Money, root of all evils?

Published October 14, 2018, 12:05 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza & Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat


By FR. BEL R. SAN LUIS, SVD                            

Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD
Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD

”It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God?” (Mk 10,25).

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          Jesus’ words are rather disturbing for the rich. What does he mean? Does he mean that the affluent are almost impossible to enter God’s kingdom? Conversely, are the poor necessarily privileged to enter his Kingdom?

        A witty man once said: “People say, ‘Money is the root of all evils,’ but they’s welcome to plant it in my garden anytime.” In other words, money is not necessarily evil.

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          Jesus himself enjoyed the food, the parties, the lodging offered by rich people like Zaccheus the tax collector, Joseph of Arimathea who lent his tomb. With money you can do a lot of good like putting up low-cost housing or employ the jobless in your company. But with money you can do a lot of evil, too. You can bribe people, buy votes, trade and market illegal drugs, influence judges’ decisions,  and so on.

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        ATTACHED TO WEALTH? The danger of  being rich–and this is what Christ warns against–is the excessive attachment to wealth and the selfish pleasures that go with it.

        This is shown in today’s Sunday’s gospel episode (Mk 10,17) where the rich young man went away sad because he couldn’t give up his possessions in order to follow Christ.

        What’s censured is not wealth in itself but the reversal of values, that is, instead of man possessing his riches, he becomes possessed by them.

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        To illustrate: A businessman who resigned as president of a company has this observation: “There’s one corporation chief I had who worked conservatively 19-20 hours a day. His whole life was his business. And he demanded the same of his executives.”

Meetings might be called on Christmas eve or New Year’s Day, on Saturdays or Sundays. One day the slave-driving boss was found slumped on his office table–a victim of heart attack!

Poor guy, he ended a servant, not of people, but of money.

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        On the reverse side, poverty is not necessarily a virtue. A poor man who curses his lot, whose sole obsession in life is to be as rich as his wealthy neighbor is very poor, indeed. But if, despite poverty, one can turn to God and help his fellowmen, then poverty is a Christian virtue.

        Further, Jesus reminds us in today’s gospel of the SOCIAL commitment of wealth if we want to enter heaven, thus: “Go and sell what you have and give to the poor; you will have then treasure in heaven” (Mk 10,21).

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        “Sharing” to the underprivileged means not merely doling out but putting one’s money in meaningful employment like paying wage that’s legal, giving to employees more benefits like housing, credit coops. Giving them what’s legal will also prevent unrest and strikes.

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        ASK YOURSELF. Are you using your riches only for personal needs and self-enjoyment or do you share them with the needy and less fortunate?

        There are lots of people living in grinding proverty. LIVE SIMPLY AND SHARE SO OTHERS MAY SIMPLY LIVE.

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        INDIGENT SICK. Talking of sharing wealth with the poor, there are indigent sick we’re supporting like Dante C. suffering from renal failure,  Maria M., stage 3 cancer, TB  patients Rosana, M. Maranga, Jacky L.  How about alleviating their sufferings by contributing an amount to buy their medicine?

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          For inquiry, e-mail me at: [email protected].

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THE LIGHTER SIDE. Three kids are bragging to each other. The first says, “Our house is worth P20 million.” The second countered, “Our garage alone costs P15 million.” The third says noncholantly, “That’s nothing. The roof of our house is worth P500 million.”

The two kids were dumbfounded. “Ha, why so expensive?”  He replies:  “Our roof is the flyover!”