Godliness with Contentment - 1 Timothy 6

Godliness with Contentment

1 Timothy 6:1-20

Solomon was the wisest, richest, and most influential king in Israel's history.  He wrote, "He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; nor he who loves abundance with increase.Ecclesiastes 5:10.  It appears that regardless of their financial status, people possess a selfish desire for the same thing...more!

A timeless truth is recorded in 1 Timothy 6:6: "Now godliness with contentment is great gain."  The same man testified, "I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content.  I know how to be abased (or live humbly), and I know how to abound (or live in prosperity).  Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need."  Philippians 4:11, 12.

Godliness and contentment are compatible.  The godly man can sleep well with a good conscience at rest.  However, ungodly men, whose lifestyle is characterized by greed, "fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition."  1 Timothy 6:9.

In Paul's day there were those who taught that "godliness is a means to gain."  In other words, if you want to be rich, you must be good.  The apostle cautioned Timothy, "From such withdraw yourself."  1 Timothy 6:5.  What would the apostle Paul think of many prosperity preachers who parade on Christian TV today?  Their message is "giving is a means to gain."  Usually they are the ones who gain from the gifts, living in their expensive homes and flying around in their private airplanes.  Don't be fooled!

In the early 1960s some South Korean evangelists preached a prosperity message to poor, country people.  They said, "Look at the United States.  Everybody has a car, and every house has a refrigerator, TV, and a lot more.  Why is that?  Because the American people are Christians.  If you will believe in Jesus and become a Christian, you will also be blessed with these material things."  Jesus never promised anyone a Ford or washing machine, but He did promise eternal life to whoever trusts in Him.

It has been said many times that money is not the root of evil, but rather "the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil...."  1 Timothy 6:10.  Covetousness has ruined many lives and marriages.  "Some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."  These days we see many greedy corporate executives going to prison because of corrupt deeds.

Material riches are not forever.  "For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.  And having food and clothing with these we shall be content."  1 Timothy 6:6, 7. 

In the meantime consider more wisdom of King Solomon: "In all labor there is profit...."  Proverbs 14:23.

 

Heavenly Father, we are surrounded by evidence of Your loving care for us.  Thank You for blessing us in so many ways.  Deliver us from the bondage and corruption of greed.  May we use what we have to glorify You.  In Jesus name.  Amen!

 
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