Judgment Day and the Walmart Return Policy
Monday, December 11, 2017
Treasures gained by wickedness do not profit,
but righteousness delivers from death.
What are Treasures gained by wickedness? Organized crime? Insider stock trading? Enron? Sure, but what about the average man, like you and me, who fails to report income on his 1040, or pockets the ten dollars too much he got back from a store clerk, or accepts full pay for half effort, or doesn’t pay his bills, or turns a deaf ear to the needy? They tell me that lots of “average Joes” take advantage of Walmart’s no-questions-asked return policy by buying an item, using it once, then returning it for a full refund. Why rent, when you can cheat? Aren’t those also treasures gained by wickedness?
Such treasures do not profit. They corrupt your soul and harden your heart. They encourage you to love things and use people. They foster selfishness and force you to suppress the guilt you feel from ill-gotten gain. They burn bridges with people and create false hopes of security in mere stuff.
Worst of all, treasures gained by wickedness put you under the judgment of God. The noble Pastor James soberly warned the rich of his day (and almost all Americans today!) that God holds us to account not only for how we get our money, but why we want it. Not only that we get it by fraud, but that we use it for luxury and self-indulgence (James 5:1-6). Lay up instead treasures in heaven (Matt. 6:20).
Welcome to Christ Church this Second Sunday of Advent. Teach us, O God, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share (1 Tim. 6:18).
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