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Formula For Happiness

Good Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?
Mark 10:17-30 or 10:17-27

Sermon Topic Generosity

Sermon Week Twenty-Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle B

Scripture Summary Mark 10:17


In the Board Room of a highly profitable business, the question of employee bonuses for lengthy and meritorious service was debated. When the matter came to a vote, the majority of the Board voted "No!" In the words of the Chairman of the Board, "Such generosity would only serve to reduce our profits." A Resolution was then introduced which provided that after five years of loyal, meritorious service, an employee would receive a green certificate expressing the companys gratitude. After ten years of loyal, meritorious service, an employee would receive a blue certificate expressing the company's continuing gratitude. Before the Resolution came to a vote, the question was asked, "What will the certificate say after fifteen years?" To which came the reply, "It will say that this employee has a green and a blue certificate."

In the New York Times a few months ago, a physician's "Letter To The Editor" was published. In it, the doctor objected to employer policies which, in his words, "provided employees with medical care, generous pensions and long vacations." By "scaling down those benefits," he said, "businesses would be finally waking up to the call of world competition." The doctor agonized over the plight of a particular company which provided these benefits. It wasn't that the company isn't making money, because it is - - lots of it. Rather it was that the company could make more if only it would be less generous.

In the Epistle to the Hebrews we read, "God's Word is living and effective... sharper than any two-edged sword" (Heb 4:12). Let us, therefore, look to God's Word in today's Gospel Lesson for living and effective enlightenment on the subject of generosity.

Today's Gospel Lesson is the story of a rich man who ran up to Jesus and asked, "Good Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" In effect, "What must I do to live in harmony with God's Rule?" Jesus replied by quoting some commandments to him: you shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal-- and so on. "I obey these commandments," the [...]

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