Our Attitudes Concerning Wealth (Luke 12:13-21)

Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

21 “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God.”  (Luke 12:13-21)

Learn it:

            Jesus and the disciples are still among a crowd when someone shared a dispute that is going on between him and his brother.  Jesus does not want to be forced to pick sides and decides to teach on the heart of the issue, greed.  He teaches on this issue by using a parable.  In this parable, a farmer happens to have a good year with his harvest.  He then focuses on how he can keep it all for himself.  Notice in the story how many times the word “my” is used.  “My” crops, “my” barns, “my” grain, “my” goods.  He is really focused on himself. 

            Jesus brings his point home in verse 20 when he calls the man a “fool!”  Then he offers up the challenge of if you died tonight, “who will get what you have prepared for yourself?”  The answer is someone besides you will get it.  The point is, you do not get to keep it with you when you die.  Jesus wants people to be generous with their money and use it to build up the Kingdom of God.  He often encourages people to bless the widows and the poor with their money.  Help those who are less fortunate than you. 

Live it:

            I want to point out that this story is not condemning wealth.  The man-made gained his wealth through hard work.  But it was God that really produced the good harvest through the weather.  The thing Jesus was condemning was the man’s attitude toward wealth.  It was all about him and how comfortable he could be.  Jesus teaches we need to be generous with our wealth.  We have to use it for God’s glory and not our own.

 

            We are all going to be held accountable someday before God about how we use our money.  It’s an area in my life God’s had to work on because I want to have financial security, pay bills, and get groceries.  But often, I was holding on the more cash then I needed and wasn’t giving properly to a local church.  God has grown me in that, and I still have a ways to go.  I encourage you to look at your own life.  How are you managing your finances?  It takes a leap of faith to give sacrificially of your money.  But God is trustworthy and the times I’ve been generous with my money God always makes sure I have enough to survive on.  


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