Tag Archives: Possessions

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

In the previous articles we have spoken about the world clinching to material wealth like velcrostrips hoping to have all luck in the world.

The materialistic desires have conquered the world. Those who know were they come from and Who they should honour do know they should not give their love to material things.

15 Do not love either the world or the things in the world.+ If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him;+ 16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh+ and the desire of the eyes+ and the showy display of one’s means of life*—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. (1 John 2:15, 16)

In the articles we also could see how many love to be moulded by this system of things. (Romans 12:2) The worldly desires have run high in our society, but at other times people also fell for those distractions and attractions.

It Conquered the World

It Conquered the World (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The love of money or the desire to amass riches and possess material things can corrupt the heart, leading a Christian to do things that go against God’s will. A few have become dishonest at work, have cheated others, or have even stolen money or objects that do not belong to them.

Lots of people do have many things of which they want to boast of is this. Lots of people also do think man is full of wisdom and that they have ‘most’ wisdom’. They do not want to look into their conscience which might bear witness. They are full of fleshly wisdom.

Material pursuits may bring on anxiety. For example, some complicate their lives by living beyond their means. Others have been enticed by get-rich-quick schemes and risky financial investments. For others, secular education as a means to attain financial success becomes a snare. The Bible warns: “Those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires, which plunge men into destruction and ruin.”

However, those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation+ and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires,+ which plunge men into destruction and ruin.+ 10 For the love+ of money is a root+ of all sorts of injurious things,*+ and by reaching out for this love some have been led astray from the faith and have stabbed themselves all over with many pains.+ (1 Timothy 6:9, 10).

Essential to not being drawn into a materialistic way of life is cultivating the ability to distinguish between right and wrong when making decisions. This ability is developed by regularly partaking of ‘solid spiritual food belonging to mature people’ and by ‘having our perceptive powers trained through use.’ (Hebrews 5:13, 14) Making sure “of the more important things” when setting priorities will also safeguard us from making wrong choices.

And this is what I continue praying, that YOUR love may abound+ yet more and more with accurate knowledge*+ and full discernment;*+ 10 that YOU may make sure of the more important things,+ so that YOU may be flawless+ and not be stumbling+ others up to the day of Christ, 11 and may be filled with righteous fruit,+ which is through Jesus Christ, to God’s glory and praise.+ (Philippians 1:9,10,11).

A materialistic life-style can blind us, leaving little or no time for spiritual pursuits.
How can we examine ourselves and avoid being ensnared by such a life-style?
We need to consider prayerfully how and to what extent we can simplify our life. King Solomon of ancient Israel said:

“Sweet is the sleep of the one serving, regardless of whether it is little or much that he eats; but the plenty belonging to the rich one is not permitting him to sleep.” (Ecclesiastes 5:12)

Does taking care of unnecessary material possessions consume a lot of our time and energy? The more we own, the more we have to maintain, insure, and protect.
Could it be to our advantage to simplify our life by freeing ourselves of certain belongings?

Lennon (right) performing "All You Need I...

Lennon (right) performing “All You Need Is Love” with The Beatles in 1967 to 400 million viewers of “Our World”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We think life can much be easier when not loving the material things and not focusing on the world and its worldly life.

On the other hand, by cultivating a healthy fear of displeasing Jehovah, loving justice, and being determined to hold a good conscience, we show that we love “purity of heart.” That love moves us to continue to “conduct ourselves honestly in all things.” (Hebrews 13:18)

18 Carry on prayer+ for us, for we trust we have an honest conscience, as we wish to conduct ourselves honestly in all things.+ 19 But I exhort YOU more especially to do this, that I may be restored to YOU the sooner.+ (Hebrews 13:18

When we act uprightly, honesty can result in a fine witness.

Emilio, an Italian Witness who works as a driver for a public transport company, found a wallet containing 470 euros ($680, U.S.). To the surprise of his colleagues, he handed the wallet to his supervisor, who later gave the wallet to the person who had lost it. Some of Emilio’s colleagues were so impressed by his conduct that they became interested in the Bible and started to study. As a result, seven people from two families have accepted the truth. Yes, behaving honestly from a pure heart really can move others to praise God.Titus 2:10.

