“Greed brings grief to the whole family, but those who hate bribes will live.” (Proverbs 15:27)
It’s back to school time, and time for new books! If you love books, then you probably love this time of year. Love for books could never get you in trouble, could it? Thomas Wise found out that it can. Let’s read his story.
Thomas Wise loved books! As a young man in England, he spent any spare coins that he had on books. Thomas lived about 100 years ago. It was a time when books and pamphlets were the only real sources of information. Thomas loved books, and he learned a lot from all of his reading.
Thomas’ favorite books to collect were very old, rare books—books and pamphlets that were the first of their kind. Thomas would collect them and then if he had two of the same book, he would sell one to make money. Thomas knew a great deal about books, and he was well respected. He was given a high position and an honorary degree at a well-known university.
But soon, trouble came. He became so in love with his book collection that it became the most important thing to him. His wife said that he loved his books more than he loved her! Thomas wanted more and more books, and he would do almost anything to get them. But he needed more money.
So he decided to make some new pamphlets and change them to look old. He looked at and studied his real old ones, then made new ones that looked almost exactly the same. They were such good fakes that he was able to sell them. He made several books, lying to and tricking many people. Do you know what he spent this money on? You guessed it—more books!
Thomas Wise wasn’t very wise. He let greed control him. He was once a respected book collector who was admired by many. He died being known as a cheater and a thief, all because of greed—greed for books.
God’s wisdom never fails. Greed for anything, even good things like books, always hurts us. Remember that greed will always end up hurting, but God’s way will make it a wonderful new day—a new day with Jesus!
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