The modern view of wealth has little awareness of what wealth has meant in different areas of the world and during various historical eras. Today, money is directly equated with wealth. In ancient times, and among other peoples of the world, land holdings, many children, grandchildren, and livestock have all been indicators of wealth. Knowledge, skill and societal influence were indicators of wealth, and still should be.
According to the Hebrew lexicon, the word ‘wealth’ is sometimes translated as, “strength”, “power”, “substance”, “fullness”, “rest” and “prosperity”. And thus, one can be wealthy without having an abundance of money.
By now it should seem quite evident that the American dollar is in a tailspin and is losing value by the minute. This dire prophesy was once home only to those fringe “gloom and doom” economists, but now, even the Wall Street Journal has sounded the trumpet of fiscal doom.
In a recent March 2nd article, “Why the Dollar's Reign Is Near an End” Barry Eichengreen argues that “although the dollar has served as the world's main reserve currency for decades, it will soon have to share that role.
Read it here: Why the Dollar's Reign Is Near an End
So what should the Christian community do?
What does it mean for Christ’s church and Christ’s people?
How are we to respond?
As I have argued before, one should already be making the necessary preparations for this economic downturn. Food prices are sure to skyrocket as will other basics needed for daily life. These things should be purchased before the prices soar. (see Ambassador School Blog post Feb 23, 2011). If at all possible, store extra food, clothing and medical supplies. These should be used for your neighbor as an opportunity to sharing the Truth of God’s Law Word. You should also encourage your pastor to begin a food bank at your church for the local community. He should instruct the congregation to prepare individually so no one family will be a burden to the others. (These Providences can be great opportunities for the Church to exercise true leadership.)
In light of these situations facing our nation and the global community, one should also carefully consider what wealth is, and why it is given.
Moses tells us why wealth is given. (Remember wealth Is not only money – in fact, it is often much more comprehensive than just dollars, gold and silver.)
“But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.” Deuteronomy 8:18
Wealth of every kind is given for one reason; to use it for the advancement of the Kingdom.
First, Christians need to take a careful assessment of their overall wealth and then, use it to advance His Glorious Kingdom in whatever way possible. The demise of the dollar can be Christianity’s gateway to leadership and Godly Dominion. Let’s not waste a great opportunity- it is God’s gift to us and to our neighbor.