This question seems to stir up a lot of controversy. From Matthew 19:23 “Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is very hard for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” This often leads to attitudes that you cannot be wealthy and expect to go to heaven. Yet, it never says you cannot be wealthy and enter the kingdom of heaven.
Being April Fool’s Day, I figured it would be appropriate to talk about a famous rich fool:
A Famous Rich Fool
When we look at Luke 12:13-21: The Parable of the Rich Fool Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I’ll say to me, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ‘But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God.”
Jesus never implied that this man was evil, just that he was foolish. It was the way in which he used his wealth that made him foolish. Often we mistake foolishness for evil or condemn something because it makes us more susceptible to abuse it. In our lives, moderation and responsibility make good companions.
Wealth can be a blessing or a curse depending on your attitude toward money. Money adds fuel to the fire. If you were a jerk before you became wealthy, you’ll only be a bigger jerk. If you were greedy before you became wealthy, money will make you greedier. Yet, if you were Christ-Centered and generous, more money will make you more generous and Christ-like. Wealth can be used for noble God-honoring purposes. God doesn’t need our money, but we can certainly use money He blesses us with to help more of His people!