The Love of money is evil
Today’s message is about how the love of money can ruin your life. Many people think that having a lot of money will answer all their problems. They work very hard to get as much money as they can. Some people even steal money from others just so they can get more of it. But this is very wrong.
Money is not the answer to all your problems. You may be very poor and not have a lot of money for anything; or you may have more money than you know what to do with. You may be so poor that you don’t know how you are going to buy your next meal; or you may be thinking that you can’t find enough places to hide all the money you have accumulated.
The Bible says: “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” – 1 Timothy 6:10
Money is good but the love of money is bad
Money is good and if you don’t have any and are in need of some I pray that God would open the door of heaven for you and provide you with what you need. But if you love money, the Bible says that you will do all sorts of evil things in order to get it, and do all kinds of evil things once you have it: you will not be blessed if you love money.
The Bible says: “Don’t wear yourself out trying to get rich.” – Proverbs 23:4.
I remember an old man who had made a lot of money in business. He worked very, very hard to become rich; he was so hard that he didn’t take care about his health or what happened to his body. He became very sick and had to take a lot of medicine in order to make it through the day. I asked him one day, “How did you make all your money?”
And he answered me, “I made all my money by buying a lot of disease and sicknesses.” This man worked so hard that he did not take care of his health, he got sick because he did not eat properly or sleep properly; maybe he smoked a lot and took drugs to stay up so he could make more money. He wore himself getting rich and he paid for the price for all his hard work to become rich; he did become rich but he lost his health in the process.
People who crave money will pierce themselves with many sorrows
People who crave and love money hurt themselves and cause themselves much sorrow. That means that people who crave and love money will get a lot of pain and sorrows in their lives. They ruin their relationships with their families; maybe their wives divorce them because they are never home and sleep with other women; or they just run off with another woman. Or maybe they just forget about their children and their children start to take drugs or get into the wrong crowd. Or maybe they get caught for committing fraud, or someone tries to kill them because they stole their money.
The point is this: we should base our decisions and the things we want to do in this life based upon what God wants us to do and what is right, not on how much money we can make or not make. Just because we can make more money doing something one way doesn’t mean that is the right thing to do.
Maybe someone is running a little spaza shop somewhere in South Africa. You know, those little convenience stores that sell soap and cigarettes and stuff to the locals. But in order to run the shop the owner has to live in the store and work very long hours. He locks himself behind the counter and watches people buy things. Maybe he sends his family to live somewhere else, maybe even to a different city, or different country. In fact he might not even care where his family goes as long as he can stay in the spaza shop and make money.
It is true what King Solomon said, he said: “Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness!” – Ecclesiastes 5:10
What use is there if you work hard, get some money, but lose your wife and family. You end up protecting your little store and your little pile of cash and you sacrifice everything else that God has given you. You need to put God number one, family number 2, and your job number 3.
Jesus said it this way: “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and the His righteousness and all other things will be given unto you.”
God wants us to seek him first and to seek living a godly life and a holy life and He said He would give us everything else we need. Jesus said to crave and desire to live a life pleasing to God before you do anything; live for God; crave and desire to live a righteous life. Don’t crave after money, thirst after the righteousness of God. Seek to do what is right, seek to do what is good, seek to be righteous and holy, and God will open doors for you that you never thought were possible.
Don’t worship money, worship God
God told the Israelites to leave Egypt and to do into the desert to worship Him, and so they did. But after the Israelites left Egypt the Pharaoh sent his army after them to destroy and kill them. The Israelites were in a difficult place. The Israelites were stuck with the Red Sea behind them and the desert and the Egyptian army in front of them. What could they do? They had nowhere to turn to but God in order to be saved. And God came through and delivered them out of all their troubles.
“Then Moses raised his hand over the sea, and the LORD opened up a path through the water with a strong east wind. The wind blew all that night, turning the seabed into dry land. So the people of Israel walked through the middle of the sea on dry ground, with walls of water on each side!
Then the Egyptians—all of Pharaoh’s horses, chariots, and charioteers—chased them into the middle of the sea. But just before dawn the LORD looked down on the Egyptian army from the pillar of fire and cloud, and he threw their forces into total confusion. He twisted their chariot wheels, making their chariots difficult to drive. “Let’s get out of here—away from these Israelites!” the Egyptians shouted. “The LORD is fighting for them against Egypt!” – Exodus 14.
Sometimes we get ourselves into a difficult place because we have acted improperly; we decided in our hearts that we were not going to worship God and follow Him. And we found ourselves in difficulty. And sometimes we find ourselves in difficulty because we were doing the right thing.
Joseph was a good man and he took care of his owner’s wealth and property with honesty and integrity and God bless Him for all his hard work. But his owner’s wife wanted to have sex with Joseph so she tried to seduce him and asked him to have sex with her. He refused and she became angry. To take out her revenge on him she lied to her husband and said that Joseph tried to rape her and Joseph was cast in prison. But God miraculously delivered Joseph out of prison and exalted him in to the highest position in the land. God did this because Joseph was an honest man who had integrity and would not do evil things with the power and opportunities God gave him.
So whether you have made a mess out of life for yourself, or if you are being persecuted because you are doing the right thing, either way you need God to deliver and help you.
Deciding to follow Jesus
If you have become a Christian you may very well be facing some persecutions and people may hate you.
If you decide to follow Jesus you will face troubles and persecutions, that is because this world hates God and does not like to see people following God’s ways. But God will be with you and help you in all of your situations. He will never forsake you and never let you down. You may face hardships, and the pain of losing family members, you may even feel physical pain. But receiving eternal life and the forgiveness of your sins is far greater than the suffering you will have here on earth.
Don’t base on your decisions on how much money you can make
You can’t always make decisions in life based upon the fact that you are making money. You can’t decide to do something just because you are going to make more money. There are other things to consider. The love of money is idolatry. If you love money you are worshipping an idol because money is an idol and becomes like a god.
People who follow idols become like them.
The Bible says that people who follow idols become like them. And idol is a statue made out of gold, or plastic, stone or wood. And the idols is sometimes shaped and made into the image or likeness of a human being.
“Their idols are merely things of silver and gold,
shaped by human hands.
They have mouths but cannot speak,
and eyes but cannot see.
They have ears but cannot hear,
and noses but cannot smell.
They have hands but cannot feel,
and feet but cannot walk,
and throats but cannot make a sound.
And those who make idols are just like them,
as are all who trust in them.” – Psalm 115:4-8
People who love money can no longer hear their children calling out for their attention; people who love money no longer hear their wives calling them to stay at home; people who love money no longer know how to speak calmly and gently to their family and to give them the support and love that they need, the advice and guidance that they are craving for.
People who love money become like idols – shining on the outside but empty on the inside. These people no longer love God and you do not hear their forces praising God and giving thanks to Him.
Where is God calling you
Don’t hold onto the things of this world if God is calling you to follow Him. Take a step of faith and listen to that small still voice speaking to you about love of God, righteousness, and taking care of your family. Think of Peter on that boat when he saw Jesus walking on the water.
“Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.”
“Yes, come,” Jesus said.”
So Peter left left the security of his boat: the wood, the oars, the sails, his friends, the nets – all that he knew that would meet his needs of safety and security. He left it all because Jesus called him.
Where do you see the face of Jesus? Where is He calling you? Can you see Him reaching out to you? Reach out your hand and let Jesus guide you: walk out to Him – walk upon the water and do not be afraid.