Yesterday was the last sermon in the Sinners Anonymous series. The scripture passage for this message was Luke 12:13-21, where Jesus encounters one of two brothers who is asking for more than his share of his inheritance. Jesus warns him about greed. Shane noted how many “I” and “me” pronouns the passage contains, indicating self-centeredness.
Shane cited a study from the Barna Group, which offers statistics, resources, seminars and custom research on current cultural and spiritual trends. The study asked people what they would be willing to do for $10 million.
- 25 percent would abandon their family
- 25 percent would abandon their church
- 16 percent would give up their American citizenship
- 10 percent would let a murderer go free
- 7 percent would kill a stranger
- 3 percent would put their own children up for adoption
Greed goes back to the Garden of Eden; when Satan tempted Eve in the Garden, he didn’t force her to eat the apple; he convinced her of the lie that God was holding out on her.
After Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden, God asked two questions of them:
- Where are you (though He already knew)?
- You fools! What have you done?
He knew that they had crossed a dangerous line into the destruction of greed.
Satan’s lie is that you can’t trust God, that He is holding back, that there is more out there for us. When he makes us believe this, he makes fools of us. Greed is much deeper than just wanting more money; Satan’s goal is to convince us to give him our souls.
Greed is grasping beyond the limit of what we need and always wanting more – it’s us reaching into the dark to grab things that do us no good. We pillage for more while Satan plunders our souls.
There are three kinds of greed:
- Greed for money and possessions (Matthew 6:19)
- Greed for pleasure
- Greed for power and control — this is when we try to become God in our own lives.
How do we overcome greed? Here’s what Jesus says:
- Become rich toward God by pointing our lives toward Him and offering Him all we have. Trust Him with our lives and our families.
- Become content when we’re rich towards God.
The measure of a man is not found in the number of his possessions — when we give, it’s not about us, but God.