1 Timothy 6:17 "As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy."
Now I know there is a lot of "hub-ub" about the "1%" in this country right now, but many would be surprised to learn that Paul is telling Timothy to speak to YOU. Yes, YOU.
On a relative scale, when compared to those who lived in the first century, we as Americans, (every one of us), would be considered "the rich" by their standards.
It is easy to read this verse and think of people like Bill Gates and just about every Hollywood Superstar in America and point the finger and say..."YEAH! THAT'S RIGHT PAUL YOU TELL THEM!". I would like to caution us here in America to not be too quick to point the finger.
Did you know, that (according to: http://www.globalrichlist.com/) if you make more than $2500.00/yr. than you are among the top 15% of the world's richest people?!
Now I understand that most of us make much more than that in a year. Heck, I spend more than that at Best Buy every year just to keep my Silver Reward Zone Status. :\ Shame on me.
The federal poverty line in America is actually $11,170.00/yr for a single person and $23,050.00 for a family of four, according to this chart for 2012:http://coverageforall.org/pdf/FHCE_FedPovertyLevel.pdf
Now when I punch that into the Global Rich List calculator we come out with: $11,170.00/yr (Top 13.06%) and $23,050.00/yr. (Top 10.5%). This is indeed humbling!
Now you may say that this is all relative. And I would agree...to an extent. But how many times have you gone LITERALLY hungry for days? Ask yourself...how much did you pay for that nice new cell phone? The fact that you are reading this on a computer (whether borrowed or own) is an indication that these statistics are more real then you can explain away by simple relativity.
God tells us, "One pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth." Proverbs 13:7
Let us stop fooling ourselves and take heed the command to those who are rich. Let us not be haughty/high-minded. And let us not trust in uncertain riches. But let us rely on God who richly provides us with EVERYTHING to enjoy!
Hebrews 13:5 "Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you."