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Tuesday, August 20, 1996

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St. Bernard

Ezekiel 28:1-10
Deuteronomy 32
Matthew 19:23-30

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"with all the trappings"

"Then who can be saved?" —Matthew 19:25

"The love of money is the root of all evil" (1 Tm 6:10). "Those who want to be rich are falling into temptation and a trap" (1 Tm 6:9). We don't have to have money or be rich to be trapped. Even the poorest person who loves money and wants to be rich is trapped.

This trap is sprung by our treasures changing and perverting our hearts (Lk 12:34). Then from the deep recesses of our hearts come wicked designs (Mk 7:21), and the wages of these sins is death (Rm 6:23). For example, the prince of Tyre, was "haughty of heart" (Ez 28:2, 5). He took all the credit for his financial success (Ez 5:23ff). This ultimately resulted in the prince of Tyre being thrust "down to the pit, there to die a bloodied corpse, in the heart of the sea" (Ez 28:8). He was dragged "down to ruin and destruction" (1 Tm 6:9) and had come "to grief amid great pain" (1 Tm 6:10).

Many people, rich and poor, are caught in this deadly, damning trap. Think of all the people buying lottery tickets, trying to become famous, or working to be millionaires. Most of these people want to be rich. This is the very desire that traps them.

Desire righteousness (Mt 5:6) rather than riches. Seek first God's kingdom (Mt 6:33). Be caught in the grasp of Christ (Phil 3:12), Who will free you from the trap of the love of money.

Prayer:  Father, release me from self-imposed bonds.

Promise:  "I give you My solemn word, in the new age when the Son of Man takes His seat upon a throne befitting His glory, you who have followed Me shall likewise take your places on twelve thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel." —Mt 19:28

Praise:  Bernard had such an anointing in calling people to follow Jesus that, early in his ministry, even married men would leave their families to join him in his monastery.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, Gambling.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, January 29, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 5, 1996