Silver and Gold

There’s a story in the New Testament of the Apostles Peter and John going to the temple in Jerusalem one afternoon to pray. Along the way they met someone who had been unable to walk since birth and had to resort to begging in order to live. When this man asked Peter & John for money, Peter’s well-known response was “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you – In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” Peter’s faith in Christ enabled him to perform a miracle and that day the man went home not just walking but leaping for joy.

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Twelve hundred years later Thomas Aquinas was visiting the Vatican and surprised Pope Innocent when Thomas walked into one of the treasury rooms. The Pope was unexpectedly present helping to count a very large sum of money. Pope Innocent sheepishly looked at Thomas and said: “Well Brother Aquinas, I guess the church is in an age where we can no longer say ‘Silver and gold I do not have.’”

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“That is true, Holy Father,” Thomas respectfully replied. “And for that reason,” Thomas continued, “the church can no longer say to the lame ‘In the name of Jesus Christ rise up and walk.’”

Thomas Aquinas understood the correlation between material comfort and faith. Often when one is in abundance the other is lacking. Are the riches and comforts in our age the reason we see less of the miraculous works of Christ?

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