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Lookin' Out For Number 1
by Wayne Blank
While God commanded honest work (e.g. the first part of the Fourth Commandment is "six days you shall labor and do all your work," Exodus 20:9), and favored capitalism (e.g. the Parable of the Talents, Matthew 25:14-30), He also taught to keep things in their proper perspective, because there is nothing more valuable than obedience to God. The old saying, "You can't take it with you" isn't found in The Bible, but the principle is - "What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?" (Luke 9:25).
So, how do we "look out for number one"? In the Words of The Savior -
"Jesus answered, "I Am The Way and The Truth and The Life. No one comes to The Father except through Me." (John 14:6)
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matthew 6:19-21)
"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"
"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." (Matthew 6:24-34)
Fact Finder: Did the apostle Paul warn the able-bodied saints against financial idleness while at the same time living a Godly life?