Kindly take note, this article is just a section of a series of articles that explore the important lessons that Jesus taught in Matthew 6:24-34. The series is labelled ‘A 21-DAY CHALLENGE FOR CHRISTIAN LIVING’. If questions arise as you read this article, kindly look out for the series. When the series is fully ready, a link to the page will be provided on this blog. It’s coming soon, God willing. Thanks.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things SHALL BE ADDED unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)

There is a highly potent, sinister force that seeks to CAPTURE and CONTROL the hearts of all that dwell on earth (including believers in Christ). That evil force is called MAMMON.

Mammon is closely related to money. But money in itself is not mammon. Money becomes mammon when it interacts with the heart of man and is able to find a landing spot in that heart. Once it secures this landing spot, however small the spot is, mammon is able to expand it until it becomes an empire in the heart of that man. A mighty fortress. A stronghold.

Mammon’s ability to RAPIDLY convert a landing spot into a stronghold is hinged on its greatest strength in a man’s heart – DECEPTION!

It is through this deception that mammon penetrates the deepest parts of a man’s heart – until it becomes an unmovable force that controls the heart. The term that the Bible uses to describe this aspect of mammon is ‘DECEITFULNESS OF RICHES’ (Matthew 13:22).

Let’s look at a very common example of this deception. In 1 Timothy 6:10 and Hebrews 13:5, the Bible is clear that believers should NOT love money. This is because money is the root of ALL evil. Every believer readily accepts this truth. Thus, if you ask 100 believers if any of them LOVES money, barely will a single one of them say, “YES, I LOVE MONEY!”

But, ask if they love the comfort, convenience, access, etc that money can buy, and most honest believers will admit YES! YES!! YES!!! Now, please think about this, what gets them the comfort, convenience, access, etc? Money, of course! So, can they still claim not to love money? No, they ACTUALLY love money!!!

Thus, by loving what money can get for us, many of us, perhaps unknowingly, have fallen in love with money – and entangled ourselves with this ROOT OF ALL EVIL. This is how deceitful money can be. Its attack on the human mind is usually not direct. Money presents itself to us as something good, something desirable, something harmless, something we can even use to help the needy!

It is only after it has gained a foothold in the heart of man that money begins to show its true colour, and to exert its TRUE CONTROL on the heart. This is the harsh lesson the story of the rich, young ruler teaches us. 

Neither his professed love for God (demonstrated by keeping God’s commandments from his youth), nor the love of Jesus for him (mentioned in Mark 10:21) could stop him from walking away sorrowfully from Jesus, when he was challenged to give up his wealth to follow Jesus. This is how powerful mammon can be – even in the most sincere heart!

There is another aspect of the tremendous power of mammon that we can see in the words of Jesus in Mark 4:19. “But … the deceitfulness of riches … CHOKE THE WORD, and it becometh unfruitful.” The meaning is clear. 

And scary too! Once mammon has gained a seat in the human heart, it has the capacity to CHOKE the word of God in that heart and render it powerless and unfruitful. Just imagine that! NOTHING can curtail this power of mammon – as long as it is seated in the heart.

Mammon is NOT a respecter of the anointing, or of spiritual position/title. Sadly, this is why/how a lot of ‘men of God’ have today turned into ‘robbers’ on God’s pulpit – extorting money from poor and vulnerable people under the guise that God will soon ‘double’ the money. 

Mammon has entered their hearts, CHOKED THE WORD OF GOD in their lives, and rendered them captives of its stronghold. Today, these men remain chained, helpless captives of the god of mammon. Again, mammon is NOT a respecter of the anointing!!! Or of ANYTHING that man can do to try and escape its deadliness. NOTHING at all!

Jesus made this point to His disciples in Matthew 19:25. He taught them about the huge danger that mammon poses to the human soul in relation to eternity. Astonished and perplexed, the disciples asked Him, “… Who then can be saved?”

Please look closely at the first part of the answer that Jesus gave them in verse 26, “… With men this is IMPOSSIBLE….” This means it is impossible for man to outsmart mammon with our tiny, human wisdom. It is simply impossible. And, if Jesus said it is impossible this means it is impossible!

Fortunately, there is a solution. And Jesus presented this solution in the second part of that sentence. “… but with God all things are possible.” It is only ‘WITH GOD’ that man can ever hope to be free from the stranglehold of mammon. Of course, ‘WITH GOD’ means following the wisdom of God, and His ways that shield us from the path of the destroyer (Psalms 17:4). Outside this way, outside this narrow path, there is ZERO remedy against the power and might of mammon.

God’s way of shielding believers from the power of mammon is what Jesus presents to us in Matthew 6:24-34. Put simply, in that passage, God changed our SUPPLY CHANNEL from money/mammon and connected the channel directly to Himself! Halleluyah! He Himself becomes our Source, our Provider, our Supplier.

