Joshua 9:3‐10:43; Luke 16:19‐17:10; Psalm 83:1‐18; Proverbs 13:4
Is Wealth a Sin?
When we read the parable of the “Rich man and Lazarus” we immediately conclude that being rich must be a sin. The one outstanding feature of the man was that he was RICH. Is that a sin?
God himself blessed Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph with wealth. David (a man after God’s own heart) was also very rich. Many Jews believed that the fact that they had accumulated wealth proved that they were under the blessing of God. They thought that those who were poor were under the curse of God.
Jesus had a lot to say about the rich and the poor. He said that He had been anointed with the Spirit of the Lord so that He might “bring good news to the poor” (Luke 4:18). Jesus also said, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God” (Luke 6:20), but “Woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation” (Luke 6:24). So, is it a sin to be rich?
The Apostle Paul warned, “The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” (1 Timothy 6:10). However there is no scriptural evidence that money itself is evil. The rich man was not punished for his wealth; his was the sin of omission (neglect). In spite of his wealth the rich man chose to ignore Lazarus lying at the gate of his house whenever he came and went. Jesus said, “Depart from Me accursed one, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger and you did not invite Me in; I was naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me” (Matthew 25:41-43).
How many will be lost, not for what they did, but for what they failed to do?
John Motis, Deacon
Good Shepherd Church
Lake Wales, FL