Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Dog's Teeth

Then He told them a parable: "A rich man's land was very productive. He thought to himself, 'What should I do, since I don't have anywhere to store my crops? I will do this,' he said. 'I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and store all my grain and my goods there. Then I'll say to myself, "You have many goods stored up for many years. Take it easy; eat, drink, and enjoy yourself."' "But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night your life is demanded of you. And the things you have prepared--whose will they be?' "That's how it is with the one who stores up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God."

Then He said to His disciples: "Therefore I tell you, don't worry about your life, what you will eat; or about the body, what you will wear. For life is more than food and the body more than clothing.”  Luke 12:16-23

SPECIAL TODAY! Three dozen nuts for the price of a dozen and a half.  It's a real bargain, Joe. You can’t miss on this deal."  Joe thinks a bit and then picks up a nut and examines it.  He shakes it.  "How long will this special sale last?" he asks.  The answer comes, "Today is the last day - get them while you can."  Joe selects his three dozen nuts.  He opens his purse and hands the shopkeeper the correct change.  Joe picks up the nut sack and goes home.  The shopkeeper smiles as he puts the two dog's teeth in his cash register.

Dog teeth served as decoration and money in different parts of Papua New Guinea and of Papua. Their quantity was restricted because only the canine teeth were considered as money.  The teeth were holed and strung on cords; they were used as necklaces and as headdresses.  The dog teeth strings were also used as bride price.  The Mafulu, a people living on the slopes towards the Gulf of Papua, used dog teeth also to pay for pigs.  The cost of a pig at one time was a chain of dog teeth that equaled the length of the pig from the tip of the nose to the base of the tail.  The use of dog teeth as money ended after 1960.

It is to be assumed that many of these people had a deep desire to collect a great hoard of them.  The driving force behind many a career was the vision of a having a roomful of shining dog's teeth.  Some achieved popularity and high social status because of their wealth in dog's teeth.  How crazy is that?!  The poor fools didn't know that it is silver and gold you are supposed to collect.

A goal or an ideal or an aim that is worthy gives dignity to the activity of one's life.  Some goals are noble - some are just noble sounding.  A few are not even noble sounding: like collecting dog’s teeth.  To some, the goal at the end of the line is favor in the sight of God; to some favor in the sight of man; to others favor in the sight of self.  It is wise to stop and examine one's aim in living and being.
Jesus taught His disciples, "Don't collect for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don't break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also". Matthew 6:19-21

There are lots of “dog’s teeth” in the houses and barns of people today.  The greater wealth is reserved for those who have discovered the riches of friendship with men and fellowship with God.  Check and see what kind of necklace you are making.

Scripture to Claim: 
What is a man benefited if he gains the whole world, yet loses or forfeits himself?  Luke 9:25

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