Receiving this direct, regular provision from God is a key indicator of an active, vibrant relationship with Him. We see this reflected in the Lord’s Prayer, “Give us this day, OUR DAILY BREAD….” This is not just something we chant in prayer, it mirrors the reality of how God is the ONLY Supplier and Provider for His people.

Jesus made a reference to this in verse 33, “… all these things shall be ADDED unto you.” God simply ADDS all that a believer truly needs for his sojourn in this world. Apostle Paul echoes the same theme in Philippians 4:19, “But my God shall SUPPLY all your need….” God becomes our Supplier when we become members of His Kingdom.

By making Himself our Provider and Supplier, God elevates all TRUE believers above the influence, attraction, and power of money! He rescues their hearts from the CONTROL OF MONEY – the key factor on which the economy of the world system runs. For His children are NOT of the world, even as He is NOT of the world (John 17:16).

The children of the world system RUN AFTER meeting their basic needs of life (this is what Jesus meant by “For after all these things do the Gentiles seek…” in Matthew 6:32). But God does not want His children to run in this same direction! Rather, He instructs us to RUN AFTER His Kingdom and His righteousness. As we do this, ALL that we truly need on earth will be added to us BY HEAVEN. 

Two completely different ways of living. And it is impossible to run in both directions at once!
This is the underlying meaning of what Jesus was saying in Matthew 6:24, “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold to the one, and DESPISE the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” It is impossible to run in both directions at once (as many of us do today)!

Please note that, in this verse, Jesus presents mammon as A MASTER. For that is what mammon is – A MASTER of ALL that choose to follow its tantalising ways (including believers). Sooner or later, money will MASTER every one of them!

Jesus highlights the difference between the two ways, the two masters, by making it clear that to love one is to DESPISE/HATE the other one. It is impossible to sit on the fence. A believer in Christ that continues to run after the economic system of the world is living A LIE. In truth, such a believer is not TRULY following Christ, he is following SELF/THE WORLD! Unfortunately, it is only on the Last Day that this truth will confront some believers.

But for us, the opportunity exists to REPENT and TURN today. If we continue to follow the economy of the world system, it simply means we DESPISE/HATE God! We do not believe the testimony given by Jesus in Matthew 6:24-34 that God is able to ADD all that we need to us. In these matters, our status as believers in Christ is revealed/confirmed, NOT by what we profess with our lips, but how we live our lives PRACTICALLY on a daily basis. Are we following God, or following the world’s system?

Expectedly, following God’s way on this subject will be MUCH MORE DIFFICULT. And will certainly lead to some kind of loss and deprivation for a believer. But this is why it is called a narrow way! A way that causes us to SUFFER! But, the rewards are infinite and eternal – for those that can endure the pain and shame that are inherent in this narrow way.

According to the words of Jesus in Matthew 6:24-34, here are the key highlights of following God’s way on this subject.

(1) Verse 25: We will ‘TAKE NO THOUGHT’ for our lives – (that is, for ALL our basic needs in this world).

(2) Verses 26-30: We will have FULL TRUST in God’s ability to provide for ALL our needs in life. And, we’ll be CONTENTED with WHATEVER He chooses to ADD to us.

(3) Verse 33: We will devote our entire lives to our PRIMARY duty on earth - which is to seek God’s Kingdom and His righteousness.

(4) Verse 34: Finally, we will ‘TAKE NO THOUGHT’ for tomorrow – believing that tomorrow will take thought for itself as Jesus said.

This is what it TRULY means to SERVE GOD (rather than SERVE mammon) as we read in verse 24. If we allow ourselves to be caught in the trap of  ‘TAKING THOUGHT’ for our lives, or for our tomorrow, it means we are putting ourselves DIRECTLY under the economic system of the world, under the umbrella of the god of mammon. 

And we thus make ourselves his servants! For, as pointed out earlier, the Bible is clear that it is IMPOSSIBLE to serve God and mammon in the same heart.

This is why it is important that we all pause to examine our hearts today. Who have we been serving, God or mammon? As the Bible instructs in 1 Timothy 6:6-8, have we learnt to be contented with just our basic needs in life? Have we learnt that godliness with contentment is great gain? Do we believe these challenging words in 1 Timothy 6:9, 

“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.”? 

These are questions we have to answer, and choices that we have to make. Starting from NOW!
May the Lord strengthen our hearts to choose wisely. May He grant us a long-term perspective to know that the value of money is fleeting as Jesus warned in Matthew 6:19. May we all embrace the available grace to repent where necessary, and to follow Christ with all our hearts till the very end. Amen and Amen.

“So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not ALL that he hath, HE CANNOT BE MY DISCIPLE.” (Luke 14:33).

Thanks for reading, God bless you.


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