“Those who trust in their wealth And boast in the multitude of their riches, None of them can by any means redeem his brother, Nor give to God a ransom for him— For the redemption of their souls is costly, And it shall cease forever— That he should continue to live eternally, And not see the Pit. For he sees wise men die; Likewise the fool and the senseless person perish, And leave their wealth to others. Their inner thought is that their houses will last forever, Their dwelling places to all generations; They call their lands after their own names. Nevertheless man, though in honor, does not remain; He is like the beasts that perish. This is the way of those who are foolish, And of their posterity who approve their sayings. Selah”
Psalms 49:6-13 NKJV
One of the unintended consequences of this ongoing pandemic and all of its global pain, is the rise of the wealthy, made super wealthy on the essential needs of others. In the extreme wealth, we watch as those who have much, rocket themselves into space, hoping to touch the face of God.
In their greatness, they truly believe, in some shortsighted and uninformed way, that they can build, through their wealth, posterity. They think that some aspect of them will live forever.
Psalm 49 was a sobering reminder this morning.
There is a thought, by some of the very rich, that they can even buy their way into Heaven, that by funding the right charities, and doing “big things”, they will curry favor with the Creator of the Universe. There is a old saying, “money can’t buy love”, nor can it buy salvation.
Jesus paid it all.
“I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.”
II Corinthians 8:8-9 NKJV
Jesus left behind the glory He knew with the Father to come to earth, humble, poor, and having little. He brought the message of the Gospel, forgiveness of sins, eternal life, and peace. He provided, at great cost to Himself, the very things that mark the good life.
Those who rely on the Lord have it all: the riches and glory of the Father handed down to the Son, and given to us.
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”
I John 3:1-3 NKJV
In earthly terms, those who are very rich still have to deal with realities. They live, they die, they pass from the scene. Once they are gone, their name perishes with them. In the city where I live, there are many buildings that bear the names of dead rich people, looming as giant tombstones paying homage to those long forgotten.
In Christ, the legacy of faith keeps our names alive as the Lord has documented all of those who have called upon the name of the Lord. We are written in the Lamb’s book of life. Even more importantly, we live on into eternity, enjoying the grace of God.
I like watching a YouTube channel called the BROS OF DECAY. A couple of Belgian brothers who tour abandoned castles throughout Europe. They tour once great structures and once majestic mansions. Each of these places were beautiful in their time, and I am sure those who built them thought they would stand forever. But the owners died, heirs didn’t have concern for the homes, and they all had fallen into disrepair, often with everything remaining as if they had just left for an errand.
““Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.””
John 14:1-4 NKJV
“Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.”
Revelation 21:2-3 NKJV
We are waiting for our own place, being prepared for us, that will never deteriorate, that will be beyond anything we can imagine. It will stand forever.
Not only that, but we too will be rocket people, as one day our Savior Jesus will return and come for His own, and those who have died and those who remain will blast off, and unlike the billionaires into their folly, we will behold the face of God.
“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.”
I Thessalonians 4:16-18 NKJV
I CAN’T WAIT!
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