The American Dream and the Slaugheterhouse

Sermon Passage: James 5:1–6; 1:9–11; 2:1–7; Matthew 6:19–21.

1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. 2 Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. 3 Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. 4 Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, are crying out against you, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. 5 You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned and murdered the righteous person. He does not resist you.

Sermon Notes

We set our desires and goals on things of this world, things that will perish as you age or when you die.

What you leave behind reveals what was in your heart.

Jesus told us to value eternal things, not temporary things (Matt 6:19–21).

But we are intentionally spiritually nearsighted. We want to be comfortable and entertained in the here and now. We prefer the temporary at the expense of the eternal.

American consumers are excellent disciple-makers, advertising their favorite possessions and interests to their friends. Yet, we don't care nearly as much to invite our friends to church or challenge them spiritually.

Slaughterhouse: Cows see the previous cow get slaughtered and still walk forward, following what everyone else is doing, oblivious to the doom they're walking into.

American Dream: You can only dream the "American dream" of success if you've fallen asleep to the dangers of worldly pursuits, oblivious to the doom you're walking into.

If you die today, what would you leave behind that impacts eternity?


  • "Every Christian has everything they need to help someone else take their next step" is one of Crossing's value statements. Jesus calls ALL Christians to be disciple-makers.
  • For some of you, helping in thankless ways at church already does leave an impact on eternity beyond what you can see.
  • Rubric: If it touches eternity, pour yourself into it. If it is temporary, don't let it be an obstacle and don't prefer it.
  • The Elderly: Instead of spending your retirement on yourself, spend your last few months impacting eternity.
  • Parents: Anything that prevents you from empowering your kids from impacting eternity, get rid of it.


Please join us as we fast once per week on the day of your choosing for the 3 weeks of October 11–November 1. We are committing to do this as a church for the purpose of vividly reminding ourselves that we prefer the eternal over the temporary. We are dedicating ourselves to leaving an eternal impact.

Learn How to Start Fasting >>