Monday, 25 January 2016

First Things First!

At this the man’s face fell.  He went away sad, because he had great wealth    
(Mark 10:22)

Why sad?  Wealth had come to this rich man with an upright life-style.  But he’d heard that Jesus possessed the secret to eternal life - and this he wanted above all else - almost!  Jesus checked him: “One thing you lack.”

It was the money thing.  It would come between him and true discipleship.

l. MONEY THAT BLINDS.  Money is neutral – but powerful!  Let it get a grip, and you can’t see anything else.  When Vesuvius erupted in AD 79, the remains of a woman were later found, in the doorway of her house, trying to escape – but desperately holding onto her treasures.

2. MONEY THAT BLUNTS.   In a boom time or recession, worry all too often attaches itself to the subject of money.  First there’s the worry of getting it, next the worry of keeping it and thirdly the worry of parting with it!  ‘Wealth is like a viper,” said Clement, bishop of Alexandria in the second century.  Handled badly it blunts all effective discipleship.

3. MONEY THAT BLOCKS.  Judas Iscariot was the materialist of the New Testament.  And materialism can be secretive.  When Jesus told the disciples that one of them would betray Him for money, they looked at each other aghast. ‘Is it I?’ they asked.  They didn’t know about Judas.  He had kept his greed hidden.  But this was to block him out of all life and love for ever.

Thought: The greatest leaders in history all had money under control….