Tuesday, November 29, 2005

I don’t usually watch the local noon news on TV.  Today, I was in the kitchen and so I flicked it on.  I saw an interesting story but I was also doing something else so although the basic information being repeated should be accurate; the exact facts, as reported, may not be 100%.  

A woman and her husband won a state lottery worth $65,000,000.  She has just died at the age of 51.  They have not yet determined the cause of death.  After winning the lottery about five years ago, if I remember correctly, she and her husband divorced.  He died two years ago.  If they gave his age, I didn’t hear it.  Her home was shown in the story.  It looked like a very expensive home and I believe the report said it was 5,000 square feet but that may not be correct.  The report also said that about one third of lottery winners who had won sizeable jackpots (the definition of a sizeable jackpot was not given) have since gone into bankruptcy.  The report did not give details of that statement and I may not be reporting it totally accurately.  I do remember the one third figure and bankruptcy.

It got me to thinking though.  Wouldn’t it be interesting to have an accurate investigation on what has happened to major jackpot winners ten years after they had won the lottery?  My guess is that all that money did not come close to bettering (that would have to be defined, of course) the life of most of the winners.  Our society, in my opinion, tends to over emphasize the importance of wealth.  It is not just today’s society.  

Of course, The Bible has some things to say about being rich.  Here are four of them.  “People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction.  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.  Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” (I Timothy 6: 9-10)

“Jesus answered, ‘If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven.  Then come, follow me.’

When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.’” (Matthew 19: 21-23)

“’No one can serve two masters.  Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve both God and Money.’” (Matthew 6: 24)

“’What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul?  Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?’” (Matthew 16: 26)

Are you willing to surrender your soul for material riches?  Wait!  I forgot.  Man evolved from a single cell creature that just happened to pop up one day billions of years ago.  We don’t have a soul.  Consequently, we don’t have to make that choice?



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