“My dear brothers and sisters, listen: God has picked the poor of this world to become unfathomably rich in faith and ultimately to inherit the Kingdom, which He has pledged to those who love Him. By favoring the rich, you have mocked the poor. And, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t it the rich who step on you while climbing the ladder of success? And isn’t it the rich who take advantage of you and drag you into court? Aren’t they the ones mocking the noble name of our God, the One calling us?” (Jms. 2:5-7 in The Voice.)
God often displays the glory of his power by giving faith to the disenfranchised of our world, the left out ones. I have been quite humbled by the simple trusting faith of many “Adults with Developmental Disabilities.” They trust the God Who loves them in ways I’m still learning to trust him.
Skeptics scoff at the spread of the Gospel in Africa’s refugee camps because, “They have nothing else, so of course they cling to God. How foolish. If there is a God he has obviously abandoned them.”
When orphaned children from Rwanda and Burundi have come to our area I have witnessed their exuberant joy in Christ and unmeasured faith that he can and will care for them and those they love.
The point is, they have little to distract their attention from clinging to God, so cling they do. Knowing they are loved is all-important and that is what they know. So the Gospel spreads among the poor of this world.
The rich are full of themselves and their wealth. They are deceived into thinking they need nothing simply because they can purchase whatever they desire – until God puts a desire for him in their heart. That is when they realize they are sinful, in need of a Savior. Unless and until that occurs they are often guilty of stepping on others while climbing the ladder of success, taking advantage of others and dragging them into court and mocking the noble name of our God.
Part of the message of this passage is to churches and other ministries. It is very tempting to give special attention to those who provide greater financial support for the ministry. In doing so we are mocking the poor and we become judges with evil thoughts (v. 4). The poor would give abundantly if they had it to give. But whether or not they give money, they are every bit as significant and beloved of God as the rich donor (maybe more so) and we are to treat them the same.