"Greed," said Dorothy Sayers, "is the sin of the haves against the have-nots." Certainly we see that here; we see also the clamorous insistence which is greed. Jesus was in the middle of a lesson, and is interrupted by this man.
In response Jesus warns his disciples to be on guard. Evidently this sin of greed needs watching; it seems it cannot be stamped out all at once. We may think our poverty eliminates us from such temptation. Christ therefore warns us against "all kinds of greed." The word in the Greek simply means, "the desire of having more."
It is a dreadful sin. See how in this parable Jesus calls the man a fool. Fool? The things he does are common in our day; let us see what it takes to make a fool by greed:
· There is the pronoun: "my." "My crops" or "my goods." Shouldn't he praise God—from whom all blessings flow?
· He desires to hoard all. This is not being "frugal;" he already has a full barn.
· He assumes the future—enough goods for many years. Do we hold the future, or does God?
· Would his care decrease with his new barns—or would they become a worry too, as they were built? When built, wouldn't their larger size seem an emptiness to be worried about?
· "I will" - not "if God wills." It is not good to make plans without the living God.
· See how charity would have eased both his cares—no barns to build, no surplus to store—and fed the poor as well!
· He assumes that ease comes from wealth—but his own experience shows that a lie. If it were so, he'd already be at ease.
· Does ease consist of "eat, drink and be merry?" Or does it come from a heart at peace with God?
This man's cares sprang from his poverty toward God—and he showed himself a fool when he proposed to use the same technique to cure his cares. Has God made you wealthy? Then be the supply of the poor and needy. Your material blessings will not follow you to the grave and beyond; your wealth towards God is eternal.