All Kinds Of Greed 2 — The Entitled & The Spendthrift
Updated: Apr 5
Chan Gin Kai
Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” (Luke 12:13-15)
We identified four kinds of greedy people in the last article — the Hoarder, the Green-Eyed, the Entitled, the Spendthrift — and we explored the first two of them.
Let’s now explore the latter two.
The Entitled believes in a conceited lie, “I may not have the means to get this, but someone ought to give it to me because I deserve it.”
The Entitled is often irritating, but we’ll seldom associate him with being greedy. Yet if we were to examine him a little deeper, we will realise how greed manifests in his behaviour because of his self-seeking attitude.
All of us have our needs and wants. We work hard for them, and watch ourselves so we are not consumed by our pursuit of them. The Entitled, however, thinks he can get them without any effort on his part because someone else ought to provide it. In the make-believe world that the Entitled lives in, everyone owes him something, and he owes everyone nothing. This is greed.
There’s more of us struggling with this kind of greed than we think. Most of us live comfortable lives and have people who love us. Yes, some problems do crop up occasionally, but we’re by and large, okay. We may not have all that we want, but we have what we need. Because all these comforts come quite easily, we get lulled into a sense of entitlement.
Don’t agree with me that we are entitled? Let’s explore the following questions. Are we constantly grateful for all that we have? Have we taken the people who love us for granted? Do we find ourselves complaining about trivial issues?
We take what we have for granted because we imagine we deserve them. We forget that what we truly deserve, for all the sins we’ve committed, is eternal damnation.
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8)
The next time we feel entitled, let’s remember that we are undeserving of the many blessings we have, especially our salvation. It is only because of God’s incredible love and Jesus’ selfless sacrifice that we are saved.
The Spendthrift confuses between needs and wants, and acquires possessions with little regard to their use and cost.
The Spendthrift is naive to the ploys of marketers and so easy to deceive. Offer a discount, show the same product in different colours, pretend a slight improvement over the last model, and the Spendthrift falls for the trick, hook, line and sinker. In fact, increase the price ten-fold and he lusts for the object even more.
Because he splurges on services he doesn’t need and pay for products he hardly use, the Spendthrift squanders income he hasn’t yet earned. The convenience of the credit card is a curse for the consummate consumer.
Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare. (Isaiah 55:2)
This verse describes the Spendthrift so aptly. We need only spend on the essentials and not waste our hard earned money on what does not satisfy. A Spendthrift may tout the awesomeness of his purchases, but if any of them truly satisfies him, why would he need to buy more? He has proven his own words untrue by his actions.
Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35)
Why do we pursue all the wrong things in greed, only to be disappointed by the outcome? We have all that we need in Jesus.
Read more about ‘All Kinds Of Greed’:
Chan Gin Kai
Gin Kai is a film producer who believes in the power of media to inspire positive changes. He has spearheaded disaster relief and capacity building projects in impoverished communities across Asia. He serves as a mentor to young professionals in the EDGE Ministry of the Central Christian Church. He describes himself as “just a sinner who wants to get right with God”.