Mat 6:24 “No one can serve two masters, for 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 God and money."
We simply can’t have two masters. One will be saying, “Go there and do this" while the other will be telling us “Stay here and do that." Serving both is literally impossible, so Jesus is stating the obvious when he tells us that we can’t serve God and money. But I have the feeling that most of us are not absolutely clear where our loyalties lie.
The following quiz is far from perfect, but the intention is to flush out those loyalties. By the way, this is for me as well as you:
Do you acknowledge that everything belongs to God?
“The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell."
You can’t serve God above money until you realize that He already owns it all. He even owns us. We own nothing. He allows us to manage His assets, but never to claim them as our own.
Are you generous?
God is a giver…He gave his only son for us. John 3:16. Our responsibility to Him as we manage His assets is to use them in a manner that he would. Tight fistedness is a symptom of loving the money more than we love God.
Are you cheerful about giving?
2Co 9:7 “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver". Giving cheerfully is a great sign of acknowledging God’s ownership.
Do you hoard your wealth?
Have you established a maximum (not minimum) limit on how much you will save before giving the rest of your wealth away? If not, you are in danger of being like the rich man Jesus called a fool (Luke 12:16-21). Consider the example of millionaire heavy equipment manufacturer R. G. LeTourneau who for years lived on 10% of his income and gave away 90%. “The question” LeTourneau said, “is not how much of my money I give to God, but rather how much of God’s money I keep for myself."
Do you accumulate stuff?
Look around. Is your garage or basement is filled with stuff that you no longer use? Do you pay for a storage shed to house your stuff? Do you keep clothing that you haven’t worn in over two years? Is it possible that you are hoarding “stuff" in a similar way that the rich man hoards his wealth? Does the thought if getting it out of your life cause you to hyperventilate? Hmmm. You just might have a misplaced loyalty.
Do you worry about money issues?
Worry is a symptom of misplaced trust. Jesus said to the worry warts, “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." (Mat 6:33)
How did you do?
I confess that I have some areas that I need to work on. Janice and I have never established a maximum limit on our savings/investments, and I definitely need to ask myself why I think I need all of the “stuff” that clutters my basement.
It seems to me that who we serve is a matter of trust. Most of us know that we need to serve God rather than serve money, but in our nation of affluence, do we REALLY trust God to take care of us if we were to lose all of our money, our 401(k), our retirement accounts, our home? Hopefully, we will never need to experience anything like that, but it has happened to others throughout history and it could certainly happen to us.
In times like those, as in today’s times, Jesus’ words will ring out loud and clear:
Mat 6:24, 25, 33 “No one can serve two masters, for 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 God and money. Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
Did these questions challenge you to examine your loyalties? What other questions would you add to this quiz?