Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 1 Timothy 6:17
Paul leaves Timothy in charge of one of the most strategically located Jesus-communities. Timothy travels with Paul around the Mediterranean world and is now the pastor in Ephesus, a bustling Roman metropolis. Paul writes to encourage Timothy and give him some additional training. One of the instructions Paul gives is how Timothy should talk to those who are rich. Paul challenges Timothy to remind those rich not to put their hope in their money but in God. It’s not that having money is wrong. Paul wants them to have a proper relationship with money—to see their wealth as a gift from God. It’s something they can enjoy, but it’s not something they can put their hope in. Instead, they are to be generous.
This was a big deal in Ephesus and is probably bigger for us today. While we may not consider ourselves rich, comparatively speaking, we are rich. Our culture makes it easy for us to put our hope into money or the things money buys. We get sucked into the “if only” game. If only we can find a bigger house. If only my IRA had a larger balance. If only I had a fun vacation planned. If only my kids would get better grades. If only I could make the varsity. We think there’s hope in these things, but they aren’t the things we should put our hope in. It’s something for us to enjoy, but not a place to put our hope. God is the only reliable source of hope.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Read and reflect on the model prayer Jesus gave us in Matthew 6:9-13. This past weekend, we went through the Lord’s Prayer. Jesus instructed us to say, “Give us today our daily bread.” It’s an acknowledgment that everything we have is a gift from God and that God is where we should place our hope.
2023 SPIRITUAL PRACTICES
Join us all of 2023 developing a different spiritual practice each month. SPIRITUAL PRACTICES are intentional regular activities to deepen our relationship with God and mold us to be more like Jesus.
March is FASTING. Keep track of our spiritual practices at beyondtheweekend.org/spiritualpractices.
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.