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The Danger of Riches 财富危险


Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. – 1 Timothy 6:9

With a deep growl, the car in front slowed to a halt at the traffic light, its immaculate red paint, signature prancing horse logo and a logo of a Christian fish gleaming in the sun. “Is it okay for a Christian to own a luxurious sports car? Do you think God will judge someone for indulging in worldly possessions?” I asked the theological lecturer seated next to me.

John Wesley is famous for exhorting in a sermon “Earn all you can, save all you can, give all you can.”82 And he lived what he preached.

He records that one year his income was 30 pounds and his living expenses 28 pounds, so he had 2 pounds to give away. The next year his income doubled, but he still managed to live on 28 pounds, so he had 32 pounds to give to the poor. In the third year, his income jumped to 90 pounds. Instead of letting his expenses rise with his income, he kept them to 28 pounds and gave away 62 pounds. In the fourth year, he received 120 pounds. As before, his expenses were 28 pounds, so his giving rose to 92 pounds. 83

He plainly challenged his listeners in his sermon “The Dangers of Riches”, “I ask, then, in the name of God, who of you ‘desire to be rich?’… Who of you desires to have more than the plain necessities and conveniences of life? Stop! Consider! What are you doing? Evil is before you! Will you rush upon the point of a sword? By the grace of God, turn and live!”84 As extreme as this may seem, one cannot deny that the consumer-driven culture in which we live is a major obstacle to growth in holiness. The temptation to pursue the things of the world become a hindrance in our Christian journey when they direct all our time, energy and attention away from God.85


但那些想要发财的人,就陷在诱惑、罗网和许多无知有害的欲望里,使人沉沦,以致败坏和灭亡。《提摩太前书》6:9

在深深的咆哮声中,前方的豪华跑车车减速停在红绿灯处,它完美的红色油漆,标志性的跃马标志以及基督教鱼的标志在阳光下闪闪发光。 “基督徒拥有豪华跑车可以吗?你认为上帝会审判某人放纵世俗的财务吗?” 我问坐在我旁边的神学讲师。 约翰.卫斯理著名的讲道劝勉信徒 “尽己所能赚取;尽己所能节俭;尽己所能施予”,他这样传讲也是这样活出来。 在他的记录中说,他一年的收入是30英镑,生活费用是28英镑,所以他有2英镑可以捐出去。第二年,他的收入增加了一倍,但他仍然只用28磅,所以他有32英镑捐给穷人。在第三年,他的收入增加到了90英镑,他没有因此而让自己的开支增加,而是让它们保持在28英镑,并捐出了62英镑。在第四年,他得到了120英镑。和以前一样,他只用28英镑,所以他的捐赠增加到92英镑。 他在他的讲道“财富的危险”中明确质疑他的听众,“我问,那么,以上帝的名义,你们谁希望变得富有?”......你们谁愿意拥有比平常必需品更多的东西而生活得更便利?停止吧!想想看!你在做什么?邪恶在你面前!你要冲往一把朝向你的利剑吗?靠着上帝的恩典,转离而生活吧!”尽管看起来很极端,但我们不能否认我们所生活的物欲消费主义的文化是圣洁成长的主要障碍。当我们把我们所有的时间,精力和注意力远离上帝时,追求物质事物的诱惑成为我们基督徒旅程的障碍。


反思

你是否为所花的钱祷告? 你的金钱和财产如何阻碍你过圣洁生活?

Reflection

“Do you pray about the money I spend?”85 “How are your money and possessions an obstacle to holy living?”86

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