Have you ever given thanks to God for the wealth He has bestowed upon our nation and upon each of us individually? Our income standards are so high that even those living at the official poverty level set by our government earn more per year than the majority of people in other countries of the world. For many Christians, the level of one’s prosperity has become the measuring stick by which their true relationship with God, and his blessing, is gauged,   but is it Scripturally so? Remember the Christians of Laodicea in Rev. 3 who were rich and in need of nothing, and didn’t realize they were wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked. (v.17)  Jesus repeatedly gives warning to his followers about the danger of riches; “Do not lay up for yourselves treasure on earth” (Matt 6:19), “Ye cannot serve God and money” ((Matt 6:24), “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God”(Matt 19:24). Paul added in 1 Tim 6:10, “For the love of money is the root of all evil which while some coveted after they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many arrows. Looking at these verses, and there are others, can a Christian believe that he has the blessing of God upon him as he becomes wealthy, especially while the Scriptures say being rich is more of a curse than a blessing? “A rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven”. (Matt 19:23) Why? One major reason is in what or who they trust. A wealthy man doesn’t need God for he will rely on his money to provide for him; a poorer man will seek after God’s provision. Prov 30:8-9 says, “Give me neither poverty or riches: feed me with food you prescribe for me: lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the Lord? or lest I be  poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain” There is a balance to be sought, one that keeps our heart focused on Jesus, the real treasure, avoiding the snares that come from too much affluence. The apostles asked Jesus,  “Who then can be saved?” (Matt 19:25-26) and. Jesus answered, “with men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible”. The Bible doesn’t condemn someone for being rich, and wealth is not a sin, but it can become a formidable barrier between a man and his God.

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