Our WEALTH cannot DELIVER us on the DAY of JUDGMENT
August 28 Bible Reading: Ezekiel Chapters 7-9
"They will throw their silver into the streets, and their gold will be like refuse; their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord; they will not satisfy their souls, nor fill their stomachs, because it became their stumbling block of iniquity. I will do to them according to their way, and according to what they deserve I will judge them; then they shall know that I am the Lord!" (Ezek. 7:19, 27)
In the above passage, prophet Ezekiel attacks the futility of false optimism of the people of Israel. All the things Judah trusted will not help them, not wealth (7:19), false idols (7:20–22), or their leaders (7:23–27). The people of Israel had coveted their silver and gold, and their efforts to accumulate them had stumbled and fell into gross sin like pride, idolatry and oppressing the weak.
Now, their material possessions were useless, as their gold and silver could not buy food as there was none available for them (2 Kings 6:25). Goods were scarce and their money could not relieve hunger and famine nor bring deliverance from the oppression of their enemies. Thus, the trust of the people in their wealth and prosperity, instead of in God, brought their downfall. It was their wealth that was their stumbling block of iniquity, and it could not save them on their day of judgment!
Our Lord Jesus Christ has emphasized this matter many times during His earthly ministry. He has cautioned us from focusing only on accumulating wealth and riches during our lifetime. These are His very words: "No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (wealth)." (Matt. 6:24)
In fact, our wealth can prove to be a stumbling block that will prevent us from pursuing the matters concerning God. Again, Jesus has spoken sternly on this subject after His encounter with the rich young ruler in Mark 10:17-22. Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, "How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!" And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, "Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." (Mark 10:23-25)
Let us remember the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:13-21, where the man had accumulated much wealth but died an unprepared and miserable death. This will happen to us as well if we are only laying up treasure for ourselves and are not rich toward God. Our wealth can never save us on the Day of Judgment!
"Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses." (Luke 12:15)