Bible Facts Newspaper Article (Ian C. Kurylyk)
“That which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God” (Luke 16:15b).
It has been well said that the world is a stage. We live amid acting, pretense, props, facades, and make-believe. We can be deceived by what appears to be worth living our life for. This passage is about money. Money and financial success are very highly esteemed by men. But God looks neither at status symbols nor bank accounts. He looks at the heart. So while money has a certain legitimate place and use in this life, the love of it instead of God is an abomination to Him.
Jesus puts his warning in context at the end of the chapter. He pulls back the veil to give us a glimpse of the next world for a man that had wealth but not God in his life. “The rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments” (Luke 16:22b-23a). He goes on to describe him as craving a drop of water on his tongue to ease the torment of the flames. No wonder God warns us of being caught up in the thinking and value system of this materialistic world.
Interestingly, the very ones He was rebuking here were the religious leaders. This reveals that even that which is highly esteemed by spiritual leaders in this world may pose a great threat to souls. With a matter as important as heaven and hell we must be sure to be right. If we cannot trust societal “norms”, and if even religion can lead us astray, we must pay close attention to the Word of God. Only the Bible reveals things as God sees them with 100% accuracy.
The very Messiah Himself was out of favour with this world. “He is despised and rejected of men” (Isaac 53:3a). The Apostle Paul was misunderstood, impoverished, jailed, and persecuted for being a spokesman of true Christianity in this world. “Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace” (I Corinthians 4:11).
The conception of Christianity popular with men today needs to be measured and verified by the standard of God’s Word by all who are concerned about their own souls and about eternity.