The standard of the world in regards to wealth and riches is so much different than the standards of God. The world says that riches are measured in bank accounts, the size of the house, or the amount of other material possessions. God has always asked His people to consider how true wealth is measured. Consider three verses near the beginning of Proverbs 22.
Proverbs 22:1 – “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold.”
Proverbs 22:2 – “The rich and the poor have this in common, the Lord is maker of them all.”
Proverbs 22:4 – “By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life.”
God says that a good name is more valuable than silver and gold. He reminds us that no matter how much one has in this life, all made in His image (Genesis 1:26; 5:1). To this, it be remembered, from Proverbs 22:4, that God has always honored humility and punished pride. God has never said that true riches are measured by earthly standards, but in humble service and fearful obedience.
In Revelation 3:17, Jesus speaks these words to His church in Laodicea, “Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’ – and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.” The earthly riches they had accumulated were not going to buy their salvation in the end. Jesus goes on to beg them to return to Him and see the true riches found in the spiritual blessings that He alone offers.
All of this is written, not because we are unfamiliar with the teachings of God’s word, but because one of the great tools in the toolbox of temptation used by the devil, is riches of the world. If you have goals for the year, how about making one of them to focus more on the true riches offered in Jesus (Ephesians 1:3), and less focus on the treasure of the world. If we want true riches, honor, and life, let us submit to God in humility. Such will bring an inheritance that this world simply cannot offer – an inheritance that is incorruptible, undefiled, and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you (1 Peter 1:4). Stay humble, friend, and allow God to make you rich!
– Adam Orr