Faithlife Sermons

When the Rich Become Poor

Notes
Transcript

Ecclesiastes 1:2,12-14, 2:18-26 (NIV)

2     “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.

“Utterly meaningless! 

  Everything is meaningless.”

12         I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem.

13         I devoted myself to study

                                         and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven.                                                 

             What a heavy burden God has laid on men!

14         I have seen all the things that are done under the sun;

              all of them are meaningless,

              a chasing after the wind.

18         I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun,

              because I must leave them to the one who comes after me.

19                      And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool?

                    Yet he will have control over all the work into which I have poured my effort

                                                                                                          and skill under the sun.  

             This too is meaningless.

20        So my heart began to despair over all my toilsome labor under the sun.

21              For a man may do his work with wisdom,

                                                                  knowledge

                                                                  and skill,

                         and then he must leave all he owns to someone who has not worked for it.        

             This too is meaningless and a great misfortune.

22        What does a man get for all the toil

                                                    and anxious striving with which he labors under the sun?

23        All his days his work is pain

                                               and grief;

                            even at night his mind does not rest.

             This too is meaningless.

24        A man can do nothing better than to eat

                                                                   and drink

                                                                   and find satisfaction in his work.

             This too, I see, is from the hand of God,

25                        for without him, who can eat or find enjoyment?

26       To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom,

                                                                          knowledge

                                                                          and happiness,

             but to the sinner he gives the task of gathering

                                                                        and storing up wealth to hand it over to the  

                                                                                                           one who pleases God.                                       

              This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

Colossians 3:1-11 (NIV)
1   Since, then, you have been raised with Christ,

                             set your hearts on things above,

                                                            where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.

2                                         Set your minds on things above,

                                  not on earthly things.

3                                                       For you died,

                                       and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

4           When Christ, who is your life, appears,

                       then you also will appear with him in glory.

5                                       Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature:

                                                  sexual immorality,

                                                  impurity,

                                                  lust,

                                                  evil desires

                                                  and greed,

                                                           which is idolatry.

6                                                                               Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

7                                          You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived.

8                                     But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these:

                                                  anger,

                                                  rage,

                                                  malice,

                                                  slander,

                                                  and filthy language from your lips.

9                                     Do not lie to each other,

                                 since you have taken off your old self with its practices

10                                                           and have put on the new self,

                                       which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.

11                                                                            Here there is no Greek or Jew,

                                                                           circumcised or uncircumcised,

                                                                           barbarian,

                                                                           Scythian,

                                                                           slave or free,

                                                                                   but Christ is all,

                                                                                                    and is in all.

Luke 12:13-21 (NIV)  The Parable of the Rich Fool

13    Someone in the crowd said to him,

                            “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

14          Jesus replied,

            “Man, who appointed me a judge

                                                        or an arbiter between you?”

15         Then he said to them, “

              Watch out!

              Be on your guard against all kinds of greed;

                     a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

16         And he told them this parable:

               “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop.

17                     He thought to himself,

                          ‘What shall I do?

                            I have no place to store my crops.’

18                   “Then he said,

                          ‘This is what I’ll do.

                            I will tear down my barns

                                                             and build bigger ones,

                                                                  and there I will store all my grain and my goods.

19                     And I’ll say to myself,

                         “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years.

                           Take life easy;

                           eat,

                           drink

                           and be merry.” ’

20             “But God said to him,

            ‘You fool!

             This very night your life will be demanded from you.

             Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

21                    “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself

                                                                             but is not rich toward God.”

When the Rich Become Poor Luke 12:13-21

The Gospel of Luke and the Christian life is abour reversals- The last will be first and the first last, those who die will live, to lose your life is to find it, the weak are those who are strong, to keep is to lose and to give is to have.

Today’s lessons are about the rich becoming poor and the poor becoming rich.

Jesus says these words while traveling to Jerusalem to die for our sins- Journey narrative 9:51-18:34

Jesus gives instructions to the crowds, to His disciples, and to us

Exhortations and warnings are given by Jesus in preparation for the coming judgment.

Jesus moves from discussing hypocrisy, confession and persecution, possessions and worry.

Jesus turns from the disciples’ need to trust God in the midst of persecution to the obstacle that money can be to total devotion to God. It is hard to be sure why this topic surfaces here, but it may be that, since persecution often involves social ostracism and loss of livelihood, material security is an attractive alternative to rejection.

[1]

Shift from confession of Jesus to forsaking the security of material possessions. Those who confess Jesus look to God for their security, not to their own ability to accumulate possessions and lay up wealth for the future.

We are tempted to be diverted from our commitment to Jesus by wealth and material possessions.

Luke 8:14 (NIV) 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.

Temptation of Adam and Eve and of Jesus

Luke 4:5-7 (NIV) 5 The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. 6 And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. 7 So if you worship me, it will all be yours.”

In 1975, six armed gunmen broke into the deposit boxes in a London bank and stole valuables worth more than $7 million. One lady, whose jewelry was appraised at $500,000, cried out, "Everything I had was in there. My whole life was in that box.?

It is no giant step to move from the fear and intimidation which produce silence and denial to the larger arena of anxiety and fear which produce greed and a grasping after things as a means of securing one’s future. Whether Luke consciously made such a transition is, of course, uncertain, but in a broad collection of teachings the reader looks for connections and governing themes. Verses 13–34 have an inner unity around the subject of material goods, with three subjects being treated: covetousness (vv. 13–21), anxiety (vv. 22–32), and a call to simplicity of life (vv. 33–34).[2]

We are affluent, rich!

Measured by the living standards of the rest of the world, most believers in America are indeed wealthy people- Wiersbe

Mark Twain once defined “civilization” as “a limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities,” and he was right. In fact, many Christians are infected with covetousness and do not know it. They think that Paul’s admonition in 1 Timothy 6 applies only to the “rich and famous.” Measured by the living standards of the rest of the world, most believers in America are indeed wealthy people.[3]

I was part of that strange race of people aptly described as spending their lives doing things they detest, to make money they don't want, to buy things they don't need, to impress people they dislike. - Emile Henry Gauvreau

Danger of covetousness, greed, possessions, afflence, money, accumulating, storing, hoarding

Proverbs 30:7-9 (NIV) 7     “Two things I ask of you, O Lord; do not refuse me before I die: 8     Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. 9     Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’ Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.

One’s attitude toward material possessions has a major effect on one’s openness to what God is doing in and through Jesus, as upon how one will be received before God in judgment. While the “greed” clause relates most pointedly back to the concern over inheritance, the clause about the abundance of possessions corresponds more closely with the parable to come.[4]

In addition to hypocrisy, the second danger of which to beware in the day of prosperity is covetousness. “I have heard the confession of every conceivable sin among men,” one priest said, “except the sin of covetousness.” People feel bad about immorality, lying, swearing—but when was the last time they cried over the sin of covetousness? Yet in Romans 7, Paul says covetousness is the very sin that plagued him. What is covetousness? Simply wanting more of that which we already have enough. And Jesus said it is a sin of which we must be so careful.[5]

Rich in Luke/Acts

For the Lukan reader the mention of wealth will already produce a rather negative set of resonances (see esp. 6:24, 8:14 and the reversal language of 1:52–53)[6]

Luke 1:53 (NIV) He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.

Luke 6:24 (NIV) “But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.

Luke 8:14 (NIV) 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.

My family testimony

Dad grew up in the Depression- It is better to have and not need than to need and not have.

Have not’s- Have’s- Have not’s

Luke 12:13-21 (NIV)  The Parable of the Rich Fool

13    Someone in the crowd said to him,

                            “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

The disputed inheritance

How an inheritance can divide families

The Avaricious Brother rebuked. This incident forms historical introduction to the Parable of the Rich Fool (16–21), just as the lawyer’s questions (10:25–30) form the historical introduction to the Parable of the Good Samaritan. Comp. 14:15, 15:1–3. We are not told whether the man was making an unjust claim on his brother or not[7]

Under the umbrella of the concern of this section (12:1–13:9) with being ready for the judgment of God, the focus now moves from the need for a clear-cut acknowledgment of Jesus to the need for a right evaluation and use of material wealth.[8]

 

He does not ask Jesus to arbitrate between him and his brother, but to give a decision against his brother. There is no evidence that the brother consented to arbitration.[9]

Jesus has been emphasizing the folly of worry.  One would think that in view of such words of encouragement the reaction of everyone would be, “How rich we are!”

Upon one listener, however, the words of Jesus seem to have made no impression whatever. [10]

He tries to use Jesus to get what he wants.  He does not ask Jesus for an opinion, but orders Jesus to implement a specific course of action. 

He came to bring people to God, not to bring property to people.- Morris

The man’s problems will not be resolved even if his brother does agree to divide.

32 sn Tell my brother. In 1st century Jewish culture, a figure like a rabbi was often asked to mediate disputes, except that here mediation was not requested, but representation.[11]

He wants a decision by Jesus against his brother. The law (Deut. 21:17) was two-thirds to the elder, one-third to the younger. [12]

The person who made this request could think of only one thing: the inheritance! He was convinced that he was being cheated.[13]

His focus was on how he could get his share of the inheritance from his brother.

