By Joseph Odongkara and Julius Izza Tabi
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many grieves. (1Timothy 6:10)
Satan subtly promotes the attitude that says money; property, possessions, physical comforts, as well as worldly fame and honor are the most important things in life. While God created all things and is the source of all we have, He does not condone our allowing things and money to usurp His first place in our lives. The prosperity that He so freely gives us, and wants us to have is indeed a blessing until it takes the place of God.
Materialism is thus the attitude that says money, property, possessions, physical comforts, as well as worldly fame and honor, are the most important things in life. Not to say, “There is no God,” but to say, “I don’t have any need for God!”
For Christians, materialism is much like the frog in a pan of water that is slowly being heated. He boils to death because he does not realize the danger quickly enough to jump out of the pot before it is too late.
A church leader from the country of Romania, which was once a communist-dominated land and is now free, commented,
“In my experience, 95% of the believers who face the test of external persecution pass it, while 95% of those who face the test of prosperity fail it!”
Satan is ecstatic when he succeeds in luring us into this trap. This is the dark side to money and possessions that many Christians are either unaware of, or unwilling to face. As a result, the spiritual vitality of many has been sapped and the church as a whole has been weakened spiritually. Like fire, money is a good servant but a destructive master.
If the church is to survive this challenge, there is an urgent need to be aware of the true nature of materialism. Unfortunately, it has become such a vital part of our culture that Christians are often unaware of its control.
By the standard of the people around Jesus, many of us today’s so called poor are very rich as well as almost all those in free societies. In Jesus’ day, a rich person was one who had more food than needed for the day and whom had more than one set of clothing.
Today let us not be frogs in the boiling water and be alert to Satan’s attack on the materialism front. Let us thank the Lord for all the material blessings we have received from Him and ask Him to help us to use them for His glory and His kingdom.
Beware, let not the love of money drive you away from the Christian faith, work to earn a living, pray where it is below your daily needs, bless the poor when God prospers you, be content when it is not enough for godliness with contentment is great gain. Give your tithes and offerings, God demands that, by the way, he can bless you by doing that. But when he blesses you, do not let the love for money drive you away from him. That’s the mistake many of us find ourselves in. When poor, we seek God often, when status change, we shun him and turn to other things.
For the heavens and the earth is the Lord’s and all that is therein, so when you get wealth know that it is the Lord’s including yourself, you are only a steward. Be a faithful steward then.
But remember materialism; the thinking that money and material prosperity is all that man needs and if there is need for God, it should be to seek for material prosperity is a false gospel. Let’s turn away from that gospel and make God our all in all.
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