1999-05-02 - Verses about Material Goods
It has been said that Jesus mentioned money more often than any other subject.
Perhaps in the future one of us will treat this subject in-depth. For now,
this is by no means an exhaustive list, but we will read some of what the
word of God has to say about material goods.
Mat 23:23 (NRSV) Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees,
hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the
weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you
ought to have practiced without neglecting the others.
Mat 6:31-33 (NRSV) Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What
will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear? For it is the
Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father
knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of
God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as
Mat 19:21 (NRSV) Jesus said to him, "If you wish to be
perfect, go, sell your possessions, and give the money to the poor, and you
will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.
Prov 3:13-16 (NRSV) Happy are those who find wisdom, and
those who get understanding, for her income is better than silver, and her
revenue better than gold. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you
desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left
hand are riches and honor.
Wealth is Not Inherently Bad
God sometimes blesses us with it if we are obedient. Sometimes, but not always,
wealth is associated with our behavior.
Mal 3:10 (NRSV) Bring the full tithe into the storehouse,
so that there may be food in my house, and thus put me to the test, says
the LORD of hosts; see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and
pour down for you an overflowing blessing.
Gen 30:41-43 (NRSV) Whenever the stronger of the flock
were breeding, Jacob laid the rods in the troughs before the eyes of the
flock, that they might breed among the rods, but for the feebler of the flock
he did not lay them there; so the feebler were Laban's, and the stronger
Jacob's. Thus the man grew exceedingly rich, and had large flocks, and male
and female slaves, and camels and donkeys.
Prov 6:10-11 (NRSV) A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like
a robber, and want, like an armed warrior.
Attitudes Toward Material Goods
1 Tim 3:2-3 (NRSV) Now a bishop must be above reproach,
married only once, temperate, sensible, respectable, hospitable, an apt teacher,
not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, and not a lover
1 Tim 6:10 (NRSV) For the love of money is a root of all
kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away
from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.