Let us say that, in connection with an inheritance, you received “a bum deal.” The trouble is that you make so much fuss about it that it begins to look as if all your happiness depends upon the solution, in your favor, of this injustice.[14]

An indefinite “certain one” (τις, tis) starts the account, as is often the case in Luke (9:57; 10:25; 11:27, 45; 13:23; Fitzmyer 1985: 969; Marshall 1978: 522). [15]

14          Jesus replied,

            “Man, who appointed me a judge

                                                        or an arbiter between you?”

35 tn The pronoun ὑμᾶς (humas) is plural, referring to both the man and his brother; thus the translation “you two.”[16]

The word for divider or arbiter (μεριστης [meristēs]) is a late word from μεριζομαι [merizomai] (verse 13) and occurs here only in the N.T. [17]

There is a greater gain than getting an inheritance and a greater loss than losing an inheritance.

15         Then he said to them, “

              Watch out!

              Be on your guard against all kinds of greed;

                     a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

Watch out- Believe that the danger exists

Beware- be on guard to ward off a foe

Be on your guard- Be vigilant to resist the evil for what it is.

Greed for pleasure, prestige, luxury, security

Luke 12:15 (NASB95) Then He said to them, “aBeware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.”

Greed, as Jesus defines it, is not the exclusive property of the rich and powerful. In fact, as the concept is discussed in Luke, it is the common desire to accumulate more than one presently has. There are various reasons for this desire, ranging from desire for prestige and luxury to the desire to secure one’s own future. [18]

We are never cured of our greediness in this life.  Like a recovering alcoholic

      We are born with a human nature that is inward focused. From the time we are born we know how to say, “mine.” We know how to be selfish. We have to be taught to share.

Do you want more than you have?

Are we greedy if we want more than we need or if we have more than we need?

1.      "A strong desire to acquire more and more material possessions or to possess more things than other people have, all irrespective of need." The word is usually translated with greed, avarice, or covetousness.

There is never a point where a greedy person has enough. Greed can never be satisfied. It is always looking to get more.

Enough is never enough.  There is always more to get.

Ecclesiastes 5:10 (NIV) Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income.  11     As goods increase, so do those who consume them.  And what benefit are they to the owner except to feast his eyes on them?  12     The sleep of a laborer is sweet, whether he eats little or much,

      but the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep.

         13 I have seen a grievous evil under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owner, 

Jeremiah 6:13 (NIV)   “From the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain;

2 Timothy 3:1-3 (NIV)  But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good,

1 Timothy 6:8-10 (NIV) 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

1 John 2:15-16 (NIV) Do Not Love the World

15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For everything in the world—the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does—comes not from the Father but from the world.

Luke 16:13 (NIV) 13 “No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”

James 4:4 (NIV) 4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.

Truths from the Bible about greed-

·         Romans 1:28-31 -- Greed is a result of idolatry.

·         Mark 7:21-23 -- Greed comes from within us and defiles us

·         Colossians 3:5-6 -Greed is part of our earthly nature and brings God's wrath

·         1 Corinthians 6:9-11 -- The greedy will not inherit the kingdom of God

·         Ephesians 5:3-5 -- The greedy will not inherit the kingdom of Christ and of God

autous may refer to all present (cp. ochlos in v. 12), or to the disciples, preferably the former.[19]

horate may stand alone, or, like phulassesthe, go with apo (cp. A-G s.v. horaō 2 b), preferably the former. For phulassō cp. on 2.8 and A-G s.v. 2 a. In pasa pleonexia the adjective pasa means ‘every kind, or form’, cp. A-G s.v. 1 a b.

pleonexia (‡) ‘greed’, ‘greediness’, cp. N.T.Wb., 69f/GREED.[20]

hē zōē autou estin ek tōn huparchontōn autō ‘his life belongs to his possessions’. For ta huparchonta cp. on 8.3 and reference there. For the meaning of ek cp. A-G s.v. 4 a d.[21]

37 tn See L&N 13.154 for this use of the middle voice of φυλάσσω (phulassō) in this verse.

38 tn Or “avarice,” “covetousness.” Note the warning covers more than money and gets at the root attitude - the strong desire to acquire more and more possessions and experiences.[22]

The Greek word for greed is very descriptive. Literally it means: the thirst for having more, always having more and more and still more.[23]

Warning:  This item has the potential to be damaging to your spiritual health.  Handle with care and remember the One who gave it to you and His purposes for it.

Greed, avarice is identified frequently in the NT as a problem to be avoided (Rom 1:29; 2 Cor 9:5; Col 3:5; Eph 4:19; 5:3; 2 Pet 2:3, 14) as it is broadly in Greco-Roman thought (see Horn, Glaube und Handeln, 60, for texts). Greed is the desire to have more, to get one’s hands on whatever one can, to acquire without reference to one’s own specific needs or the situation of others. The basis for the warning against greed is the assertion that life is not to be found in possessions. [24]

On πλεονεξία “the greedy desire to have more,” as a more comprehensive vice than φιλαργυρία, see Lft. Epp. p. 56 and on Col. 3:5. [25]

St. Francis of Assisi once said, “Men have confessed to me every known sin except the sin of covetousness.” [26]

Covetousness is an unquenchable thirst for getting more and more of something we think we need in order to be truly satisfied. It may be a thirst for money or the things that money can buy, or even a thirst for position and power. Jesus made it clear that true life does not depend on an abundance of possessions.[27]

Covetousness appears in many forms- clutching what is already possessed, grasping for more.

Our possessions can possess us.

Possessions are dangerous because they can possess us. Did you get a new car—or did it get you? You used to be free on Saturdays to toss a ball with your kids. But now you have to wax your car, tune it up, keep it running. Small men seek to get. Great men seek to be.[28]

Greed can create a distortion about what life is, because the definition of life is not found in objects, but relationships, especially to God and his will.7 [29]

Greed is an obsession to hoard all things for oneself, blocking out any thought for God or for one’s neighbor.

From every kind of greedy desire for more (πλεον [pleon], more, ἑξια [hexia], from ἐχω [echō], to have) an old word which we have robbed of its sinful aspects and refined to mean business thrift. In the abundance of the things which he possesseth (ἐν τῳ περισσευειν τινι ἐκ των ὑπαρχοντων αὐτῳ [en tōi perisseuein tini ek tōn huparchontōn autōi]). A rather awkward Lukan idiom: “In the abounding (articular infinitive) to one out of the things belonging (articular participle) to him.” [30]

12:15 Jesus warned the man and the crowd, including His disciples, against every form of greed. Greed is wrong because it exalts possessions to a place of importance that is greater than the place they occupy. Quality of life is not proportionate to one’s possessions. There is more to life than that. Even an abundance of possessions does not bring fullness of life. The man had implied that his life would be better if he had more possessions. Jesus said that was not necessarily so. People should seek God rather than riches because God does bring fulfillment into life (cf. Col. 3:5).[31]

Often disputes over inheritance are really about greed, symptoms of the disease of “possessionitis.” Jesus attacks this disease directly in this parable, making a point Luke repeats often in his Gospel (4:4; 8:4–15; 9:24–25; 12:22–34; 16:19–31; 18:18–30). It appears that greed and the pursuit of possessions constitute one of the greatest obstacles to spiritual growth. This is especially true in modern culture, where possessions are readily available and their technological glitz is always being enhanced, as splashy advertisements for the latest gadget make clear.[32]

When Jesus makes this warning, he has more in mind than monetary accumulation. If Jesus were alive today he would see the attitude behind the expression “The one with the most toys wins” as a prescription for failure in life. The ancients knew, as moderns also know, that life consists of more than the accumulation of wealth. Scripture repeatedly warns against greed and includes it in lists of moral vices (Mk 7:22; Rom 1:29; Eph 4:19; 5:3; Col 3:5; 1 Tim 6:10; 2 Pet 2:3, 14; in the Old Testament, Job 31:24–25; Ps 49). The ancient historian Plutarch said, “Greed never rests from the acquiring of more” (On Love of Wealth 1 [Mor. 523 E]; L. T. Johnson 1991:198).

When possessions are the goal, people become pawns. In fact, a reversal of the created order occurs, as those made in the living image of God come to serve dead nonimages. It is this inversion of the created order that makes greed such a notorious sin; it is even called idolatry in some texts (Eph 5:3; Col 3:5). When I think of this story and its lesson, I picture a Buddha with a dollar attached to its stomach. For some, the material world is god. Many of us end up serving our dollars or pounds and bowing before their demands rather than relating sensitively to people. In the process relationships can be damaged and marriages destroyed. False worship involves bowing before something that is not worthy of honor and that cannot deliver life’s true meaning. The pursuit of wealth is the pursuit of false religion.[33]

This is a very emphatic statement in Greek (a PRESENT ACTIVE IMPERATIVE and a PRESENT MIDDLE IMPERATIVE, both PLURAL). Greed (or covetousness) is the attitude and lifestyle of “more and more for me at any cost” (cf. Rom. 1:29; Eph. 4:19; 5:3; Col. 3:5)! It is the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil! Greed kills (I Tim. 6:9–10).[34]

So Jesus tells an example parable, in which the example is negative. It involves the fortune of one man and how he handles that fortune. The man remains nameless, as is the normal pattern in such parables, because he represents a type of person. [35]

The following context deals with right and wrong attitudes toward earthly possessions.

