Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Luke 12:13-21

Luke 12:13-21
And someone out of the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, speak to my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”  And He said to him, “Man, who set me up as a judge or divider upon you?”  And He said to them, “Watch and keep guard from all covetousness, because one’s life is not out of his abundance of his possessions.”  And he spoke a parable to them, saying, “A region produced a wealthy man.  And he was reasoning with himself, saying, ‘What should I do, since I do not have somewhere that I will gather my fruit?’  And he said, ‘I will do this.  I will demolish my barn and I will build a greater one.  And there I will gather all of my fruits of the earth and my good things.  And I will say to my soul: soul, you have much good being appointed for many years.  Rest.  Eat. Drink. Be glad.’  But God said to him, ‘Fool!  They require your soul from you this very night.  And that which you prepared, to whom will it be?’  In this same way is the one who stores up for himself and who is not rich in God.

Thoughts for Today

First Thought:

A man approaches Jesus and asks him to tell his brother to act a certain way.  I love Jesus’ response.  “Who set me up as a judge over you?”  The reality is that He is the Son of God!  He is in a place to judge over us, yet He does not desire that place.  How many of us seek to be that person who is the judge?  How many of us seek to be that person who holds the fate of others in our hands?  How many of us want to be the boss, or the CEO, or the CFO, or the president, or some other position of power?  Yet Jesus knows the truth.  In the end, even if we sit in positions of great power we cannot force other people to behave a certain way.  We can give regulations and expectations.  But we cannot control the behavior of other people.  The only person who can control how I at is me.

Do you ever desire to be in a place of power and control?  Where in your life do you desire this?  In what way is such a place of power unable to deliver on the promises and expectations that it promises?

Second Thought:

Jesus then leads us into a discussion on covetousness and desiring things.  In western culture, we have an expression: “Keeping up with the Joneses.”  Human beings covet easily.  We see something with our eyes and we want it.  We desire it.  Our heart lusts after it.  We work until we can attain it.  We talk to other people about getting it for us as a gift.  Whatever the means, we as human beings all know the pattern of seeing something we want to possess and devising a means to possess it.  Jesus tells us to be careful of this tendency.  Yes, it is good to set goals and work towards them.  But we must be careful in the process that we do not lose sight of God.  I should fundamentally want something because God wants me to have it, not because I crave it in my inner being.  We need to be careful that we do not lose sight of God and God’s desires when we consider what we have and what we want.

Do you ever covet?  When you covet and get what you desire, what is often the result?

Third Thought:

In the end, this parable is all about from where we see our future coming.  There are people who save and save for retirement, thinking that their future – when they are done with work – will be made easy.  However, there are two problems with that.  The first and most basic problem is that it causes a person to provide for themselves and stop placing their trust in God.  It causes a person to see all that they have as a doing of their own hands and their own creative ingenuity rather than as a blessing from God.  That gives us enough problems now.  However, the bigger problem is that such an attitude places us in very rough shape with respect to the eternal.  If we are living in such a way as we are providing for ourselves and not trusting in God, what will become of us in the eternal?  Can any one of us provide for ourselves after death?  No.  We should be storing up treasures with God, because He is the one who can best provide for us now and into the eternal.

Where is your treasure?  Who is responsible for the treasure you do have being in your life?

Passage for Tomorrow: Luke 12:22-31
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