Sunday, November 16, 2008

Loving Money instead of God?

In the past few weeks of financial upset it is so easy to be distracted by the goings on. Stock Market volatility. The fear of what the new administration with the new congress will do with taxes. And the list goes on and on. This all comes and goes which is why it is a good thing to hold onto the provisions of God for us with a dead hand grasp. This is the natural state of human nature to be always tempted to curve inward. "What will happen to me?"

Philippians 4:10 I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. 11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me. ESV

We see a great comfort from our St Paul in the promise that in Jesus we can do all things. This is another example of how we are to be in bible reading, prayer and receiving his gifts on a regular basis. Thereby nourishing our faith in his good gifts. Through these means God has promised to be there for us to strengthen and to ensure that nothing happens in our lives will rob us of our faith. This faith is again nourished through the means of grace as promised in scripture. This is why those means are under such attack from our enemy and the unwary Christian falls victim to the doubts raised because it sounds so reasonable.

“What can it profit to the soul that the body should be in good condition, free, and full of life; that it should eat, drink, and act according to its pleasure; when even the most impious slaves of every kind of vice are prosperous in these matters? Again, what harm can ill-health, bondage, hunger, thirst, or any other outward evil, do to the soul, when even the most pious of men, and the freest in the purity of their conscience, are harassed by these things? Neither of these states of things has to do with the liberty or the slavery of the soul.” *

Matthew 6: 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” ESV

These promises given us by Jesus sets us free. We do not have to have a strangle hold on money but rather use it to serve our neighbour as befitting our calling. God grant us repentance from the idolatry of trusting in our wealth rather than in his promises.

In the name of Jesus. †

*Martin Luther: "On Christian Freedom" (1520)

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