MYRA D. COLGATE
CHEROKEE PENTECOSTAL HOLINESS CHURCH
“A devout life does bring wealth, but it’s the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. Since we entered the world penniless and will leave it penniless, if we have bread on the table and shoes on our feet, that’s enough.
“But if it’s only money these leaders are after, they’ll self-destruct in no time. Lust for money brings trouble and nothing but trouble. Going down path some lose their footing in the faith completely and live to regret it bitterly.
“But you, Timothy, man of God: Run for your life from all this. Pursue a righteous life—a life of wonder, faith, love, steadiness, courtesy. Run hard and fast in the faith. Seize the eternal life, the life you were called to, the life you so fervently embraced in the presence of so many witnesses.”
1 Timothy 6:6-12 (MSG)
“Yet true godliness with contentment is itself of great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it.
“So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.
“But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction.
“For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.
“But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness.
“Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have declared so well before many witnesses.”
1 Timothy 6:6-12 (NLT)
Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, most people still believe that money brings us happiness, but unfortunately, this may not be the case.
Paul gives us these guidelines:
- Realize that one day, riches will all be gone. (1 Timothy 6:7, 17)
- Learn to be content with what you have. (6:8)
- Monitor for value and common sense, ahead of time if possible, what you are willing to do or what you are not willing to do in order to earn more money. (6:9-10)
- Love people more than money. (6:11)
- Love and value God’s work more than you do money. (6:11)
- Freely share what you have with others. (6:18)
In Proverbs 30:7-9 there is more on avoiding the love of money. When is ‘enough’ ever enough? It is the difference between what we actually ‘need’ and what we may ‘want’. We may have all we need to live and that is our ‘enough’. But when we allow ourselves to become anxious or discontent, over just what we ‘want’, that can bring about our thinking of desiring our own ‘more than enough.’ Like Paul, we can choose to be content with our ‘needs’ being met—‘our enough’ without having all that we, ‘want’, too. Unfortunately, the only real alternative is that we can, by switching to our ‘wants’, too, we may trap ourselves by the many foolish or harmful desires that could eventually end in our ruination or destruction and not having any choice. Having to remain in debt—what could be worse? It could lead to the taking of all our resources that we may really need just to live.
Paul uses active and forceful verbs to describe the Christian life: run, pursue, fight, hold-tightly. Some think Christianity is passive, that it relies upon waiting on God to act. He has already done all He has given us in His Word He is going to do. He is now waiting on us to demonstrate our discipline and obedience as He has instructed us in and by His Word! He loved us enough that He gave us His Son who has already died for us in our place. He gave us His best—His beloved Son, Jesus. True believers in Him are the ones who have chosen to exchange His Death, as their death (dying to self and selfishness), and thereby have chosen to live their lives by living it for Him, and in Him, and along with Him, actually doing what is known to be right. Believers are to have an ‘active’ faith, training, working and sacrificing to accomplish His Will on the earth. Is it time for ‘action?’ Are we contributors or merely spectators? (From NLT Life Application Study Bible)