Summary: Money Talks & the Power of Patience (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

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Reading: James chapter 5 verse 1-11.


• Albert Einstein was invited to speak Swarthmore College.

• It was to be at a banquet held in his honour.

• Hundreds of people from all over the country came along;

• They crowded an auditorium to hear what he had to say.

• When it came time for him to speak,

• The greatest physicist walked to the lectern,

• Solemnly looked around, and said,

• “Ladies and gentlemen, I am very sorry, but I have nothing to say.” Then he sat down.

• The audience was in shock.

• A few seconds later, Einstein got up, walked back to the podium, and spoke again.

• “In case I have something to say, I will come back and say it.”

• Six months later he wired the president of the college with the message:

• “Now I have something to say.”

• Another dinner was held, and Einstein made his speech.

This evening I feel the opposite of Einstein:

• Because I have too much to say!

• The passage I’ve been given to speak on divides into two parts:

• So therefore you are getting two mini sermons instead of one main sermon.


• Now this evening you are going to get the highlights and not the full match.

• Full football match lasts for about 90mins,

• Highlights on Match of The Day last about 10mins.

• This evening you are getting the highlights;

• The key points.

• There are a number of expressions that are hard to understand;

• They make uncomfortable reading.

• But in the time I have to look at this passage;

• I haven’t got the ability or the knowledge to explain it all.

• So if I miss out a phrase or a verse you want explaining fuller;

• Then go home and do your own investigations into the passage!


• As mentioned already the passages divide into two parts:

• In the N.I.V. Bible they are headed

• Verses 1-6: Warning to Rich Oppressors.

• Verses 7-11: Patience in Suffering.

(Sermon 1). A Warning to Rich Oppressors.

• In this section;

• James issues two very practical warnings to the wealthy:

• Now most of us would not consider ourselves wealthy,

• Quote: a famous comedian: "If ‘money talks’ all it ever says to me is good-bye"

• Because most of us would not consider ourselves wealthy,

• The temptation is to apply these verses to others and not ourselves;

• Now don’t do that!

• Because we (each person here) are extremely wealthy;

• On a world scale we are all very, very wealthy.

• i.e. We all have food, clothes, shelter & probably some money in the bank.


• If you woke up this morning with more health than illness...

• You are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week.

• If you have never experienced the danger of battle,

• The loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation;

• You are ahead of 500 million people in the world.

• If you can attend a church meeting without fear of harassment, arrest, torture, or death;

• You are more blessed than three billion people in the world.

• If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back,

• A roof overhead and a place to are richer than 75% of this world.

• If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish someplace;

• You are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.

• If your parents are still alive and still married ...

• You are very rare.

• If you can read your Bible:

• You are more blessed than the 80% of the world’s people and furthermore,

• You are more blessed than over two billion people in the world that cannot read at all.

• On a world scale we (each person here) is extremely wealthy,

• i.e. We all have food, clothes, shelter & probably some money in the bank.

• So resist the temptation is to apply these verses to others and not ourselves.


• Of course if you are not rich and you want to get rich;

• Let me tell you how to do it.

• Quote: John D. Rockefeller’s three simple rules for anyone who wants to become rich:

• One: Go to work early.

• Two: Stay at work late.

• Three: Find oil.


(1). A Warning against Hoarding Wealth (vs 1-3)

“Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you. 2 Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. 3 Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days”.

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