Greed

Today’s lesson is taken from Acts 19: 25-27. “He called them together, along with the workers in related trades, and said: “You know, my friends, that we receive a good income from this business. And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says, that gods made by human hands are no gods at all. There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the the great goddess Artemis will be discredited; and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.”
Now here is the lesson. Greed, is the glue that holds riots together. Greed is the reason that people decided to incite others to cause division and destruction. When Paul was preaching the doctrine of Christ Demetrius was not worried about the doctrine, his concern was the loss of revenue. He and his fellow tradesmen made idols and had been making a great living at this trade. Demetrius’s concern was the people changing their thought process and believing the teachings of Paul. So Demetrius very cleverly appealed to the tradesmen’s pocket book. Then he encouraged them to hide that greed behind the mask of patriotism and religious loyality. In their eyes they were the heros of the hour or the sake of the land and “their” beliefs. Now, let me translate this entire lesson into what is happening today – Politicans, and groups with an agenda have no concern for the right of the people. They disguise their greed under the blanket of many words. They incite people using some of the same words that Demetrius used. Words meant to appeal to emotions and not logic. Words meant to stir up people so they will forget the real reason for the riot in the first place. Demetrius wanted to control the money flow. Control the people because when he controled the people he controled the money. It had nothing to do with Paul’s teachings. This is proven in Demetrius’s statement, “There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited; and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the provinceof Asia and the world, will be robbed ofher divine majesty,” Doesn’t that sound like some of the verbage used today to incite riots and looting and division? The core is not about right or wrong, the core is about greed. The core is about filling cofers with money and control of people. The core had no concern for “social injustice”, or any of the other catch phrases now being used. The core is all about the core. Just like Demetrius and his plan for inciting riots. Continuing the scripture in verses 28-41 ” When they heard this,they were furious and began shouting, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians. Soon the whole city was in an uproar. The people seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Paul’s traveling companions from Macedonia, and all of them rushed into the theater together. Paul, wanted to appear before the crowd, but the disciples would not let him. Even some the officials of the Province, friends of Paul, sent him a message begging him not to venture into the theater. The assembly was in confussion: Some were shouting one thing, some another. Most of the people did not even know why they were there. The Jews in the crowd pushed Alexander to the front, and they shouted instructions to him. He motioned for silence in order to make a defense before the people. But when they realized he was a Jew, they all shouted in unison for about two hours: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Fellow Ephesians, doesnt’ all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the the temple of the great Artemis and her image, which fell from heaven? Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to calm down and not do anything rash. You have brought these men here, though they neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess. If, then Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen have a grievance against anybody the courts are open and there are proconsuls. They can press charges. If there is anything further you want to bring up, it must be settle in a legal assembly. As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of what happened today. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it. After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.”
As you see from the rest of the chapter, it did not take much for the masses to head into a fulll fledged riot ready to burn the place down and kill Paul and his friends. The sentence that hit me like a ton of bricks was this one, “Most of the people did not even know why there were there.”
This is a powerful statement that is true in the envoirment we are currently in. Most of the people do not even know why they are there. They have no clue that is greed. They, also like today, during this riot brought on by greed, not only became anti- Christian, they became anti- Jewish. Does this sound familiar? Ladies and gentlemen, the time has come to put away the greed, hate, division and things of this world. The time has come to put on Christ, to understand that this world as we know it only exists because God is trying to give us every chance to come to him. To know that he is God and he is in control. Not the rioters,not the poiticans, not even the medical “experts”. God is in control and with a word, all of this can go away in the blink of an eye. Time to put down the weapons of greed, the actions of rioting and division, time to come together to become more Christlike. Time to be humble, honest and forgiving. #godsplan,#greed,#scripture

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Yvonne Mason Sewell

Background:  The eldest of five children, Yvonne was born May 17, 1951 in Atlanta, Georgia. Raised in East Point, Georgia, she moved to Jackson County, Ga. until 2006 then moved to Port St. Lucie, Florida where she currently makes her home.  Licensed bounty hunter for the state of Georgia. Education:  After a 34 year absence, returned to college in 2004. Graduated with honors in Criminal Justice with an Associate’s degree from Lanier Technical College in 2006. Awards:  Nominated for the prestigious GOAL award in 2005 which encompasses all of the technical colleges. This award is based not only on excellence in academics but also leadership, positive attitude and the willingness to excel in one’s major. Affiliations:  Beta Sigma Phi Sorority  Member of The Florida Writer’s Association – Group Leader for St Lucie County The Dream:  Since learning to write at the age of five, Yvonne has wanted to be an author. She wrote her first novel Stan’s Story beginning in 1974 and completed it in 2006. Publication seemed impossible as rejections grew to 10 years. Determined, she continued adding to the story until her dream came true in 2006. The Inspiration:  Yvonne’s brother Stan has been her inspiration and hero in every facet of her life. He was stricken with Encephalitis at the tender age of nine months. He has defied every roadblock placed in his way and has been the driving force in every one of her accomplishments. He is the one who taught her never to give up The Author: Yvonne is currently the author of several novels, including:  Stan’s Story- the true story of her brother’s accomplishments, it has been compared to the style of Capote, and is currently being rewritten with new information for re-release.  Tangled Minds - a riveting story about a young girl’s bad decision and how it taints everyone’s life around her yet still manages to show that hope is always possible. This novel has been compared to the writing of Steinbeck and is currently being written as a screenplay. This novel will be re-released by Kerlak Publishing in 2009  Brilliant Insanity – released by Kerlak Publishing October 2008  Silent Scream – Released by Lulu.com October 2008- Slated to be made into a movie Yvonne’s Philosophy in Life - “Pay it Forward”: “In this life we all have been helped by others to attain our dreams and goals. We cannot pay it back but what we can do is ‘pay it forward’. It is a simple

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