Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Heavenly wealth

Lots of news about the rich and the famous (or infamous) these days in Hong Kong.  A Catholic priest called an extremely rich real estate developer the devil, which provoked some angry responses.  Another extremely rich man’s unmarried son suddenly came up with three sons, after his younger brother produced two daughters.  A merely rich man’s company gave his employees a raise, but made previously-paid lunch hours unpaid; then changed his mind after noisy protests.   These shows to what extent the rich will go, to make another dollar. 

But it is not just the rich who are keen on making money.  Those of us who have little, are also very keen on securing our own apartment, building up investments in stocks, gold, foreign currency and such.  We all know the value of money.

Do we?

In The Gospel According to Mark, Jesus told a rich young man who had kept all the commandments: “One thing you lack.  Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Jesus is saying that, instead of investing in treasure on earth, we should invest in treasure in heaven - things that have truly long-lasting value.  What exactly is treasure in heaven?  It is to love God, and to love our fellow men (and women, and children, and old people, ..., and particularly the poor and the oppressed).  It really is better than the love of money. 

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