This parable emphasizes the false security that money and possessions provide. There was a Roman proverb that says, “Money is like sea water, the more you drink, the more you want!” The problem here is not money, but the love of money, the priority of money, the self-sufficiency that money seems to provide (cf. Mark 8:36–37).[36]

All kinds of greed. Greed is an insatiable desire and lust for more and more. 104 It is all-consuming, so that all of life becomes focused on the accumula tion of wealth. There is no room for anything else, not even God. This is why it is so hard for a rich person to enter God’s kingdom (18:25).

Life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. Compare 4:4; 9:24–25; 12:22–34.[37]

Temptation of greed- Trying to establish and measure our lives by what we have.

This challenge gives way to teaching on greed and the nature of life. Greed is the desire to have more, to get one’s hands on whatever one can, to acquire without reference to one’s own specific needs or the situation of others. The greedy person is confused about life, since a humanly meaningful and satisfying life has very little to do with how extensive one’s possessions are.[38]

16         And he told them this parable:

               “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop.

There are more parables dealing with money than with any other subject. This is probably because there are so many snares and temptations that beset those who possess and/or seek to acquire money. The warning contained in this story is that of providing amply for the physical aspects of life, while ignoring preparations for the life to come. [39]

This is one of four passages in the journey narrative that treat possessions (12:22–34; 14:12–33; 16:1–13; 16:19–31; Pilgrim 1981: 109). It is also one of four unique Lucan parables with a negative illustration (10:29–37; 16:19–31; 18:9–14; Schneider 1977a: 281).[40]

The parable of the rich fool is unique to Luke.

Luke 16:19-31, 18:18-30

The Parable of the Rich Fool, which illustrates both points;—that the life that is worth living does not depend upon wealth, which may be a trouble and anxiety; and that even mere existence cannot be secured by wealth.[41]

The rich fool does not simply stand for people who are materially rich, but for those who take no thought for God. [42]

Absent in the story by the rich man is any mention of his relationship with and accountability to God.

Such a man would be envied in an agrarian context and might even be regarded as specially blessed by God[43]

reference to Ecclus. 11:18, 19 or to Ps. 49:6, 16–20.

41 tn Or “yielded a plentiful harvest.”

Brought forth plentifully (εὐφορησεν [euphorēsen]). Late word from εὐφορος [euphoros] (bearing well), in medical writers and Josephus, here only in the N.T. [44]

He has enough and more than enough.

17                     He thought to himself,

                          ‘What shall I do?

                            I have no place to store my crops.’

42 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate that this is a result of the preceding statement.

44 sn I have nowhere to store my crops. The thinking here is prudent in terms of recognizing the problem. The issue in the parable will be the rich man’s solution, particularly the arrogance reflected in v. 19.[45]

So it is with the rich fool: my fruits, my barns, my corn, my goods, just like Nabal whose very name means fool (I Sam. 25:11), whether a direct reference to him or not. [46]

18                   “Then he said,

                          ‘This is what I’ll do.

                            I will tear down my barns

                                                             and build bigger ones,

                                                                  and there I will store all my grain and my goods.

46 sn Note how often the first person pronoun (I, my) is present in these verses. The farmer is totally self absorbed. [47]

There is no mention of God or others.

Essence of Greed- Keeping what resources God brings our way for ourselves.

This man believes that what he has is his in no uncertain terms. Several times in the next few verses he speaks in first-person terms about what he has: my crops … my barns … my grain … my goods … myself. There is no hint of an awareness of stewardship or responsibility to others as a result of his fortune. There is only self-interest. In his view he, like the famous American investment company, has made money the old-fashioned way—he has earned it! So after he stores his grain, he can relax into a totally self-indulgent life of ease: “Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” The language recalls the biblical and Jewish texts of hedonism, as well as Greek culture (Eccl 8:15; Is 22:13; Tobit 7:10; 1 Enoch 97:8–10; Euripides Alcestis 788–89). Almost every culture recognizes that using the creation for strictly selfish ends is a distortion.[48]

19                     And I’ll say to myself,

                         “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years.

                           Take life easy;

                           eat,

                           drink

                           and be merry.” ’

Sins of thought- He said to himself 3X

 

The Gospel parable is likely to be a conscious development from Sir 11:18–19[49]

18 There is a man who is rich through his diligence and self-denial,

and this is the reward allotted to him: 19 when he says, “I have found rest,

and now I shall enjoy my goods!”

he does not know how much time will pass

until he leaves them to others and dies. [50]

47 tn Grk “to my soul,” which is repeated as a vocative in the following statement, but is left untranslated as redundant.[51]

“Extremes meet,” suggests Dean Plumptre; “and the life of self-indulgence may spring either from an undue expectation of a lengthened life” (as was the case here), ”or from unduly dwelling on its shortness, without taking into account the judgment that comes after it. [52]

Note difference in tenses (ἀναπαυου [anapauou], keep on resting, φαγε [phage], eat at once, πιε [pie], drink thy fill, εὐφραινου [euphrainou], keep on being merry), first and last presents, the other two aorists. [53]

12:19 The rich man’s folly lay in what he failed to consider, not in the plans that he made. His words to himself indicate that he thought his life consisted in the abundance of his possessions alone, but there was more to life than he realized, namely life beyond the grave. The man used a common form of address in speaking to himself (cf. Ps. 41:6, 12; 42:5). “Soul” or “self” translates the Greek psyche that frequently represents the whole person as it does here (e.g., James 1:21; 5:20).[54]

The gift of our possessions, like our lives, comes to us apart from our own efforts.

What are you going to do with the gift- hoard it or share it?

To be rich toward God is to believe that God is the giver of all good things, including life and salvation. To show that one believes is to share with others the gifts God gives.

 

God’s gifts are to be used to glorify God through serving others.

The two main points deriving from the actions of the fool and of God follow naturally. (1) A purely selfish accumulation of possessions is incompatible with true discipleship. (2) This incompatibility stems from the transience of earthly riches and the coming reckoning which all will face before God. [55]

Wealth with respect to God has two levels of meaning for Luke:

1)      The response of faith.

2)      The disposition of possessions in accordance with faith, which means to share them with others rather than accumulating them for one’s self.

“ ‘take your ease’ ” The theological emphasis here is on the frailty and presumption of human plans (cf. Prov. 27:1; James 4:13–15). True life is much more than physical prosperity![56]

1 Corinthians 15:32 (NIV) “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”

echeis polla agatha keimena eis etē polla ‘you have many goods laid up for many years’. eis etē polla goes with polla agatha primarily, meaning ‘enough for many years’. polla agatha here includes panta ton siton kai ta agatha mou of v. 18, i.e. agatha has a wider meaning here than in v. 18.[57]

The follower of Jesus cannot eat, drink, and be merry without helping those who have nothing to eat or drink. Life is not about “taking it easy” but about serving those who do not have it so easy.[58]

He never saw beyond himself.

He never saw beyond this life.- Barclay

George W. Truett, a well-known pastor, was invited to dinner in the home of a very wealthy man in Texas.  After the meal, the host led him to a place where they could get a good view of the surrounding area.

   Pointing to the oil wells punctuating the landscape, he boasted, "Twenty-five years ago I had nothing.  Now, as far as you can see, it's all mine."  Looking in the opposite direction at his sprawling fields of grain, he said,  "That's all mine." Turning east toward huge herds of cattle, he bragged, "They're all mine."  Then, pointing to the west and a beautiful forest, he exclaimed, "That too is all mine."

   He paused, expecting Dr. Truett to compliment him on his great success.  Truett, however, placing one hand on the man's shoulder and pointing heavenward with the other, simply said, "How much do you have in that direction?"  The man hung his head and confessed, "I never thought of that."

 

First of all, the rich man shows that he does not know himself. He fails to realize that his body is mortal and will not necessarily live on “for many years:” Also, he does not take account of the fact that the “ample goods” in which he rejoices cannot satisfy the soul. His soul has nothing!

Secondly, he does not figure with the needs of others. He is thoroughly selfish. Both in the Greek original and in my translation the words I and my occur an even dozen times. There are 8 I’s and 4 my’s. He should have realized that there were other people who were in need of some of his grain. He missed the joy of generous giving.

Thirdly, the rich man does not thank and glorify God. [59]

Goods are given.

Three speeches- He discusses with himself ways of ensuring his future security.  His goal is to enjoy the good life while life lasts.

He goes, the goods are left behind.

What he thought were possessions were gifts from God, and even his own soul was on loan from God.

The First Article

creation

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.

What does this mean? I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them.

He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life.

He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil.

All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey Him.

This is most certainly true.[60]

1) God is the provider and owner of all things.  Wealth is a gift from God.

     God will provide for our needs, not for our greeds.

2) We are managers of God’s wealth and to use it for His purposes.

3) Wealth is not sinful in itself unless it is the priority.

4) We are warned to use wealth to remember our Creator, for personal enjoyment, and for the benefit of others.

 

Accumulation of wealth must be balanced with dependence upon God and honest and responsible stewardship.

 

In one of his books Watchman Nee said that we approach God like little children with open hands, begging for gifts. Because he is a good God, he fills our hands with good things—life, health, friends, money, success, recognition, challenge, marriage, children, a nice home, a good job, all the things that we count at Thanksgiving when we count our blessings. And so like children, we rejoice in what we have received and run around comparing what we have with each other. When our hands are finally full, God says, “My child, I long to have fellowship with you. Reach out your hand and take my hand. But we can’t do it because our hands are full. “God, we can’t,” we cry. “Put those things aside and take my hand,” he replied. “No, we can’t. It’s too hard to put them down.” “But I am the one who gave them to you in the first place.” “O God, what you have asked for is too hard. Please don’t ask us to put these things aside.” And God answers quietly, “You must.”

Hold Things Loosely

I'll never forget a conversation I had with the late Corrie ten Boom. she said to me, in her broken English, "Chuck, I've learned that we must hold everything loosely, because when I grip it tightly, it hurts when the Father pries my fingers loose and takes it from me!

Charles Swindoll, Living Above the Level of Mediocrity, p.114

I have held many things in my hands and I have lost them all; but whatever I have placed in God's hands, that I still possess. - Martin Luther

The issue- How much of what belongs to God do I need to keep and use for my own needs?

We are not owners, but managers for God.

There is no such thing as Christian givening, merely Christian mangement and distribution.

We are not here to live comfortably, but usefully.   

20             “But God said to him,

            ‘You fool!

             This very night your life will be demanded from you.

             Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

48 tn Grk “your soul,” but ψυχή (psuchē) is frequently used of one’s physical life. It clearly has that meaning in this context.

49 tn Or “required back.” This term, ἀπαιτέω (apaiteō), has an economic feel to it and is often used of a debt being called in for repayment (BDAG 96 s.v. 1).

50 tn Grk “the things you have prepared, whose will they be?” The words “for yourself” are not in the Greek text, but are implied.[61]

Psalm 14:1, 53:1 (NIV) 1     The foola says in his heart, “There is no God.”

Material prosperity does not prolong our physical life.

Possessions will not give us joy and peace in this life.

Material prosperity does not indicate or ensure that one is rich toward God.

Possessions will never give us eternal life.

You can’t buy your way into heaven.

God is not impressed with our money.

There is nothing wrong with saving for the future or following good business principles.

Wealth cannot keep us alive when our time comes to die, nor can it buy back the opportunities we missed while we were thinking of ourselves and ignoring God and others.- Wiersbe

Proverbs 23:4-5 (NIV)  Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint. 5  Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like an eagle.

 

When the game is over, it all goes back in the box.

You can’t take it with you.

Psalm 49:16-17 (NIV) 16     Do not be overawed when a man grows rich,

when the splendor of his house increases; 17 for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him.

Temporary, eternal

1 Corinthians 7:31 (NIV)  This world in its present form is passing away.

1 John 2:17 (NIV) 17 The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.

Who switched the price tags?- Tony Campolo

The way you deal with your possessions is an indicator of the condition of your heart.

Mt.6:21- Where your treasure is there will your heart be also.

Money does not necessarily solve problems; it created new problems for this farmer. It is not a sin to be wealthy, but it is a sin to make wealth your god (Col. 3:5). Note the emphasis the farmer gave to himself (“I” and “my”). Wealth can be a window through which we see God (1 Tim. 6:17) or a mirror in which we see only ourselves. It can make us generous or selfish, depending on what is in our hearts.

The rich are prone to be covetous, and the poor are prone to worry. Both are sins. When we substitute things for life, we stop living by faith and trusting God. [62]

Looking out for number one!

I had a little tea party

This afternoon at three.

’Twas very small—

Three guests in all

Just I, Myself, and Me.

Myself ate all the sandwiches,

While I drank up the tea.

’Twas also I who ate the pie

And passed the cake to Me.[63]

This man had gathered all of his treasure on earth but had stored none in heaven. The same idea is expressed in this epitaph:

Here lies John Racket

In his wooden jacket.

He kept neither horses nor mules.

He lived like a hog.

He died like a dog.

And left all his money to fools.[64]

Leave Behind

Out of the life, I shall never take
Things of silver and gold I make
All that I cherish and hoard away
When I leave these things on earth must stay.

Though I failed for a painting rare
To hang on my wall, I must leave it there
Though I call it mine and boast its worth
I must give it up when I quit this earth
All that I gather and all that I keep
I must leave behind when I fall asleep

And I wonder often, what will I own
In that other life when I pass along.
What shall He find and what shall He see
In the soul that answers the call for me'

Will the Great Judge find when my task is through
That my soul has gathered some riches, too'
Or at the last it will be mine to find
That all I had worked for was left behind.

Author Unknown

Where had the fool gone wrong?

I believe that the story itself reveal several “foolish” elements in this man’s thinking and actions. Consider them with me for a moment:

(1) The rich fool was foolish in failing to recognize where his wealth had come from. There is no evidence in the story that this man was particularly smart, especially good at his work, or that he was a hard worker. The man apparently should not have taken the credit for his wealth. Jesus was careful to tell us that the man’s ground produced a great harvest. Let’s face it. Good ground produces good crops. Bad ground produces bad crops. And beyond this, God gives the bountiful crops. This is precisely what God promised in the Mosaic Covenant (cf. Deuteronomy 28:1-14). The rich fool did not seem to recognize the source of his prosperity. Indeed, from what we are told, the rich fool had no regard for God at all.

(2) The rich fool erred in his understanding of the purpose of wealth. If the rich fool failed to grasp where his wealth came from, he also failed to understand what he was to do with it. He thought that wealth was to store up and to save, rather than to use. He further believed that wealth, when it was to be used, was to be used for his own comfort and ease. He did not, as the Old Testament Law had taught, see his wealth as the occasion for praising God, and as the means by which he could offer sacrifices and offerings, both compulsory and voluntary. Neither did he see his wealth as a God-given provision for him to minister to others, both by giving and by loaning to those in need. It never occurred to the rich fool that when his barns could not hold any more, he could have given some of his wealth away.

(3) The rich fool was foolish in that he saw his possessions as his security, and as the basis for his ceasing to be productive. It would seem from this man’s words that he not only planned to retire, but that he planned an early retirement. His wealth, we might say, was his “social security.” I understand him to be saying that he would be at ease once his bigger barns were built and his crops were safely stored inside, along with his goods. He is planning to “hang up his work jeans” and to retire to the rocking chair. He is looking forward to eating and drinking the finest and in enjoying all the fine things for the rest of his life.

(4) The rich fool was foolish in his presumption about the future. The rich man presumed two things about the future, both of with were false. First, he presumed that he would possess his wealth in the future. Second, he presumed that he would be alive in the future, to enjoy his possessions. Both of these presumptions were shown to be false when his life was demanded of him that very night. Someone else got his possessions, and he did not live to enjoy what he had stored up.

(5) The rich fool was foolish in holding a view of the future which was short-sighted and which excluded the kingdom of God. The rich fool lived his life in the light of the future, but that future did not include the kingdom of God, death, or the judgment to come. The rich man’s future was only as long as his earthly life, and only as broad as his own interests.

(6) The rich man was a fool both in the way he defined life and in the way he thought life was to be obtained. The word “life” is frequently used in chapter 12. To the rich fool “living” or “life” was defined in terms of ease and pleasure, in terms not just of eating and drinking, but of doing so in a way that was enjoyable. And life was obtained by putting oneself and one’s wealth first. One found life by seeking life for oneself and by ignoring others, including God. Jesus told His disciples that the way for a person to obtain “life,” to save his life was to give it up. The rich man lived his life exactly the opposite to the way Jesus taught His disciples to live. Those who die in the pursuit of “life,” “living,” or “living it up” are aided by Satan, the murderer, who leads men to death by promises them and causing them to pursue “life” wrongly defined.

