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Dec 28, 2007

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RonMck

Yes, I think that you are correct about the two main themes.

An aside on the James quote. I am intrigued by the phrase "You have laid up treasure for the last days". James though that he was living in the "last days". I believe that the expression "last days" does not refer to the period before Jesus return (the last day) but refers to the period between the ascension of Jesus and AD 70, when the Jerusalem temple system continued to exist, but was redundant because Jesus had made the perfect sacrifice (more here). This period was the last days of the Jewish temple system.

Anyway, James seems to be challenging those who heard Jesus warning and sold their property and left Jerusalem to become part of the diaspora. But instead of using their wealth to assist with spreading the gospel, as Barnabas did, they are hanging onto gold (treasure) to provide security in a very uncertain time.

I take from this, that in times of uncertainty, we should not shift our wealth to gold, because it then becomes unproductive, like the wealth of the foolish rich man, and because we start to find our security in our gold, when in turbulent times, the only place of security is trust in God. If productive investments become impossible, due to the turbluence of the times, we should put our wealth in God's bank, by giving it into the Kingdom.

Michael W. Kruse

Interesting take, Ron. Thanks.

Brad Cooper

Michael and Ron,
A lot of helpful stuff from both of you. It's late tonight, so I'm going to sleep on all of this and respond tomorrow. Good night...though it may be morning by the time you actually read this, Michael. And I have no idea what time it is in New Zealand, Ron! :) Anyways, I'll respond to both of you in my tomorrow! Ha!

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