Wise Investment

February 16, 2013 No Comments

We don’t like to talk about money in church too much. They just don’t seem to be a good fit. It’s a crude and low thing to speak about when there are such higher truths to be sought out and learnt. But as there are twice as many verses in the bible about money (about 2350) than about faith and prayer combined it’s safe to say that money is actually very important to God.

In Mark 10:17-31 Jesus has an odd conversation with a wealthy man. This rich, young man runs up to Jesus as he’s about to move on; “Good Teacher! What must I do to inherit eternal life?”

What an opening to give him the gospel! But Jesus response stuns his disciples. He challenges the man on his keeping of the commandments

Those that Jesus quotes: (6)Don’t kill, (7)Don’t commit adultery, (8)don’t steal or (9)lie, (he adds something extra; don’t defraud), and then back to number 5; DO honour your parents; the man says he has kept.

But notice what’s missing: 1 through 4: Putting God first, no idols, not taking God’s name in vain, and keeping the Sabbath then number 10; covetousness.

Each of these point to the same failing in this man: It’s not the keeping (or not) of the commandments that is the problem but his love of his wealth. Jesus prescription is to immediately give away all of that which will prevent him from gaining that glorious reward.

Jesus is offering him treasures far beyond anything the man had even dreamed of, in effect Jesus tells him that he’s too short sighted, storing up temporary things that he can’t hold on to and won’t last. Jesus offers him eternal treasure that he can never loose!

In Matthew 6:19-20 Jesus teaches us:

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal”

Randy Alcorn in his book Money Possessions and Eternity put it this way:

When Jesus spoke about thieves, rust and moths taking our earthly treasures (Matthew 6:19) he is saying the same thing as he told the rich man: It won’t last, and “You can’t take it with you”.
But then he adds something breathtaking, something revolutionary; a brand new corollary to the old adage: “You can’t take it with you, but… you can send it on ahead!”

Because Jesus loved this man he wanted what was best for him, one thing you lack he said… Jesus isn’t giving him an ultimatum, he’s offering him treasures far beyond anything the man had even dreamed of.

So how do we go about investing in eternity? There are many ways we can build up that treasure in heaven that Jesus spoke about. There are practical things we can do, we have our minds (most of us anyway…) and our bodies and abilities that we can use for God’s Kingdom. Whether it’s preaching, cleaning, greeting, on the doors, sharing the Gospel with a friend or family member. All of this work for the Lord is building up treasure in heaven with our names on it. But we’re talking specifically about earthly wealth and everything we have in that sense is from the Lord in one way or another, he expects us to invest it wisely.

We have the power to affect the future, beyond our limited life span and even our children’s. We have the power to affect, even change eternity, not just with our time and abilities but with our wealth and possessions which are just as much gifts from God.


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