Mark 12:41-44 “And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.”
We are so impressed by money. Money is power. Money brings fame. We are deceived into thinking that money can buy happiness. Yet, some of the unhappiest people in the world have far more money than most and are miserable.
We work, and we toil to have, yet, we never seem to have enough.
John D. Rockefeller, probably the richest man since Solomon, was asked how much money was enough? His reply was ‘just a bit more’. Let’s face it, we all have a thirst to possess.
1 John 2:15-16 “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, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”
God tells me I have within me lusts that would cause me to want to be somebody, to have much in possession, and do great things. In and of themselves they seem harmless enough. But, when the desire to have, or the desire to be, or the desire to overtake what I am to have, be and do for God; then I am out of balance.
The example in today’s passage reminds me of a statement:
“In the work of our Lord it is not a question of how much of our money we give to God, but how much of God’s money we keep for ourselves. During the time of our, Savior was here, only one person gave enough to specifically attract His attention” – Source Unknown
The principle here deals specifically with our perspective on money. Some inherit great sums for which they have never worked. Others have worked tirelessly and seemingly have nothing. Yet, the first could be in such poverty and the latter richer beyond measure. How can that be so?
Our view of money is skewed. We have been made to believe that the possessing of great riches is a desirable thing. And so it might seem at first glance. To not be in want of anything; food, clothing, transportation, friends, pleasures and ease; money seemingly can satisfy all the creature comforts we might desire.
There are things money cannot buy. It cannot buy friends. It cannot buy love. Money cannot purchase integrity, honesty and character. Those with money think that everything and everyone has a price. When they are in possession, it is only a matter of ‘how much?’
Am man began to prosper greatly, and his thought process is revealed to us in scripture.
Luke 12:18-19 “And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.”
We can sometimes think that God is blessing us when riches increase and that may very well be true. But, the purpose of riches is not to store them away and keep them for ourselves. God is teaching us that money is a tool – a necessary tool.
But and if we place too much importance on possessing it, He warns us:
Luke 12:20-21 “But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”
Rich toward God… Those things eternal that we can send ahead are to be desired above all that we might touch with our hands.
Job was a man rich in possessions. And when all was taken from him, we find that his confidence was not in that which he possessed, but his relationship with God.
Job 1:21-22 “And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD. In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.”
Poverty has a way of putting things into perspective – IF we look to God for the provision for our soul. We are promised that we will not lack as long as we live here in the world.
Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Herein lies our problem: there is a great disparity between what God sees as our needs and what we think they should be.
That man, who today might be like Warren Buffet, or Bill Gates, or even Rockefeller would be admonished by God with how He dealt with the rich man who tore down his barns and built bigger.
Matthew 16:26-27 “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.”
Jesus hits at the heart of our perspective. The price God places on a soul is indeterminable. He came to pay the ultimate price for us. To redeem us. To reopen the door for man to be with God. Sin; Adam’s sin, closed that door. Jesus’ shed blood opened that door.
We view giving as ‘sacrificial’ or giving till it hurts.
How selfish of us!
When I got saved, I became the purchased possession of my Heavenly Father. I no longer owned anything – He owns me… and everything that comes with me. My marriage, my family, my car, my house; they are not mine at all – they are His; just as I am.
I am only a steward of that which God possesses of me.
When you and I can become disconnected with our pocketbook and give as God directs, we will begin to see the blessings that can come when we allow God to use the ‘tools’ He gives us for His glory.
The writer of Proverbs tells us:
Proverbs 30:7-9 “Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die: Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.”
Give me just enough. Allow God to determine what limit is enough for you and you will enjoy life much more!