Materialism may not seem to be an issue of loyalty, but it is. Do we trust in Jehovah’s promise to provide what we really need?

33 “Keep on, then, seeking* first the kingdom and his righteousness,+ and all these [other] things will be added to YOU.+ 34 So, never be anxious about the next day,+ for the next day will have its own anxieties. Sufficient for each day is its own badness.  (Matthew 6:33-34)

Let [YOUR] manner of life be free of the love of money,+ while YOU are content+ with the present things.+ For he has said: “I will by no means leave you nor by any means forsake you.”+ (Hebrews 13:5)

Rather than striving to obtain at any cost some of the “better” things in life that are presently beyond our reach, can we do without them? (Read Philippians 4:11-13.) Are we tempted to forgo theocratic privileges in order to get what we want now? Does loyal service to Jehovah have first place in our life? Our answers will largely depend on whether we are wholehearted in our service to God or not.

“It is a means of great gain,”

wrote the apostle Paul,

“this godly devotion along with self-sufficiency. For we have brought nothing into the world, and neither can we carry anything out. So, having sustenance and covering, we shall be content with these things.”—1 Timothy 6:6-8.

In a revelation to the apostle John toward the close of the first century, the glorified Jesus Christ delivered a message to the congregation located in Laodicea, Asia Minor. It was a warning message against materialism. Though materially rich, Laodicean Christians were bankrupt spiritually. Instead of continuing to walk by faith, they allowed material possessions to blind their spiritual vision. (Revelation 3:14-18) Materialism has a similar effect today. It weakens our faith and causes us to stop ‘running with endurance the race’ for life. (Hebrews 12:1) If we are not careful, the “pleasures of this life” can smother spiritual activities to the point that they are “completely choked.”

14 As for that which fell among the thorns, these are the ones that have heard, but, by being carried away by anxieties and riches and pleasures+ of this life, they are completely choked and bring nothing to perfection.+ (Luke 8:14).

Time ran out for the world of Noah’s day, and it will run out for the present system of things. The apostle Peter assures us:

“Jehovah’s day will come as a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a hissing noise, but the elements being intensely hot will be dissolved, and earth and the works in it will be discovered.”

Neither the symbolic heavens — wicked governments — nor the symbolic earth — mankind alienated from God — will survive the heat of God’s burning anger. Indicating how we can prove ourselves ready for that day, Peter exclaims:

“Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of persons ought you to be in holy acts of conduct and deeds of godly devotion, awaiting and keeping close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah!”—2 Peter 3:10-12.

A key to spiritual protection is contentment rather than the use of this world to the full and the enrichment of ourselves materially. (1 Corinthians 7:31; 1 Timothy 6:6-8) We as such do not have to look so much at the world of mankind or the kingdom of mankind but at the world of the Kingdom of God. When we walk by faith and not by sight, we find joy in the present spiritual paradise. As we partake of nourishing spiritual food, are we not moved to “cry out joyfully because of the good condition of the heart”? (Isaiah 65:13, 14) Moreover, we take delight in our association with those who manifest the fruitage of God’s spirit.

22 On the other hand, the fruitage+ of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness,+ faith, 23 mildness, self-control.+ Against such things there is no law.+ 24 Moreover, those who belong to Christ Jesus impaled* the flesh together with its passions and desires.+ (Galatians 5:22, 23)

How vital that we find satisfaction and refreshment in what Jehovah provides in a spiritual way!

Some questions we do well to ask ourselves are:

‘What place do material things occupy in my life? Am I using the material possessions I have to live a life of pleasure or to promote true worship? What brings me the greatest satisfaction? Is it Bible study and fellowship at Christian meetings, or is it weekends away from Christian responsibilities? Do I reserve many weekends for recreation instead of using such time for the field ministry and other activities in connection with pure worship?’

Our regularly attending Christian meetings and sharing in preaching the good news are included among the necessary acts and deeds of godly devotion. May we perform them with heartfelt devotion to God while we wait patiently for Jehovah’s great day. Let us “do [our] utmost to be found finally by [God] spotless and unblemished and in peace.”—2 Peter 3:14.

