Three Bills and a Baby


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Bible Reading: Genesis 18:18-19

For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just.   Genesis 18:19, NIV

TRY THIS EXPERIMENT: Take a one-dollar bill, a five-dollar bill, and a twenty-dollar bill. Place the three bills in front of a baby who is under a year old. (If you don’t have a baby brother, sister, or cousin under a year old, try to borrow one from the neighbors!) Now, watch the baby as you complete the following questionnaire:

Which bill did the child choose first?

__The twenty-dollar bill __The one-dollar bill
__The five-dollar bill __All of the above

What did the child do with the money?

__Put it in his or her mouth __Bought a bag full of candy
__Dropped it on the floor __Invested it in a mutual fund

OK, so you probably don’t have to do the experiment to know what the answers would be, right? A little baby wouldn’t recognize the difference between a one-dollar bill, a five-dollar bill, and a twenty-dollar bill, so he or she might pick up any one of the three (or all of them). And he or she would probably try to eat it or try to bounce it off the floor!

Why? Because babies don’t know that money is valuable. They don’t know that money can be exchanged for candy. And they sure don’t know that a twenty-dollar bill can buy more candy than a one-dollar bill.

Sometimes older kids—even adults—have sort of the same problem. We don’t know what’s really valuable. We act like wealth and fame, popularity, or possessions are valuable. But God knows what’s really valuable, and he revealed one of those things to Abraham a long time ago. He chose Abraham to be the father of the whole nation of Israel “so that he [would] direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just” (Genesis 18:19, NIV). That’s what is really valuable: doing what is right and just. That’s why God commands us to be just—because he values justice. And he wants us to value it, too. More than one dollar. More than five dollars. Even more than twenty dollars.

REFLECT: What does it mean to “value” something? How do you know that God values justice (fairness)? What do you value?

PRAY: “God, since you value fairness, I want to value it, too. I choose to follow justice and justice alone.”


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