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Effects Of Materialism

QUESTION: What are the effects of materialism on society?


To evaluate the effects of materialism, let's first examine what materialism promotes. In the most austere sense, materialism states that all that exists is physical matter -- negating thought, feeling, human will, and faith. In a more subtle course, materialism promotes the idolatry of possessions or material wealth. Possessions are believed to fill all human need and characterize quality of life. For a godless society, the philosophy of materialism may seem plausible.

However, if societies have any spiritual belief, whether it is in Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Wakantanka (Native American for Great Spirit), or Allah, materialism does not stand. Or does it? Perhaps this will sound familiar.

Materialism's goals and their end results:1
  • Acquisition of material goods (lust, envy, false comfort, idolatry)
  • Self interests, (selfishness, no compassion, greed, denies eternal soul and the Creator)
  • Accumulation, equivalent to success (no morals, no sense of right or wrong, preoccupation to money, jealousy, thievery)
  • Voiding all faith and spiritual deity (hopelessness, unrepentant sin, despair, eternal death)
The opposite of theism (belief in God) is atheism, stating there is no god. Therefore, we can look at materialism as atheistic or antichrist in nature -- materialism operated rampantly throughout the world, regardless of religious foundations. Increasingly, societies have become secular and humanistic in nature. Humanism denies any spiritual nature of mankind. Man has set himself and his material desires (his idols) above all else, including God.

The effects of materialism are similar to brainwashing. They have undermined any personal responsibility by claiming that thought is dictated biologically and by environment. A materialistic society can be especially effective if it is a governmental tenet as well. For instance, some of the oppressed countries under the strictest rule of Communism (spawned from materialism) mandated its citizens to disband all formal and public forms of Spiritual worship. Although Russia allowed certain church traditions, worship was highly discouraged. China went so far as to say that teaching children of God and Spirituality was child abuse. Materialism and Spirituality are at complete opposite ends of the spectrum, like good and evil.

Materialism is sin and its effects are sin! The Bible tells us that God has created man with free will. Mankind is allowed to make his own choices; this includes whether or not to accept God and His righteousness. Romans 3:22-24 states, "This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." And in Romans 6:23 it says, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

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