Monday, September 29, 2014
September 29 – The root of all kinds of blessing
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains. (1 Timothy 6:10 HCSB)
Some people think they’re quoting the Bible when they say “Money is the root of all evil,” but that’s not exactly what the Bible says. Excluding the word “love” from the verse changes the meaning completely. Money in itself is not evil. It’s neutral. It’s a tool. We can use money in good and bad ways. What makes the difference is whether or not our lives revolve around it.
Yesterday Evelyn, Mark and I had the great privilege of attending our first meeting at the Temple of Solomon in Sao Paulo, Brazil. For those of you who have not heard about this building, it is a replica of the Jerusalem temple that seats 10,000 people in a working class neighbourhood in Sao Paulo. It has a life size replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle, and a small museum that explains the story of the people of God throughout time and the significance of the various articles in the Tabernacle and Temple. Many Jewish people have come to visit the Temple and the large majority have been amazed and honored by it all, even though we make it clear that we believe in Jesus as the Messiah, and hundreds of thousands of others have come and are already speaking about how the meetings there have changed their lives.
Some complain about the cost of the Temple and how all that money could have been used to help the poor and needy. The fact is that we are helping people all day long, seven days a week in all of our churches, and this Temple was built to combat a different kind of poverty by opening people’s eyes to the greatness of God, and to their need to approach Him with reverence. It was not built with any man’s glory or reputation in mind; it was built to glorify God by bringing people into His presence.
There were many special moments in yesterday’s meeting, but one of the most touching was how everyone arrived early, as much as an hour beforehand, and sat in silent meditation before the meeting. You could hear a pin drop. People were not visiting with friends, answering last minute phone calls, or chitchatting, they were there to connect with Almighty God because of their hunger for Him. And when the meeting finished, everyone was asked to leave in the same way, in silent respect.
When we love money we make the great mistake of pushing the Creator of all things to the side, and worshipping wealth – a small part of His creation. God deserves all our trust and respect, and will not withhold an abundant life from us when we put Him first. The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, yet trusting in a mighty God to provide for you is the root to every kind of blessing. But we cannot trust in Him completely until we understand His greatness.