Reading: Psalm 135:15-21
The idols of the nations are silver and gold,
made by human hands.
They have mouths, but cannot speak,
eyes, but cannot see.
They have ears, but cannot hear,
nor is there breath in their mouths.
Those who make them will be like them,
and so will all who trust in them.
All you Israelites, praise the LORD;
house of Aaron, praise the LORD;
house of Levi, praise the LORD;
you who fear him, praise the LORD.
Praise be to the LORD from Zion,
to him who dwells in Jerusalem.
Praise the LORD (NIV). *
Though it may not be obvious, there is something timeless about the first sentence from today’s reading: The idols of the nations are silver and gold, made by human hands.
In today’s world shaping silver or gold into an idol may be unusual, but it still occurs. India and the nations of Southeast Asia have plenty of gold and silver idols. This is not a dying worship form. Many have been cast in recent years.
In the western world we frown on such openly idolatrous displays of wealth and worship. Or do we? Gold and silver represent wealth. In reality, we have simply transformed our worship of wealth from bulky commodities like silver and gold to more transferable assets like securities and paper currency. We are still guilty of bowing before silver and gold, but it comes with a different name. Now we call it the almighty dollar.
The almighty dollar, or more broadly speaking, the market, determines the ebb and flow of commerce, and by extension impacts every aspect of our daily lives. It is not an exaggeration to say we are caught up in financial system that is deeply idolatrous. Our society has taken the worship of wealth (Mammon) to new heights. We elect our political leaders not based on morality or personal integrity, but rather can they deliver a higher level of GDP—put more money in our pockets.
Into this corrupt world, the apostle, Peter, speaks these words to those who have been called to follow Christ: For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect (1 Peter 1:18-19).
Response: Father God, I need the right perspective on wealth and finances. Your precious blood is worth more than all the silver and gold this world has to offer. I bow before you as my Almighty Savior. Amen.
Your Turn: Is Jesus the Lord of your finances? Is your Redeemer more important than wealth?
* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA
Please pray for the people of Ukraine!
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I believe that Holy Spirit is teaching and I pray that I am learning to measure every purchase by God’s standard. For example, how many Bibles could I buy and give to those who don’t have one for the same amount of money that I am about to spend on something that will profit me nothing and do nothing to increase the Kingdom of God here on earth? The answer to that question, at the worst, saves me money, and at its best glorifies God when used for His purposes.
Great point, Wally. I think this verse applies to what you are saying and doing:
“I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings” (Luke 16:9).
Alan Kearns said:
In recent years I have been reflecting and repenting of my use of finances in the past; I could have done better and glorified God more. As I get older, and read posts such as this (including brother Wally’s comment) I realise I am still a work in progress for His Kingdom.
Amen, Brother Alan, we all are, but we serve a merciful, gracious God! Hallelujah!
Wally and Alan, this discussion is serving to prompt me to spend money in a very specific direction. Here I will briefly share it with you. I am having all of my “Psalms 365” posts translated into Spanish. I am employing the daughter of a pastor in Costa Rica to do this. Volumes 1 and 2 are already completed. Today I will be in touch to get Volume 3 done. Please pray for this project to genuinely impact many people to the glory of Christ our Saviour.
Alan Kearns said:
That is exciting news David! Be assured of my prayers for God’s hand in this new outreach for the Gospel. Please keep us updated brother.😁
Thanks, Alan. Will do.