By BGEA Staff • June 1, 2004
We can find no evidence in the Bible to indicate that God’s will is for everyone to be wealthy, or that there is something wrong with Christians who do not have many material possessions.
In fact, James clearly warns that we must not treat those who are rich differently than we do those who are poor (James 2:1-9). The Bible does acknowledge that some believers are rich (1 Timothy 6:17). However, those who are rich are admonished to not put their hope in their wealth, but in God, and they are to be generous and willing to share (1 Timothy 6:17-18).
Paul warned against believing “that godliness is a means to financial gain” (1 Timothy 6:5) and went on to say that we should be content with what we have (1 Timothy 6:8). He even warned, “People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs” (1 Timothy 6:9-10).
On the other hand, some have made the opposite mistake of thinking that there is some special merit in being poverty stricken and have taken pride in that. As long as we are seeking our value in what we have or do not have on this earth, we do not understand God’s purposes.
God can choose to prosper with material wealth, or He can choose not to. Our focus needs to be on Him and His purposes for us—whether we are rich or poor. Since we are His, all that we have is also His, to be used for His purposes.
Jesus tells all of us, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:19-21).