What is it? • Materialism– Preoccupation with or emphasis on material objects, comforts, and considerations, with a disinterest in or rejection of spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values. • Tangible objects are of more value that intangible • Greed - Excessive desire to acquire or possess more • Greed Materialism • Greed is based on the love for money, not the possession of it • Poor people can be greedy • Rich people can be charitable • 1 Timothy 6:10For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
Who wants to be rich? • 1 Timothy 6:9But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. • How many people desire to be rich? • Who does NOT desire to be rich? • Luke 16:13“No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” • What does it mean to serve money?
Greed is common • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sz36WCCX82A • 2 Timothy 3:1-4But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, • Perilous Dangerous Risk losing salvation
Blind to the needs of others • Too focused on my own success to worry about the needs of others. • Other people slow me down and are obstacles in my way • Tithing reduces my bank account – it hurts to give • Not considering there are many poor people all around in need of our help • Poverty nearby
Insatiable desire for more • Rockefeller – “How much is enough? More than I presently have.” • Collecting money becomes a hobby and a goal • Richness can cause us to neglect our spiritual life
Not being able to let go of wealth • Luke 18:18-23Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?“ So Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: "Do not commit adultery,' "Do not murder,' "Do not steal,' "Do not bear false witness,' "Honor your father and your mother."‘ And he said, "All these things I have kept from my youth.“ So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich. • How do we feel when we are asked to give?
Constantly comparing with others • How do I feel when a friend buys something new? • My attitude towards poor and wealthy people says something about my value system. • How do I feel about the person driving: • James 2:2-4 - For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes, and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,” have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?
Showing off • Do I feel the need to show off my things to other people? • Jeremiah 9:23Thus says the LORD: “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;”
How we treat the poor • James 5:1-6Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming upon you! Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days. Indeed the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. You have lived on the earth in pleasure and luxury; you have fattened your hearts as[b] in a day of slaughter. You have condemned, you have murdered the just; he does not resist you.
Willingness to disobey God to obtain more • Mistreating others. Possessions are of more value than people. • Lying, cheating, stealing… • Working more than is necessary at the expense of other things – not leaving time for God each day
Focus on Worldly things • 1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world--the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life--is not of the Father but is of the world. • Experiencing a luxury without having the maturity to handle it • “The finer things in life”
Giving in to covetousness • Luke 12:15And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.” • Looking at what my neighbor has • Thinking life would be better if I had it too • Seeking after material possessions for that reason alone
Confusing necessities with luxuries • How much of what we have do we really need? • What are some things that we THINK we can’t live without? • Choosing to live without a luxury • 1 Timothy 6:8And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.
SEEING money as our security • The need to “secure” our future by saving more • Faith in money more than God • Luke 12:16-21Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: "The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, "What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?‘ So he said, "I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry."‘ But God said to him, "Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?‘ "So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.“
Listening to the media • Our greed can be fueled by the media, credit card companies, companies that want us to buy their product, etc… • Products we MUST have
Giving & Serving • Mark 12:41-44Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, "Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.“ • Giving what we have makes us realize how blessed we are • We can live with much less than God has given us • Giving God a chance to bless us – Gideon example
Redefine what is valuable to us • Luke 12:34For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. • Satan tempted Christ with: • Food (Desires of the flesh) • Glory • Riches • How much time do we spend seeking after these vs. purity & holiness?
Fasting & prayer • Matthew 4:4But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” • Learning to live with less food – rely on God more • Praying focuses us on the heavenly things more than the earthly
ASK God to satisfy what we lack • James 4:2You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. • God who knows our actual needs wants to bless us even beyond our bare necessities • We should ask Him to provide for us what is right and be content with what He gives
Summary • Signs of materialism • Blind to the needs of others • Insatiable desire for more • Not being able to let go of wealth • Comparing with others • Showing off • How we treat the poor • Willingness to disobey God for money • How does materialism develop • Focus on worldly things • Giving in to covetousness • Confusing necessities with luxuries • Seeing money as our security • Listening to the media • How to combat greed • Giving and serving • Redefine what is valuable • Fasting & prayer • Ask God to satisfy what we lack
CONCLUSION • Many of us are caught in the web of greed • And we think it’s normal and healthy because we see it all around us • Honest self-examination • Confession