“Fool! This night your soul is required of you; and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?” (Luke 12:20)
To be covetous is to live in a special world; a world of I, me and myself; a world where I care only for one person – me. To be covetous is to refuse to give others their due like the case of the man whose brother had to run to Jesus because he did not give him a share of their father’s inheritance.
To be covetous is to be like the rich man in the parable Jesus gave to us in today’s Gospel passage who did not know what to do with riches. The reason why Jesus called this man a “Fool” was that in his plan for the enjoyment of his wealth, there was no consideration of others.
The man said to himself: “What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops? … I will do this; I will pull down my barns and build larger ones…” In pulling down his barns, he was willing to waste forgetting that so many cannot even afford what he was about to throw away. To be covetous is to live in abundance (wastefulness) in a society where people can barely feed twice daily.
Note that Jesus did not say it is a sin to be rich. Jesus’ point of emphasis is the need for us to avoid covetousness; that is, the worship of wealth, trusting in riches, failing to be rich towards God.
What does it mean to be rich towards God? It is refusing to live according to the passions of our flesh or following the desires of the flesh and the senses. To be rich towards God is to live in a manner that acknowledges there is God. To be rich towards God is to place a priority on the things that pertain to God over and above the things that bring about our material comfort. It is taking care of our souls rather than our flesh only.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, use me as your instrument in the mission. Use me completely and thoroughly that my life more than my words will proclaim your message to the ends of the world. Amen.
Bible Study: Ephesians 2:1-10, Psalm 100:1-5 and Luke 12:13-21).