1 Timothy 6:6-10
Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it; but if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. But those who want to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.
Today's text confronts us with an overwhelming, yet exciting, challenge.
It is overwhelming because our covenant group study book titled Life Lessons with Max Lucado, in its final chapter on 1 Timothy, concentrates on 1 Timothy 6:6-19, dealing with the theme of "contentment." At the same time, in my efforts to be a faithful preacher, I cannot neglect the larger text for us, which is 1 Timothy 5:23-1 Timothy 6. There are many themes swirling in this passage, each of which is important, each of which could be the targeted focus of an entire sermon.
What's exciting about this is that there are moments such as today in which we can touch on a number of themes, trusting that the Holy Spirit will speak to each of us at our own particular need and, in the process, even touch our lives from an angle we never expected, on a theme to which we have given very little thought.
Let me divide today's message into two parts. Part one deals with some specific topics to which we must give attention, even if that attention is brief in nature. Part two will deal specifically with the theme "greed versus contentment."
Let's look at part one. There are four specific topics we will address briefly, hopefully stimulating you to additional thought, Bible study and conversation in your covenant groups.
Topic #1: My failure in last week's sermon.
That's right. I am admitting to having failed you in last week's sermon. I know that some of you who are politically inclined are expecting me to add or subtract something I said pertaining to the election. No, the election has come and gone. All I would do is encourage you to pray for our leaders and for our nation and for our world.
What I am talking about is the anxiety last week's message left in the hearts of some people who have worked so hard to take responsibility for family members. Remember, we talked about 1 Timothy 5:8, which reads: "And whoever does not provide for relatives, and especially for family members, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever."