LUKE 12:16-21 – And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” ’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”
THEME OF THE DAY. THERE IS NO TIME OF EASE. A lot of lessons emerge from today’s scripture. One which jumps out quickly is the self-deception of thinking at any time in this life we may “kick back, relax, and coast our way into heaven.” As Christians, there will never be a “warfare-free” day. Oh, some days may not be as spiritually intense as others. And God will give us days of great joy and lessened spiritual conflicts. But no day will be battle-free. Remember that – daily. Forget that – daily, and the results will be spiritual defeat. We will be overcome by sin; engulfed in worldliness; and lose our joy of walking with the Lord Jesus. But even worse than all those spiritual consequences of forgetting what life in this world is for the Christian is the indictment God makes. Observe the dialogue in the parable.
First, there is the self-talk. The rich man worked hard all his life. He invested wisely. He looked ahead at “kicking back” in retirement. He calls it a life of “relaxation, eating, drinking, and being merry.” There is nothing wrong with such hard work, wise investments, and even looking forward to a change of lifestyle of no longer being in the workforce. However, here is where it goes south quickly. Retirement from a secular world does not mean retirement from the spiritual world. There is never “retirement” in the Christian life from service to warfare. We don’t get to lay aside our armor, talents, time, and spiritual gifts and sit back “on the porch” as if we are done. Done is heaven. Work and warfare continue in this life for all of this life. Don’t be a Christian who separates their spiritual lives from their secular lives. Actually, this is impossible. All of life is spiritual lived in a physical or secular world. There is no distinction.
Now move on to the talk from God. The one-word description or indictment of the person who looks for a care-free life of comfort and ease is penetrating, direct, and without any possible misinterpretation. God says “fool”. The word “fool” is defined as “a person who is without sense, unwise, and lacks good judgment.” And we may summarize our Lord’s words like this – “If you think a person can accumulate wealth for the purpose of living a life of ease, comfort, and care-free, you are unwise, without sense, and lack sound judgment. You have forgotten this world is one of spiritual conflict. Ease and comfort are for the next world.”
So, let’s read today’s scripture with a heart of wisdom realizing the nature of life in this world. It is not a playground but a battleground all the days of our lives.
PRAYER: “Father, help me not be deceived to think I can coast at any time in my Christian life.”
QUOTE: “No vacations, retirement, or times of ease occur in the Christian life. We fight daily to the end of life.”