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Overcoming greed – Part 2

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Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Ojo

“Be Thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness” (1Timothy 6:11)

Last week God spoke to us on the general overviews of greed in the secular and spiritual. This week shall focus on the effects of greed in the socio-economy and spiritual aspect of our daily living. The present social life of majority of Nigerians has been negatively affected because of greedy leaders. Greed is one of the causes of human sufferings around the world. We have many behavioral addictions today among the youths, like abuse of hard drugs, rape, even as most of them are depressed. Greed has affected the economic life of the community and nation at large.

Solomon in his wisdom said: “Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household, but he who hates bribes will live” (Pr. 15:27). Greed breeds dishonesty in the family and public offices. A greedy person can never be satisfied, no matter the high level of income. For example, some banks managers have been jailed for embezzlement. Notable politicians are in the EFCC’s net not because they are not well paid, but because they are never satisfied. The mindset of some people is to acquire wealth by all means, which is against the moral standard of the society and biblical injunction. Greed has affected many relationships because money can change the outcome of many relationships. Husbands have used their wives for money ritual because of greed.

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Greed has brought negative impact on our national economy, inflating of the prices of goods, compromised measurement scales in markets etc. Petrol attendants are also engaging in sharp practices by adjusting their fuel dispensers in order to rob their customers. Hoarding of goods for personal gains and afflicting of sufferings on poor the masses. Greed can cause rift among employees and their bosses just as employees can lose their trust in a greedy boss who charges them to work hard, but does not reward them with higher wages because he/she simply wants to increase profit.

The effect of greed on the spiritual life of believers is enormous. Greed reduces ones personality as an image of God. God was not a greedy person when he worked for six days, and rested on the seventh days. Greed leads to multiple sins “For everything in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life…” (1 John 2:16).

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When you are motivated by greed in seeking for wealth, you lose your identity. Daniel refused ungodly consumption of food and exercised self-control and later on looked more nourished than others.

Moses also refused to enjoy in King Pharaoh’s Palace and chose to suffer in righteousness. “Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow” (Pr. 13:11).

Greed leads to unfaithfulness among the spouse. “But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust…” (James1:14-15).

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