1)      When we seek out wealth, inheritance above all things (greed)

2)      When we want more stuff, possessions thinking it will make us happy

3)      When we think what we have belongs to us and doesn’t need to be shared with others (presumption)

4)      When we presume that they will live forever on earth (presumption)

5)      When we worry about the future we hoard (worry)

6)      When we store up things for self, rather than seek to be rich toward God

(selfishness)

Wherein lies his folly? Different answers are given: the failure to recognize the fleeting nature of life (cf. Pss 39:5–8, 13; 90:12); the failure to prepare for what lies beyond death (v 21 can easily be read in this context, esp. if linked to v 5); the failure to consider God (cf. Jas 4:13–5:6); selfish preoccupation with one’s own life and pleasures; etc. If Sir 11:19–20 can be something of a guide, then the problem is likely to stem from the view that one’s responsibilities in life end with the securing of one’s own economic future. The farmer had no business stopping at the point where his own future has been assured by the windfall of an unusually good crop. At this point his responsibilities had only just begun (is there some negative echo of Joseph’s handling of the bumper crops of Egypt?). In defining this broader responsibility, one’s answerability to God is not to be left out of account. The life-force, from which stems all our power to act, one has as a trust from God, and he may ask for its return at any point. The foolishness of the farmer’s narrow aims is highlighted by the contrast between his many years of supply and the few hours that remain to him of life. He has considered only his own present life, but his stockpile of good things will be of no benefit to that life, for God has now asked for its return. It may be that Ps 49:13 (in its context) has had an influence on the thought here as well, and that we should discern in the exultation of v 19 a foolish confidence that in securing his economic future, the farmer has secured the future of his life itself as well—he has not reckoned with God. In the larger Lukan section, the prospect of death necessarily introduces, as well, the prospect of judgment (see v 5).[65]

PRINCIPLE ONE: ONE’S VIEW OF THE FUTURE DETERMINES ONES PRESENT CONDUCT

The rich fool was correct to live his life in the light of the future. He was foolish in his concept of what the future held. He assumed that he would be alive in the future, to enjoy the things he had stored up. His grasp of the future did not include God nor the kingdom of God. His future was entirely “this life” oriented, earthly, sensual.

PRINCIPLE TWO: ONE’S DEFINITION OF WHAT CONSTITUTES LIFE IS CENTRAL AND CRUCIAL TO THE WAY WE LIVE OUR LIVES

PRINCIPLE THREE: LIFE DOES NOT CONSIST IN THE ABUNDANCE OF THINGS, EVEN FOR THOSE WHO CAN ACCUMULATE MUCH

Doesn’t the goal and the means of the rich fool sound a lot like our concept of retirement. Don’t we hope to be able to store up enough goods as we go through life to be able cease our labor, and to enjoy the rest of our life as a kind of extended vacation?

This is the only place in the Bible where retirement is spoken of, and here it is in the context of disapproval. Of course, the Bible recognizes aging and slowing down. But retiring to a life of self-indulgence finds no favor with God.

The problem with this man’s retirement package is that it was a ticket to hedonism. In the Scriptures, to “eat, drink and be merry” is a description of dissipation (cf. 1 Corinthians 15:32; Ecclesiastes 8:15; Isaiah 22:13). A retirement that lives for self is unbiblical and immoral. [66]

BIBLICAL "CURES" FOR GREED -- rather than "getting" we need to be "giving".

Being rich towards God is approaching God as hungry, needy, people -- letting God give us what we need rather than trying to secure it on our own.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV) 3     “Blessed are the poor (beggars) in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

The rich become poor when they think they are rich without God.

 

Luke 9:25 (NIV) 25 What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?

Luke 12:31-32 (NIV) 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

The poor become rich in Jesus Christ.

2 Corinthians 8:9 (NIV) 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

1 Peter 1:18-19 (NIV) 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. [67]

Ephesians 1:7 (NIV) 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace [68]

Ephesians 2:7 (NIV) The incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 3:8 (NIV) 8 Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,

 

Ephesians 1:18 (NIV) 18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, [69]

 

      Jesus Paid It All- Song

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

Luke 12:22-31 -- Don't worry. God will provide what you need.

Luke 12:32-34 -- Sell your possessions and give to the poor.

Luke 18:18-30 -- Sell all your possessions and give to the poor.

Luke 19:1-10 -- Give half of one's possessions to the poor.

Luke 21:1-4 -- Give everything that one has.

Luke 12:33 (NIV) 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.

Luke 18:22 (NIV) 22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Matthew 19:21 (NIV) 21 Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

“The bosoms of the poor, the houses of widows, the mouths of children are the barns which last forever,” said Ambrose. [70]

·         Acts 2:42-47 -- Share possessions with other believers for the sake of the needy

·         Acts 4:32-37 -- Communal ownership of all property for the sake of the needy.

He

•     thought he could satisfy his eternal soul with perishable goods

•     smugly assumed he would live to a ripe old age

•     was totally self-centered (note the many first-person singular pronouns)

This marks the only occasion in the Bible when God himself called an individual a fool.[71]

Money is stored servanthood.

A businessman pulled out his change from his pocket.  Among the coins was a small cross.  “What a place to carry it, “ someone remarked.”  “Oh, not a strange place at all,” was the reply.  “When I’m tempted to spend money foolishly, I’m reminded that the cross has first claim on it.”- Come Alive with Illustrations- Flynn

taute tē nukti ‘this very night’, emphatic.

      Luke 12:15- The one who dies with the most toys still dies.

Luke 9:25 (NIV) 25 What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?

Luke uses κεῖσθαι (lit. “to place”) quite often, but not elsewhere with the sense “to lay/store up.” “Eat, drink, and be merry” had become a traditional trio long before this parable was coined (Eccl 2:24; 3:13; 5:18; 8:15; Judg 19:4–9; Tob 7:10; cf. Isa 22:13 [= 1 Cor 15:32]; Sir 11:19; there are also non-Jewish parallels [see Fitzmyer, 973][72]

Is thy soul required of thee (την ψυχην σου αἰτουσιν ἀπο σου [tēn psuchēn sou aitousin apo sou]). Plural active present, not passive: “They are demanding thy soul from thee.” The impersonal plural (aitousin) is common enough (Luke 6:38; 12:11; 16:9; 23:31). The rabbis used “they” to avoid saying “God.” [73]

12:20 God said something different to the man than he had said to himself. This contrast shows the error of the rich man’s thinking. In the Old Testament a fool is essentially someone who disbelieves or disregards God (e.g., Ps. 14:1; cf. Luke 11:40). That is precisely what this man had done regarding the meaning of life. He had thought that he would be comfortable for many years to come (v. 19), but God demanded his life that very night. This loss of life contrasts with his accumulation of possessions. Now he had nothing left, and his possessions would pass to his heirs (cf. Eccles. 2:18–19). This fact could not have escaped the notice of the man who posed the question about his inheritance (v. 13). Even if he got part of his brother’s inheritance, he might not keep it long.[74]

“ ‘You fool’ ” This man was not a theological atheist, but he lived his life in practical atheism, as so many in the church today (cf. Ps. 14:1; 53:1). The NT book of James is a good NT commentary on the priority of wealth!

Self- centered, self- sufficient, short-sighted, spiritually impoverished fool

James 1:11 (NIV) The rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.

This is a different word for “fool” (aphrōn, cf. 11:40; 12:20; I Cor. 15:36) and not the word “fool” (mōros) of Matt. 5:22, which reflects the Aramaic raca. Jesus Himself uses mōros in Matt. 23:17, 19.[75]

Ἄφρων (aphrōn, fool) is an important term, for in the OT a fool is one who either acts without God or without wisdom about potential destruction (Job 31:24–28; Ps. 14:1; 53:1 [53:2 MT]; Eccles. 2:1–11; Sir. 11:18–19).[76]

This is a penetrating question for materialists (cf. Ps. 39:6; 49:10; Eccl. 2:18–23).[77]

When not even his ψυχή is his own to dispose of, what will become of his ἀγαθά ?[78]

We might well ask ourselves the question, “If Christ should come today, whose would all my possessions be?” [79]

21                    “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself

                                                                             but is not rich toward God.”

51 sn It is selfishness that is rebuked here, in the accumulation of riches for himself. Recall the emphasis on the first person pronouns throughout the parable.[80]

Not rich toward God (μη εἰς θεον πλουτων [mē eis theon ploutōn]). The only wealth that matters and that lasts. Cf. 16:9 and Matt. 6:19f. Some MSS. do not have this verse. Westcott and Hort bracket it. [81]

“Being rich toward God” means being rich in those things which are pleasing to Him. Amassing wealth without reference to the God who bestows it is πλεονεξία, and πλεονεξία is ἀφροσύνη.[82]

Two principles:

1)      A person’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.

2)      One who is not rich toward God is a fool.

The principal deficiency of the wealthy farmer is his failure to account for God in his plans.- Green

A man whose life hangs by a thread and who may be called upon at any time to give account of himself is a fool if he relies upon material things.- Morris

People who are satisfied only with the things that money can buy are in great danger of losing the things that money cannot buy.- Wiersbe

 

Matthew 6:19-21 (NIV) Treasures in Heaven

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

The greatest tragedy is not what the man left behind, but what lay before him: eternity without God.- Wiersbe

12:21 Jesus drew the application. A person who only enriches himself and does not lay up treasure in heaven is a fool (cf. Matt. 6:19; 1 Tim. 6:6–10; James 1:10). “For himself” contrasts with “toward God.” This translation preserves the form of the contrast in the Greek text. The point of the contrast is the difference between riches on earth and riches in heaven.

