Greed and illicit sex: Would you treat them as equals?

Our visiting professor, Richard Smith, (and my good friend) had us faculty meditate on Paul’s teaching regarding greed. He had us read Col 3:5-7 and Eph 5:3-5. In both passages Paul puts both greed and sex on the same footing: they are both forms of idolatry.

He asked us to consider how greed might infiltrate our lives (yes, even impoverished seminary profs). Do we, like our culture, consider greed a petty vice or perverse? Would we be inclined to use church discipline when greed appears (1 Cor. 5:9-11 suggests so)?

What is the line between justice and demand; between security and self protectionism?  I raised a concept that I heard from a development officer of a local nonprofit. He talked about nonprofit greed. We fantasize and imagine security where we no longer have to ask for money or worry about next year’s budget. Ever had that fantasy? I do. 

By the way, I suspect this devotional work we have been doing of late is rather rare for faculty. We faculty are already arrived and we make decisions on the proper way to teach and the proper way to govern. But how many faculty meetings give ample time to applying biblical truth to their own lives. Its not normal and we tend to slide back into intellectual discussions…

Okay, now that I’ve felt pride for our faculty, I better go and repent of this vice 🙂

1 Comment

Filed under Biblical Reflection

One response to “Greed and illicit sex: Would you treat them as equals?

  1. abbafund

    wow – great challenge! It brings up the whole issue of how it seems in so many churches there are the “acceptable” or “respectable” list of sins and there are the “unacceptable” sins like illicit sex, etc.

    My wife just posted on the sin of greed, lust for comfort and possessions this morning that seems all too acceptable in our culture.

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