When We Prosper

William C. Brownson

Read: 1 Timothy 6:17-19

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. (v. 17)

We saw yesterday that money is not evil. And being rich, if our wealth has been gained honestly, is certainly not a crime. If we don’t love it and are willing to share it, money can be a source of great blessing. Yet there are attendant dangers.

The psalmist warns, “If riches increase, set not your heart on them” (Ps. 62:10). Likewise, the sage turns the wisdom of his proverb into a prayer: “Give me neither poverty nor riches” (Prov. 30:8). Paul urges Timothy to counsel wealthy believers along these lines:

  • Don’t be haughty (all too often great affluence can foster great pride).
  • Don’t set your hopes on riches (they may vanish, and you will eventually!)
  • Hope in God (he provides all we need and brings us joy).
  • Do good with your wealth; be generous and ready to share. Then you will be “rich” in the best way—in good deeds.

And what’s more, by using wealth in that way, Paul says that we will be laying up treasures for the future, sending our riches on ahead (v. 19). And better still, we’ll be taking hold now of abundant life. Sounds like the love of giving is a root of all kinds of good! —Bill Brownson

As you pray, ask God to move your heart so that you will love giving more than getting.