January 1: No Other Gods

Read Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12

Somehow, most people who try it are either unaware of the risks or think that they will be the exception to the rule. And so they forge ahead. They give inordinate priority to money, possessions, and wealth. The result? Those who are rich have a “camel through the eye of the needle” chance of entering the kingdom of God (Matt. 19:24). Those who pursue wealth walk a path filled with potholes (1 Tim. 6:9). Those who love money tap into a root that branches into all kinds of evil (1 Tim. 6:10).

Solomon observed those realities as well. But keep in mind, he is numbered among the wealthiest men to ever live. He wrote not only from observation of others but also from personal experience. He knew that those who love wealth would love to have more. They are never satisfied (5:10). To him it was clear that wealth can rob a person of peaceful sleep (5:12). He wrote of how riches can harm the owner and disappoint the heir (5:13, 14). He observed that wealth has no lasting benefit when a person departs this life (5:15-17). He saw that the rich often lack opportunity to enjoy what they have acquired (6:1-6). Yes, there is great risk involved in the pursuit of wealth!

Of course, a person cannot navigate through life today without money and at least some possessions. The biblical alternative to the pursuit of wealth, however, is to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matt. 6:33). When that pursuit has priority in your life, God promises to provide for your needs. It is then that you are also able to find satisfaction in your work and even enjoy its fruit. That is amazing! It’s worth repeating. When we give priority to the Lord and His ways, we experience His provision, work satisfaction, and life enjoyment.

Rather than attempting to be an exception to the rule, go with God’s sure plan. Seek Him first!

sbk

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