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Guarding Against Greed

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Be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.
- Luke 12:15

In this passage, the Lord warns us to guard against greed. In other words, we need to protect ourselves against continually desiring what we don't have or constantly craving more of what we do. This compulsion to acquire is dangerous for several reasons:

1. It Breeds Discontent

Continually focusing on what you don't have instead of what you do, creates the feeling of unhappiness within you. What you don't have is never satisfying so focusing on it is always discouraging.

2. It Breeds Covetousness

When your attention is on what others have or can afford, your natural impulse is to possess. Don't look if you can't touch, don't touch if you can't buy.

3. It Breeds Worldliness

Constant attention to material things tends to make us materialistic, especially when our focus is on things that belong to others.

Jesus teaches us that true life, true wealth is not based on what you or your neighbor has. True life is based on what God gives and He gives everything to everyone who asks (Matthew 7:7-8).

You see, it's easy to focus on what others have or can afford. Guarding against greed requires us to continually ask God to provide for us what we need each day. In this way we will dissolve the constant yearning to possess what's for sale or what others are buying.

Discussion Questions

  1. Why do you think people never seem to be content?
  2. How do we teach children to be content with what they have?
  3. When are the times you are most satisfied? Why can't you remain in that state at all times?
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