Read Luke 12 -- 13
In Today's Reading:
Warnings against greed, hypocrisy; parables, healings, and teachings
The Lord illustrated the deceptive danger of covetousness by telling this parable: The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow (store) my fruits? . . . I will pull down my barns, and build greater (larger); and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have much goods laid up for many years; take your ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said to him, You fool, this night your soul shall be required of you: then whose shall those things be, which you have provided? (Luke 12:16-20). By hard work in the highly-respected occupation of farming, this man had become wealthy. There is no hint that he had gained his wealth by dishonest methods. His soul-destroying sin was that he spent his lifetime in self-gratification. God called him a fool, and then added: So is he that lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God (12:20-21).
We Christians should not allow material desires to distract us from doing the will of God. We are not to worry about our future needs. As important as food, clothing, and shelter are to maintaining life, our first concern should always be to seek . . . first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33). By keeping our priorities right, we prepare ourselves to be all that our Lord wants us to be to accomplish the purpose for which He created us.
How we use our time and talents is an expression of our Christian faith. Christ taught that life is truly fulfilling by loving, serving, and giving to extend the Good News to a lost world. Regardless of how much or how little talent, or possessions we may have or acquire, as good stewards we should prayerfully consider what Jesus would have us do with them.
You, O man of God . . . follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness (gentleness). Fight the good fight of faith, lay (take) hold on eternal life, whereto you are also called, and have professed a good profession (confession) before many witnesses (I Timothy 6:11-12).
12:50 straitened = pressed, hampered, distressed; 12:58 hale = to take by force, drag; 12:59 mite = the very smallest unit of money; 13:8 dung it = fertilize it; 13:11 had a spirit of infirmity = had suffered a disability or sickness; 13:24 strait = uncompromising in conduct or morality.
For Luke 13:27: See Psalm 6:8. Luke 13:35: See Psalm 118:26.
Pray for Brad Ratliff and the Bible Pathway Radio Broadcasts on WYRV-AM, Cedar Bluff VA · Government Officials: Sen. Hillary Clinton (NY), Rep. David Phelps (IL), and Rep. Charles Stenholm (TX) · Country: Zambia (10 million) in south-central Africa · Major languages: English and 70 indigenous languages · Religious freedom · 30% Roman Catholic; 25% Protestant; 24% ancestor worship, magic, and witchcraft; 19% cults · Prayer Suggestion: Beseech the Lord in intercessory prayer for others when you have questions (Exodus 32:11).
Memory Verse for the Week: Galatians 2:20