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Sermon Illustrations: Values


Philip II was king of Macedonia. He had just won a battle capturing the town of Potidaea when three messengers arrived, one after the other. The first one told him the good news that his favourite general, Parmenion, had won a great battle against the Illyrian tribes. The second told him that the horse he'd sponsored in the Olympic Games had won first prize. The third told him that his wife, Olympias, had just given birth to a son, who would one day become Alexander the Great. To celebrate the news he valued most, he issued orders that a silver coin be minted to celebrate his horse's victory.

A young man applied for a job as an architect. They called him up and asked him to come in. When he did, they offered him the job at $150,000. He went to sign the agreement and was told, "You are expected to look after your clients, wine, dine, and take them to girlie places. I hope your wife will understand." The architect said, "No thanks". "What! This is the opportunity of a lifetime." "No thanks, I'm not willing to sell my values for $150,000." A few days later, he got a promotion from his current boss.

In 2006, when they announced that Gold Lotto was now worth $33 million, they asked people what they'd spend it on. One man said, "$10 million on parties, $10 million on beer, $10 million on gambling, and I'd waste the rest."

One dark and stormy night, a gang of thieves broke into a jewellery store, but they were on a mission with a difference. They didn't steal a thing. But they carefully went round the whole shop and switched all the price tags. Then they left. The next day, the staff came in, and because the thieves had been so careful, nobody noticed they'd even been there. Customers came and people were spending huge amounts of money to buy cheap junk, while others were paying a couple of dollars for jewellery worth thousands of dollars. Someone has switched the tags on our planet. We are continually bombarded with a different set of values from what the Bible teaches.

If you get a good tracker, they can follow a person just about anywhere. They just follow the signs: A broken twig, a couple of footprints, some flattened grass. They just follow the trail and they know what direction you're headed. If you want to know where a person is headed in life, what's important to them, just follow the money trail.


Surely there is no better description of a man's god, than to say that his god is the power in whom he trusts; and when a man puts his trust in material things, then material things have become, not his support, but his god. William Barclay

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