Yesterday, we remembered the second commandment forbids the creation or use of idols. If you know your bible history, you know the ancient nation of Israel had problems keeping this commandment and the first. The prophets warned them of God’s judgement over their idolatry. The nation didn’t repent and the judgement eventually fell.
Before we feel too smug that we don’t engage in idolatry, listen to Colossians 3:5, “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.” (NIV) Did you hear it? Greed is idolatry, the worship of something other than God.
The word greed is such an ugly word, right? We can thank Charles Dickens for that. He painted a dark, depressing picture of a greedy man. You know who I’m talking about, don’t you? Ebenezer Scrooge. He lives in our minds as the grasping miser who abandoned love and all else to pursue money. But we must realize that Scrooge is a caricature, not just a character.
Greed in our day is much prettier, even fashionable. In fact, you may admire some greedy people because they are celebrities, the glitterati, the wealthy. Because we don’t see Scrooge in ourselves, we think our constant desire for more and for the best is fine. But where do we draw the line.
Hebrews 13:5 tells us one way to keep the second commandment, “Keep yourselves free from the love of money.” (NIV)
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.