Those who love money will never have enough - Ecclesiastes 5:10a (NLT)
It was a rainy Saturday afternoon and Martha was trying to organize a bunch of kids that had gathered at the church for what was supposed to be an outdoor game day. As she was going over a list of games Daisy walked up behind her "Well, It happened again." Daisy said to Martha startling her.
"Do I dare ask what?" Martha asked once she regained her composer. "I ordered in 12 dozen new pencils for Sunday School again and every single one is gone AGAIN!" "Did you just misplace them?" Martha queried. "Once maybe but three times?" Daisy answered, "Besides I opened the package and put 12 of the pencils on the table with some papers for Sunday and the rest in the supply cabinet and they’re not there, they’re ALL gone."
"Wow!" Martha exclaimed, "Those pencils must have been really special for someone to want to take them." "Not really." Daisy said shaking her head, "They’re just an assortment of blah colors with the church logo on one end. I just can't imagine why someone would want 36 dozen pencils. That's 432."
"Four hundred thirty two!" Exclaimed Randy as he walked over and kissed his wife. "I'll kiss you that many times." "Not in front of the children." Daisy scolded him. "Alright," Randy smiled, "That's not what I came here for any ways. I came here to ask you why we had so many pencils hiding in the pantry at home?"
"What are you talking about?" Daisy asked in interest. "Well," Randy answered, "I was looking for some chips to snack on and I found what looks to be over 400 pencils tucked away on the bottom shelf.." "So, that’s where you put them." chuckled Martha, "I guess your memory is going." "No." Daisy shook her head, ""I know I put them in the supply cabinet here at the church."
"What’s going on?" Randy asked a bit puzzled. "According to your wife, someone’s been taking all of her pencils for church" "Well, " Randy replied as as he went on to tell them more about the pencils he found. As he did Louie had been a short way of listening in muttered an "Uh ho" and took off.
"Did you hear that" Martha interrupted. "Yeah, I did." Daisy answered, "And it sounded like a Louie," "And I think we may have solved are pencil mystery." Randy added "Now to catch a pencil thief." "And while you're doing that dear," Daisy continued on, "I'm going to get and return some pencil." And with that she kissed her husband and left. After that Martha walked over to Randy, handed him her clipboard and said "I'll find Louie for you. I'll let you organize this rainy day game day. since you're here." and than she left to find Louie.
A philosopher once said: "I was walking in a garden when I saw a tree whose branches were so loaded with fruit that they bowed down to the earth. Some of them broke under the heavy weight. 'Poor tree!' I thought. 'Here's one who was destroyed by the overabundance of his success.' " He continued his walk and saw a shepherd at whose feet lay a dead sheep. A wild dog had killed it. All the other sheep had run into the fold and were safe. They had managed to get through a hole in the fence. But the sheep that was killed couldn't get through because it was too fat, and the dog jumped on it. And the philosopher thought, "Another life destroyed by an overabundance of blessings." The philosopher went on until he met a man hobbling along on two wooden legs with the aid of two canes. "Tell me, sir, how did you lose your legs?" asked the philosopher. "I'll tell you. In my youth I served in the army. Some of my fellow soldiers and I attacked the enemy and put them to flight. Then we began helping ourselves to the loot. My comrades just grabbed a few things and left quickly. But I wanted to take as much as I could carry. Meanwhile the enemy overtook us. My friends escaped, but I was so heavily loaded down I couldn't run fast, and I was wounded. I escaped with my life, but I lost my legs." "Indeed," said the philosopher, "success, riches and greed can all equally destroy." (Bible Illustrations)
We don’t often here the original name for the deadly sin we are going to look at today. Oxford defines it as extreme greed for wealth or material gain and is the word “avarice.” Today we will simply think of it as greed, an intense and selfish desire for food, wealth, or power
So, What's wrong with being greedy?
- Greed Is Foolish - Luke 12:21 - “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.” (NLT)
- Greed Doesn’t Satisfy
- Luke 12:15 - And he went on to say to them all, "Watch out and guard yourselves from every kind of greed; because your true life is not made up of the things you own, no matter how rich you may be."(TEV)
- Ecclesiastes 5:10 - Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness! (NLT)
- Greed Leeds To Evil - 1 Timothy 6:10 - The love of money causes all kinds of evil. Some people have left the faith, because they wanted to get more money, but they have caused themselves much sorrow. (NCV)
- Greed Hurts Self In Time Of Need
- Ecclesiastes 5:12-13 - Those who work hard sleep in peace; it is not important if they eat little or much. But rich people worry about their wealth and cannot sleep. I have seen real misery here on earth: Money saved is a curse to its owners. (NCV)
- 1 John 3:17 - If we are rich and see others in need, yet close our hearts against them, how can we claim that we love God? (TEV)
- Greed Turns On One - Proverbs 11:6 - Righteousness rescues those who are honest, but those who can't be trusted are trapped by their own greed. (TEV)
- Greed will Be Punished - Proverbs 28:20 - Honest people will lead a full, happy life. But if you are in a hurry to get rich, you are going to be punished.(TEV)
In response to greediness, Jesus has some great advice found in Luke 12. Here are a few of those verses. Luke 12:22,31-34 - Jesus said to his followers, “So I tell you, don’t worry about the food you need to live, or about the clothes you need for your body.....But seek God’s kingdom, and all the other things you need will be given to you. “Don’t fear, little flock, because your Father wants to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Get for yourselves purses that will not wear out, the treasure in heaven that never runs out, where thieves can’t steal and moths can’t destroy. Your heart will be where your treasure is.
Here's Something to Ponder
- Is there anything that you tend to horde?
- What do you do with your excess?