MONDAY, FEBRUARY 1
Then someone called from the crowd, “Teacher, please tell my brother to divide our father’s estate with me.” Jesus replied, “Friend, who made Me a judge over you to decide such things as that?” Then He said, “Beware! Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own.”
Luke 12:13-15 (NLT)
GUARDING AGAINST GREED
An English professor and her five sisters had grown up in a small Midwestern town during the Great Depression where her father, despite the difficulties of the time, rose to become a successful banker. When her aging father died, she and her husband hurried home for the funeral. As they comforted her poor mother, they noticed in mute amazement that everything in the house had been tagged by the other sisters with their names—Judy’s, Margaret’s, Annie’s. She and her husband were appalled but said nothing. The table was set, and dinner was served amidst mounting tension and awkward conversation. Then her husband stood, stepped behind their mother’s chair, and said, “Everyone’s tagged what they want. We’re placing our tag on what we want.” And he placed his hands on their poor mother’s shoulders. Greed is always ugly. Covetousness can turn a family’s mutual mourning into a pool of hatred. (Preaching the Word-Luke)
In Luke 12, Jesus responds to a younger brother’s request to make his older brother divide the inheritance. Clearly the father has died recently and this brother’s primary concern was the money. Jesus indicates the real problem here is not a division of assets. The real problem is greed. The Greek word for greed literally means: the thirst for having more, always having more and more and still more. It is as if a man in order to quench his thirst takes a drink of salt water, which happens to be the only water that is available but it makes him even more thirsty.
Jesus used this situation to warn all of us against the deceit of greed. In the sermon, Mike mentioned that money is neither good nor evil. What matters is our attitude towards money. An attitude of contentment is the opposite of an attitude of greed. What is your attitude towards money? Are there areas in life where you are struggling to find contentment? Ask God to reveal any attitude adjustments you may need.