Money And The Bible

The American Dream has become the American Nightmare for many. Countless people have to work two or three jobs to make ends meet and others live in squalor. Many Christians have wondered whether there is a connection between the secularization of society and the open proclaiming of vice. Casinos and all kinds of entertainment must fill the empty hearts.

Laissez faire capitalism, once curbed, is practically back. Moreover it is exported to other countries as well under the name of democratic freedom. I do not like such a dream. Caring for the weak and the poor and the elderly is called socialism with a conviction that once imbued McCarthy in his witch hunt against communism. Health is called a privilege by many, not a right. In India, under the cloak of caste and karma, the Dalit are kept in extreme poverty and misery. In America you have the underprivileged. Among other reasons many with no way out turn to crime. Nowadays the rich really become richer and the poor are kept poor. Because of this there is more prostitution, all kinds of addictions and crime. If everybody would enjoy a reasonable standard of living, the rich would also have a better life with less to worry about. Personally I try to keep myself apolitical. I have never in my life voted for a party or a politician, local or national. And I want to keep it this way, no matter when other Christian claim that the “bad” guys will take over with such an attitude. The “bad” guys have already taken over and they are fighting each other. I want to be a pilgrim in a world that keeps crucifying my Lord. But that does not mean that I cannot have an opinion and conclude that certain things are happening.

I do not advertise that politicians should turn things back. It is too late for that. I say that Christians should separate from corrupt churches and call upon the Lord with a pure heart. I do not advertise some kind of moral majority. I say sincere Christians should live quiet lives and pray for people, from the president to their neighbors, from the pope to the local deacon, from their king or queen to their local mayor. And they should be witnesses of Christ Jesus and preach an unimpeachable gospel.

Besides that, the well-off among Christians should help the weak, the sick, the poor and the elderly. Solomon wrote already 3000 years ago “the poor man meets the rich man, God has made them both” and that “the rich man speaks harsh words.” But it should not be this way among Christians. I am not saying that Christians should shut themselves up or away and forget about a so-called evil world. We should also help the Dalit in India and people in a similar plight in other countries and at home in the streets and shelters. Solomon also preached that we “should not ask for earlier times that they were better, for we would not ask for wisdom this way.” Such nostalgia is misplaced and naive. Nor should we lose ourselves in mere social programs. Christians should combine care with truth. Food and solace with the Bible.

Again Solomon, “wealth gained from vanity diminishes, but he that lays away little by little increases.” Watch out and keep yourself from greedy plans that amount to gambling. “Wisdom serves as shade and money serves as shade, but the excellence of the knowledge of wisdom gives life to those that hold it.” “The wealth of a rich man is as a protecting wall in his imagination.” But Solomon never preached all-out socialism, a welfare state from the cradle to the grave, like they attempted in Sweden, let alone communism. “A worker is worthy of his hire.” But do not forget that there are many whose backs are emotionally broken and who cannot lift themselves up by their own boot straps. And let us not be jealous of the rich. The Lord said “How difficult is it for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven!” And “the rich man is wise in his own eyes, but a poor man will search him out.” As to taxes “the children are free, but so as not to irritate them… ” “Give to all that is due, toll to whom toll is due, customs to whom customs, honor to whom honor and fear to whom fear (such as the police).” We are not supposed to be revolutionaries or rebels. “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.” Tithing should not be enforced or heavily preached. “He that sows sparingly will reap sparingly and he that sows in a blessing way, will reap in a blessed way. Everybody as he has chosen beforehand in his heart, not with sorrow and not from force, for God loves the cheerful giver.” And “He that waters, will himself be watered.”

I do not have the wisdom to advise society with a solution to the near bankruptcy of the capitalist system, other than what I wrote above. I am praying that politicians and their advisers will receive that wisdom. And I hope and pray that the energy techniques will evolve so much that electricity will be readily available globally. But I am sceptical. Somebody said that “men in jeans made America great, but men in suits broke it down,” As people shrink from their responsibilities, so the more the government has to step in. Those politicians that promise us that they will make America great again, I am afraid they do not know what they are saying. Again and again they promise, but are not able to make good on it. Every time again they succeed in riling up the masses, to no avail. That’s why I say that Christians individually, and where possible, collectively, should give the example.

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