We live in a world focused on gain: money and possessions, promotions and positions, achievements and experiences, reputation and status. From every side we are bombarded with the message to get the most you can get and be the best you can be. If we judge by what we see, man believes his ultimate purpose in life and the true measure of his self-worth is climbing as high as he can up the slopes of the mountain of the world. Even things like religion and morality have fallen prey to this focus on gain. They are construed so that their primary purpose is to help man to get and be on the mountain.

 

But what does God think of this colossal “King of the Hill” game? Not much. In Matt. 16:26 we read, “What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul?” A man can succeed at this game like no one has ever before succeeded and yet lose out absolutely — and awfully — when it comes to God and eternity. Now the right answer is not rigorous religion which shuns the world like a hermit. The right answer is “Wisdom is the principle thing, therefore get wisdom” (Prov. 4:7). And the Bible defines wisdom, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Ps. 111:10). If we make God our chief passion and his wisdom (found in the Bible) our chief getting, everything else will fall into place.

Lee Brainard, September 20, 2014

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