In James 5, James paints a pretty bleak picture of the rich oppressors. They denied others what they owed them, indulged themselves, and harmed those they could have helped. While James was not describing wealthy Christians, it’s still worthwhile for us to ask hard questions about our money to make sure, as Christians, we’re living with financial integrity.
Matthew 6:24 reminds us that money can be a dangerous competitor for our heart, so we must take an honest account of how we give, spend, and save. Craig asked us to wrestle with this question: “If I were accused of being the wicked rich James is talking about, would my bank statement be evidence for the prosecution or the defense?”
Here are some follow-up questions to help us figure that out:
1 // What do I dream about financially, buying more for myself or for more opportunities to be generous?
2 // Do I ask God what he wants me to do with 100% of my income and not only the portion I’ve set aside to give to the church?
3 // Do I primarily use my money to make myself more comfortable or to further God’s mission to the world?
4 // As my income has increased, have I increased my giving year after year and become more generous than I was before?
5 // Do I ask God to increase my income or to increase my generosity?
6 // Does the amount that I’m giving require me to trust and depend on God more?