Posted in christ, occupy wall street, riches

I am the 1%

“The Occupy Wall Street slogan, We are the 99%, refers to income inequality and wealth distribution in the U.S. between the wealthiest 1% and the rest of the population.” (Wikipedia)

The OWS movement promotes a Marxist version of “social justice” and is not Christian in the least.

Early Christians, for example, demonstrated how a system of distribution could be set up to meet the needs of everyone within a local church community (Cf. Acts 2:43-45, Acts 5:1-11, Acts 6:1-6). This communal sharing was a voluntary method of meeting pressing needs within the church. Of course, this was a far cry from the politically driven socio-economic Marxism, communism, and socialism that exist in present times, all which grant citizens the right to possess a large share of society’s burdens but only a small (though equal) share of its benefits.” – See more

Christian, if you have become involved in movements to donate money to causes which strive to render poverty non-existent (Bono’s ONE, for example, or Passion stamping out sex trafficking cause) or any other cause that uses your God-given money to stamp out social ills, especially to the neglect of giving to your local church, then shame on you.

For does not God raise up rich and poor? Install kings and depose them? Place each one of us in their own nation, state, sphere?

Job, Abram, David, Solomon, Paul, Nicodemus, Lydia, Susannah, Joseph of Arimathea, the three Magi, Matthew/Levi, and so on were in turn very rich. Were they somehow ‘wrong’ to be rich? Job’s fortune increased to a high degree, then God took it away, then God restored it. Was God wrong to make Job rich again? Could he have not given what Job had to the poor who existed all around him?

Jesus even raised up and used rich men for His name who were not believers, Cyrus, Nebuchadnezzar, and used them for His name.

In terms of Occupy Wall Street, I am the 99%. I am very poor. I have a minimal income. It has actually gone down in recent years, due to the school system rendering furlough days on us. (Unpaid days).  I skip grocery shopping twice a month now, choosing to shop only bi-weekly. To save gas, I don’t drive anywhere except work and church. I have no savings and I live paycheck to paycheck. I buy nothing for myself, except very occasionally, a book, and new socks. According to the world’s standard, I am the working poor and part of the 99%.

Does that entitle me to another guy’s money? NEVER! I would not have it so. I don’t need it!

Because in fact, I AM THE 1%.

I don’t judge my lifestyle according to the world. I am satisfied with Christ’s provision. I always have enough to eat. I have a nice, clean, safe place to live. I have clothes and a vehicle and a job. I am cool in the summer and warm in the winter. I have books to read, the bible to study and friends to share with.

I have Christ.

He is all I need. His provision of His blood, freely given on the cross, is all the treasure I need or want, Because that is all there is

Christian it is always good to remember that we are not of this world. If you are in Him, you are spiritually wealthy and of the 1%.

“I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.” (Philippians 3:8)

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:21)

Further reading:

A biblical view of ‘social justice’

Posted in end time, end time. prophecy, revalation, riches

UPDATED: Wealth skew is here: rich getting richer, poor getting poorer

Update at bottom.

As Russia re-awakens her old glory, America’s old glory is fading. Many people ask if America is in the bible concerning the last days. I do not think she will be. We are certainly on the decline. Here is one devastating headline:

Iran Press: Americans lost 1.5 trillion in household wealth this quarter…
American households have lost 2.3 percent or $1.5 trillion of their net worth from April to June last quarter, according to the Federal Reserve. (!!!)

Another devastating headline:

Yahoo News/Census: 1 in 7 Americans live in poverty
The ranks of the working-age poor climbed to the highest level since the 1960s as the recession threw millions of people out of work last year, leaving one in seven Americans in poverty

CNBC/Cramer: Two US Banks fail, total for year now 127
State regulators closed two banks Friday, bringing the total number of U.S. bank failures for 2010 to 127.State regulators shuttered Haven Trust Bank of Florida … State regulators closed North County Bank of Arlington, Wash.

Last week we read that “Federal regulators have seized six banks in the Southeast, Midwest and Northeast, bringing the number of failed U.S. banks this year to 125, officials said. Three of the seizures were in Georgia, which has had 45 bank failures since 2007, the most of any state since the recession began in December 2007, The Wall Street Journal reported. Fourteen Georgia banks have failed so far this year.  The failed Georgia banks are the Bank of Ellijay, First Commerce Community Bank, and Peoples Bank. Community & Southern Bank of Carrollton, Ga., assumed deposits at the three failed banks.”

The US economy is failing, and Western nations in Europe are failing, but not everybody is failing. Many nations are experiencing growth.

India Business Standard: ‘We have covered significant ground’
The Indian economy itself has been undergoing a remarkable transformation since the reforms of 1991, which deregulated the economy, internally, while liberalising trade and investment policies. Over the past decade, India has been one of the fastest-growing major economies in the world and, in recent years, has reached a growth trajectory of 8-9 per cent a year.

China Daily: Robust Chinese Economy Seen Chugging Forward
The economy will be on a good footing if it achieves a growth rate of 10 percent this year and the inflation rate is around 3 percent, the nation’s top statistician said on Wednesday.

