Have you ever been a guest to someone? Perhaps you stayed in someone’s home for a short period and were a “house guest.” Maybe someone invited you to their home for dinner so you were a “dinner guest.” Being a guest means you are spending a brief period somewhere different, a place or an occasion that is not your own. When you go to another person’s home for dinner, do you tell them what they need to serve? Do you criticize the way they set the table? When you stay as a house guest visiting someone, do you rearrange their furniture? Do you call up the cable company and change the cable subscription?
Considering these questions probably resulted in some laughs. Most people would never think of doing these things, because you know you are a guest. You know that you are only temporarily spending time there. You know it’s not your home; it’s not your place to change the way things run.
Now consider being God’s guest. Do you know that you are God’s guest? Yes, God’s guest. God created us and we are only here a short time. Verse 5 says, “You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to You; at best, each of us is but a breath” (NLT). Yes, life is but a breath. James wrote, “How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog–it’s here a little while, then it’s gone” (4:14 NLT). As God’s guest, do you act like a guest? Do you realize you are “a traveler passing through” this place? Do you thank your gracious Host? Or have you become a rude guest who has decided you will hunker down and change the order of things?
“Hear my prayer, O LORD! Listen to my cries for help! Don’t ignore my tears. For I am Your guest–a traveler passing through, as my ancestors were before me.” – Psalm 39:12 [NLT]
More Than a Story is a 12 week study of the parables of Jesus. This is the first week: RICHNESS.
More Than a Story: Richness
[The Rich Fool: Luke 12:13-21]
BE ON GUARD AGAINST COVETOUSNESS
Covetousness – desire to have more than you have
LIFE DOES NOT CONSIST OF ABUNDANCE OF POSSESSIONS
Possessions are useless when life is gone
Cannot truly live when fixated on possessions
- Focused on protecting what you have
- Focused on getting more – never enough
- Focus is idolatry – God doesn’t have 1st place in life
Rich man called a fool. Jesus says, “So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God” (v. 21 ESV). He’s not called fool for being productive or profitable.
Matthew 6:19-21: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” [NIV]
Notice that the rich fool is not just called a fool; he’s a fool who loses his soul.
Our possessions: Time – Treasure – Talents
These can be hazardous or helpful. You decide.
Hazardous = It becomes your life <<OR>> Helpful = 1 Timothy 6:17-19
“Tell those rich in this world’s wealth to quit being so full of themselves and so obsessed with money, which is here today and gone tomorrow. Tell them to go after God, who piles on all the riches we could ever manage—to do good, to be rich in helping others, to be extravagantly generous. If they do that, they’ll build a treasury that will last, gaining life that is truly life.” [MSG]
True Life — Eternal Life Life is knowing God
“Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent” (John 17:3 NIV).
“Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8 NLT).
Bible Study Questions:
1) The brother who approached Jesus at the beginning of the passage was covetous. The “rich fool” in the parable told by Jesus was also covetous. Jesus said to “be on your guard against all covetousness” (v. 15).
What are some instances when we are covetous?
How can we be on guard against this covetousness?
2) When reading verses 17-19, what words stick out to you?
3) What was the focus of both the brother and the “rich fool”?
4) Can one be “rich” in possessions (“treasure” – money) and still be rich toward God? If so, how?
5) How can we be rich toward God?
6) John 17:3 says that eternal life is knowing God and Jesus Christ. What does that mean? What is the difference between knowing of God, knowing about God, or truly knowing God? How does that look in our lives?
More Than A Story is a 12-week Sermon Series and Bible Study focused on the parables of Jesus.