Money represents the keeping of this world. The keeping of this world ultimately represents the keeping of the central authority of this world. The central authority of this world has a beast as his agent. For those who are kept by this world, the Twenty-third Psalm is sung to the glory of the beast: The beast is my shepherd; I shall not want. . .
We have a history of putting the images of our worldly authorities on money. So it should come as no surprise that the name of a beast on us winds up as the final money of the world.
It is not always apparent when the Bible is talking about money, although money is the number one idol of man. What the Bible does talk about often and openly is the subject of idolatry, and does so almost exclusively using sexual images, analogies, and terminology. As a result, what has been calling itself “church” has not only missed the point about money but has had a rather unhealthy and skewed view of sex.
The “church” has, in all too many cases, abandoned sex to the world, while, at the same time embracing the world’s graven images, especially money. In effect, we have been taught that, if we keep our noses clean with regard to sex, we can get away with just about every harlotry where the keeping of this world is concerned.
Most every time Eve is presented in the media, it is as a “sex kitten.” The Original Sin was not sex; it was idolatry! For too long, what’s calling itself “church” has implied—if not outright taught—that men and women should not desire one another sexually. Sex has been cast into outer darkness, only to be retrieved as a necessary evil for procreation.
So we have the spectacle of latter-day Pharisees, self-righteous in their vaunted avoidance of “sexy” thoughts, while mortgaged up to their ears in the keeping of this world. Lusting after monetary tithes for the support of bigger and better buildings and programs, latter day Pharisees abandon the poor and needy to the kingdom of the beast.
The most substantial, most powerful, most pervasive parable in the Bible—one that has been built into creation—is sex. The point of the parable is “Christ and the Church,” Ephesians 5:32. Until we get the point of this parable, not only are we left hung up on the plumbing, but we can’t seem to see the problem where spiritual prostitution is concerned.
What a bride does for love
a prostitute does for money.
Parables are stories from life illustrating truths about God or spiritual truth, perhaps not so easily understood without the word picture the parable provides. The way I am using the word “parable” here, it is God who is telling the story, not with spoken or written words, but with His material creation designed in such a way as to illustrate truth about the spiritual creation that is His ultimate intention.
With this in view, we understand what is written in Romans 1:20 to be saying that “… the things that are made… – the “things” – of the original creation are His parable illustrating otherwise invisible truth about God and His ultimate intention or purpose. In this sense then, Adam was made male and female to illustrate the otherwise invisible truth about God, that God is relational. Male and female, taken together are a parable of spiritual relationship. This is the “sexual parable.”
Gold is a parable of provision. Gold is a vehicle of provision, one that in the material creation serves as a medium of exchange. At the same time, gold illustrates the ultimate medium of exchange, the supply of The Spirit of God. This is our ultimate provision. In its highest revelation, it is the provision of God’s love, and not the provision in or of a market place. The first market place that has to go is the one between our ears that is constantly calculating “what’s in it for me?” When our revelation of The Love of God is great enough, the “what’s in it for me” question goes away, and without further calculation, we become the provision and expression of that love to and for others. (“It is not as though I have already attained all this…” only that this is the understanding that my own study and experience has found to date.) This is the provisional truth or exchange truth that the parable of gold illustrates. Actually it is a very strange and wonderful exchange.
The cross is God’s “foreign exchange window.”
Jesus, The Messiah is the teller. We can always find Him there. It is there that we exchange our fallen “tender” for the legal tender of God’s love. The legal tender of heaven is the Love of God.
Love is the only legal tender in
In The Kingdom of heaven.
This point is stressed, not because of a preoccupation with sex or even gold, but in order to get the proper focus on money and what that focus implies in terms of our relationship with God. God has used sexual terminology in His description of idolatry, not to degrade sex, but rather to reveal its importance is a parable that illustrates the fullness of the spiritual relationship God offers us with Himself.
This post is excerpted from my money book, Are You Worried Yet? Where Is Money Taking Us? (Also titled For Love or Money Understanding the 2nd Parable: GOLD) – Book One Chapter 5 Fouling Up the Works.