Either Way You Lose
Proverbs 22:16 “He who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth and he who gives gifts to the rich–both come to poverty.”
The Contemporary English Version renders the text in a clear straight forward manner. “Cheat the poor to make profit or give gifts to the rich–either way you lose.”
When you aim to make quick money by oppressing the poor or exploiting them, you will fail. You will fail because, God, always without delay, comes to their defense. God will punish those who exploit the poor by defeating their profit making scheme.
The business will fail, even when the market forces of supply and demand are in your favor. The business plan will fail because God who is not bound to market forces has not blessed your business. We need to wake up and realize the importance of God’s blessings in all our activities. If God doesn’t bless, it is doomed to fail, even when everything else is right.
To oppress or exploit the poor is to charge exorbitant prices, to abuse them for cheap Labour, to delay their pay, to favor others over them, unfair treatment, etc. To oppress and exploit the poor seems tempting because they hardly know their rights and they can’t afford to defend themselves.
Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ (25:45) “He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.‘
Whatever is done in favor of the poor or against the poor is done to God. An exploitation and oppression of the poor is a direct affront to God. Since God will fight back on behalf of the poor, He always win and we end up in losses and poverty.
Giving gifts to the rich in order to win their favor is futile. The rich are rich because they have more than enough. Your gift is hardly noticed. Your gift is probably cheap compared to what they have or can afford. The desired impact of your gift will never be felt. They won’t even remember that you gave a gift, while you still remember and maintain false hopes. It is akin to adding a cup of water to an ocean hoping to touch it and win it’s favor. What a waste!
Since the rich are not moved by material, you will keep giving more, as you grow poor they grow rich. Since its a gift, you can’t demand refund or profit as if it were an investment. The exercise of giving gifts to the rich in order to win their favor is against God’s will and He won’t bless us.
Many times we treat the rich as gods, thus triggering God’s jealous. We feed the rich better than others, we give them honor and respect more than others and we quickly forgive them more than others. When the rich visit our churches or are members of our churches and homes, we give them recognition and favours that we don’t extend to others. That different treatment is akin to worshiping them. Idol worship. Therefore God opposes all such deals and failure and poverty follows in haste.
Exodus 12:35 “The Israelites did as Moses instructed and asked the Egyptians for articles of silver and gold and for clothing.
(12:36) The LORD had made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and they gave them what they asked for; so they plundered the Egyptians.”
Only God can touch and move the heart of the rich in your favor. If you pray to God, He can cause the rich to favor you, without you worshiping them. Your faith must be in God and not in the rich. God made rich Egyptians to love and be generous to Israelites as they were leaving Egypt, thus Israelites plundered Egyptians of valuables. Don’t worship the rich, by giving them gifts they don’t need. Give gifts to God and worship God and you will succeed.
Methods of getting rich that avoid the path of trusting God and working hard are methods bound to fail in deeper poverty. Either way you loose because God’s favor and blessings are not upon you. We need God to bless us as we do our best in everything.
Don’t oppress the poor or give gifts to the rich in your business, studies, courtship, in your worship, at the work place, in the family, etc. Trust God, live within your means, and do your best and you will go furthest in Jesus name. Amen! (C)firstname.lastname@example.org (do not delete any part of this post, including this. You are free to share these posts but don’t edit the authorship or content… thank you and be blessed!)