Tuesday: The Allure of Materialism

The advertising world is powerful. Companies spend billions putting images of their products before us. They almost always use beautiful and appealing people to promote what they are selling. We look at that ad and see ourselves, not just with the product but as actually being like the people in the ad.

money pursuit fortune

Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Materialism would not be nearly as effective if it were not for the subtle (and sometimes not-so-subtle) sensuality woven into the advertising. It is advertising’s most powerful technique, but it acts like poison to Christians who are struggling against the dangers of materialism, which is most of us.

Read Matthew 6:22-24. What does the eye represent according to Christian thought and action? How should we as Christians react to the subtle images that tempt us to consume what we really don’t need?

Advertising that attaches sensuality to retailers’ products can become a powerful tool. Retailers sell their merchandise by creating excitement in the minds of consumers. The experience is pure fantasy, but it works. It can be almost mystical, taking people, however fleetingly, to what seems like another realm of existence. It becomes a false religion that offers no knowledge and no spiritual truth, yet at the moment is so appealing and alluring that many people don’t resist it. We want it, and we feel that we deserve it, so why not get it? God alone knows the vast amounts that have been spent and will still be spent on things that advertisers have convinced us we need.

“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Gal. 5:16, NKJV). Though we tend to think of the “lust of the flesh” in only sexual terms, what other ways can we be in danger of fulfilling this lust?


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Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons