A FOOL and HIS RICHES
Luke 12:13-21 [1 Timothy 6:6–10]
In verse 14 we find that Jesus, the great reconciler of people, would not take up his case. “But He said to him, “Man, who appointed Me a judge or arbitrator over you?”
Although ministry can all too often become mired in an attempt to right perceived wrongs, Jesus wisely said, “This is not My area of concern.” Jesus’ mission was too urgent, too important to be diverted to issues other men could settle. Jesus came to reconcile us to God and to each other, and not to reapportion wealth, nor to reinforce our own views of justice.
Jesus’ purpose was not to make bad men good or good men better. His purpose was to make dead men live, to see people born again and brought into the kingdom. Jesus was out to heal relationships between God and people, only then could they heal relationships between each other.
Countless times we think that if we only had more money we could prevent problems from coming our way. We think money would not only allow us to enjoy a better life, but that it would allow us to enjoy life better. The sooner we get over the illusion that more stuff means a better life the better off we will be. Then we can pursue true treasure, a deep and abiding relationship with Jesus.
Jesus uses this opportunity to teach us in verse 15 that possessions do not give life its meaning. Desiring possessions can become a dictator in our life filling us with greed. “Then He said to them, “Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.”
Jesus uses this interruption as an opportunity to teach His disciples where the focus should be as He warns them and us of the deceitfulness of riches. In a world as affluent as ours where everyone seem to be seeking more and more temporary and fleeting stuff the warning against greed has never been more needed. The Bible calls this pursuit of stuff greed.
So, what is greed or covetousness? It is simply wanting more when we already have enough. Jesus said it is a sin of which we must be so careful. Not only is it one of the Ten Commandments, it is the root of all evil. The Greek word for covetous in 2 Timothy 3:2 is the same as “love of money in 1 Tim. 6:10. Jesus then tells a parable to explain why we need to guard against all kinds of greed; apparently there are many types of greedy desires.