Walking by faith means that we keep busy in the Kingdom work, with full trust in Jehovah’s promises.

58 Consequently, my beloved brothers, become steadfast,+ unmovable, always having plenty to do in the work of the Lord,+ knowing that YOUR labor is not in vain*+ in connection with [the] Lord. (1 Corinthians 15:58).

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Preceding articles:

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

For The Love of Stuff

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Watch out

Thought of the day: We want more, i want more, but why is that?

Mini-MAX-malism: A Bigger Approach to Less is More

Less… is still enough

Less for more

The Art of Doing Less – Your Time is Finite

Looking at a conservative review of Shop Class As Soul Craft

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Additional reading:

  1. What is life?
  2. Greed more common than generosity
  3. Some one or something to fear #2 Attitude and Reactions
  4. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  5. Some one or something to fear #4 Families and Competition
  6. Struggles of life
  7. It continues to be a never ending, exhausting battle for survival.
  8. Searching for fulfillment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  9. Daily portion of heavenly food
  10. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late!
  11. How should we react against the world
  12. A call easy to understand
  13. Followers with deepening
  14. Come ye yourselves apart … and rest awhile (Mark 6:31)
  15. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  16. Looking forward to God’s faithfulness
  17. Count your blessings
  18. God should be your hope
  19. Always set a place in your life for the unexpected guest
  20. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  21. Be a ready giver
  22. Contribution – Contributie, bijdrage
  23. Bearing fruit
  24. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  25. What’s church for, anyway?
  26. Making church
  27. Meeting – Vergadering
  28. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  29. Gathering or meeting of believers
  30. An ecclesia in your neighbourhood
  31. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  32. Breathing and growing with no heir
  33. Breathing to teach
  34. Reasons to come together
  35. God won’t ask
  36. Communion and day of worship
  37. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #6 Prayer #4 Attitude
  38. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #18 Fulfilment

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Further reading:

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs, Welfare matters

Material gain to honour God

Front cover of the first edition of Lenin's Ma...

Front cover of the first edition of Lenin’s Materialism and Empirio-Criticism, published in Moscow in 1909 under the pseudonym “Vl. Ilyin.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Around us we may find lots of material things which can attract and distract us. We have nature, something which can not be made by man but can only be adjusted or changed to man’s desires. We have all sorts man-made things which can be for use or just for being there, one moment to give pleasure, an other moment to be thrown away as useless.

The things from nature, the goods which make us able to create things they all come from somewhere. It is the earth that gives it to us.  But behind it is the Master Hand. What lots of people do not see or do not want to know is that behind everything made there is the Master Creator Who allows others to be and to create such things.

For many it is a very hard thing to believe that everything we can see around us and all things we can have is because God allows it to be there. It is there because of God allowing it but it also belongs to God.  We like to think that what we have is ours and no one elses.  Man wants to have everything for him or herself. Man wants to feed the “I” and wants to satisfy the “I”. Man thinks by taking all things for him/herself he can be and can satisfy the inner person and fulfil his “I amambition.

Strangely enough people want to gather as much as they can and safe it, though they will not be able to take it with them when they die. Their possessions will either go to someone else or be thrown away to be incinerated or to go in oblivion on the trash pile.

In this world there are so many who want to flaunt with what they can gather. They are so  proud, but in a way do know nothing, and dote on an argument and quarrel on the use of a word or on the way of life. With their earthly grabbing culture they are the cause of envy and controversy and blasphemy and evil premeditation.

Strife among men whose minds are corrupt and who are cut off from the truth and who think worshipping God is for worldly gain should alert us and make it that we keep away from such things. Those who love God should know that their gain is greater contentment, for it is the worship of God.  For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

1Ti 6:6-7 HNV  But godliness with contentment is great gain.  (7)  For we brought nothing into the world, and we certainly can’t carry anything out.

English: Donkey cart in Conlig A change from a...

