Poverty & Wealth
Spurgeon, "THE DUTY OF REMEMBERING THE POOR"
POVERTY is no virtue;
wealth is no sin.
On the other hand, wealth is not morally
and poverty is not morally evil.
A man may be a good man and a rich man; and it is quite
certain that very frequently good men are poor men.
Virtue is a plant which does not depend upon the
atmosphere which surrounds it, but upon the hand
which waters it, and upon the grace which sustains it.
We draw no support for our 'growth in grace' from our
circumstances whether they be good or evil. Our circumstances may
sometimes militate against the gracious work in our breast, but
it is quite certain that no position in life is a sustaining cause
of the life of grace in the soul.
Grace must always be maintained by divine power,
which can work as well in poverty as in riches;
for we see some of the finest specimens of the full development
of Christianity, in those who are the very lowest in temporal
circumstances; far outshining others whom we would have
imagined, from their position in society, would have had many
things to assist their virtues and sustain their graces.
Grace is a plant which draws no nourishment
from the wilderness in which it grows.
Grace finds nothing to feed upon in the heart of man;
all it lives upon, it receives supernaturally.
Grace sends all its roots upwards, none downwards;
it draws no support from poverty, and none from riches.
Gold cannot sustain grace; and on the other hand,
rags cannot make it flourish.
Grace is a plant which derives the whole of its support from God
the Holy Spirit, and is therefore entirely independent of the
circumstances of the man.
But yet, mark you, it is an undeniable fact,
that God has been pleased for the most part
to plant his grace in the 'soil of poverty'.
He has not chosen many great, nor many mighty men of this
world, but he has "chosen the poor of this world
to be rich in faith - to be heirs of the kingdom of God."
We should wonder why, were we not quite sure that God is
wise in his choice. We cannot dispute a fact which Scripture
teaches, and which our own observation supports- that the
Lord's people are, to a very large extent, the poor of this world.
Very few of them wear crowns; very few ride in carriages;
only a small proportion of them have a competence; a very large
multitude of his family are destitute, afflicted, tormented,
and are kept leaning, day by day, upon the daily provisions of God,
and trusting him from meal to meal, believing that he will supply
their lack, out of the riches of his fullness.