Pyramid Scheme--by Kimberly B. Southall
Recently, my husband was offered yet another opportunity by another professing Christian to participate in a "great money-maker." Basically, what it all boiled down to is what I classify as a "pyramid scheme." In other words, those who invest a little money at the beginning supposedly get a whole lot of money with very little effort when others they recruit follow suit. The problem with this is that somewhere along the line, some poor schlep is going to lose his money. Now, I ask you, does this seem right? Does this seem like a worthwhile undertaking for anyone, let alone a follower of Christ? Obviously not.

Even worse, the problem goes deeper than who will eventually get hurt in the end. Why would a Christian want to make a living in a manner which annoys and repels others? Do they not realize how self-centered it is to plague everyone they know by begging them to join their "business"? What must non-believers think when they see professing Christians become obsessed with a "get-rich-quick" scheme? Do they not see what a distraction it is in their Christian walk--one can hardly be serving Christ full-time when he or she is constantly sizing up everyone around them as a possible recruit. Do they not understand what a disservice their actions are to the cause of Christ? I have noticed that those who participate in these schemes never have any time to serve Christ--they use all their spare time trying to make a buck. If they would try to promote Jesus half as much as they do their investment, the kingdom of God would flourish. What about the heart condition of the one involved in such "money makers"? The one phrase which I hear each time another person offers such an opportunity is, "You can really make a lot of money." Sadly, that must be what is on the mind of such an individual all of the time.

Don't get me wrong. There is absolutely nothing wrong with making a good living. In fact, there is nothing wrong with being wealthy. Not at all. The question is, how did/does a person get that way? Was it an honest gain through hard work or did they have to step on a lot of people along the way? If a person's main reason for investing in such an enterprise was in order to offer a valid and worthwhile service to others, then that would be just fine. But again, what I keep hearing is the resounding "you can really make a lot of money..." And such people never want to discuss anything else. To this, I would like to point out the following scriptures:

19Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 22The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money. (Matthew 6:19-24 NIV)

- - -

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. (1 Timothy 6:10 NIV)

If you are ever offered the opportunity to participate in one of these pyramid schemes (or any other undertaking which would divert your attention from God), I beg you to think twice. Are you willing to give up the work you are currently doing in the service of the Lord in order to pursue the love of money? That is all too frequently what occurs in such businesses.

There is only one "pyramid scheme" which is beneficial to everyone. It is called evangelism. It works like this: You tell some people about Jesus Christ. They tell some people, and they tell some people, and they tell some people . . . and everyone is better off for it. I ask you to join me in the "pyramid scheme" of evangelism today. Serve God today and store up treasures in heaven.

Copyright © 1999 Kimberly B. Southall. All rights reserved.