Bloomberg News: Brazil is fastest growing South American economy
Brazil’s economy added a record number of government-registered jobs in the first eight months of the year on a surge in investment, signaling Latin America’s biggest economy is growing rapidly. Yields jumped.

Wall Street Journal: Sweden’s Reinfelt boosted by economy as vote approaches
Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfelt heads into Sunday’s general election on the crest of the sharpest economic recovery among Europe’s major countries.

Poverty will exist in the Tribulation, but most things will be more or less the same as they are now, except more extreme. Jesus said in Luke 17:27 that “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.” There’s money if people are marrying and living and building and eating and drinking.

The notion that everyone will be poor is a misnomer. I wrote more about it here:  “A Great Gulf Fixed: Goodbye Middle Class! Instead, what will happen is that there will be great wealth skew, the very rich and the very poor will exist side by side. The poor will cry, the rich will buy. It is a picture painted by the following verses:

Rev 6:6, the poor cannot afford bread but the rich still buy luxuries- “And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

James 5:1-5, the poor cry for their pay that the rich withheld at their expense: “Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth.  You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.”

Revelation 18:11-13 depicts merchants mourning the loss of Babylon, the rich had bought her luxuries in a still-robust trade even at the end of the Tribulation:

“…cargoes of gold and silver and precious stones and pearls and fine linen and purple and silk and scarlet, and every kind of citron wood and every article of ivory and every article made from very costly wood and bronze and iron and marble, and cinnamon and spice and incense and perfume and frankincense and wine and olive oil and fine flour and wheat and cattle and sheep, and cargoes of horses and chariots and slaves and human lives.” And we can imagine the extreme poverty of the slaves and human lives who existed at the whim and pleasure of the very rich.

The difference is that people will not care that the poor are hungry and starving outside their doors. The rich simply whoop it up.

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

So the widening disparity of of certain nations’ economies should not surprise us, it will be so in the Tribulation, more correctly named, The Time of Jacob’s Trouble.

This article from California shocked and saddened me. The town in which the leaders raked in the money is one of the poorest in LA County.

Small town officials arrested over fraud in California
Eight officials from an impoverished Californian town were arrested Tuesday on charges of paying themselves vast salaries at the expense of local taxpayers, prosecutors said.  The eight, including former municipal manager of the town of Bell just south of Los Angeles, stand accused of using roughly 5.5 million dollars of public money to benefit themselves, through illicit loans.  “This was calculated greed and theft accomplished by greed and secrecy,” said District Attorney Steve Cooley, after the officials were arrested mostly without incident. But while local people went hungry, town manager Robert Rizzo paid himself 787,000 dollars last year — nearly twice as much as US President Barack Obama — even though his town only has 38,000 residents, prosecutors allege.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has become inordinately richer while in her position this year, more than any other Congressman. She is 8 million dollars richer…

Rich Dems getting richer
According to The Hill’s analysis of financial disclosure forms filed last summer, the Speaker’s net worth rose more in 2009 than any other lawmaker’s, from $13.7 million in 2008 to $21.7 million in 2009.

Child Hunger, as seen at Wal-Mart
Bill Simon, the head of Wal-Mart’s U.S. operations: “And you need not go further than one of our stores on midnight at the end of the month. And it’s real interesting to watch, about 11 p.m., customers start to come in and shop, fill their grocery basket with basic items, baby formula, milk, bread, eggs, and continue to shop and mill about the store until midnight, when … government electronic benefits cards get activated and then the checkout starts and occurs. And our sales for those first few hours on the first of the month are substantially and significantly higher. And if you really think about it, the only reason somebody gets out in the middle of the night and buys baby formula is that they need it, and they’ve been waiting for it. Otherwise, we are open 24 hours — come at 5 a.m., come at 7 a.m., come at 10 a.m. But if you are there at midnight, you are there for a reason”.

“What Wal-Mart calls the “paycheck cycle” has recently been “extreme,” Simon said, with lots of shoppers at the beginning of the month and fewer at the end. Wal-Mart is also seeing an “ever-increasing amount of transactions being paid for with government assistance,” he said…”

Children are going hungry, desperate parents roam Wal-Mart aisles at midnight, waiting for checks to clear so they can buy baby formula, and Nancy Pelosi somehow earned 8 million MORE this year than last. Earning money is not a problem. And even Jesus said the poor will always be with us. (Mt 26:11). It is the attitude about getting money and what you do with it that is the end time characteristic. The officials in Bell, CA stole from the public. The government in DC today is stealing from the public, at the very least by printing money with nothing to back it up, while spending more and more wantonly – causing a massive debt load on every person.

These economic times are not simply tough times that will turn around. It will not get better. It will only get worse…unless you are saved by grace of Jesus and will disappear in the blink of an eye, in the rapture! If you want to know more, or how to have a relationship with Jesus, please click here


I found this news article this morning:

Census finds record gap between rich and poor:
The income gap between the richest and poorest Americans grew last year to its widest amount on record as young adults and children in particular struggled to stay afloat in the recession.  The top-earning 20 percent of Americans — those making more than $100,000 each year — received 49.4 percent of all income generated in the U.S., compared with the 3.4 percent earned by those below the poverty line, according to newly released census figures. That ratio of 14.5-to-1 was an increase from 13.6 in 2008 and nearly double a low of 7.69 in 1968.