In this teaching with its illustrative parable Jesus taught His disciples and the multitude to beware of a foolish attitude toward material possessions. The wrong attitude is that the richness of life depends on the richness of wealth. Disciples need to be aware of this viewpoint because the desire to increase wealth can draw them away from following Jesus faithfully. This is especially true since Jesus promised them opposition and persecution rather than wealth and comfort. Material possessions cannot provide the quality of life that intimacy with God can. Disciples should live with what God has revealed about life beyond the grave, specifically reward or loss of reward, clearly in view rather than living for the present.

“A test of our heart is how we give. Are we generous or are we hoarders? This is a test that we have to engage in privately before the Lord. No one can tell someone else exactly how to answer such questions, for there is no magic percentage that is to be reached.”305

[83]

As the man contemplates his future as one of the rich and famous, God has another account to render: the man is about to join the dead and departed. When God addresses the man as fool, he indicates the man’s blindness in judging life’s priorities. The man’s soul is being weighed in the balance. On that scale the possessions the man has and the social résumé he has built register no weight whatsoever. He cannot take these things with him to the bar of divine justice. Only his naked character will be on that balance. The man whose life is possessions makes himself a paperweight at the final judgment. The one who defines life in terms of possessions comes up empty when the time comes to assess whether eternal life will be gained. The parable ends on a note of tragedy: “Who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” One thing is for sure, his treasures will not be his anymore.

Jesus underscores this tragedy as he closes the parable with a final commentary: “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God.” Jesus’ point is that the seeker of wealth ends up with an empty soul and an empty life. Possessions are like “lite” beer; they may taste great, but they are really less filling.

All this teaching suggests the importance of proper priorities regarding possessions. They are a stewardship, not to be hoarded selfishly but to be used to benefit those around us. Jesus is not saying possessions are bad, but that the selfish pursuit of them is pointless. When the creation is inverted, the value of possessions is distorted. Those who climb over people or ignore them in the pursuit of possessions will come up empty on the day God sorts out our lives. What a tragic misuse of the gift of resources this man had gained! What could have been an opportunity for generosity and blessing became a stumbling block to the soul.[84]

 

Mt.6:19ff, Luke 12:33

 

Many millionaires are paupers before God. They are not rich either in grace or faith or good works.[85]

 

The man who is not rich in regard to God is indeed poor, no matter how big his bank balance. He is, therefore, in the last analysis a fool, a godless and hence a senseless man (cf. 11:40). He has, as he thought, prepared for his own comfort, but he has not prepared for his ultimate destiny. He heaped up treasure for himself, the implication being that if he had given up his wealth in alms he would have secured a lasting treasure for himself (v. 33).[86]

 

3. God’s provisions for disciples 12:22–34 (cf. Matt. 6:25–34)

This pericope continues the subject of life and possessions (cf. “treasure” in vv. 21, 34). What Jesus implied in the parable of the rich fool He explicitly taught in these verses. His disciples should not think or act as the pagan world (v. 30) typified by the rich fool.[87]

Ellis sums up well Luke’s main point and entitles 12:13–34 “To Have or to Live?” 106 Two important themes in this section have come up already and will come up again. These are the issues of priorities (9:23–25; 17:33) and attitude toward wealth (5:11, 28; 12:33–34; 18:22). Here they are intimately associated. In the face of the arrival of God’s kingdom, to be concerned about inheritance rights and goods is folly indeed. Better to focus on the kingdom and allow oneself to be wronged (1 Cor 6:7) than to allow greed (Luke 11:39) to control one’s life. One cannot serve God and Money (16:13). Luke’s remedy in such circumstances was simple. Give to those in need (11:41; 16:9–12; 19:8). One can avoid becoming a slave to possessions by recognizing their temporary quality. The rich fool did not realize that he “owned” nothing. All he had—even his life— was on loan and could be called in at any time. Luke was telling Theophilus: “Friend, order your life in accordance with the one thing that is eternal—God. Let not greed for that which is temporary keep you from eternal treasure!”[88]

Life does not consist of possessions, and it is foolish, indeed incredibly myopic, to think that one’s responsibilities in life have come to an end if one has been able to secure one’s economic future.[89]

The verse does not directly criticize the accumulation of wealth (though elsewhere Luke is insistent upon its dangers) but is content to emphasize the need to be rich in a Godward direction. [90]

The farmer was right to the extent that he saw that life is about the accumulation of wealth, but what kind of wealth should we be primarily concerned with accumulating? To “become rich with God in view” refers in the present context primarily to the use in obedience to God of one’s material wealth for the relief of real needs in the world. The point could be generalized to all acts of compassion.[91]

Jesus, the wisdom of God, says to us all: “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God” (v. 21). So often the rich, like the wealthy farmer, are lovers of money but are not rich toward God. Indeed, that is precisely why they are rich—every dream and every waking moment is filled with dollar signs. They are greedy. They amass money the old-fashioned way—they hoard it! And very often the rich are not rich toward God because they have built their fortune by taking it from others.

But there are also rich (and poor too) who are “rich toward God” because they use what God has given them for others. The Scriptures celebrate such people—the well-to-do centurion who built a synagogue for God’s people—the hospitable home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus where Jesus found respite—the well-connected women who supported Jesus’ ministry. All these wealthy people were rich toward God. The way to become rich toward God is to invest in Christ’s church and in the lives of his people.

We can enlarge our savings and build huge accounts to hold it all. We can plan our retirement so we will have nothing to do but change positions in the sun. We can plan our menus for the twilight years so that nothing but the finest cuisine crosses our lips. We can live as if this is all of life. We can laugh our way to the grave—only to discover at the end that we have nothing and are in God’s eyes fools.

Or we can be rich toward God because we gave and gave and gave. How are your investments—your heavenly portfolio? Where are your riches? Are you rich toward God?

The domestic concern that elicited the parable suggests a particular warning regarding an overweening demand to get our “fair share.” It is so much better to take less than our fair share or to give it away. Squabbling over an inheritance is not worth it. Many, in retrospect, would pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to forego the miseries that came as a result of insisting on their rightful portion. As Christians, we can and should avoid such deadly errors.

The key to all of this is not the adoption of a particular lifestyle, but to give and give and give and give. Because to do so is to invest and invest and invest and invest—to become “rich toward God.”[92]

This rich man was more concerned about getting money than hearing the Word of God (see 8:14). He wanted Jesus to solve his problems but not save him from his covetousness! Had Jesus made a just division of the property, this would not have solved the problem, for “the heart of every problem is the problem in the heart.” The statement in v. 15 contradicts the philosophy of the world and is illustrated in the parable (vv. 16–21).

Money does not necessarily solve problems; it created new problems for this farmer. It is not a sin to be wealthy, but it is a sin to make wealth your god (Col. 3:5). Note the emphasis the farmer gave to himself (“I” and “my”). Wealth can be a window through which we see God (1 Tim. 6:17) or a mirror in which we see only ourselves. It can make us generous or selfish, depending on what is in our hearts.

The rich are prone to be covetous, and the poor are prone to worry. Both are sins. When we substitute things for life, we stop living by faith and trusting God. All of nature trusts God to meet their needs, and so should we. [93]

Jesus is not here condemning riches; he is rather condemning a wrong attitude toward riches as if they are the most important thing in life.   He is warning against greed and the failure to use riches properly.- Prange 144

Live a simple life so that others can simply live!

Viewing life in terms of God’s coming judgment.

The major idea is that focusing on material wealth is dangerous. Jesus warns against greed and stresses that life does not consist of possessions. A person who trusts in possessions and ignores God will be disappointed when God calls for an account. By negative example, Jesus calls people to be rich toward God.

[94]

In this “you can’t take it with you” parable, Jesus shows that to focus on possessions and not be concerned with spiritual things is a grave, long-term error. Though riches may be enjoyable in the short term, they do not exist in the long term. Their mere possession does not bring accreditation before God (James 1:9–11; 5:1–6).[95]

Jesus applies the parable by noting that this is the fate of all who store up treasure for themselves but are not rich toward God. Οὕτως (houtōs, so it is) indicates a comparison. The basic contrast is between ἑαυτῷ (heautō, to himself) and εἰς θεόν (eis theon, toward God). The parable does not condemn planning or wealth per se. Rather, Jesus’ complaint is against the person who takes wealth and directs it totally toward the self. Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1–10) will be a counterexample of a penitent rich man. Storing up treasure for oneself and not for God is the problem. “Laying up treasure” is a concept with Jewish roots (Sir. 29:8–17; Tob. 4:9; Ps. Sol. 9.5; Nolland 1993a: 687; see also the exegesis of Luke 12:33). The main element of the comparison is that wealth is ultimately a wasted accumulation, for the person cannot present it to God for admission to heaven. As Fitzmyer (1985: 974) says, “Divine scrutiny of the life given will not be concerned with barns bursting at their seams.” Life does not consist of one’s possessions, and to regard life as such is to be gripped by greed (Luke 12:15; Plummer 1896: 325). It is important to note that the issue in the parable is not wealth, but how wealth is directed. The sin is accumulating riches for oneself. Pilgrim (1981: 112) sees three errors: (1) hoarding one’s possessions, (2) assuming that life can be secured and measured by possessions, and (3) regarding property as one’s own.

