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– Greed – The Teachings of Jesus

Bible on Greed, Money and Selfishness

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Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort

Erich Fromm

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Greed is not a financial issue. It’s a heart issue.

Andy Stanley

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“What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 

For it is from within, out of a person’s heart,

that evil thoughts come—

sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice,

deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.

Mark 7:20-22

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(This YouTube Video is 2:53 minutes in length, below is the transcript)

Jesus was in a constant battle with the religious leaders known as the Pharisees.

Jesus challenged their religious authority by claiming to bring a message straight from God.

One topic of disagreement was regarding wealth.

The Pharisees had a saying; “Whom the Lord loves – He makes rich.”

They were of the opinion that wealthy people were blessed by God.

Today, we have a number of preachers who preach what’s known as the prosperity gospel. That essentially agrees with the Pharisees.

Jesus taught a completely different perspective.

Then He said to them,

beware and be on your guard against every form of greed

for not even when one has an abundance

does his life consist of his possessions.

In the 12th chapter of the book of Luke (12:13-21.) Jesus provided us with the parable of The Rich Fool, to fully illustrate His teaching. In this parable, a wealthy young man had so much grain he didn’t know what to do with it, after some deliberation he decided to build bigger barns to keep the grain for himself rather than sharing it with those in need. As a result this man insured himself of wealth in this life but his spiritual life was void of the good deeds that could reward him in the life to come, this proved to be a tragic mistake when the young man died unexpectedly.

So is the man who stores up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.

Jesus taught that material needs are far less important than spiritual needs, the truth is God is far more capable of supplying our needs than any amount of material wealth. Material possessions are trivial matters compared to our need to store up treasure in heaven by serving others.

For life is more than food and the body more than clothing. We’ve all seen those who have become slaves to their possessions. Jesus taught that we are far better off if we become slaves to God. As in much of His teaching, Jesus points to our heart letting us know that what we treasure is a direct reflection of what’s in our heart. Those who have turned their back on God spend much of their time fixated on material gain. Those who know God can be at peace when they put their trust in Him rather than their bank account.

For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek, but your Father knows that you need these things but seek his kingdom and these things will be added to you.

Luke 12:30-31

Jesus makes it very clear that our best investment is in our service to God by serving others.

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(This YouTube Video is 5:16 minutes in length, below is the transcript,

All scriptures are New International Version (NIV)

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.

1 Timothy 6:10

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One who is greedy stirs up strife;

but one who trusts in the Lord will prosper.

Proverbs 28:25

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He said to them

beware keep yourselves from covetousness

for a man’s life doesn’t consist of the abundance of the things which he possesses

Luke 12:15

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but those who desire to be rich fall into temptation into a snare

into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction

1 Timothy 6:9

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…be free from the love of money

content with such things as you have

for he has said “I will in no way leave you neither will I in anyway forsake you.”

Hebrews 13:5

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He who is greedy for gain troubles his own house

but he who hates bribes willl Ive.

Proverbs 15:27

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No one can serve two masters

either you will hate the one and love the other or

you will be devoted to the one and despise the other

you cannot serve both God and money

Matthew 6:24

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He who loves silver shall not be satisfied with silver


he who loves abundance with increase:

this also is vanity

Ecclesiastes 5:10

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Don’t love the world or the things that are in the world

if anyone loves the world the Father’s Love isn’t in him

for all that is in the world the lust of the flesh.

The lust of the eyes and

the pride of life isn’t the Father’s but is the world

the world is passing away with its lusts

but he who does God’s will remains forever.

1 John 2:15-17

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An inheritance quickly gained at the beginning

won’t be blessed in the end.

Proverbs 20:21

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Wealth gained

dishonestly dwindles away

but he who gathers by hand

makes it grow

Proverbs 13:11

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For the wicked boasts of his heart’s cravings and

he blesses the greedy

scorning the Lord

Psalm 10:3

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and in their greed

they will exploit you with false words.

Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and

their destruction is not asleep.

2 Peter 2:3

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For what does it profit a man,

to gain the whole world and forfeit his life?

Mark 8:36

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Don’t lay up treasures for yourselves on the earth, where moth and rust consume, and

where thieves break through and steal.

Matthew 6:19

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While Jesus was speaking, a Pharisee asked Him to dine with him, so He went in and reclined at table. The Pharisee was astonished to see that He did not first wash before dinner,

and the Lord said to him

“Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish,

but inside you are full of greed and wickedness.

You Fools! Did not He who made the outside make the inside also?”

Luke 11:37-40

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So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain.

It takes away the life of its owners.

Proverbs 1:19

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nor thieves

nor the greedy

nor drunkards

nor slanderers

nor swindlers

will inherit the kingdom of God.

1 Corinthians 6:10

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All day long he craves for more,

but the righteous give without sparing.

Proverbs 21:26

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Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming on you.

Your riches are corrupted and your garments are moth-eaten.

James 5:1-2

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