And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God… but woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.”Luke 6: 21,24
When we read the verses above, most of us probably think of the economic status of the poor and the rich, right? But is Jesus automatically admitting those who are poor directly into heaven just because of their lack of economic power? Is He condemning all rich people to future woes?
I don’t think so. Certainly, economics is a factor in our lives, but people who are in need may be more likely to trust in God for their needs while the Rich may rely on their own wealth to see them through.
Jesus explains the condition of some of the “Rich” this way:
“The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’ But God said to him, Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”Luke 12:16-21
Notice that Jesus doesn’t condemn the wealthy. He condemns the man who is dependent on his own abilities and pays little attention to God.
The Old Testament describes the wealth of Abraham as great, but as A.W. Tozer once wrote, Abraham had great possessions, but while “he had everything, but he possessed nothing.”
Abraham’s prized possession included his son of promise, Isaac, but when presented with the test of his love for God or his son, he chose to trust God absolutely.
The kingdom of God is available for all who trust in Him. Being poor in spirit speaks of the condition of the heart, not the bank account.