Matthew 6:19 is close in concept to this passage. Paul also teaches that the love of money—not money per se—is the root of all evil (1 Tim. 6:10). It is how money can cause us to focus inwardly that is the danger. God’s care is made available to those who have right priorities, as the next passage and other texts show (Luke 12:22–34 [esp. 12:33]; Ps. 37:4; Matt. 6:33; Hendriksen 1978: 664). The one who relies on God has the true wealth of life. James 4:13–17 is similar in tone, for James is not complaining about the making of plans or business arrangements, but that one does it without considering God and his will.[96]

Jesus uses a dispute over inheritance to teach about the danger of attraction to possessions. Treasure laid up only for oneself is short lived. One cannot present a suitcase full of riches to God for admission into heaven. God desires other priorities. Jesus tells all to be rich toward God. When thinking about the most beneficial way to live, long-term thinking is crucial. The disciple should realize that the pursuit of wealth is a dangerous distraction and a form of greed when it is self-directed. Wealth toward self is poverty before God. The comfort that comes from wealth and the power derived from materialism provide only a fleeting and false security, a vain effort at control. Jesus stresses that wealth is potentially a subtle, but devastating, obstacle to God. Where idols and selfish inwardness are present, God’s judgment waits. Wealth’s only legacy is its fleeting nature (Luke 6:24–25). Only wealth handled with generosity meets with God’s approval (1 Tim. 6:17–19).

[97]

So many people give all their effort to heap up things which in their very nature cannot last. Work for the things which last forever, things which you need not leave behind when you leave this earth, but which you can take with you.”[98]


Most of us think that’s a nice problem to have. To have so much of everything that you need nothing at all.

Jesus warned us about two dangers: greed (which includes materialism), and worry.

 

Have a will with a Christian preamble-

I have now disposed of all my property to my family. There is one thing more I wish I could give them and that is faith in Jesus Christ. If they had that and I had not given them a single shilling, they would have been rich; and if they had not that, and I had given them all the world, they would be poor indeed.?
- Patrick Henry

I place no value on anything I have or may possess, except in relation to the kingdom of God. If anything will advance the interests of the kingdom, it shall be given away or kept, only as by giving or keeping it I shall most promote the glory of Him to whom I owe all my hopes in time or eternity. - David Livingstone

Thankful For Material Things

In her book, Discipline, the Glad Surrender, Elisabeth Elliot reveals four meaningful lessons to be learned from the discipline of our possessions: 'the first lesson is that all things are given by God...Because God gives us things indirectly by enabling us to make them with our own hands (out of things He has made, of course) or to earn the money to buy them...we are prone to forget that He gave them to us. We should be thankful. Thanksgiving requires the recognition of the Source. It implies contentment with what is given, not complaint...it excludes covetousness. The third lesson is that things can be material for sacrifice. The Father pours out His blessings on us; we, His creatures, receive them with open hands, give thanks, and lift them up as an offering back to Him...This lesson leads naturally to the fourth which is that things are given to us to enjoy for awhile...What is not at all fitting or proper is that we should set our hearts on them. Temporal things must be treated as temporal things'received, given thanks for, offered back but enjoyed.

In Touch, May, 1989

Two Ways to Get Enough

  • One is to accumulate more and more
  • The other is to desire less. G.K. Chesterton, quoted in Family Survival in the American Jungle, Steve Farrar, 1991, Multnomah Press, p. 75

What are you doing with your life that will last forever?

Illust- Temporary, eternal

“Only one life, ’twill soon be past; only what’s done for Christ will last.”[99]

How are your investments—your heavenly portfolio? Where are your riches? Are you rich toward God?[100]

What is your treasure?  Use of your time and your checkbook.

 

Where are you storing your treasures- heaven or earth and for whom- Jesus or self?

1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NIV) 17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.

Luke 12:29-31 (NIV) 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

Luke 12:32-34 (NIV) 32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

2 Corinthians 9:11-12 (NIV) 11 You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. 12 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.

Amen.

Psalm 17:14 (NIV) O Lord, by your hand save me from men of this world whose reward is in this life.

Psalm 39:6 (NIV) Man is a mere phantom as he goes to and fro: He bustles about, but only in vain; he heaps up wealth, not knowing who will get it.

Psalm 49:5-6 (NIV) 5 Why should I fear when evil days come, when wicked deceivers surround me— those who trust in their wealth and boast of their great riches?

Psalm 49:16-17 (NIV) 16     Do not be overawed when a man grows rich,

when the splendor of his house increases; 17 for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him.

Psalm 62:10 (NIV) Though your riches increase, do not set your heart on them.

Proverbs 11:4 (NIV)  Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.

Proverbs 14:31 (NIV) 31     He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker,

but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.

Proverbs 23:4-5 (NIV)  Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint. 5  Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like an eagle.

Proverbs 30:7-9 (NIV) 7     “Two things I ask of you, O Lord;

do not refuse me before I die:

8     Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches,

but give me only my daily bread. 9     Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’

Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.

Ecclesiastes 5:10-15 (NIV) 10     Whoever loves money never has money enough;

whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income.   This too is meaningless. 11     As goods increase, so do those who consume them.

And what benefit are they to the owner except to feast his eyes on them?

12     The sleep of a laborer is sweet, whether he eats little or much,

but the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep.

         13 I have seen a grievous evil under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owner, 

14     or wealth lost through some misfortune, so that when he has a son

there is nothing left for him.

15     Naked a man comes from his mother’s womb,

and as he comes, so he departs.  He takes nothing from his labor that he can carry in his hand.

Jeremiah 6:13 (NIV)   “From the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain;

Matthew 6:19-21 (NIV) Treasures in Heaven

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Matthew 6:26 (NIV)

26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

Matthew 19:21 (NIV) 21 Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Luke 8:14 (NIV) 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.

Luke 9:25 (NIV) 25 What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?

Luke 11:39 (NIV) 39 Then the Lord said to him, “Now then, you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness.

Luke 12:24 (NIV) 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!

Luke 12:33 (NIV) 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.

Luke 16:13 (NIV) 13 “No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”

Luke 16:14 (NIV) The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all this and were sneering at Jesus.

Luke 18:22 (NIV) 22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Luke 18:24-25 (NIV) 24 Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25 Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

Acts 2:44-45 (NIV) 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.

1 Corinthians 7:31 (NIV)  This world in its present form is passing away.

2 Corinthians 4:18 (NIV) 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

2 Corinthians 8-9

2 Corinthians 9:11-12 (NIV) 11 You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. 12 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.

Ephesians 4:28 (NIV) 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.

Ephesians 5:3 (NIV) 3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.

Colossians 3:5 (NIV) 5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.

1 Timothy 6:8-10 (NIV) 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NIV) 17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.

2 Timothy 3:1-3 (NIV)  But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good,

Hebrews 10:34 (NIV) 34 You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions.

Hebrews 11:25-26 (NIV) 25 He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26 He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.

Hebrews 13:5 (NIV) 5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

James 1:11 (NIV) The rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.

James 4:4 (NIV) 4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.

James 5:1-5 (NIV) Warning to Rich Oppressors

Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. 2 Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. 3 Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. 4 Look! The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. 5 You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter.

1 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV) Praise to God for a Living Hope

3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you,

1 John 2:15-16 (NIV) Do Not Love the World

15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For everything in the world—the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does—comes not from the Father but from the world.

1 John 2:17 (NIV) 17 The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.

Church of Laodicea Revelation 3:17 (NIV) 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.

2 Corinthians 8:9 (NIV) 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

1 Peter 1:18-19 (NIV) 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

Ephesians 1:7 (NIV) 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace

Ephesians 2:7 (NIV) The incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 3:8 (NIV) 8 Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,

Ephesians 1:18 (NIV) 18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,

Jesus Paid It All- Song

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

More money than you can spend.
More food than you can eat.
More clothes than you can wear.
More cars than you can drive.
More TVs than you can watch.
More rings than you have fingers.
More gifts than you have friends.
More homes than you can visit.
More beds than you can sleep in.
More lawn than you can mow.
More house than you can clean.
More yachts than you can sail.
More planes than you can fly.
More cattle than you can count.
More games than you can play.


----

[1]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1146). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[2]Craddock, F. B. (1990). Luke. Interpretation, a Bible commentary for teaching and preaching (162). Louisville, Ky.: John Knox Press.

[3]Wiersbe, W. W. (1996, c1989). The Bible exposition commentary. "An exposition of the New Testament comprising the entire 'BE' series"--Jkt. (Lk 12:13). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

[4]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (686). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[5]Courson, J. (2003). Jon Courson's Application Commentary (361). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

esp. especially

[6]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (686). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[7]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (322). London: T&T Clark International.

[8]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (683). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[9]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (322). London: T&T Clark International.

