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Oilfield Workers Sharing Christ Around the World


Photo by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

By Mike Chaffin

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Matthew 23:25

          As we traverse down the slippery slope of human depravity, we come to the fifth deadly sin. Greed. There is potentially no greater vice to destroy relationships, businesses, and our moral code than greed.

          Jesus warns us about the perils of being greedy.

          Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” Luke 12:15

          Greed is tightly tied to other forms of vice, but in its rawest form it causes us to be unloving, something that no Christian should be. That unloving feeling kills compassion in our hearts for others, the most Christ-like trait of all.

          Jesus refuted the pharisees on the need for his disciples to wash their hands prior to eating. Jesus told them it isn’t what we put in the body that defiles it, but what comes out.

          20 He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.” Mark 7:20-23

          That is a pretty extensive list of vices, and we will get to all of them in this series. Jesus calls them evil, however, without Him in our life they are sadly a part of us. Greed sets front and center.

          Greed leads us to think, “if only I had____ I would be on easy street.” Acting on that impulse brings conflict, and we forge ahead without God’s blessing. As the proverb states,

            The greedy stir up conflict, but those who trust in the Lord will prosper. Proverbs 28:25

          Paul goes as far as to compare greed with idolatry. When greed leads us to strive for anything before our relationship with the Lord, it is a form of idolatry. Greed is defined as an ‘intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power or food.’ Greed intwines itself into other vises like envy and gluttony, among others.

          “Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction.” Eric Fromm

          Don’t look for things to scratch that itch. Only Jesus can fill us with the truly important.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please deliver me from any greed in my life. Help me to overcome the urge to want and want needlessly when I have all I need in you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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