Summary: EOLS: How we think about material possessions is indicative and predictive of our spiritual health and destiny.

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Mat 16:24-26

(24) Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

(25) For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

(26) For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?

Luk 12:16-21

(16) And he told them a parable, saying, "The land of a rich man produced plentifully,

(17) and he thought to himself, ’What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’

(18) And he said, ’I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.

(19) And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.’

(20) But God said to him, ’Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’

(21) So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God."

EOLS: How we think about material possessions is indicative and predictive of our spiritual health and destiny.

Over the past few weeks, the London riots have been on the news and in the papers daily.

Police in London said Friday they have charged almost 600 people with violence, disorder and looting over deadly riots in Britain’s capital, as the city’s mayor said Londoners wanted to see "significant sentences" handed out to the guilty. Across the country, more than 1,700 people have been arrested. (Yahoo News)

The current riots are also giving voice to outrage, but this time the politics seem to center on consumerism — "and a kind of slightly juvenile, slightly ill-thought-through, I think, politics among the youth.” He says the riots in the UK are rooted in materialism and believes people need to be reminded they’re valued for more than the things they possess. (Adabayo-NPR)

Class warfare, the struggles between the “haves and the have-nots” is as old as human history. Mankind has always been locked in a constant social war where scarce resources are available to meet unlimited needs and wants. Most wars are fought for control of economic power and wealth.

It’s no wonder the scriptures say

1Timothy 6:10

(10) For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.

I find it interesting that Paul emphasized it is the “love of money” and not money itself that is at the very roots of evil. Money is a wonderful slave but a cruel master. The fact is Jesus had a lot to say about money, possessions, greed and envy along with all the corruption that they bring into the hearts of men.

It’s the human way to spend our lives in pursuit of “the stuff.” Most of us have heard the saying “he who dies with the most toys wins.”

Christopher Winans, in his book, Malcolm Forbes: The Man Who Had Everything, tells of a motorcycle tour that Forbes took through Egypt in 1984 with his Capitalist Tool motorcycle team. After viewing the staggering burial tomb of King Tut, Forbes seemed to be in a reflective mood. As they were returning to the hotel in a shuttle bus, Forbes turned to one of his associates and asked with all sincerity: “Do you think I’ll be remembered after I die?” Forbes is remembered. He is remembered as the man who coined the phrase, “He who dies with the most toys wins.” That was the wisdom of Malcolm Forbes. In fact, that was his ambition. That’s why he collected scores of motorcycles. That’s why he would pay over a million dollars for a Faberge egg. That’s why he owned castles, hot air balloons and countless other toys that he can no longer access.

ScienceDaily (Apr. 16, 2010) — People who pursue happiness through material possessions are liked less by their peers than people who pursue happiness through life experiences, according to a new study… The "take home" message in his most recent study, which appears in this month’s edition of the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, is that not only will investing in material possessions make us less happy than investing in life experiences, but that it often makes us less popular among our peers as well. by University of Colorado at Boulder psychology Professor Leaf Van Boven.

I could read you story after story, for hours about people who either squandered great riches or who were rich and lived miserable lives, but that would only be half the picture. The truth is plenty of “regular” people are consumed with money and riches and waste their lives caught up in either resentment because of what they don’t have, or in some idle pursuit of more, more more.

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