“Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven.” (Matt. 19:23)
Riches are relative, they can only be compared to what someone else has, and so this question must be posed, and it must be contemplated by you in a relativistic way, are you rich?
There are heads of corporations that receive more in their quarterly bonuses than many will make in their entire life, are they the rich? If your house and your weekly paycheck are smaller than your neighbors, are they wealthier than you and thereby in peril of being one of the rich our Lord spoke of?
Must we remain poor and destitute in this world to enter into the Kingdom of the Living God?
“And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.” (Luke 19:8)
Even after Zacchaeus fulfilled his promise, he was still wealthier than many who lived in that land.
We could inject Matthew 5:3 here, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” But the Lord was not speaking in this context about those who believed, yet whose faith was still small, He was speaking about silver and gold, material possessions, things of the world accumulated.
So, how much money, how much in your IRA or retirement fund, how much silver and gold, how much does one need to accumulate before you would be considered “rich?” What’s the amount of wealth we must possess before that opening verse is spoken to us?
How much your heart wants to hold onto it is the answer.
“But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:” (Matt. 6:20)
“And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.” (Mark 10:22)
“And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.” (1st Tim. 6:8)
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 4:19)
I do not mean to be presumptuous here, but I would guess you have a house full of things, maybe not as much as your neighbor does, maybe not as much money in the bank or in your pocket as some, but even if you are living paycheck to paycheck, you are richer than many people on this planet. Are you too rich? Is there such a thing?
“For with God nothing shall be impossible.” (Luke 1:37)
It’s not the amount you have that the Almighty is concerned with, it all belongs to Him anyway, it is your attitude towards it. Do you seek to obtain more simply to have it, are you never content for very long with that last possession you obtained, do you hold onto all you have with an iron fist, is your sense of security found in those riches you call your own?
“Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither:” (Job 1:21a)
Again, my friends, where your heart is.
Can you live in your car and call Him blessed as easily and with as much sincerity as you would in a fine mansion surrounded by luxurious items? Can you live here in abject poverty serving the Almighty with great zeal and love without the continuous thought of “It will be better in heaven?” Can you be content in Christ when the Lord Jesus Christ is all you have, or do you need at least a small amount of riches in your life to call Him blessed?
“The LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.” (Job 1:21b)
How rich is too rich can only be answered in your heart, riches are relative to not only those around us but in our desire to serve no matter how much or how little of the world’s riches we possess. Can you honestly bless Him if He removes all from you, can you exalt the name of the Most High God above the heavens if you have no place to lay your head?
He has supplied all your needs, you have accumulated your wants, you have to be the one that determines where your true treasure is, where your riches are.