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  • Writer's pictureJill Ball

Treasure in Heaven

Whether we have money or not, we all want more. Even the super-rich, who have all that they want or will ever need, work hard to increase their wealth.

Some spend money that they don’t have to enjoy life.

Others don’t spend what they have but save it to give them security for the future.

Don’t tell anyone, but I’m not motivated by money.

I’ve always had enough. My father was a doctor so I never worried about money as a child. My husband thinks that I should be more responsible and show more interest in it, but financial and pension advisors are the most boring people on earth. (My apologies to any who belong to this profession.) It is true that now I am drawing a modest teacher’s pension, I appreciate them more.

So, what should my attitude towards money be?

Jesus often discussed this topic.

And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’
“Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’
This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.
Luke 12 v 16 – 21 (NIV)

The problem was that the farmer wanted to hoard his surplus grain. He wasn’t generous and ignored the poor. He wanted to keep the wealth to give him security for the future.

My husband, Andy, has been preaching about how people expect money to give them what only comes from God. They put their faith and hope for the future in the money they have saved, not in their Heavenly Father. This is one of the dangers of being rich: we don't have to trust in God because we think we can buy our way out of trouble.

Our attitude is paramount.

Do we chase after God, or money?

Do we love Him, or it?

We cannot serve both God and mammon, which in my mind I translate as materialism.

Money is a great servant, but a terrible master.

There was only one instance that we know of, where Jesus told a young man to give all his money away to the poor, and then he would have treasure in heaven.

So, I don’t think many of us are called to the make a vow of poverty. We need to steward our money and use it well. Which means Andy is right - I cannot ignore it totally!

However, my priorities are important.

So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Matthew 6 v 31 - 33 (NIV)

Jesus teaches us to pray for our daily bread, which speaks of the food we need, not the luxuries that we crave.

We haven’t been promised unlimited wealth and prosperity, just what we need.

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
Luke 6 v 38 (NIV)

We cannot out-give the Lord because of his generous nature.

the sea at a moment of creation
by Jill

Radical Christianity

If we are trustworthy with money and give our surplus to the poor as a blessing, we will be blessed. But this isn’t a way to get rich. That’s not the point. We don’t give to others so that we will amass treasure on earth, but we will be building up treasure in heaven.

After the feeding of the five thousand the crowds followed Jesus because they had seen the miracle and were thinking about their stomachs, not their souls.

Once again Jesus shows us an alternative lifestyle - a radical way of life.


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