Posted in end time, prophecy, riches, wealth

Can the rich inherit heaven?

Matthew 19:24 records Jesus as saying, “Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” This was Jesus’ summation of an exchange He’d just had with a rich young man. The young man had asked: “What must I do to gain eternal life?” When Jesus told him, “If you want to enter life, obey the commandments.”
“Which ones?” the man inquired.
Jesus replied, “‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother, do not give false testimony, and love your neighbor as yourself.’”
“All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?”
Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.”

That’s when Jesus said it is hard for the rich to enter heaven. He was not saying wealth was bad. That rich young man wanted to follow the cash road and not the road to salvation. Abram was rich and he entered heaven. The bible records Abram (Abraham) in Genesis 13:2 “had become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold.” But Abraham was a friend to God (Isaiah 41:8) and God blessed Abram (Genesis 14:19). So having money isn’t the issue. Your attitude about it, is. The rich young man made money a priority rather than trusting Jesus for his needs.

This week several articles caught my eye. In attempting to discover what is driving the tea party movement, especially the success of Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally, the comment was made, “The recession is undergirding a huge amount of free-floating anxiety about everything. …[C]ertainly for all of the past three years, there has been nothing but uncertainty in the economy…”

The collapse of the economy is in my opinion one of God’s merciful warning signs to us. It might not seem like His mercy as you try to put food on the table, but for wealthy nations like the US, Britain and others, having  the extraneous things stripped away from us goes a long way to putting things back into perspective, like God as the center point of our lives instead of chasing material wealth, as the rich young man wanted to do.

In this article, “Gallup surveyed people in more than 100 countries in 2009 and found that religiosity was highly correlated to poverty. Richer countries in general are less religious.” There was one exception: The US, who, despite our wealth, still claims religion as an important part of our lives. Our economic decline has begun, however, and the hope is that as our material things are being stripped away from us that the focus will once again be centered on God. It is what the end time signs are for.

Riches delude us into thinking that we can sustain ourselves in our own power. ‘Why do I need God?’ you might think, ‘I can house, feed, and clothe myself. I have toys and leisure and plenty. I don’t need to sacrifice or give up one iota of my things. I worked hard for them.’ Well, Haggai 2:8 reminds us, “The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, saith the LORD of hosts.” Everything you have is already God’s and He can take it away in a moment. That rich young man could not see the truth: “Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven. (Proverbs 23:5) Riches are temporary, as much of the industrialized world is now discovering. Riches fly away.

Europe is having a hard time with this concept. They are at a tipping point. Will the hard economic times release them from clinging to worldly goods and start them looking up? Or will they struggle to maintain it all under their own power? The article excerpt below puts it historical perspective. I strongly recommend reading all of it.

“It seems the populace wants the best of all worlds. Someone who can do it all—keep the eurozone together, protect their shorter work weeks, ensure early retirement ages and provide the high standard of living those in the European Union have come to expect. Someone who can secure their social programs and pensions. They want someone who can step in and take charge. To accomplish this, one leader would have to quickly seize sweeping amounts of centralized power. He would have to control the social, political and military powers of Europe. He would have to unite the continent in a way not seen since the EU’s inception. Does this sound unbelievable? It should not. This is what Europe has always done. Throughout the centuries, the continent has surrendered its power to one man—one who can ensure they continue to live comfortably.”

The article continues with giving examples from history: Constantine, Justinian, Charlemagne, Otto The Great, Charles V, Garibaldi united Italy, then came Napoleon, Mussolini and Hitler. Europe is staggering once again under economic decline and soon the choice will come. Trust Jesus, or trust a charismatic figure issuing flattering promises and sly words that tickle the ears. We know the outcome. On a grand scale they will clamor for status quo and the empty promises of the antichrist.

During the Tribulation (Time of Jacob’s Trouble) those who still insist on clinging to their money and ‘things’ will realize their bad trade. James 5:1 warns: “Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you…”

Do not take the cash road, for it is broad and leads to destruction. Take the narrow way: look where it leads! True wealth is a growing Holy Spirit inside you. Real riches are the joy in serving a risen Lord. Even those believers who are already wealthy have an admonishment: “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;” (1 Timothy 6:17). Many wealthy folks already have discovered how quickly their stock portfolios and retirement funds shrunk in a day, a week, a year. It all comes from the blessing of God and He takes it away also. Trust not in earthly belongings, they are so much clutter and distraction from the purity of the narrow way. If you are wealthy, great, just remember to Whom it all really belongs. If you are not wealthy on this earth, then remember that your riches are stored up in heaven. (Mt 6:19-20)

Jesus is good to us and mighty to save. And the gifts do not end there, but begin. He gives us a place to live for eternity. He gives peace, joy, and wealth beyond measure. I am glad I traded worldly things for His promises. There is no better retirement fund!