The Sin of Greed

January 6, 2016

Scripture Reading: Psalm 29

Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
   ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
   worship the Lord in holy splendor.  

The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
   the God of glory thunders,
   the Lord, over mighty waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
   the voice of the Lord is full of majesty. Psalm 29:1-4

Swarms of earthquakes are occurring in Oklahoma over which we have no control even though human behavior most likely is the cause. We humans who claim rather regularly to have a corner on God do not accept that it is God who has shared God’s earth with us and not the other way around. Oklahomans are experienced at this. The Great Depression hosted by human greed was greeted here by a great drought just over eighty years ago. While the drought would have been devastating in its own right, aggressive farming practices had rendered the land vulnerable. The result was what has been labeled the Dust Bowl. We have been here before also in the oil patch. Eager to pull as much of the black gold out of the earth, we ravaged the land from the beginning of oil exploration. We still are working to recover acres of earth wasted for many years from its exploitation.

We are mimicking the lives of our ancestors in faith, the Israelites, whose relationship with God ebbed and flowed based on their fidelity to their covenants with God. They too were more self-righteous at times than righteous investing their religiosity in removing the speck from another’s eye rather than taking the plank from their own as Jesus described. (Matthew 7:3-5)

Unless and until we turn around from our epidemic sin of greed across Christendom, we will continue to pay the heavy toll associated with our failure to care for the earth.

Prayer: Lord, here we are again, standing before you asking for forgiveness for the same failures we have repeated, and our ancestors in faith repeated, over and over again. We acknowledge your power and majesty and pray once more for your grace. Cleanse us again from the greed that overwhelms us, help us learn from our mistakes, and open our hearts and minds to your ways of wholeness, oneness, and justice for everyone. Amen.

All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized 
Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council 
of Churches of Christ in the United States of American. Used by permission. All rights