Friday, July 24th, 2009
"Do not toil to gain riches. Cease from your own understanding. Have you caused your eyes to glance at it, when it is nothing? For without fail it makes wings for itself like those of an eagle and flies away." (Proverbs 23:4, 5)
To most people, the expression "the real life" conjures up an image of luxury and pleasure. One Asian news magazine notes: "Those who watch films or TV learn to desire what they see, to dream of what they might have." Many people make the attaining of riches and status their purpose in life. Many sacrifice their youth, health, family life, and spiritual values in pursuit of these things. Few stop to think that such media images are no more than a reflection of "the spirit of the world" - the dominant pattern of thinking that influences the majority of earth's billions and moves them to act in opposition to God's purpose for us. (1 Corinthians 2:12; Ephesians 2:2) No wonder there are so many unhappy people today! (Proverbs 18:11)
(Watchtower issue: 10/01/07, 1:8)
*It might be difficult for some people to believe that their desire for wealth and prominence could ever reflect an attitude or thinking pattern similar to Satan's, but check out this interesting reference describing what led Satan down the path he eventually took. Ezekiel chapter 28 describes the "leader or King of Tyre" which is a symbolic reference to Satan and the vast commercial empire he has built up. Notice how God describes the angelic spirit creature he originally was before he turned wicked...
(Ezekiel 28:13-15) "You are sealing up a pattern, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. In E´den, the garden of God, you proved to be. Every precious stone was your covering,...You are the anointed cherub that is covering, and I have set you. On the holy mountain of God you proved to be. In the midst of fiery stones you walked about. You were faultless in your ways from the day of your being created until unrighteousness was found in you."
so now look where it all started:
(28:3-5) "There are no secrets that have proved a match for you. By your wisdom and by your discernment you have made wealth for your own self, and you keep getting gold and silver in your storehouses. By the abundance of your wisdom, by your sales goods, you have made your wealth abound, and your heart began to be haughty because of your wealth."
"Because of the abundance of your sales goods they filled the midst of you with violence, and you began to sin. And I shall put you as profane out of the mountain of God, and I shall destroy you, O cherub...Your heart became haughty because of your beauty. You brought your wisdom to ruin on account of your beaming splendor. Onto the earth I will throw you...Owing to the abundance of your errors, because of the injustice of your sales goods, you have profaned your sanctuaries..."