Read 1 John 2:15–17. What are we being warned against here, and how can we protect ourselves from the danger these verses talk about?
Though the idea of what it means to be
rich varies greatly, the book of Proverbs comes with some instructions on how to get
rich and then how to deal with your
riches once you get them.
1. Do not get rich at the expense of the poor (Prov. 28:8). Your wealth is not justified if you obtain it at the expense of the poor. As we have already seen, the Bible speaks very strongly against those who exploit the poor for their own gain.
3. Work hard (Prov. 28:19). Wealth should not come as the result of stealing or by chance, but as a reward for our hard work. What is obtained depends on the quality of our labor. If we are rich, we should deserve it.
4. Do not try to get rich fast (Prov. 28:20, Prov. 28:22). Our proverbs present two potential scenarios: (1) when we close an eye to some dishonest action and, as a result, become complicit in that action (Prov. 28:22); (2) when we are so eager to enjoy the wealth of our parents that we rob them of what they need to live now (Prov. 28:24). Even worse, those who do those things can justify the wrong deeds in their own minds until they convince themselves that they have done nothing wrong. Therefore, they say,
it is no transgression (NKJV).
Money is a very powerful force in this world, which is why the Bible talks a lot about it. If, like pretty much everyone else, you desire money, how can you make sure that you are not falling into the trap of what Jesus called
the deceitfulness of riches (Mark 4:19)?