May 6 Keep away from love of money, but pursue godliness

1 Tim 6:11 “But you, as a person dedicated to God, keep away from ~~ all that (i.e. the love of money, 6:10). Instead pursue~~ righteousness, godliness, faithfulness, love, endurance, and gentleness.”

When people can be made to believe that certain things or experiences will bring happiness, security, and significance, they can be manipulated to buy or try anything.

We are told that “contentment is great gain” (1 Tim 6:6) and that the “love of money is the root of all kinds of evil” (6:10), but everything in our society says, “Greed is the key to motivation for prosperity” and “Money will bring happiness and security.”

Choices must be made. “Some” in the church where Timothy was pastoring had already “strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (6:10). The world’s way promises much but delivers little.

If we want to follow God, and to be used by God, we must change our normal values and priorities. We are told to “habitually keep away from” certain things.

This means “to seek safety in flight [and] move hastily from danger” that results from being “obsessed with disputes and arguments . . . , envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, [and] useless wranglings . . . [of those] who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself . . . those who desire to be rich fall into temptations and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition” (1 Tim 6:4–-9). Keep away from these kinds of people.

On the contrary, “continually or habitually be pursuing” six qualities or characteristics: “righteousness, godliness, faithfulness, love, endurance, and gentleness,” which are the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22–-23). “Righteousness” comes from a heart and life in harmony with God’s commands, which leads to “godliness,” the motivation for an obedient lifestyle.

Faithfulness refers to reliable trustworthiness in life and trust in whatever God says. Love is an unselfish care for and commitment to others.

Patience refers to an enduring ability to stay true to the faith and God’s purpose for one’s life.

Finally, gentleness is kindness in dealing with others. This defines a man who walks with God . . . one that others respect and want to be their leader.

“Loving Lord Jesus, You lived humbly on this earth, showing us the way. Help me love You and Your precepts more than money or fame or any other selfish notion that may want to take Your place.”

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