Read Luke 12:13-34.
Jesus was teaching about hypocrisy, debating the Pharisees, and disclosing secrets of the Kingdom to His disciples. And then a man in the crowd interjected to ask Jesus to settle an inheritance dispute!
The difference between those who nurse their worry and those who don't is the degree to which they focus on God.
This request was out of left field—it had nothing to do with what Jesus had been teaching a moment before. Even so, He used it as an opportunity to teach His disciples about the power of greed.
While hypocrisy belongs to the spiritual realm, greed belongs to the material realm. In this way, they're very different sins. Even so, there is a connection: Just as people can be deceived by false teaching—for that is what hypocrisy amounts to—they can also be deceived by misleading materialism.
The Bible is clear that it is the love of money—not money itself—that leads to all kinds of evil (see 1 Timothy 6:10). Greed is never satisfied. It's always demanding more and is never rich toward God. Money tempts us to forget the Lord (see Proverbs 30:7-9).
In Luke 12, Jesus links the love of money to worry. He's driving home the point that a full and joyous life cannot be rooted in our temporary accumulations. The abundant life here and now comes from knowing you are going to spend eternity in heaven with Jesus.
When we realize that God owns all our resources, indeed our every breath, we discover worrying over money and the struggles of this life is foolish. Jesus spells out several reasons in Luke 12:22-34. First, we are the Lord's top priority. We matter to Him more than anything else in all creation (see Romans 8:32). Second, we are the recipients of His glorious provision. Every good and perfect gift in our lives is from Him (see James 1:17). Third, as God's children, we have been given privileges that we could never earn—just consider that through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross we become God's heirs—co-heirs with Christ (see Romans 8:17). God cares for us and blesses us with the heart of a perfect, dedicated Father.
In Truth, this man who stood before Jesus, asking Him to settle his inheritance dispute, was a fool full of worry. The difference between those who nurse their worry and those who don't is the degree to which they focus on God. With every decision we make—financial or otherwise—we must choose to store up treasure in heaven and trust in our good Father.
Prayer: Lord, help me to recognize ways that I am being greedy in my life and to give over every area of worry to trust in You. As I seek You, I lack no good thing (Psalm 34:10). Help me to live joyfully, standing firm on Your sure promises. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes" (Luke 12:22-23).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef's sermon series Enduring Wisdom: WATCH NOW