Bible Readings and Devotion for October 15, 2020
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Devotion for October 15, 2020
By Pastor David Tinker
In the 2001 film, Gosford Park, the character Sir William McCordle, portrayed by Michael Gambon, is a wealthy businessman and nobleman. We learn from the film that his core decision making process is always about what is good for him at the moment without regard to anybody else. This is illustrated through various actions. Two examples: 1- sexual harassment, for his own pleasure, of a maid at the manor house; and 2 – his statement about business.
I want to focus today on his 2nd example. There was some action he had taken for his business interests which caused harm and destruction in the life of others. He was pretty callous about it. When confront about the harm, his response is basically, “Business is business.” By this he meant, “I only care that my business is making money. It is of no concern to me what happens to others, just as long as I get richer.”
In our reading today from Luke 12 we have the parable of the Rich Fool. This man had a farm which was very successful. It did so well that he felt needed even larger barns to store the large surplus. When pondering this new construction project his only consideration was himself. When doing what seems to be a prayer, he seems to be praying only to himself, rather than to the Lord. Upon completion of his new barns he sits back for he has plenty of produce for himself for many years in advance.
Our Lord Jesus comments on this man’s attitude and way at the end of the parable, “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.”
Jesus condemns a self-focused life. The man was only thinking of himself. He only consulted himself when making his decisions regarding God’s provision. Jesus is reminding us to consider honoring God and his ways when we receive his provision. His ways include care for our neighbors in need. Jesus adds to this when he says in this same chapter, verse 48b, “From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.” Bottom line: in whatever situation you have in life, consult with God and his teachings about how to use it. As God provides more, then consult him more vigorously regarding how to manage it according to his will. The rich man did not consult the Lord, and the good which could have been done in his lifetime did not get to happen. For us, now, today, is the time to consult the Lord and to use his provision in a way which shows love for God and love for neighbor. When one is a follower of Jesus, life is not all about oneself.
Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we humbly thank you for your goodness to us and to all that you have made. We praise you for your creation, for keeping us and all things in your care, and for all the blessings of life. Above all we bless you for your immeasurable love in redeeming the world by our Lord Jesus Christ, for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies that with thankful hearts we praise you, not only with our lips but in our lives, by giving ourselves to your service and by living in your gifts of holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be all worship and praise, now and forever. Amen.