[10]Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 11: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke. Accompanying biblical text is author's translation. New Testament Commentary (661). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[11]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:13). Biblical Studies Press.

[12]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:13). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[13]Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 11: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke. Accompanying biblical text is author's translation. New Testament Commentary (661). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[14]Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 11: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke. Accompanying biblical text is author's translation. New Testament Commentary (671). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[15]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1149). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[16]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:14). Biblical Studies Press.

[17]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:14). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

a  1 Tim 6:6–10

[18]Black, M. C. (1996). Luke. College Press NIV commentary (Lk 12:13). Joplin, Mo.: College Press Pub.

[19]Reiling, J., & Swellengrebel, J. L. (1993], c1971). A handbook on the Gospel of Luke. Originally published: A translator's handbook on the Gospel of Luke, 1971. UBS handbook series; Helps for translators (470). New York: United Bible Societies.

‡ Greek word occurs only once in the Gospel of Luke.

[20]Reiling, J., & Swellengrebel, J. L. (1993], c1971). A handbook on the Gospel of Luke. Originally published: A translator's handbook on the Gospel of Luke, 1971. UBS handbook series; Helps for translators (470). New York: United Bible Societies.

[21]Reiling, J., & Swellengrebel, J. L. (1993], c1971). A handbook on the Gospel of Luke. Originally published: A translator's handbook on the Gospel of Luke, 1971. UBS handbook series; Helps for translators (470). New York: United Bible Societies.

[22]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:15). Biblical Studies Press.

[23]Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 11: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke. Accompanying biblical text is author's translation. New Testament Commentary (662). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

NT New Testament

[24]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (685). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[25]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (323). London: T&T Clark International.

[26]McGee, J. V. (1997, c1981). Thru the Bible commentary. Based on the Thru the Bible radio program. (electronic ed.) (4:301). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[27]Wiersbe, W. W. (1996, c1989). The Bible exposition commentary. "An exposition of the New Testament comprising the entire 'BE' series"--Jkt. (Lk 12:13). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

[28]Courson, J. (2003). Jon Courson's Application Commentary (361). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

7 Tiede 1988: 233; Ernst 1977: 398; Fitzmyer 1985: 970; Lev. 19:18. Manson 1949: 271 notes the similar OT perspective: Job 31:24–25; Ps. 49; Eccles. 2:1–11. Note also T. Judah 18–19; Sir. 11:18–19; 1 Enoch 97.8–10; Mark 7:22; Rom. 1:29; 2 Cor. 9:5; 1 Tim. 6:10; 2 Pet. 2:3, 14; B. Scott 1989: 131–32.

[29]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1150). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[30]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:15). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[31]Tom Constable. (2003; 2003). Tom Constable's Expository Notes on the Bible (Lk 12:15). Galaxie Software.

[32]Bock, D. L. (1994). Luke. The IVP New Testament commentary series (Lk 12:13). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[33]Bock, D. L. (1994). Luke. The IVP New Testament commentary series (Lk 12:13). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[34]Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 12:15). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[35]Bock, D. L. (1994). Luke. The IVP New Testament commentary series (Lk 12:13). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[36]Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 12:16). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

104 Cf. Rom 1:29; Eph 4:19; 5:3; Col 3:5; 2 Pet 2:3, 14.

Covetousness is an unquenchable thirst for getting more and more of something we think we need in order to be truly satisfied. It may be a thirst for money or the things that money can buy, or even a thirst for position and power. Jesus made it clear that true life does not depend on an abundance of possessions.[37]

[37]Stein, R. H. (2001, c1992). Vol. 24: Luke (electronic ed.). Logos Library System; The New American Commentary (351). Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[38]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (688). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[39]KJV Bible commentary. 1997, c1994 (2042). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[40]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1150). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[41]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (323). London: T&T Clark International.

[42]Blomberg, C. (1990). Interpreting the parables (266). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[43]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1151). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[44]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:16). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[45]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:17). Biblical Studies Press.

[46]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:17). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[47]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:18). Biblical Studies Press.

[48]Bock, D. L. (1994). Luke. The IVP New Testament commentary series (Lk 12:13). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[49]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (684). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[50]The Revised Standard Version. 1971 (Sir 11:18). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

[51]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:19). Biblical Studies Press.

[52]The Pulpit Commentary: St. Luke Vol. 2004 (H. D. M. Spence-Jones, Ed.) (334). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

[53]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:19). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[54]Tom Constable. (2003; 2003). Tom Constable's Expository Notes on the Bible (Lk 12:19). Galaxie Software.

[55]Blomberg, C. (1990). Interpreting the parables (267). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[56]Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 12:19). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[57]Reiling, J., & Swellengrebel, J. L. (1993], c1971). A handbook on the Gospel of Luke. Originally published: A translator's handbook on the Gospel of Luke, 1971. UBS handbook series; Helps for translators (472). New York: United Bible Societies.

[58]Black, M. C. (1996). Luke. College Press NIV commentary (Lk 12:18). Joplin, Mo.: College Press Pub.

[59]Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 11: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Luke. Accompanying biblical text is author's translation. New Testament Commentary (664). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[60]Luther, M. (1997, c1986). Luther's small catechism with explanation. Contains the basic principles of the Lutheran religion with some explanation.; Translation of: Kleine Katechismus - English. (electronic ed.) (3). St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[61]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:20). Biblical Studies Press.

a  The Hebrew words rendered fool in Psalms denote one who is morally deficient.

[62]Wiersbe, W. W. (1997, c1992). Wiersbe's expository outlines on the New Testament (177). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

[63]McGee, J. V. (1997, c1981). Thru the Bible commentary. Based on the Thru the Bible radio program. (electronic ed.) (4:302). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[64]McGee, J. V. (1997, c1981). Thru the Bible commentary. Based on the Thru the Bible radio program. (electronic ed.) (4:301). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

cf. confer, compare

esp. especially

[65]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (687). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[66]Hughes, R. K. (1998). Luke : That you may know the truth. Preaching the Word (48). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.

[67]  The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

[68]  The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

[69]  The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

[70]MacDonald, W., & Farstad, A. (1997, c1995). Believer's Bible Commentary : Old and New Testaments (Lk 12:16). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[71]Willmington, H. L. (1997). Willmington's Bible handbook (588). Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House Publishers.

lit. literally

cf. confer, compare

[72]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (686). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[73]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:20). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[74]Tom Constable. (2003; 2003). Tom Constable's Expository Notes on the Bible (Lk 12:20). Galaxie Software.

NT New Testament

[75]Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 12:20). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

OT Old Testament

MT Masoretic Text

[76]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1153). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[77]Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 12:20). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[78]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (325). London: T&T Clark International.

[79]MacDonald, W., & Farstad, A. (1997, c1995). Believer's Bible Commentary : Old and New Testaments (Lk 12:20). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[80]Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition Notes (Lk 12:21). Biblical Studies Press.

[81]Robertson, A. (1997). Word Pictures in the New Testament. Vol.V c1932, Vol.VI c1933 by Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. (Lk 12:21). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.

[82]Plummer, A. (1896). A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel According to S. Luke (325). London: T&T Clark International.

305 305. Bock, Luke, p. 346.

[83]Tom Constable. (2003; 2003). Tom Constable's Expository Notes on the Bible (Lk 12:21). Galaxie Software.

[84]Bock, D. L. (1994). Luke. The IVP New Testament commentary series (Lk 12:13). Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.

[85]Ryle, J. C. (1997). Luke. The Crossway classic commentaries (Lk 12:21). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.

[86]Marshall, I. H. (1978). The Gospel of Luke : A commentary on the Greek text. Includes indexes. The New international Greek testament commentary (521). Exeter [Eng.: Paternoster Press.

[87]Tom Constable. (2003; 2003). Tom Constable's Expository Notes on the Bible (Lk 12:21). Galaxie Software.

106 Ellis, Luke , 177.

[88]Stein, R. H. (2001, c1992). Vol. 24: Luke (electronic ed.). Logos Library System; The New American Commentary (352). Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[89]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (684). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[90]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (687). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[91]Nolland, J. (2002). Vol. 35B: Word Biblical Commentary : Luke 9:21-18:34. Word Biblical Commentary (688). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

[92]Hughes, R. K. (1998). Luke : That you may know the truth. Preaching the Word (49). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.

[93]Wiersbe, W. W. (1997, c1992). Wiersbe's expository outlines on the New Testament (177). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

[94]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1148). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[95]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1154). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[96]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1154). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[97]Bock, D. L. (1996). Luke Volume 2: 9:51-24:53. Baker exegetical commentary on the New Testament (1155). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

[98]The Gospel of Luke. 2000, c1975 (W. Barclay, lecturer in the University of Glasgow, Ed.). The Daily study Bible series, Rev. ed. (165). Philadelphia: The Westminster Press.

[99]Osbeck, K. W. (1990). Amazing grace : 366 inspiring hymn stories for daily devotions. Includes indexes. (262). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications.

[100]Hughes, R. K. (1998). Luke : That you may know the truth. Preaching the Word (50). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.

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