Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Money and the Kingdom

“Money is the root of all evil,” a pastor of years gone by often said, “but give me some of that root!”

As I leave by pastoral duties at SS Peter & Paul in San Francisco for a new assignment, I cannot but review my tenure in the City. I have heard many good things reported, for which I am deeply grateful. For the negatives I apologize and ask for prayers.

A good deal of money was spent in the renovations of our church. And while I tried not to make too bold a pitch, I did initiate several drives to get the work done and paid for. I did hear a few complaints, but thank God for the great generosity that allowed us to do make many improvements.

Money is the subject that Jesus talked about more often than any other subject, except the Kingdom of God itself. The Kingdom of God (or Rule of God) is the reality of his loving presence in every area of your life, making it possible for you to come alive. Your willingness to live under the Rule of God makes it possible for you to be a sensitive, feeling, laughing, crying, loving person in the fullest sense of what it means to be human. That is Jesus number one subject.

But number two is money and possessions. Prayer is important, of course. But Jesus talked more about money than prayer. Our sexuality is important and a real problem in our time. But Jesus talked more about money than He did about sexuality.

Why did He talk about money so much? Because He was perfectly aware of how important it is to us and how reluctant we are to place it under the Rule of God.

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