If there’s one thing the Bible is clear on it is that we are all equal before God, rich and poor alike. Passages like James 2:1-7 come to mind, but it is not just a New Testament message. The Law makes no distinction between rich and poor, except that the poor can bring a cheaper sacrifice. In Lev 5:7-13, for example, if you cannot afford a lamb for a sin offering you can bring two doves or two young pigeons. Those who cannot even bring two doves can bring a small amount of flour. Even more, the Law requires men to take special care of the poor: to aid the widows and orphans, not to exact usury, to free all slaves in the year of jubilee, etc. The Scriptures, in fact, spend quite a bit of time on this topic, and why? Because we need it! Throughout history, societies have stratified into an upper class and a lower class, the haves and the have-nots. Our pride deceives us into thinking that if we own more we must be worth more. People misunderstand God’s blessing. They think they deserve it. Now it is true that wisdom and righteousness often reap a harvest of prosperity. You don’t have to go far in Proverbs to see that. Just two verses past this one we read, “Humility and fear of the Lord bring wealth and honor and life.” (v4) But nowhere does the Bible say that rich people are intrinsically better than poor people.
God calls us to love our fellow human beings, whatever their estate. Forgive me, Lord, when I overlook those who have nothing or envy those who have much. Train my heart to see the person behind the tattered clothes or the fancy car. Every one is a sinner for whom Christ died, and I should love them no less than you do. Amen.