Luke 12:13-34 p.95
ILLN: THE BUDGET
QUESTION: Was this a good budget?
Most people’s answer would depend on whether they were better or worse off financially.
Cut in tax benefits working people. Reduces Gift Aid to charities
Economic growth at the expense of the environment?
No ‘Green Bank’ . Cut in solar energy subsidies
Economic growth during your lifetime.
QUESTION: Are we happier?
Depends on how we view our money & possessions
OUR ATTITUDE TO MONEY & POSSESSIONS
Jesus tells us to guard against greed, selfishness, worry
Instead, put God & his kingdom first and trust him to provide our needs
PARABLE OF THE RICH FOOL v.13-21
Context: argument over inheritance. Man says to Jesus, “tell my brother to divide the property with me”
Jesus does not get drawn into the argument - Looks at the cause
Concerned with attitude, not who gets what
Addresses attitudes of greed, selfishness & worry - all spoil our lives
Take positive action - “Guard against every kind of greed”
Not just money. Also possessions, food, clothes
The man was rich - he had good land that bore good crops - doing well
This was not the problem. His good crops were a gift from God
Problem - asks himself, “What will I do with my surplus crops”
Answer, “Keep them all for myself”
Greed led to selfishness - repeated use of “my”
“My crops”, “my barns”, “my corn”, “my other goods”, “my life”
He did not acknowledge that all these things were gifts from God , including his life
“there are nae pooches in a shroud”
He “piled up riches for himself but was not rich in God’s sight”
God calls him a fool because he did not realize what was really important
He didn’t even get to enjoy the things he had stored up for himself
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;
QUESTION: WHAT ARE THE IMPORTANT THINGS IN LIFE?
ILLN: ELIZABETH TAYLOR
Elizabeth Taylor, who has died this week aged 79, was famous for her colourful personal life as a film actress. She won two Oscars during he career as an actress.
Also famous for her eight marriages - to seven husbands
Reports of her substance abuse and illnesses hit many headlines.
She is also famous for dedicating the later part of her life to fundraising for charity, raising awareness of Aids and supporting third world causes.
What did people say about her?
She was beautiful, wealthy, famous
“As a friend she was always, always there for me. I'll miss her for the rest of my life, but I was so lucky to have known her. - Lisa Minelli
What people really admired about her “She was a nice person”
Beauty, wealth & fame are temporary.
Qualities like kindness, friendship & generosity are eternal
ILLN: ANDREW CARNEGIE
Andrew Carnegie was born in Dunfermline in a typical weaver's cottage with only one main room consisting of half the ground floor which was shared with the neighbouring weaver's family
He emigrated to the United States as a child with his parents. His first job in the United States was as a factory worker in a bobbin factory. Later on he became a bill logger for the owner of the company. Soon after he became a messenger boy. Eventually he progressed up the ranks of a telegraph company. He built Pittsburgh's Carnegie Steel Company, which was later merged with other companies to create US steel.
Most people would not know that about Andrew Carnegie. That is not what he is remembered for.
There have been many rich people throughout the ages - most forgotten. Andrew Carnegie is remembered for the way he used his wealth to benefit others
Someone asks a taxi driver, “What is the quickest way to Carnegie Hall”. taxi driver answers, “Practice, practice, practice”
With the fortune he made he built Carnegie Hall (New York), and established many libraries, schools, and universities in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and other countries
WORRY - Jesus speaking to disciples - most not wealthy
Worry is different to greed but just as bad - spoils our lives
Can also lead to selfishness. Worry that we won’t have enough for ourselves so we store things up instead of sharing. Eg. This winter - oil shortage
This does not mean that we should not save money or own possessions
It does not mean we should not work to earn our living
v.29 “Don’t be all upset, always concerned about what you will eat & drink … instead, be concerned with God‘s kingdom and trust him to provide your needs”
INSTEAD TRUST GOD TO PROVIDE OUR NEEDS
APPN How does that apply to us today?
Many people are facing the possibility of being made redundant
Can we trust God to provide our needs?
Jesus says, yes we can. If one door closes another will open
If we do what we can do, - pray, seek his will, - God will guide & provide
PROVERB: “Cut your coat to according to your cloth”
We may need to cut our expenses, but we will not starve
We may not be wealthy in the world’s terms but we will have enough and we will know the secret of true happiness - riches in heaven - things money cannot buy - love, joy, friendship, fulfilment, peace of mind