Don’t let possessions possess you.

Every interaction with Jesus is an opportunity to learn from wisest person to walk the face of the earth.

I have no way of remembering all of the ways that I have blundered into the presence of Jesus with some silly idea of mine only to be lovingly corrected by the Savior.

There was a man like me who met with Jesus. He came to him with the hope of using Jesus’ authority to persuade his brother to divide an inheritance properly.

He said, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me” (Luke 12.13).

Before we dismiss this man as a selfish jerk who took up Jesus’ valuable time, let’s stop and think for a moment.

— Have we ever prayed for our sports team to win?

— Have we asked Jesus to help us pass a test in school?

— Have we told Jesus about how someone wronged us and how it should be made right?

— Have we asked him to “straighten out” a church, business, or political leader?

It may be that we are more like this man than we’d like to think.

Beware of Greed

Jesus answered the man and instructed him about greed. Certainly, the man in the crowd wasn’t the only one who needed the lesson.

Luke 12.14-15 But he said to him, “Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?”

And he said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.”

Jesus warns his followers to guard against all kinds of greed. Greed involves seeking to possess material things that go beyond what God deems beneficial for us.

Greed or avarice is the excessive or insatiable desire for wealth or gain. It is the source of a large amount of the world’s oppression and suffering.

The United States state department places the number of persons who are trafficked into slavery to be in the tens of millions. Each of those persons is the victim of someone else greed or avarice.

Not only does greed harm others, it also harms the greedy. Our possessions end up possessing us.

A Parable about Greed

Jesus used parables to convince people of truths that they may not be willing to accept.

As we learn at the feet of Jesus, let’s be willing to see things his way.

Luke 12.16-20Then he told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly.

“And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’

“Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.

“And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.’

“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’”

God calls the greedy person a “fool.” The Bible describes a fool as someone who lives their life without giving consideration to God.

The man in the parable was a “fool,” because he never consulted with God about his financial plan.

The Bible also identifies a “fool” as someone who believes that there will be no accounting for their actions.

They suppose that they can gain their wealth any way they please and have no accountability before God.

In the parable the “fool” doesn’t realize that he will stand before God in judgment. He has traded brief pleasure for an eternity of regret.

A Message for Us

In these verses Jesus has given us insight into how the kingdom of God actually works.

— We are to beware and make sure that greed does not affect our lifestyle.

— We are to choose a rich life with God by choosing a Jesus-kind-of-life.

Jesus ended his message with these words: “So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God” (Luke 12.21).

YouTube Video

I am thankful that Rudy took time on a busy Monday to help with several YouTube videos on the Gospel of Luke. You can view the video on the Bob Spradling YouTube channel.

Rudy adds a great perspective to our understanding. You will appreciate his thoughts.

Please email your prayer request to bsprad49@gmail.com or private message me on Facebook. The Maywood prayer team will pray for you.

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