Many people put more faith in their bank balance than in God to provide for their needs. The recent economic crisis has proven God’s Word to be correct when it tells us not to trust in wealth. The average American saw 40% of their wealth evaporate when the stock market crashed and home values plunged in 2008 and 2009. Of course , we are to save and to plan for our retirement years, but our trust needs to be in God.
It is tempting to think that wealthier Christians are ‘more’ spiritual than poorer Christians. However, an examination of God’s Word shows that wealth, or lack thereof, is no indication of one’s spiritual condition. It may be a matter of trust, however. God does impart wealth to those who can be trusted to use it according to His purposes and He withhold wealth from Christians for whom wealth would create problems.
What does the Bible say about wealth and poverty.
1) God determines who is wealthy and who is poor. “The Lord sends poverty and wealth; he humbles and he exalts.” 1 Sam. 2:7
2) There is no shame in being poor . “The brother in humble circumstances ought to take pride in his high position. But the one who is rich should take pride in his low position, because he will pass away like a wild flower. For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom fails and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.” James 1:9-11
3) There is no glory in being rich. “Do not be overawed when a man grows rich, when the splendor of his house increases; for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him.” Psalm 49:16,17
4) Righteousness is more desirable than riches. “Better a poor man whose walk is blameless than a rich man whose ways are perverse.” Prov. 28:6
1 Tim. 6:17-19 “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”
This verse tells us that the role of the wealthy is to do good deeds and to be generous and bless others. If the rich use their money as God commanded, they will build treasure in Heaven. Our goal should be to build eternal treasure which will last forever. Earthly riches are fleeting and will not do us any good in Heaven.
James 2:5-6 “Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised to those who love him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you?”
This verse reminds us that God has promised blessings to the poor. The poor will be rich in faith and will inherit the kingdom of God.
If God has blessed you with financial resources beyond what you need to provide for your family, please remember His command to share with those less fortunate than yourself. Pray and ask God to direct your giving to the needs He would have you meet. In this way, you will be a blessing and you will store up treasure in Heaven.
If your family is struggling financially, please remember that there is no shame in being poor and no shame in asking for help. Ask God to meet your needs and then allow Him to do so by sharing your needs with others.