Hasn’t God chosen the poor?

Listen to me, dear brothers and sisters. Hasn’t God chosen the poor in this world to be rich in faith? Aren’t they the ones who will inherit the Kingdom he promised to those who love him? But you dishonor the poor! Isn’t it the rich who oppress you and drag you into court? Aren’t they the ones who slander Jesus Christ, whose noble name you bear?Yes indeed, it is good when you obey the royal law as found in the Scriptures: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you favor some people over others, you are committing a sin. You are guilty of breaking the law. -James 2:5-9 NLT

Money and the seduction of wealth is a consistent theme throughout the scriptures. With money comes power and the powerful usually accumulate much wealth. Consider Solomon, a truly wise king, who received over twenty-five tons of gold every year - in the end he was disillusioned by it all. Perhaps the saddest example was the rich young ruler who Jesus advised to sell all he had - this man walked away from God in the flesh because wealth had a hold over his heart.

Interesting how James speaks about the command to love each other. I wonder if people back then were using love as an excuse to rationalize their discriminatory practices? Ironic because God's kind of love is the sort that loves people who cannot do anything for us. When we show favor with a hope of getting something in return we are not loving but manipulating. It is why God has called us to love the poor - the ones that He has chosen to be rich in faith.

Lord, open my heart to love those who cannot do anything for me. Help me to be a friend to the friendless.

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