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Discussion Forum : Articles and Sermons : A Powerful Prophetic Word: God And Mammon by Zac Poonen

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ArtB
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Joined: 2004/4/27
Posts: 431
New York

 Re:

by appolus on 2011/9/26 12:02:36 wrote:

I think what Art was trying to say and correct me if I am wrong Art, is that we do indeed need money. Its not money that is evil, its the love of money, the desire to be rich, that is where so many people lose it ( its especially complicated in America because of the " American dream.")"

Yes apollus, it is the pursuit of money at any and all cost that is evil. It is not wealth that is evil, it is Avarice that is evil. Avarice is the insatiable desire for wealth in all its various forms.

And your example of Paul is an excellent one to be followed.


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Arthur Biele

 2011/9/27 3:48Profile
ArtB
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 Re:

by Koheleth on 2011/9/26 14:31:10 writes:

"Frank, thanks for your input. ArtB did not just say that we need money. He said that we need wealth and that Zac Poonen was extreme. Zac may have been extreme as far as rich people are concerned, but the only valid question is whether he was Biblical."

I gave scripture to back up my views on this matter. These have not been addressed. I see no reason for any to disagree with these scriptures as I presented them.

BTW, 'Money' is one form of Mammon. The Greek word 'Mammon' merely means wealth. One dollar is wealth. Obviously it is not a lot of wealth, but it is wealth (i.e. Mammon). Get a million of them and it becomes a lot of wealth (i.e. a lot of Mammon). It is the excessive or insatiable desire for wealth or gain, avarice, that Jesus warns against. And He was addressing Pharisees who loved accumulating lots of Mammon to feed their avarice.

And i agreed with Zac Poonen about the TV 'evangelists' who constantly ask their viewers to send money so he can help the needy around the world, and from that money sent in to them they have bought for themselves a giant home with lots of plush property, several expensive cars and lots of money in their savings account, and investment properties in South America or elsewhere.. To me, that is avarice.

As for my mammon, it is very small. I have successfully went through Bankruptcy, I can pay neither the taxes nor the mortgage on my home, I was in foreclosure which was mysteriously lifted by the mortgage Company, but sooner or later they will want the property. I live on a $ 1,000 per month. So I'm certainly not defending my massive amount of Mammon. Yet, I am at peace and remain in fellowship with God, come what may.


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Arthur Biele

 2011/9/27 3:56Profile
Koheleth
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Joined: 2005/11/10
Posts: 530
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 Re:

ArtB, you are not handling the Scriptures correctly because you don't understand the words used in them. I am not saying you are trying to misuse Scripture, just that you don't understand the vocabulary and definitions of the words you are trying to discuss.

You say $1 is wealth, but it is not. Having only $1 is poverty. All of the dictionaries disagree with the way you use the word wealth when they define it as "a great quantity or store of money, valuable possessions, property, or other riches." Wealth is not another word for money, as you suggest.

 2011/9/27 4:22Profile
ArtB
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Joined: 2004/4/27
Posts: 431
New York

 Re:

by Koheleth on 2011/9/27 1:22:28 writes:

"ArtB, you are not handling the Scriptures correctly because you don't understand the words used in them. I am not saying you are trying to misuse Scripture, just that you don't understand the vocabulary and definitions of the words you are trying to discuss.

You say $1 is wealth, but it is not. Having only $1 is poverty. All of the dictionaries disagree with the way you use the word wealth when they define it as "a great quantity or store of money, valuable possessions, property, or other riches." Wealth is not another word for money, as you suggest."

Come on now Koheleth, your being picayune. $ 1.00 is wealth, I agree that it is very little wealth, but it is a degree of wealth.

Here is the meanings of the Greek word mamonas:

NT:3126

mamonas (mam-o-nas') or mammonas (mam-mo-nas'); of Aramaic origin (confidence, i.e. wealth, personified); mammonas, i.e. avarice (deified):

(Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

As you can see, there are two Biblical definitions for 'mamonas'.

The first definition is simply wealth. Enough wealth that gives confidence, presumably to pay all ones bills and food. clothing, and a furnished Shelter (Home) to live in. Not a dollar, but a significant amount of dollars. This is 'mamonas' personified. And it is this definition that you referred to.

The second definition is 'mamonas' deified. It means 'avarice'. This is the meaning I referred to as the wrong relationship to have with mamonas. And this is the meaning Jesus was conveying to the Pharisees who loved accumulating excessive amounts of mamonas.


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Arthur Biele

 2011/9/27 5:23Profile









 Re:

I agree with much of what brother Zac is saying, but I think he stretches the point too far. The jonah example is just strange and there is nothing to suggest from the Scriptures that Jonah made this trip because he either had money or loved money. Zac says this..........

"Christians who pursue after Mammon have plenty of money to travel whenever they like, and wherever they like. They also have enough to buy whatever they like, whenever they like. Only lovers of Mammon can afford such expensive habits. But those who have an extravagant lifestyle can never be witnesses for the Lord in the midst of a suffering world."

Sadly I have seen this in many " ministers," who travel the world to go to conferences and such and much of the trip is sight-seeing to places that those who supported them could never see because they could not afford it. They have the latest lap-tops and cameras and so on, and if Zac is correct, then they could never be witnesses for the Lord in the midst of a suffering world. It is so much worse in these folks beacuse it is not even their own money they are abusing, and to make the whole thing even more despicable, they then turn around and condemn this very activity in others.

