Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Wisdom: Equalizer of Men

A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold. The rich and the poor meet together; the LORD is the maker of them all.
-Proverbs 22:1-2

Wealth and faith have always had a rocky relationship. For years the Church has proudly touted the cause of poverty. For many it was and is a means through which they could live out their faith. Self-inflicted poverty has become a way some have tried to earn their salvation. In more recent years, the heresy has arisen that if your faith is strong enough, you will be blessed with temporal health and wealth. Both of these ways have lead to a denial of the Gospel and have driven many to despair their salvation.

But this Proverb presents both ways. A good reputation, righteous living, and favor with God is more valuable than any riches. However, both the rich and the poor are made by God. And from God comes all good things.

True Wisdom is found in the balance of all things in Christ. If your wealth takes your eyes off of His atoning sacrifice, forsake it! If your poverty turns you from the comfort He has given, it is evil. If your wealth is recognized as one of God’s good gifts and is used for His glory and in thanksgiving it is a blessing. If your poverty is seen as a builder of faith and cheerfully borne as your cross, then it is a beautiful witness to the world.

In the end, both riches and poverty neither avail nor curse. It is God who is the Maker of all things. If you put your trust in the free gift of salvation won through the cross of Jesus Christ, you are blessed indeed.

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Wealth and poverty, blessing and bane, all things are given by You in Your divine Wisdom, Good Father. Giver of faith, work in us that faith which blesses You in all things, for we know that in all things You, who love us and sent Your Son to die for us, have promised to work for our good. Forgive us our faithlessness when we come across difficult times. Forgive us our forgetfulness when we encounter Your temporal blessings. Fill us with the joy of Your eternal blessings in Christ Jesus, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, ever One God, world without end.
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