Donkey cart in Conlig A change from all the materialism that seems to arise early in December – these children take to more traditional activities, in this case dressing up in Victorian fashion and parading along The Green in Conlig village. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Therefore, let us enjoy the beauty of nature and the God given things and let us be satisfied with food, raiment and shelter. For those who desire to be rich, fall into temptations, and snares, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which causes them to sink in degeneration and destruction.  For the love of money is the root of all evil: and there are some men who have coveted it and have thereby erred from the faith, they have brought to themselves many sorrows.

1Ti 6:8-10 HNV  But having food and clothing, we will be content with that.  (9)  But those who are determined to be rich fall into a temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful lusts, such as drown men in ruin and destruction.  (10)  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some have been led astray from the faith in their greed, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

In case you love God and you want to go for Him, you should flee these things; and follow after righteousness, piety, faith, love, patience, and meekness.  We are told to fight the good fight of faith, and to let the right things reign in our mortal body, laying hold on eternal life to which we are called, having professed a true profession before many witnesses.

1Ti 6:11-12 HNV  But you, man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness.  (12)  Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you confessed the good confession in the sight of many witnesses.

1Co 6:18 HNV  Flee sexual immorality! “Every sin that a man does is outside the body,” but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.

Rom 6:12 HNV  Therefore don’t let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.

Nothing but the all mighty God, mighty Prince, the King of kings, and Lord of lords,  has immortality or deathlessness, dwelling in the light which no man can approach, and whom no man has seen, nor can see. To Him be honour and dominion for ever and ever. Even Christ Jesus, the son of God had to face death. He really died, was three days in hell and was than taken out of the dead by his heavenly Father, the Only One True God.

Even the son who has received authority from his heavenly Father to judge and to be a king shall have to hand over the Kingdom of God to his heavenly Father in due time, because everything belongs to God.

Like Jesus only did the Will of his heavenly Father, and not his own will, we should try to do also the Will of God. Like Jesus could not do anything without his Father, we should know also that nothing is possible without God as Sustainer of the world allowing it to happen.

As Christians we should know that we live in the world but should not be part of it. We may get many possessions but should take care those things do not take possession of us.
Everything what we gather in our life we should use for the good. Not only for the good of the self but also for helping others.

Let us remember that those things which may life easier for us should be used to to do God’s will and to honour Him by what we do with it. And let us go for the real treasures.

Mat 6:19-21 HNV  “Don’t lay up treasures for yourselves on the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break through and steal;   (20)  but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consume, and where thieves don’t break through and steal;   (21)  for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

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Strife: heated, often violent conflict or disagreement; angry or violent struggle or quarrel; Contention or competition between rivals; trouble or discord of any kind; strenuous effort; open clash between two opposing groups (or individuals)

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Preceding articles:

Thought of the day: We want more, i want more, but why is that?

Mini-MAX-malism: A Bigger Approach to Less is More

Stop and Think

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

How to Find the Meaning of Life and Reach a State of Peace

Less… is still enough

Less for more

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Additional reading:

  1. What Are You Seeking?
  2. Souls and Religions with Nirvana and light
  3. Finding Beauty Amongst the Trash
  4. True happiness, love and perfection
  5. Not holding back and getting out of darkness
  6. Purify my heart
  7. Two states of existence before God
  8. A good idea to halt all activity for one hour some day
  9. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  10. Rest thy delight on Jehovah
  11. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  12. Humbleness
  13. Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God
  14. What happens when we die?
  15. Is there an Immortal soul
  16. Looking on what is going on and not being of it

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Further reading:

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Filed under Lifestyle, Religious affairs

Happy yet?

fire dancing for fun and profit

fractal 2Today we did it. We signed the document that says yes, in exchange for x amount of money minus y amount of concessions and repairs we will leave our home which we love and go somewhere else. We will allow it to be filled point forward by strangers whom we will probably never will meet.

In some cultures this would be a monumental, every-few-generation sort of event. In other circles, our sadness is hard to understand. We’re a little embarrassed about it, frankly. We like to think we are not so attached to our possessions and that our spirits have been longing for the freedom to roam.

pat polacco 2But like most things, it’s not a simple choice. This is a beautiful place with space for gardens and the front porch on which I’ve now written five novels. Yes, we’d keep it if we could. That is, if we could without having…

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