Why are there rich Christians?

I have no issue general issue with those who identify as Christians, there are many who have a rather compassionate outlook on life they claim is heavily influenced by their faith.

My attitude is: as long as you aren’t affecting any non consenting parties then it’s none of my business.

However I think it’s important to address dishonesty wherever it occurs. Including when religious people live their lives contrary to the what is stated in the book they claim to live their life by.

Jesus spoke countless times against the rich people of his day. He said that it would be more difficult a rich man to get into heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of an needle. He didn’t mean an actual needle, it was the name of a small gate into Jerusalem, the camels had to bend down to get through. The point is that the rich would have to lower themselves.

In my view, to be a true christian you have to lower yourself, and I don’t mean just physically once a week, I mean you can’t have more things than other people.

Jesus said how hard it is for a Rich man to enter heaven:

Mark 10

23 Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God!” 24 This amazed them. But Jesus said again, “Dear children, it is very hard to enter the Kingdom of God. 25 In fact, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!”

Let’s look at it in context, why did he say that? What happened right before?

Mark 10

17 As Jesus was starting out on his way to Jerusalem, a man came running up to him, knelt down, and asked, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked. “Only God is truly good. 19 But to answer your question, you know the commandments: ‘You must not murder. You must not commit adultery. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. You must not cheat anyone. Honor your father and mother.’[a]” 20 “Teacher,” the man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.” 21 Looking at the man, Jesus felt genuine love for him. “There is still one thing you haven’t done,” he told him. “Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 22 At this the man’s face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions.

This rich man had obeyed the law of Moses like Jews are supposed to. This isn’t an easy set of rules to follow and Jesus appreciated that, but Jesus wanted something more from this rich man, he wanted him to give away everything, to make himself poor for the benefit of others. This isn’t a once off passage either:

Luke 6

20 And turning His gaze toward His disciples, He began to say, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.21“Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.22“Blessed are you when men hate you, and ostracize you, and insult you, and scorn your name as evil, for the sake of the Son of Man.23“Be glad in that day and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven. For in the same way their fathers used to treat the prophets.24“But woe to you who are rich, for you are receiving your comfort in full.25“Woe to you who are well-fed now, for you shall be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.26“Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for their fathers used to treat the false prophets in the same way.

However I don’t think it gets clearer than Luke 3.

Luke 3

10And the crowds were questioning him, saying, “Then what shall we do?”11 And he would answer and say to them, “The man who has two tunics is to share with him who has none; and he who has food is to do likewise.”

This wasn’t a metaphor, the early follows of Jesus lived in a commune, pooling their wealth until Jerusalem fell and Christians had to recraft their message to suit a foreign audience. They were really serious about it too, joining the community and not pooling all of your wealth would get you killed.

Acts 5

But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property,and kept back some of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet.3But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land?4“While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”And as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last; and great fear came over all who heard of it.6The young men got up and covered him up, and after carrying him out, they buried him.   Now there elapsed an interval of about three hours, and his wife came in, not knowing what had happened.8And Peter responded to her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for such and such a price?” And she said, “Yes, that was the price.”Then Peter said to her, “Why is it that you have agreed together to put the Spirit of the Lord to the test? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out as well.10 And immediately she fell at his feet and breathed her last, and the young men came in and found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband.11And great fear came over the whole church, and over all who heard of these things.

Let me finish off with this verse from Mathew. You have to make a choice, you either accept that the words of Jesus according to the gospel are the words of God and therefore essential to follow in order to please the creator or you don’t.

Mathew 6

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness 24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

You either give up all your wealth or you probably shouldn’t call yourself a Christian.