Jesus is the Prize

I read a blog article this morning on Dan Dewitt’s blog “Theolatte.” He wrote of a new T.V. documentary that shows the life of several wealthy, possession driven, name-it-and-claim-it type pastors in LA. It makes me sad that this show is being produced and broadcast, but  of course there’s nothing I can do about that. What I can do, as Dan has, is give a reminder, biblically, as to what is important in this life. First, here’s the video trailer for this show:

Please know that God does provide for His people. This has always been true and always will be. But, the pursuit of possessions and the things of this world is a death knell to true faith. So here’s my reminder: Jesus is the prize, not the stuff He provides! To miss this truth is to miss the Savior. Here’s what the Apostle John wrote in regard to the desire for riches in this life:

“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” (1 John 2:15–17, ESV)

Unfortunately, the world will get yet another dose of an unfortunate side of Christian ministry (so called.) All I can do is hope and pray that this show has little effect over those Jesus can reach with His Gospel. Unfortunately, many have a skewed view of what true Christianity is because of this type of “witness.”  As Dan wrote,  “If all I knew about Christianity came from religious broadcasting I’d likely throw in the towel and join them.”

As a Pastor who lives on a modest salary and works well past 40 hours a week to earn it, (and gladly do it), let me tell you that there are many, many more of us giving our lives away for the Gospel with no care for this world’s “stuff” than there are of those who live like ministry is a means of gain. Here’s Paul’s take on it:

“But godliness with contentment is great gain,” (1 Timothy 6:6, ESV)

“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.” (1 Timothy 6:9–10, ESV)

Jesus has called us to follow Him forsaking all the things of this world, in trade, that in the life to come, we will be compensated and completely satisfied; in Him.

Here’s a link to Dan Dewitt’s article: http://www.theolatte.com/2013/07/the-posh-pastor/

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