I berlieve that when the Lord says that you cannot serve two masters he is talking about the supreme idolotry, love and trust in money. Most folks I know do not love money as such, they love the security that it brings, Their trust is in their bank-books. It allows them to sleep at night. To " believe,' in Jesus, as called for in John 3, does not mean to give mental assent to the fact that He is the Son of God, that is only a portion of that word and many only have that portion and therefore do not have salvation. it means to trust, to put ones life in the hand of the Lord. Our lives cannot be in Gods hand and in moneys hand. We either trust in the Lord with all of our hearts or we do not, so in this regard I tend to agree with brother Zac. Yet, in most cases this is a process of sanctification and as in all aspects of Christianity, we have " weaker brothers.' God alone knows what is idolotrous in our lives, what we trust above and beyond Him. We can say that we trust in Him but only circumstances will flesh this out. Often times believers genuinly believe that they trust in God with all of their hearts until, for instance, they lose their jobs and they are forced to see that their trust was not as all encompassing as they thought. This is part of being refined in the fire. Probably many who read this have often had to face their own weaknesses and it was a shock to them to know that it even exsited, yet this is what the work of the Holy Spirit does in a believer. I thank the Lord for His work in the lives if His children.........brother Frank

 2011/9/27 10:32
psalm1
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Joined: 2007/1/30
Posts: 1230


 Re:

"ArtB, you seem to be confused. The word of God does say we cannot serve both God and riches or wealth. There is a choice. There is a real difference between mammon, which is an excess, and God's provision of what we need. That is not mammon. We do need God but no one needs mammon."

The problem is,this is rooted in legalism.If there is such a thing as "too much wealth" then where is the line?

Is it 20k?
How about 50k?

Should we have a 50k house?
Is a 250k house sinful?
Tell me,who is going to set the line? If one is bad and the other is good,then someone has to make it law so we can be "GOOD"

This mess places the accusers of the brethren that are wealthy in a bad place with God.

Their own wealth condemns them alongside the "wealthy"

Any minister of a 3rd world country would see Zac as Zac sees the "wealthy"

This whole concept is boggus in that all of us here in America could easily be depicted as mammon lovers.

Zac does not know the hearts of men,and to judge his fellow christian's motive from his human perspective is sad.

 2011/9/27 13:12Profile
Veronica226
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Joined: 2010/2/3
Posts: 144
Montana

 Re:

A good book to read on the subject, if anyone is interested, is "Money, Possessions and Eternity" by Randy Alcorn. I believe he had a very balanced approach to it.

The most interesting thing to me is that money is amoral (that is, the actual physical dollar bill). It's neither good nor bad. It can be used to by a sex slave and drugs or used to feed the poor and spread the gospel. But the money itself remains amoral. It's your attitude towards it and what you do with it that makes it bad or good.
Would also like to point out that money isn't real. It represents something else that we want or need to have. It's just easier to trade something that represents a value for ground beef than to trade a chicken for ground beef. Money's just there to make trading easier.
And in America it's actually a debt note. It even says it right there on the dollar bills. It's what you owe the government. So if they come to take it from you you're tough out of luck. :/
I know that isn't a Scriptural reason not to love money, but it's practical. We shouldn't rely on the government to sustain us with the money they keep printing, but we should rely on GOD. If you've ever grown a garden you know what I mean. You are totally dependent on God to make the garden grow, if it doesn't you don't eat.

Sorry if this is off topic... I think I'm just rambling now...


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Veronica

 2011/9/27 16:19Profile









 Re:

I think Psalm1 makes some good points, especially the legalism aspect and who draws the line. Take my own example for instance. I was raised in one of the poorest areas of Scotland which is the poor man of Europe. We lived in what was known as a " tenement." There was five of us in a one bedroom high rise victorian building. It was overrun with vermin. We had no hot water and often spent months without electricity. Bt any measure of the Western world we were poor. Now, if an Indian brother, or a chinese brother or a brother living in a village in Mexico, could see where I lived, would they not marvel that I lived in an apartment with any kind of running water? Would they not be amazed that we had electricity even if it was cut off periodically for non payment of bills? Perhpas they would be amazed that for 15 cents I could have a warm bath with all the hot water I wanted once a week at the local indoor swimming pool? So, the average America would be horrified and most of the rest of the world may have thought that I was richly blessed.

Yes indeed, it is God who knows the hearts of men and this is how the Lord judges, not on the outward appearence. I wrote earlier that this subject could be used to bring men into bondage. A man could preach about the love of money until the cows come home and I would say amen every time.

I think about a conference I attended. Two of the most anointed speakers came from very different places, and everyone on this site would love and respect both. One wore the sharpest of suits and is always dressed very well, the other wore very plain clothes. The sharply dressed brother stayed at the best hotel in town, the other brother stayed in a room of a house volunteered by a local believer. Can we say that one was a witness for God and the other was not?..........brother Frank

 2011/9/27 17:45
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 Re:

Quote:
Satan is a master schemer. He knows that if people are told to choose between God and Satan, no one will choose Satan. But when the choice is between God and Mammon, Satan knows that even believers will find it difficult to make a decisive choice.

Satan knows that most Christians choose their jobs and their place of residence, etc., based on their passion for Mammon (property and money) rather than on any desire for the promotion of God's kingdom. Satan knows that all such believers are useless for God's purposes, irrespective of the amount of religious activity they engage in.

Satan also knows that most of the Christian work in the world is more dependent on Mammon (money and property) than on the power of the Holy Spirit. Satan knows that all such Christian work will not have any eternal value - even if the reports of such work appear impressive when presented attractively by "public relations experts" in colourful Christian magazines!!



This article is very important and I hope many more saints here spend the time to read it.


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 2011/10/5 16:28Profile





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