Love of money is bi-partisan

I will be glad when this election is done. Though I do love the “smear” ads on TV where a campaign pays for a supposedly neutral common man to blast the opponent, and then ends with, “I approve this message,” I think I’ll be ready for one man to win. But my personal favorite is the unbridled optimistic “buy in” from “party homers” reminiscent of the promises made by Pedro from Napoleon Dynamite, guaranteeing the celebration of the “holy santos” and more tater tots.

Several years ago someone asked me, “Did you see Obama’s speech?” I replied that I had not. “Well you should.” Yes, because every politicians pep rally speech becomes reality soon after he’s elected to office. That’s how it works, right?

Anyhow, sorry for the rant.

I’ve been reading I Timothy in the morning these days and came across the well known, but probably often misquoted passage about money found in 6:10-11: 

“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation…For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils….”

It wouldn’t hurt for both political parties, or rather for all of us, to consider how we display a “love of money.”

Democrat: I don’t want to work, or rather can’t work (that’s what doctors have said, can’t you read this report?), so give me my money. You owe me.

Republicans: I worked hard for my money, so I want to give as little as possible. I built this. I’m voting for someone who will tax me as little as possible so I have more money. And this will fix the economy too.

While one side seems to be painted as the side who wants to hoard money, and the other side as the one who wants to give it away, I think both parties really do love money.

Maybe this is an overly simplistic caricature? But in the midst of mudslinging, disgust, frustration, sadness, over either sides’ recent convention (and you have every right to partake in the latter three), it would do us all well to consider how we-not simply the other side-loves money just as much. Perhaps just in different ways.

Sometimes we love money because it brings security. Sometimes we love it because I can buy cool stuff like a new-or rather refurbished-Mac. I just did. Sometimes we like the power it gives. Sometimes we like the prestige and place in the community. But all of us love it for some reason. It’s not just money we’re after.

Yet Paul reminds Timothy, “But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.”

Ouch. Yeah, that’s not me, at least not much of the time. But the good news for the Christian, or for those who will one day put their faith in Christ, that’s Jesus to a tee. And his record counts as mine. Fortunately. Not only that but he came poor that we might become rich. Not rich by simply having more money and indulging in our idolatry, but rich because we are lavished with grace and promised a future richness (mansions in a New Heaven and New Earth), that I imagine will one day be even more tangible than a big house.

Jesus is why we can be more content tomorrow than today. And he is why/how we can critique another political party without ignoring the fact that the love of money will always be bi-partisan. I’ll vote the Republican, and I’ll challenge that the other side loves money too, probably just as much. But only Jesus can/has done/will deal with our love of money.

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