Love of Money
by Matt Smith
I distinctly remember this particular Sunday morning when I was either 12 or 13 years old. Something seemed different as there seemed to be an odd feeling to the service. I then remember when the service was over going out to the car and seeing my mom crying. I don’t remember when exactly the story was relayed to me but I do remember learning in short order that things were never going to be the same at my childhood church. Our pastor had been found to be siphoning money off of the church’s account and into his own. How he had done that I don’t know but the proof was beyond dispute.
How could something like that happen? Our reading today sheds some light on this all-too-common issue. 1 Timothy 6:9-10 says, “But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some have coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”
The love of money and the things it offers has been an issue as long as humans have been on this earth. Whether it’s the desire to have a lot of money to spend on elaborate vacations and expensive toys or the desire to save it all and enjoy the security that it brings sitting in our bank accounts, it is a temptation that many of us face. However, Paul warns in these verses about the trouble that yielding to this temptation brings. Phrases such as “foolish and harmful lusts” which “drown men in destruction” and the prospect of being “pierced with many sorrows”.
The answer to this type of sin is spelled out for us in verse 8. “And having food and rainment let us be therewith content.” That’s it, contentment. That doesn’t mean we don’t look for opportunities to better ourselves financially but at the same time we should strive to be content with the things God has blessed us with, even if they may be just the basic material things of this life. And if we have that attitude we will save ourselves from the consequences of a materialistic and greedy mindset.
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