Thursday, January 31, 2008

Caution: Don't Read (part II)

"Yeah, those bits from Jesus were tough, but what do you expect? He's perfect. Nobody else, not even people that love Jesus, would say or do anything like that." [If that's your best defense against the stuff in the previous post, again, don't read any further--the following was written by actual people who trusted Jesus and his words.]
  • "But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root [a] of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith (A) and pierced themselves with many pains. 11 Now you, man of God, run from these things; but pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, (B) endurance, (C) and gentleness."
  • "Now all the believers were together and had everything in common. (AQ) 45 So they sold their possessions and property and distributed the proceeds to all, as anyone had a need. [j] 46 And every day they devoted themselves [to meeting] together in the temple complex, and broke bread from house to house. They ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, (AR) 47 praising God and having favor with all the people."
  • "But know this: difficult times will come in the last days. (A) 2 For people will be lovers of self, (B) lovers of money"
  • "For an overseer, as God's manager, must be blameless, not arrogant, not quick tempered, not addicted to wine, not a bully, not greedy for money"
  • "Your life should be free from the love of money."
  • "Instruct those who are rich in the present age not to be arrogant (E) or to set their hope on the uncertainty of wealth, but on God, [a] who richly provides us with all things (F) to enjoy. 18 [Instruct them] to do good, to be rich in good works, (G) to be generous, willing to share"
  • "But the one who is rich [should boast] in his humiliation, because he will pass away like a flower of the field. (A) 11 For the sun rises with its scorching heat and dries up the grass; its flower falls off, and its beautiful appearance is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will wither away while pursuing his activities. (B)"
  • "Therefore, it is already a total defeat (F) for you that you have lawsuits against one another. Why not rather put up with injustice? (G) Why not rather be cheated?"
  • "And I say this, brothers: the time is limited, (S) so from now on . . . those who buy [should be] as though they did not possess, 31 and those who use the world as though they did not make full use of it. For this world in its current form is passing away. (U) 32 I want you to be without concerns."
  • "For we brought nothing into the world, and [a] we can take nothing out. (B) 8 But if we have food and clothing, [b] we will be content with these."
  • "You ask and don't receive because you ask wrongly, so that you may spend it on your desires for pleasure. (A) 4 Adulteresses! [a] Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? So whoever wants to be the world's friend becomes God's enemy. (B) 5 Or do you think it's without reason the Scripture says that the Spirit He has caused to live in us yearns jealously? (C) [b]"
  • "Do not love the world (W) or the things that belong to [d] the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. Because everything that belongs to [e] the world— 16 the lust of the flesh, (X) the lust of the eyes, (Y) and the pride (Z) in one's lifestyle—is not from the Father, but is from the world."
  • "If anyone has this world's goods and sees his brother in need but shuts off his compassion from him—how can God's love reside in him?"
  • "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ: although He was rich, for your sake He became poor, so that by His poverty you might become rich."
  • "And walk in love, as the Messiah also loved us and gave Himself for us, a sacrificial and fragrant offering to God."

Is it just me, or do even the conservatives read the New Testament a little less literally when it comes to money?

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