You’ve heard the old adage, “It’s not what you know, but who you know that counts.” Almost every person in the business world understands and has experienced its meaning. I’m not sure where this saying came from but I do know that it speaks of something found in the Word of God that is very meaningful. I’m referring to favor. Listen to some passages from the Old Testament that refer to this subject…
Blessed is the one you choose and bring near, to dwell in your courts! We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house, the holiness of your temple! (Psalm 65:4 ESV)
Lord, you were favorable to your land; you restored the fortunes of Jacob. (Psalm 85:1 ESV)
O Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you; I will praise your name, for you have done wonderful things, plans formed of old, faithful and sure. (Isaiah 25:1 ESV)
For thus said the Lord of hosts, after his glory sent me to the nations who plundered you, for he who touches you touches the apple of his eye: (Zechariah 2:8 ESV)
Blessed is the one God chooses, not the one who is the best. The fortunes of Jacob were restored not because of what Jacob did, but because of the God that Jacob knew. God did wonderful things for you and me not because of what we are, but because before we were, God formed a plan. The apple of God’s eye deserves to be plundered, but God never breaks faithful relations with them.
There are many in the business world that feel this way regarding the matter… “For success, and especially to obtain employment, one’s knowledge and skills are less useful and less important than one’s network of personal contacts.”
I can’t tell you the number of times I have listened to an entrepreneur recount their success by attempting to convince me that he or she are “self-made millionaires.” They love to tell the stories that point to the fact that so often they picked themselves up by their own bootstraps. It doesn’t take much prodding to find however, the time and place when they were helped by someone that simply had favor toward them. The fact is, no one ever made it without help from an outside source that simply helped because they could. NO ONE! If you are successful it’s because you had help. Someone had favor toward you. A parent, a close relative, a mentor, a group of customers… someone gave you favor to get you started. This reality of favor being necessary in order to get your start toward success isn’t just a common thing, it is absolute. Personally, I think it should be made into a law much like the law of gravity.
Now, listen to a verse from the New Testament that speaks on this subject:
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God… (Ephesians 2:8 ESV)
Where’s the word favor in this verse? It’s Grace. Yes grace. No matter how you look at it, God saved me by Grace which is unmerited favor. Favor toward me even though I didn’t earn it or deserve it.
Now, if this concept is so well known in the business world, shouldn’t it be a very powerful way to present the Gospel?