Fr. Ben’s homily for Tuesday of the 12th week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: THE GOLDEN RULES OF PROSPERITY!
By: Fr. Benedict Agbo
Homily for Tuesday June 22 2021
* Gen 13 : 2 – 18, Matt 7 : 6 – 14.
We are all conversant with the golden rule of charity stated by Christ in today’s gospel : ‘As you wish that men would do to you, do so to them’. This rule is at the center of all human happiness and prosperity on earth.
Selfishness is an enemy of happiness. True prosperity can never be attained by a selfish man /woman. Abraham is a typical biblical example of a wealthy man who had true prosperity. The 1st reading of today says : ‘He was very rich in cattle, in silver and in gold’. Today, we want to look at the following 5 rules /principles of true prosperity taking Abraham as a case study :
1. The Principle of Contentment ; The Bible says that ‘The love of money is the root of all evil’, 1 Tim 6 : 10. Money is a good servant but a bad master. He is better managed by those who don’t love him, those who are contented with what they have and are not comparing themselves negatively to this or that person. Abraham had such a wonderful disposition.
2. The Principle of Faith ; Faith is the legal tender with which we transact all human – divine business. Because every land, animals and things of this world belong primarily to God, it is necessary to get the divine mandate for prosperity before one claims it. In today’s 1st reading we see how Abraham was led to take spiritual possession of the land of Canaan. In life sometimes, something could be given to you but certain forces will prevent you from taking possession of it. The battle is often more spiritual than even political.
3. The Principle of Peace and Conflict Resolution ; The Bible says it clearly that only peacemakers will be recognized as the children of God, Matt 5 : 9. There can be no true prosperity without peace. Abraham distinguished himself in today’s 1st reading as a man of peace by allowing his junior brother Lot to take the upper hand in their land dispute thus ensuring peace and harmony between his men and Lot’s men. Wealth is only enjoyed in the environment of peace and it is grossly wasted in the circumstance of war. We pray in Nigeria that the ‘Sons of Usman Dan Fodio’ and the adherents of ‘Biafra’ would not be allowed to draw us back economically to the circumstance of civil war which we have barely recovered from after 50 years.
4. The Principle of Generosity ; The golden rule of charity makes it clear that we should do onto others whatever we wish done to us. Selfishness therefore negates success and prosperity because it disobeys the golden rule of charity. Abraham was lavishly generous. He stood out everyday in search of travelers and strangers to help. It was in the process of this charity that he met his Angels who led him out of the woods (his problem of 99 years of barrenness).
5. The Principle of Patience ; Our people say that ‘The patient man eats the fattest meat’. True prosperity comes with patience and hardwork . Unfortunately, our society is fast becoming a society of shortcuts. A look at the traffic jams in our Cities showcases so called ‘Christians’ and ‘Learned men and Women’ who cannot simply hold on for 1 minute for a lorry that is trying to make a U turn, for example. Everybody selfishly creates his /her own illegal lane until the road blocks and a journey that should last 30 minutes snowballs into 5 hours. Our young people no longer want to work hard in order to earn a living. Impatience is one of the greatest enemies of wealth and true prosperity in Nigeria today and sometimes I wonder whether our Priests and Pastors actually find sufficient time to dwell on these issues. The golden rules of prosperity must be obeyed before any nation can experience lasting prosperity. Today, even non Christian countries like China and Japan are prospering more than us because we have refused to obey the laws of prosperity.
May God bless you today!
FR BEN AGBO