wives and about 300 concubines. He accumulated all this wealth, properties, and knowledge and found out the hard way that all of these things pale in comparison to the glory and success of knowing and pursuing God.
God is not concerned with status, numbers, popularity, or wealth. He’s concerned with the heart. He’s concerned about your motives. He’s concerned with how you will use these things to build His Kingdom, not your own. The only way to make sure that your God-given vision is successful is to submit it to Him and follow His blueprint of success, which is found in His Word. So if you want to be successful in His eyes, it’s important that you use His Word as the standard to measure your success. Let’s take a look at how the Bible defines success.
The 10 Commandments of Biblical Success
1) Realize that success comes from God.
(1 Samuel 2:9; 1 Chronicles 12:18; Deuteronomy 8:18)
Success will never be found in the world, and you will never be successful in your own strength. Success comes from God. It’s God who empowers you with the gifts, talents, and ability to do what He calls you to do. When you operate in His plans and remember Him in all you do, He will cause you to succeed.
2) Seek His guidance.
(2 Chronicles 26:5; Psalm 119:105; Matthew 6:33)
When we spend time in the Word and seek His face, He leads us into all truth, instruction, and provision. God blesses and prospers our efforts when we intentionally seek His face. He wants us to share His plans with us to help us succeed. But we have to seek Him. Are you spending time in prayer and fasting? Are you spending time in your Word? His Word provides us with all the instruction and guidance we need. By seeking His instruction, He will give you the guidance to successfully carry out your God-given purpose.
3) Seek accountability & wise counsel.
(Proverbs 11:4, 15:22, 19:20-21, 20:18)
If you’re doing something you’ve never done before or you're struggling in developing systems, plans, and routines that would make you successful, why wouldn’t you seek out the help you need? Accountability and wise counsel are there for encouragement, strategy, and support, which are hard to come by when you’re laying the foundation of your God-given vision. It’s foolish to believe that you have all the answers or that you can do it by yourself. Accountability and wise counsel are there to help you enlarge, further, and challenge you as you pursue your purpose and goals. Put yourself in a better position to succeed by seeking out the wisdom and experience of those that are qualified to support you in your purpose. Hire a coach. Seek out a mentor in your niche. Find an accountability partner. Your plans will be stronger, effective, and likely to succeed when you surround yourself with accountability.
4) Commit your plans to the Lord.
(Proverbs 16:3; Colossians 3:23)
What are your motives for your work? Plans fail when we set them from a superficial or self-serving motive. Are you working to serve the Lord, or are you working to serve yourself? Don’t let there be anything that holds you back from fully dedicating your work to Him. Trust and depend on God for your success while working like everything depends on you. God can’t bless your efforts if you don’t make the plans and work towards them. Step out in faith and trust that as you commit your plans to Him He will bless your efforts.
5) Be strong & courageous.
Do you have a large task at hand when it comes to pursuing your God-given vision? So did Joshua when God called him to finally lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. Joshua served and trained under the leadership of Moses, and after Moses died, He was charged to carry out God’s promise of deliverance to the Israelites. I’m pretty sure that Joshua wasn’t ready to carry the burden of that calling. That’s why God had stressed to him three times (Joshua 1:6,7,9) to be strong and courageous. God knew that it was going to be a challenge to carry out His God-given calling, but because He spent years training and preparing Joshua, it was a task that He was already equipped to do. He just had to believe that God’s never failing hand was on him as he took a bold and courageous step of faith. Your purpose and calling will come with challenges, but those challenges won’t be anything that God hasn’t already prepared you to handle. Be strong and courageous and trust that because He has called you, He’s with you and has prepared you to do this work successfully well in advance.
6) Obey his instructions & meditate on His Word.
(Joshua 1:6-8; 1 Kings 2:-3; Psalm 1:2-3)
God’s Word is our instruction manual to live our best lives. It applies to everything, including your God-given vision. If you want to be successful in carrying His vision out, you have to follow and meditate on His instructions. Think about it. Have you ever attempted to put something together by skipping the instructions because you thought, “I don’t need these instructions. It’s simple! I can do it myself,” to find out that the project turned out the wrong way or you missed some vital steps because you didn’t take the time to follow instructions? This is the outcome when we fail to obey and meditate on God’s Word. We may finish the project but because we failed to follow His instructions or tried to cut the corners, we missed out on having a quality, finished project. Following His instructions and meditating on His Word is what fast tracks our success. We fail when we think we can achieve the same results in our own ability or by ignoring His Word. His Word serves as our blueprint for success. Follow and mediate on His instructions and you will succeed.
7) Attribute your success to God.
Remember that apart from God, you can do nothing (John 15:5), so it’s important to keep your pride in check. It is He who is accomplishing the work through you. It’s His work, you are just the instrument. Be humble. God doesn’t care about your status, achievements, or riches, and neither should you. He values your love and relationship with Him above all else. Therefore, don’t boast in your achievements; boast in His love, righteousness, and mighty power.
8) Seek out wisdom & understanding.
(Proverbs 3:13-18, 19:8)
In order to be successful in God’s eyes, we must seek out wisdom and understanding. The Bible tells us that if we love ourselves and what we do, we will seek out wisdom and understanding. This will lead to blessing and prosperity. It is God’s wisdom that will lead us down the right path to carry out this God-given vision. It is with wisdom and understanding that we’ll know exactly how to focus our efforts and go about executing His plan.
9) Fear & humble yourself before the Lord.
(Proverbs 22:4; James 4:10)
To fear God means to honor and revere the Lord while humbling yourself under His instruction and hand. He cannot lift you up when you don’t even acknowledge Him in your plans or success. Too many of us want a platform, not a purpose. We want to build our on Kingdom, not His. Instead of thinking you can do this in your own will and that you deserve the spotlight and the praise, humble yourself (i.e. submit to His plan and perfect timing). When you honor and respect the Lord and place your eyes on Him, not yourself, He will lift you up at just the right time.
10) Be faithful with little & steward what you’ve been given well.
(Luke 16:10-12; 1 Peter 4:10)
It’s very important that you steward what you’ve been given well. So many of us are focused on the next season that we’re missing what God is trying to grow and develop in us now. My pastor once said that you will never get “next” until you are faithful with “now.” So my question to you is: are you being faithful in your current season now? A calling or vision isn’t an excuse to forfeit current responsibilities and roles. Work toward your future while being faithful during the meantime. When God sees that you are faithful with today, He will be able to bless and prosper you with tomorrow.
As you redefine your definition of success, make sure that God is at the center. He wants to prosper you in His purpose for you. Seek out accountability and wise counsel. Put yourself in the position to receive wisdom and understanding. Fear Him and be faithful with what He’s given you, but most importantly, “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need,” (including success).