Wising up About Wealth

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Thanksgiving and praise 

In Psalm 100:4-5 we are encouraged to praise and give thanks to God: 

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  

For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.  

We begin our service with a prayer of thanksgiving, followed by a song of praise. 

Almighty God, creator and redeemer, we praise you for the beauty of the world around us and for every gift we enjoy. 
Thank you for creating us to know you, to love you and to obey you. Most of all, we praise you for your amazing love in sending your Son to restore your world by dying for us and rising to give us new life. Accept our praise and thanksgiving, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen. 


Bible Reading 

As we prepare to receive God’s word, let’s ask for God to be at work within us. 

We thank you heavenly Father, for inspiring all Scripture by the Holy Spirit. Help us by your Spirit so to hear your holy word that we may be equipped for every good work, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen. 

Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12

Riches Are Meaningless

If you see the poor oppressed in a district, and justice and rights denied, do not be surprised at such things; for one official is eyed by a higher one, and over them both are others higher still. The increase from the land is taken by all; the king himself profits from the fields.

10 Whoever loves money never has enough;
    whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income.
    This too is meaningless.

11 As goods increase,
    so do those who consume them.
And what benefit are they to the owners
    except to feast their eyes on them?

12 The sleep of a laborer is sweet,
    whether they eat little or much,
but as for the rich, their abundance
    permits them no sleep.

13 I have seen a grievous evil under the sun:

wealth hoarded to the harm of its owners,
14     or wealth lost through some misfortune,
so that when they have children
    there is nothing left for them to inherit.
15 Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb,
    and as everyone comes, so they depart.
They take nothing from their toil
    that they can carry in their hands.

16 This too is a grievous evil:

As everyone comes, so they depart,
    and what do they gain,
    since they toil for the wind?
17 All their days they eat in darkness,
    with great frustration, affliction and anger.

18 This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given them—for this is their lot. 19 Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil—this is a gift of God. 20 They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart.

I have seen another evil under the sun, and it weighs heavily on mankind: God gives some people wealth, possessions and honor, so that they lack nothing their hearts desire, but God does not grant them the ability to enjoy them, and strangers enjoy them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil.

A man may have a hundred children and live many years; yet no matter how long he lives, if he cannot enjoy his prosperity and does not receive proper burial, I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded. Though it never saw the sun or knew anything, it has more rest than does that man— even if he lives a thousand years twice over but fails to enjoy his prosperity. Do not all go to the same place?

Everyone’s toil is for their mouth,
    yet their appetite is never satisfied.
What advantage have the wise over fools?
What do the poor gain
    by knowing how to conduct themselves before others?
Better what the eye sees
    than the roving of the appetite.
This too is meaningless,
    a chasing after the wind.

10 Whatever exists has already been named,
    and what humanity is has been known;
no one can contend
    with someone who is stronger.
11 The more the words,
    the less the meaning,
    and how does that profit anyone?

12 For who knows what is good for a person in life, during the few and meaningless days they pass through like a shadow? Who can tell them what will happen under the sun after they are gone?

Sermon 

Tim Young will now preach the sermon  

Wising up About Wealth

 
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Prayers 

We are the people of God, but Scripture reminds us that we still sin. We need to confess our failures, knowing that the Lord Jesus intercedes for us with the Father, who freely forgives us, through his infinite goodness and mercy. 

So let us draw near to God with sincerity and confidence, and pray together. 

Heavenly Father, you have loved us with an everlasting love, but we have gone our own way and rejected your will for our lives. We are sorry for our sins and turn away from them. For the sake of your Son who died for us, forgive us, cleanse us, and change us. By your Holy Spirit, enable us to live for you and to please you in every way; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

In 1 John 1:9, those who confess their sins are assured with these words: 

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 

Allow Irene to lead you in prayer. Finish with the Lord’s Prayer. 

Let’s conclude our time of prayer with the Lord’s Prayer 

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name,  your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours  now and for ever. Amen. 


Announcements 


Song 


Benediction 

As we conclude our service, let’s be encouraged by these words from the Apostle Paul in 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 

May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it! Amen. 

Thanks for sharing with us! See you next week.  

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