Revelation 18:3: Excessive luxuries

‘For all the nations have drunk
    the maddening wine of her adulteries.
The kings of the earth committed adultery with her,
    and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries.’ NIV

I am struck by the words ‘’excessive luxuries’’ in verse 3b. We live at a time where there is a growing divide between rich and poor. The ranks of the super-rich are swelling, and the largest amount of the world’s wealth is concentrated in the hands of relatively few people. But such a system cannot last. It will sooner or later collapse beneath its own weight.

I am not saying that it is wrong to have wealth. But whatever we have is ours to steward. It is a sacred trust. Remember: ‘’From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked’’ (Luke 12:48). There is a way of living, a way of spending money, that is careless of the needs of others. From such worldliness may God keep us (or, indeed, deliver us).