CHARGE THE RICH TO DO GOODFrom The Heart
Publish date: 05/24/2004
Let all who are under the yoke as bond servants esteem their own [personal] masters worthy of honor and fullest respect, so that the name of God and the teaching [about Him] may not be brought into disrepute and blasphemed. 2 Let those who have believing masters not be disrespectful or scornful [to them] on the grounds that they are brothers [in Christ]; rather, they should serve [them all the better] because those who benefit by their kindly service are believers and beloved. Teach and urge these duties. 3 But if anyone teaches otherwise and does not assent to the sound and wholesome messages of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and the teaching which is in agreement with godliness (piety toward God), 4 He is puffed up with pride and stupefied with conceit, [although he is] woefully ignorant. He has a morbid fondness for controversy and disputes and strife about words, which result in (produce) envy and jealousy, quarrels and dissension, abuse and insults and slander, and base suspicions, 5 And protracted wrangling and wearing discussion and perpetual friction among men who are corrupted in mind and bereft of the truth, who imagine that godliness or righteousness is a source of profit [a moneymaking business, a means of livelihood]. From such withdraw. 6[And it is, indeed, a source of immense profit, for] godliness accompanied with contentment (that contentment which is a sense of inward sufficiency) is great and abundant gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and obviously we cannot take anything out of the world; 8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we shall be content (satisfied). 9 But those who crave to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and into many foolish (useless, godless) and hurtful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction and miserable perishing. 10 For the love of money is a root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have been led astray and have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves through with many acute [mental] pangs. 11 But as for you, O man of God, flee from all these things; aim at and pursue righteousness (right standing with God and true goodness), godliness (which is the loving fear of God and being Christlike), faith, love, steadfastness (patience), and gentleness of heart. 1 Timothy 6:1-11 AMP
People use money as security, but riches are temporary and unstable – wealth comes and it goes. People also see money as an indication of a person’s worth, but money has absolutely nothing to do with who you are or your worth in this world. God does not differentiate between us, based on what we have or what we know (head knowledge). God is no respecter of persons. There are people who are puffed up with pride and stupefied with conceit, even though they are actually woefully ignorant. They love to argue and they try to use the Gospel to profit themselves, but they are not contented. They are always striving for money and prestige and they don’t care who they trample along the way. This is not God’s plan for you.
God wants you to be content in spite of and apart from your circumstances. Godliness is indeed, a source of immense profit. Godliness accompanied with contentment - a sense of inward sufficiency - is great and abundant gain. We did not bring anything into the world and obviously we cannot take anything out of the world, but if we have food and clothing, we should be content and be satisfied with these, because those who crave to be rich fall into temptation and a snare. They are distracted from God’s true purpose for their lives. The love of money is a root of all evil. The love of money will cause you to make wrong decisions and mess up your life and other people’s lives.
If you want to be a man or woman of God, you must flee from all these things. Rather, you must pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, patience, and gentleness of heart.
As for the rich in this world, charge them not to be proud and arrogant and contemptuous of others, nor to set their hopes on uncertain riches, but on God, Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for [our] enjoyment. 18[Charge them] to do good, to be rich in good works, to be liberal and generous of heart, ready to share [with others], 19 In this way laying up for themselves [the riches that endure forever as] a good foundation for the future, so that they may grasp that which is life indeed.
1 Timothy 6:17-19 AMP
God does not want you to be poor, He wants you to be blessed, but He wants you to put Him first – always. He does not tell you not to be rich and He does not say that it is wrong to be rich. He does warn the rich not to be proud, arrogant, or contemptuous of others. He cautions them not to set their hopes on uncertain riches, but on God. Why? Because God is the One Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. If we will pursue Him, He will pursue us. He charges the rich to do good, to be rich in good works, to be liberal and generous of heart, and ready to share with others,
So be blessed - be rich - but make sure that you always put God first, that you do not think of yourself more highly than you ought to, and that you are always generous and kind as well. If you do this, you will lay up for yourselves the riches that endure forever.