And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 19:23
Directions against covetousness – Three: (9.) Consider the dreadful effects of the love of riches. It is a most certain sign of a state of death and misery. It is the departing of the heart from God to earthly things. Worldliness keeps man from repentance and coming home to God. Is there any other thing that so hinders the conversion of sinners as earthly things? The love of riches destroys holy meditation by turning it to worldly things. It steals the heart in its necessary preparation for death and judgment until it is too late. It causes contention among the nearest relations, war between nations, and divisions in the church. It is the great cause of all the injustice, oppression, and cruelty that rages in the world. It makes men false to their friends and engagements, and is a great destroyer of love and good works. (10.) When you find your covetousness to be most eager and dangerous, resolve to cross it more here than any other time. When you find your covetousness to be most eager and dangerous, resolve to cross it more here than any other time. (11.) Take heed that you do not seek to reconcile God and mammon. Do not seek to mix heaven and earth as your happiness, dreaming that when the world has been loved the most, you may keep heaven as a reserve at last. Is the world more loved, sought, delighted in, and faster held? Does it have more of your heart, delights, and industry? If you cannot let go of all for heaven, you cannot be Christ’s true disciples (Luke 14:26-33). (12.) To overcome the love of the world you must mortify the flesh, for the world is desired for its pleasures. A mortified man has no need for the cravings of the sensual. You will be thankful to God when you look upon other men’s wealth that you do not have need of these things. How much better you can enjoy God and yourself in a more retired and quiet state of life.
In this classic devotional, John Calvin urges readers to apply the Christian life in a balanced way to mind, heart, and hand. Rather than focusing on contemplative otherworldliness, the book stresses the importance of a devotedly active Christian life. In style and spirit, this book is much like Augustine’s Confessions, Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, or Thomas à Kempis’s Imitation of Christ. However, its intense practicality sets it apart, making it easily accessible for any reader seeking to carry out Christian values in everyday life. Chapter themes include obedience, self-denial, the significance of the cross, and how we should live our lives today.