"Everyone who has given up home, brothers or sisters, father or mother, wife or children or property for My sake will receive many times as much and inherit everlasting life." —Matthew 19:29
It is difficult for a rich person to enter into God's kingdom (Mt 19:23). Jesus proclaimed: "I repeat what I said: it is easier for a camel to pass through a needle's eye than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God" (Mt 19:24). In effect, it is humanly impossible for a rich person to be saved, "but for God all things are possible" (Mt 19:26). Therefore, it's reasonable to not want to take the extreme risk of being rich, unless God insisted on it.
Are you rich? Most of you probably don't think you are. However, if we in the USA are not rich, there are very few people in the world who are rich or have ever been rich. By international and historical standards, most of us are rich. That means Jesus' words in the Bible apply to us. We are in great danger of losing our souls. Our first response to this fact should be to drastically simplify our life-styles so that we will no longer be rich, even by international, historical, and Biblical standards. Becoming poor is something most of us can do, if we try. This will significantly lessen the very real danger of our eternal damnation. However, a few people will not be allowed by God to become poor. They remain in great danger, but by humble stewardship of God's possessions, they may accept the grace of salvation. Rich people, get out of danger or be extremely careful!
Prayer: Father, open my eyes to see the warning signs before it's too late.
Promise: "Many who are first shall come last, and the last shall come first." —Mt 19:30
Praise: St. Jane Frances lived as a consecrated religious for thirty-one years. By the time of her death, her new religious order had grown to fill eighty-six convents in France.
Reference: (For related teaching, order our book, The Bible on Money.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, February 17, 1998
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 25, 1998