“Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days…You have lived on the earth in pleasure and luxury; you have fattened your hearts as in a day of slaughter” (James 5:2-3, 5).
Everyone desires to be successful. No one wants to be viewed as a loser. Therefore, Satan deceitfully defines success in terms of material wealth, possessions, carnal pleasures, luxury, and ease. Though these status symbols are highly esteemed among many, they are fraudulent and foolish ways of measuring true success. “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Timothy 6:7-10).
The rich farmer of Jesus’ parable in Luke 12 was a “success” in every way but one. Yet, he was a colossal failure. He foolishly failed to have a portfolio of heavenly treasures. He left behind everything he lived for.
This is the frightening and everlasting failure which comes with a false definition of success.