Poor vs Rich (Proverbs #24)

Text: Proverbs 10:4, 15, 22

Slack vs Diligent (vs 4)

  • Slack
    • Get rich quick pyramid schemes
    • Cash advances for low income people
    • Playing the lotto
    • Debt as a tool to create prosperity
    • Buy this CD and join this group and you’ll get rich
    • Lazy
    • Slack is indifferent, careless
    • Slack is, ‘It’ll be alright’ attitude
    • Slacker refuses to work because he likes to live in the moment.  No prudence or aforethought.
    • Ignoring the inevitable health problems or inability to work because “God will take care of it” is presumption, not faith.  Your grandma called it savings for a “rainy day”.  You know the rainy day is coming should the Lord tarry so prepare.
    • He refuses to work because he does not care enough about what God has provided to him.
    • Slacker refuses to work because he has never associated labour with increase.
    • Slacker refuses to wait because he has never associated patience with increase.
  • Diligent
    • Diligence is a characteristic that centers on action.
    • Diligence is excellence in everything.
    • Diligence understands the equation that time and energy (work) equal productivity.
    • Diligence is an aspect of wisdom.
    • To the diligent, his substance is precious.  He counts everything a blessing.  He considers himself a steward of what he has.
    • Diligent budget almost everything.

Strength vs Destruction (vs 15)

  • Rich
    • Theology of Covetousness – 1 Timothy 6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; 4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, 5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
    • God sends the rain on the just and the unjust.  God is no respecter of persons.  You are not the reason God has blessed you.
    • Supposing that gain is godliness is a theology that produces covetousness.
    • Supposing that gain is godliness is a theology that produces pride.
    • Money is not a thermometer.  Money is a tool.  Money is not a basis of judgment.
    • Notice where the gain is.  Morally strong people are people with very few wants.  There is a mindset that says Give me, Give me.
    • Philippians 4:11-13 contentment is learned
    • Notice that wealth is a temporary tool.
    • wealth is his strength, protection
    • wealth is his confidence
    • Two opposing ends of the spectrum in these verses; the one supposes that material wealth = godliness.  The other end supposes that material wealth is evil and should be shunned.  God clearly says that to remove yourself from an opportunity to be a blessing is wrong.  These folks don’t understand that when God provides, He provides through His people.
    • Contentment is the opposite of covetous – 1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
    • Covetousness promises these things – 1 Timothy 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
    • Misplaced trust in riches is like taking a step on a broken ankle – 1 Timothy 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; 18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; 19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
    • Revelation 3:14 – Your faith in God should not be affected by how much money or how little you have.  It is the same sin to worry when there is little as it is to kick back and relax when there is much.  That indicates trust.  Proverbs says trust Not!
  • Poor
    • Can’t eat because he has no money
    • Can’t get the creditors off his back because he has no money

Blessing vs Sorrow (vs 22)

  • Certain riches come with a mixture of sorrow
    • Trusting in wealth brings sorrow because wealth is corruptible
      • The only certainty about riches is that they will be gone.
      • Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal.
      • The nature of wealth is just like anything else, it will diminish over time.
      • You can look at your checkbook at the end of the month and know that much about it.
      • $1000 in your savings account today will pay for less a year from now.
      • If your 401K is not outpacing inflation, it is losing value.
      • Proverbs 23:5 – riches CERTAINLY make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.
    • Trusting in wealth brings sorrow because wealth is uncertain
      • Cyprus Bank – rich depositors (100,000 Euros take a tax of 60% of their deposit in order to pay off creditors, Greece investments)
      • Wealth can change hands overnight
    • Trusting in wealth brings sorrow because wealth has limited power
      • Ecclesiastes 6:1 – wealth doesn’t equal health.  Howard Hughes
      • In the world money is power and that is deceiving.
      • Acts 8:18-25 – money has no power with God
    • God’s blessings don’t come with sorrow
      • I use to be pessimistic about the blessings of God.  Say things like if you’re on the mountaintop there is only one way to go and that is down.
      • Lady said, “I always feel bad when I feel good cause I know I’m going to feel worse.”
    • Also shows there is wealth that is not monetary
      • James 2:5 rich in faith
      • Ephesians 2:4 rich in mercy
      • 1 Timothy 6:18 rich in good works