February 28

Mark 8:34-38

“For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life?” vs. 36-37

Over the last dozen years or so many people in our country have taken advantage of the rising stock market to accumulate more money than they ever dreamed possible. And as tax rates have gone down they’ve found ever new ways to protect and increase their fortunes. And now they’re scared to death! They’re afraid that political forces will turn against them and that their abundance will disappear. They’re searching for new and imaginative investments and tax shelters, some new mechanism that will allow them to hang on to their riches. And Jesus says, “What’s the point? Even if they gain the whole world, what’s their profit?” He speaks the truth! And what’s most amazing is that many who call themselves Christians have gotten caught up in this wealth-making frenzy. How can they even dream that Jesus desires his followers to do all they can to make more and more money? How does that mesh with his call to take up the cross? Obviously many dedicated disciples have profited from this wealth-making environment–they too have boatloads of money. But they’re figuring out ways to give it away and lift up those who live in poverty. They find satisfaction, not in accumulation, but in sharing, and as their fortunes dwindle, their joy increases!

Thought for the Day: When does wealth become dangerous?

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