CLTC – Dr Maxon Mani, PhD Principal
“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that” (1 Tim 6: 6 – 8).
[In Scripture]there are many warnings about the dangers of wealth and money and the love of it. Moses warned Israel about the temptation of wealth when they entered the land of Canaan and become wealthy (Deut 6:10- 12). Jesus portrayed this by saying it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven (Matt 19:24).
He also said that the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of riches tend to choke God’s word and keep people from ever producing fruit (Matt 13:22). In this devotion we look Paul’s warning to Timothy about the lure of wealth and money and how we can deal with the lures of money and wealth (6: 3- 10). In Paul’s warning to Timothy, first, Paul says false teachers create conflict in the church and teaches that godliness is a means of financial gain (6: 3-5), and second, Paul says the love of money is a trap with inherent dangers (6: 9-10).
The problem with wealth and money is that we tend to idolize it and put our trust in it, rather than trusting God. Paul later addressed the wealthy in the church and says, “Command those who are rich in this world’s goods not to be haughty or to set their hope on riches, which are uncertain, but on God who richly provides us with all things for our enjoyment (6:17).”
To address this lure of wealth and money Paul says, but godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that (6: 6 – 8). Here Paul says if we want to keep away from the temptation of loving and pursuing wealth which is dominant not only in the world culture but in the church, we need to instead pursue godliness.
Godliness means “god-likeness.”
Where loving wealth tends to draw people into temptation and a snare (6:8), pursuing godliness is true gain. It provides blessing not only for our own life but also for our family and peers, which also leads to eternal reward and riches. Wealth or money is not evil; it is neutral, as it can be used for good or bad. But they must not master the way we think and live in this life.
Contentment is about trusting God in our way of thinking and lifestyle. As Gregory Brown stressed if we don’t believe this, then we won’t remain content when going through various hardships. The reason Job didn’t blame God when Satan attacked his wealth, family, and health is because he saw his trials as coming from the gracious hand of God. He said, “The Lord gives, and he takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). He trusted in God’s sovereignty.
If we don’t trust in God’s sovereignty, we will always be in a state of discontentment. It will cause anger, bitterness, and discontentment. To be content, we must trust in God’s sovereignty—he is in control of all things and working it all for our good. Be Content!
From the weekly CLTC newssheet, 10 September 2021
Dr Maxon Mani, PhD Principal
“Equipping people for Christian Leadership in today’s world”
To develop churches and communities by equipping and enabling Christian leaders spiritually, intellectually, relationally and professionally for today’s world.