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Daily Pearl: Proverbs 11:25 – What is the result of being greedy and selfish?

20 Jan

 

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  • It puts extra strain on others. [4] You may think your small contribution to a cause or your single kind word makes no difference, let me assure you, it does. If you do not share it, it will be missed. Not only will the recipient of your kindness feel abandoned by you, but those people working with you for the common good will have to work harder to make up for your absence. E.g. your church wants to help a local old age home to prepare a special Christmas dinner. Everyone in the church is pitching in with salads, meat dishes, desserts; but you do not help, you prefer NOT to contribute your one, simple, strawberry jelly. It turns out that the old people are all very fragile and can eat only certain foods, including jelly, so without your small contribution they will not be able to enjoy dessert at all. The team therefore has to make a quick plan to purchase already prepared jelly at a local grocery store at an enormous price….something that could have been avoided if you just brought your single bowl of jelly. You managed to disappoint the old people and annoy your fellow church members. Paul had such a problem with the Philippians, who did nothing to support him in his need. Epaphroditus was the only one who came to Paul’s aid and nearly died for his efforts.

Philippians 2:30: “because he risked his life and nearly died for the sake of the work of Christ, in order to give me the help that you yourselves could not give.” [1]

  • God will see to it that we become poor. [4] Wealthy people are not all bad, selfish individuals, and you may notice that those who have been blessed materially, worked hard for their money, are eager to give to others. On the other hand, money sometimes comes easy to those who earn it in less than legal manners, these people are often very selfish and self-righteous, building their palaces and wearing their glittering jewels for all to see, yet they refuse to share something that they barely earned. We keep forgetting that even material wealth is a gift from God, and it is never really ours; you do not take it with you when you pass on. We are obligated, as Christians, to be aware of this and to share our material wealth, because the same God that gave it, can take it away in the blink of an eye. ####Another example is when you have compassion, love, kindness; when you have a wealthy soul. I may be naïve in believing this, but I think all people are blessed with kind hearts.  It is the human spirit and the influence of the evil world that causes people to become less giving, hardening their hearts. Wealth of the soul is no something we should keep to ourselves, we should share it; spread the love and caring. If you share comfort with someone, that person may one day volunteer to comfort you…to fill your soul with new love, while, if you avoid being kind, being nice to someone, no-one will bother to reach out to you in your times of heartache and despair. You will become even poorer in goodness and love, you will become bitter and angry. Most definitely NOT a good person; you will be someone others choose to avoid.

Proverbs 13:22: “Good people will have wealth to leave to their grandchildren, but the wealth of sinners will go to the righteous.” [1]

Proverbs 28:27: “Give to the poor and you will never be in need. If you close your eyes to the poor, many people will curse you.” [1]

  • Not being generous shows a lack of Christian love.[4] You may preach to others and tell the world how Christian and holy you are, but if you do not care for others, if you refuse to give, you are far from being a true follower of Jesus Christ. Practice what you preach, as the saying goes, if you speak the words with your mouth, if you shout “Holy, Holy”, let your deeds support what you say…let everything you do, be holy too. It is true that people will not necessarily listen to your words, but they will definitely notice what you do…let it be the right and good things your Maker demands of you.

James 2:15-16: “Suppose there are brothers or sisters who need clothes and don’t have enough to eat. What good is there in saying to them, ‘God bless you! Keep warm and eat well!’ – if you don’t give them the necessities of life.” [1]

1 John 3:17-18: “Rich people who see a brother or sister in need, yet close their hearts to them, cannot claim they love God. My children, our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action.” [1]

  • Beware covetousness and greed[4]. Do not only seek to satisfy only your own need, and if you give, do so abundantly, not sparingly[4]. Take care that your own self-satisfaction and ego do not play a role in your kindness. Kruis mentions that “Jesus condemned James and John for their self-seeking attitude, and he calls usall to humble service”. [3]

Proverbs 28:22: “A stingy man hastens after wealth and does not know that poverty will come upon him.” [5]

Matthew 20:26-28: “Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave, just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” [3]

2 Corinthians 9:6: “Remember that the person who sows few seeds will have a small crop; the one who sows many seeds will have a large crop.” [1]

Malachi 1:6b-7 and 9a-10: “You despise me, and yet you ask, ‘How have we despised you?’ This is how-by offering worthless food on my altar. Then you ask, ‘How have we failed to respect you? I will tell you-by showing contempt for my altar……Now, you priests, try asking God to be good to us. He will not answer your prayer ….The Lord Almighty says,…I am not pleased with you; I will not accept the offerings you bring me.” [1]

  • Not having a giving and generous heart may cause your own demise, but being giving, generous, kind-hearted and compassionate will secure your place in heaven.

Jeremiah 45:5: “And do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not, for behold, I am bringing disaster upon all flesh, declares the Lord. But I will give you your life as a prize of war in all places to which you may go.” [6]

Romans 2:8: “But for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.” [5]

James 3:13-15: “Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.” [6]

James 3:16: “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.” [6]

1 Timothy 6:9: “But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.” [6]

  • Matthew sums it up perfectly, see what he writes:

Matthew 13:44: “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. [6]

PRAYER:

Lord, please give us the wisdom to give without asking, without a moment’s thought to our own needs and desires. If we see sorrow or any other need, let us reach out to share the love You have given so freely to us.

SOURCES:

  1. BIBLE. 2001. Good News Bible: Today’s English Version.  Cape Town: Bible Society of South Africa.
  2. IMAGE SOURCE. The F.I.E.R.C.E. Woman.  [Web:] Daily Quote: April 29, 2014.  [Date of Access:] 20 January 2016.
  3. KRUIS, John G.   Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling: Self-centeredness.  Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company.
  4. LEE, John.   The Ultimate Topical Bible Guide: Bible Basics.  Switzerland: Aurora Production.  330p.
  5. OPEN BIBLE. d.  Topical Bible.  [Web:] Greed.  [Date of Access:] 20 January 2016.
  6. OPEN BIBLE. d.  Topical Bible.  [Web:] Selfish people.  [Date of Access:] 20 January 2016.

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Posted by on January 20, 2016 in Daily Scripture

 

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