Tag Archives: wealth

Matthew 19 – Marriage & Money

Marriage:
How lightly do we esteem divorce?  How easily do we let it go?  In the time of Christ, divorce was an easier process than it is now.  You had just to get a certificate of divorce from the Scribes and/or Pharisees.  I have heard it said that it was easier than that.  I have heard it said that all a man needed to do was to tell his wife, “I divorce you.” three times together, and they were divorced.

Jesus makes it clear that once the marriage has been sealed, divorce is not in the design or the plan.  Yet so often, we don’t see it that way.  Men are looking for t he perfect wife, and women are looking for the perfect man.  They marry the person that they think is “the one” or their “soul mate” and when things don’t quite go as  expected, there is a running of the bulls.  The couple flees and the marriage dissolves.   Yet that is not how it is meant to happen.  Yet we, in our selfishness and pride, would rather destroy what God made and blessed than admit that we may be wrong, or that we need to change in ways that we don’t want / like to… especially when we feel hurt by someone who was supposed to protect / respect us.  There are so many things i could go into explaining and blaming for this mentality; the age of marriage, pre-marital emotional intimacy, a lack of marital support / mentoring, a lack of understanding of what marriage really is, but i need to move on.

Money:
I am very interested in this story of the rich young ruler.  In Bible college I had a professor that put a very interesting spin / perspective on this story.  The rich young ruler is a young man that clearly desires to be righteous and be a part of what God / Christ is doing.  However, he gets so caught up in his own wealth, that he can’t let it go to pursue Christ.  However, this story may not end here.  From what i’ve heard, this young man reappears in the Bible in the book of acts.  Apparently Josephus (the non-Christian Jewish historian) reports that the Apostle John taught his disciples that this rich young ruler was the same man that is named in Acts (4:36-37) “Now Joseph, a Levite of Cyprian birth, who was also called Barnabas by the apostles (which translated means Son of Encouragement), and who owned a tract of land, sold it and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.”  Barnabas went on, partnered with Paul, and was one of the first missionaries.  He did great things with the kingdom, but ONLY after he let go of his riches.  I have not studied this in depth, but i believe this to be true because i have seen how God works.  To have a man consumed by his riches and reject Christ / his call at first because of these things finally turn, reject the wealth, and become the true man of God he was meant to be.  That kind of redemption can only be the work of God / YHWH!

Rev. John J. Camiolo Jr.

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Genesis 30 – Overcome

Well, that’s three pens i have gone through now.  I ended up switching from fountain style to ball point style, and i definitely don’t like the difference in quality of the ink.  The fountain style is definitely scratchier on the paper while the ball point writes smoother, but the ink and quality of writing i get with the fountain style definitely makes it a better quality pen overall.

If faith in action is the theme of Abram/Abraham’s life, and blessing the theme of Isaac’s, then wrestling / struggle appears to be a major theme of Jacob’s life.  In chapter 30 we see Jacob’s wives, Leah and Rachael, struggling together to bear sons for Jacob.  They go so far as to follow in his grandparents footsteps and bring their maids into service to bear children for them.  Jacob gets angry at Rachael for her blaming him for her being barren, and finally God opens her womb and she is able to bear.

Meanwhile, Jacob is struggling with his uncle Laban who is expecting Jacob to work for him for basically nothing.  Since Jacob’s arrival, Laban has been blessed more and more.  He appears to be becoming wealthy at Jacob’s expense.  Meanwhile, Laban appears to continue to have an attitude that Leah, Rachael, and their children still belong to him.  With that kind of attitude it’s no wonder that Laban had struggled with being blessed before Jacob’s arrival.

By the end of the chapter progress has been made.  Leah has borne six sons and one daughter, and her maid has borne to Jacob two sons.  Meanwhile Rachael’s maid has borne Jacob two sons for her, and God has finally blessed her by opening her womb and she has borne Joseph.  All have overcome.

Meanwhile, Jacob is finally getting paid for his services to Laban.  He gets the spotted, speckled, and striped sheep and goats, and God is blessing him.  He is overcoming his Uncle Laban’s greedy behaviors.

Do we feel like we are constantly struggling with no success?  I know that i feel that way at times.  So often it seems like i am working so hard, and the success is so limited.  I know that God is taking care of me and blessing me, but it is easy to focus on the struggle and lose sight of the times and ways God has helped me to overcome.  We will have trials, troubles, and tribulations in life.  They can be walls that block our way, or just bumps in the road.  God gives us the strength to succeed and overcome.  What do you have to thank God for today?

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