Wealth, when it has gone astray from its intended purpose, is like a rich man wanting more than anything else to create a permanent home for himself on earth, to build and erect a lasting legacy and abode. As if what he acquires, he acquires forever, what he possesses he keeps forever. If the rich man were truly wise, he would live as if he would like to live forever in friendship with God, and with those he should desire to share what he has. The sin of the rich man is not his wealth. Goods are goods. Money is wonderful. The Redeemer does not contradict the Creator. Everything that exists is good and everything here is for our use. Jesus does not expect us to strip ourselves of all ‘goods’ in the world. He just wants us to use them as we should. They need to serve us and serve others. Wealth is a sin only when it is accumulated for its own sake. When it is kept only for our own benefit then we become slaves to wealth.
On the other side of this issue is to understand what a terrible thing it is to be entirely without wealth and unable to meet needs of any kind. To constantly be without is exactly like wealth when it becomes a burden. A burden is a burden. To always be without is not only a burden, but also a torment and a form of slavery. Because poverty, like misused wealth, prevents us from being free and open to God, to others and to ourselves. The widow’s condition was a burden to the same degree as the rich mans burden—the ability to release the heart.
“Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” Jesus