The Doctrine Of Non-Accumulation

Q. I am trying to locate some information concerning a book a work colleague gave me to read regarding earthly wealth and possessions. This book espouses a “doctrine of non-accumulation” concerning Christians owning earthly possessions.

As for myself, I have very little in this world. I do not own a home, nor do I have investments etc… but I am also not in any debt, and I tithe faithfully every week (cheerfully I might add). The one “worldly” thing I do own is a boat, and it is the only thing that I enjoy besides Christ and Church (call it my tinker-toy). I think my colleague believes that I shouldn’t own this “luxury” item either, and that I should sell it and give the proceeds away (which I believe to be his reasoning for giving me the book).

A. I think your friend is advocating a position based on an extreme interpretation of Matt. 6:19-21. We’re not instructed to take vows of poverty, only to avoid storing up treasure on Earth instead of trusting the Lord for our provision. Relying on our own stored up treasure will promote a scarcity mentality instead of the abundance mentality the Lord wants us to have regarding His provision.

While many Christians are certainly overly accumulation oriented, you don’t appear to be. Unless your boat has become an idol that you worship above God, throw the book away and enjoy your time on it, thanking the Lord for blessing you with it.

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