Monday, 29 February 2016

To Work For Money, Rather than For God, is to Love Money

No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Matthew 6:24). 

Many in the modern Church think that there is nothing wrong with working for money. They think that when people work, it is to be done for money. What is even more dangerous is that they think that working for money is compatible with working for God. They do not even realise that a person who works for God cannot work for money, and a person who works for money, cannot serve God.  What they do not realise is that to work for money, is self-centred and self-serving. What working for money is, is to trust and love mammon.

Who a person works for is who a person worships. A person who works for God is a person who worships God, whereas a person who works for mammon is a person who worships mammon.

You may say that the Bible commands the follower of Christ to serve one's master or employer. That is true (Ephesians 6:5; Colossians 3:22; 1 Peter 2:18). However, the whole truth must be explained. When a follower of Christ is employed by an earthly employer to do work for him, he is not working for that employer, but rather for God:

Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Ephesians 6:7 which says: "with good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men" or in the NIV "Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people" makes it clear that working for an employer is not actually to serve him, but to serve God. 

Likewise in working such that money is received for one's work, the work is done for God and God alone, and not the money. Though you may receive money, that is not what working is for. If you are working for the money, or approve of it, what difference is there between you and the unsaved who think working for money is normal and in their pride and self-centredness, think it is legitimate and justified? 

God and mammon are two opposing masters. Mammon panders to the flesh and anyone who serves himself and his own needs serves mammon. God hates the flesh and its will, and demand people stop serving themselves, and serve Him and Him alone:

Fear the LORD your God, serve him only and take your oaths in his name (Deuteronomy 6:13).

Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve
(Matthew 4:10). 

And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve (Luke 4:8). 

Mammon, on the other hand, does not tolerate a person serving God. No, he demands people serve him. How does a person serve mammon? By simply seeking his own needs, and that of those who he loves. Why? By seeking one's own needs, one is not trusting God. One is saying that God that one need not God, and rejects Him. To even think about seeking one's own needs is itself to not trust God and therefore reject God. As such, one is trusting in one's own flesh which does not and cannot submit to God (Romans 8:7-8), and therefore, not be able to be righteous.  That is why Jesus said in Matthew 6:31-34:

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

In Matthew 6:31, Jesus said "take no thought" of the earthly needs, legitimate needs, such as food, drink and clothing which literally means to not think about these things in one's heart because God will provide for His true children. God's grace is sufficient and He cares for His children very very very much. If God takes care of even His lilies, which do not toil which Jesus referred to Matthew 6:28, such that not even Solomon, who in the minds of Jesus' original audience was the epitome of wealthiness, was not arrayed like the lillies, how much more God would God care for His children:

And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? (Matthew 6:28-30). 

Jesus rebuked His original audience of having little faith (Matthew 6:30) in being anxious for these legitimate earthly needs. It is irrelevant that what a person is anxious for are legitimate earthly needs. The issue is that anxiety for any earthly things, including such needs, is itself to not trust God, to be of "little faith" in God (Matthew 6:30).

For the true follower of Christ, one works for God, and God gives him the money out of His grace, so that God is the one who provides. One does not work for the money, but rather for God. The money is only a mere by-product of his work. God provides money to serve Him and others as an expression of love. Mammon, on the other hand, provides money to be enslaved to him and serve oneself, instead of serving God and others.