The household wealth of the poorest half the world was just under £2,700 per household in 2017.
The wealthiest 1% own half of global wealth. If averaged out that would be £42.500 per person.
In 2017, 2,300,000 people newly became millionaires – 1 person in every 3,300.
In all his comments about life and how to live well before God, Jesus speaks most about money – not about sex and marriage, but money, handling money, holding money and spending money.
He himself said that we could not serve two masters: God and money (Gospel of Matthew 6:24)
All too often, we pay homage to the former, but worry about the latter.
Most people in and around Christ Church are, according to these figures from Credit Suisse*, wealthy in the world. We are certainly above the poorest half’s wealth quotient of £2,700 per household, and quite a number of us are above the world-wide average of £42,500 per person, if only because of the bricks and mortar around us.
Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 6:24 is followed by a call to each of us not to trust in our wealth, but to trust in God’s loving provision.
Personal testimony tells me that that is true. It seems hard to stop worrying about money and to put God first, but it begins in letting go of the money we have, sharing with others, and watching it multiply in God’s hands.
And … He does not forget those who are generous. He provides for all their needs. Jesus’ words, a few verses on, say:
“31 So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”
* Credit Suisse Research Institute, reported in The Economist, 18th November 2017, page 71