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  • Bob Wilburn, District Superintendent

No Man Can Serve Two Masters...


“Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy.”

I Timothy 6:17


The instruction is clear: Command those who are rich not to be haughty or to trust in uncertain riches. The concern is valid for the saved and the lost: there is a tendency for the prosperous to become proud and to trust in what they possess. There are many warnings in God’s Word regarding money and possessions:

“No man can serve two masters: for he will either hate the one and serve the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”

Matthew 6:24.

Jesus goes beyond saying that a person shouldn’t serve God and money - HE said it can’t be done. Paul states in I Timothy 6:10: “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil…” (NKV). I John 2:15 says, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world, if any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” Paul said in Colossians 3:2, “Set your affections on things above, not on things on the earth.”

God’s Word is filled with principles and promises of prosperity. Certainly, God wants to bless His people so they can underwrite His missional mandate for the church to preach the Gospel to all nations. That being said, God also wants us to enjoy what He blesses us with: “…who gives us richly all things to enjoy.” (I Tim. 6:17). It is not a sin to have money. God uses us and the resources He places in our trust to carry out His Kingdom purpose regardless of whether we are poor or prosperous.

Think about these statements in regard to money:

· Stewardship of possessions is about our faith, not our finances.

· Riches are about our trust, not our treasures and trinkets.

· Wealth is about values, not valuables.

· Being a good steward is about mission, management, and multiplication.

I like what the writer of Proverbs said: “In the house of the righteous is much treasure.” “The righteous” are the redeemed - those made righteous by faith in Jesus and His atoning work on the cross. In the house of the righteous is MUCH treasure! MUCH treasure: our Salvation, God’s Abiding Presence, His Provisions, His Protection, His Promises!!! We’re Blessed!! We have His Word and His Wisdom. We have His Voice and His Victory. We have His Comfort and His Counsel. We have Help, Hope and Heaven! Goodness and Mercy follows us all the days of our life. We are a blessed people….YES….in the house of the righteous is much treasure!!

In the world’s eyes, you may not have much. The value of our life is not defined by the value of our “stuff”. Jesus said a “man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of things he possesses.” Perhaps a lifetime of ministry, of working in God’s church has yielded little in the way of this world’s goods. YET--you’re blessed: You’ve preached the unsearchable riches of God’s Word, you’ve taught, sung, served and stood. You’ve worshipped in God’s Presence, you’ve experienced the anointing of the Holy Spirit flowing through you as you’ve prayed for others. Through it all, God has given you victory in your valley and joy on your journey. Indeed, we can say with David:

“Praise ye the Lord! Give thanks unto the Lord; for He is good: for His mercy endures forever.”

(Psalms 106:1)

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