Today’s Scrip-Bit   1 November 2022 Matthew 6:24b.

Matthew 6:24b.       Ye cannot serve God and mammon (money, riches).

Well, this new month of November has opened somewhat wet and cloudy in my area. But thankfully all the Halloween nonsense is now over, except the children stuffing their innocent faces with the candy they collected on their ‘trick or treat spree.’ Now, the next big push, the next big money grab is Christmas. And believe me, they have already begun the process for that. As soon as one money making opportunity passes, they jump right into the next one. But that’s the way of our new world, it’s all about the money! 

And I’m chuckling, though somewhat sadly, as I remember talking to a young lady recently about marriage, and she was quite adamant to remain a spinster in her parents’ home unless, and until, she found a man with money. LOVE, unfortunately ran a distant second place to the dinero. I guess, contrary to popular opinion, it’s not LOVE, but money that makes the world go round! And so many of us supposed believers are doing like the world, running down the money. Yes, we all need money to live, but we’re not supposed to let money run or colour our lives. 

That’s Jesus’ position. Remember His most august pronouncements on the subject. ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other: or else he will hold to (be loyal to) the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (money, riches).’ (Matt. 6:24) And though that’s gospel truth, it’s also simple logic. We cannot have two masters running our lives at the same time. But nonetheless, many of us still try to do it, only to confuse and disrupt our lives even more than normal. 

And I like how the scholars explain that verse. ‘This kind of spiritual double vision causes one to believe he can serve two masters. Total loyalty to God cannot be divided between Him and loyalty to one’s material possessions. A master is a lord or an owner. That God claims total lordship over His own is obvious in this passage. Therefore, Jesus rightly proclaimed, Ye cannot serve God and mammon. The term ‘mammon’ is derived from the Aramaic term for possessions or wealth. Jesus is not condemning money or possessions in and of themselves, but the improper attitude of enslavement toward wealth.’ 

And is that ever a major problem in this money hungry and wealth conscious society! Thankfully though, Jesus also gave us the antidote for that illogical and ungodly behaviour, when He wisely advised. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) 

Oh my people, there again, that’s simple logic and common sense! If you make the One True God of this world, the owner of it all, as well as your Creator, your number ONE priority, it’s obvious that He will look after you and provide for all of your needs. You won’t have to go chasing down the money or the material wealth, they will come chasing you down, because there’s no one as generous as your heavenly Father, and He’s just dying to bless His obedient and faithful children! 

And the thing is, when you acquire wealth and riches through Satan, rather than the Lord God Jehovah, those riches can fall through your hands like water through a sieve or strainer. But when you get your wealth through the grace of Almighty God, He guides you to make good decisions, and your wealth stays in your hands. And Jesus is not the only one who warns us in the Good Book, or rather in the Good Library, for the Bible is not a book but a library containing numerous books with a wealth of knowledge and experience on earthly living. (smile) So let’s check out a few of those warnings nuh. 

And I guess this is the warning that most of us know, which comes from Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For the LOVE of money is the root of all (kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many arrows.’ (1 Tim. 6:10) Yes friends, that says it plain and straightforward; it’s not the money itself, but the LOVE of money, that’s our greed, that causes so many of us to stray away from God and thus ruin our lives. Oh, we cannot covet, or strive after money as the goal of life, as so many of us do, because it almost always drives us to despair and eventual downfall. 

And in that same chapter, Bruh Paul also instructs Timothy thus. ‘Charge (command) them that are rich in this world (present age), that they be not highminded (haughty), nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy. That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute (give), willing to communicate (share). Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.’ (1 Tim. 6:17-19)

 Ah mih bredrin, yuh see when you are wealthy in earthly goods you are also expected to share that wealth unselfishly and generously with others, laying up heavenly rewards. Note though, as the scholars explain. ‘Salvation is not purchased by the giving of money, but generosity demonstrates the reality of one’s faith. Since the believer trusts God and not money, he gives. This giving shows where his heart is and that he views his wealth in light of eternity.’ Oh friends, I only wish we could say that about the majority of the wealthy people in our current world! 

Then there’s this admonition from James: ‘Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be (wants to be) a friend of the world, is (makes himself) the enemy of God.’ (James 4:4) There’s no room for doubt in that statement. To be a true believer, faithfulness to God must be our top priority, and our actions, not just our talk, ought to show that. 

And these words of John in his first epistle very clearly state the same thing. ‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh (physical desires), and the lust of the eyes (personal desires), and the pride of life (self-interests), is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:15-17) 

It could not be put any simpler or better my brethren: the things of this world pass away, but the things of God, and those who abide in His will, live forever! So, for those of us who choose to abide in God’s will and live forever, let’s go home declaring (chuh man!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know to whom we belong, lock, stock and barrel. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with my immediate neighbours, as well as with the whole wide world! Glory be!’ 

And having made that declaration (yesss!!!) let’s go out and action it by sharing the amazing LOVE and friendship of Jesus with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him like We do! Much LOVE!

…contrary to popular world opinion…life is not about the money…it’s all about JESUS… 

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