Daily Devotional Sunday 6th December 2020

by William Moody

James 5:1–6

Warning to the Rich

5:1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, are crying out against you, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the righteous person. He does not resist you.


Living with a focus primarily on material possessions is no new activity (v1-3). Misery comes to those who live for riches because they will not last forever, their fine clothes and even their gold and silver will disappear.

The problem with living for material possessions is that it distracts people from what should be their first priority of seek first God’s kingdom and righteousness (Matt. 6 v33). That is why when speaking of seeking first the kingdom Jesus teaches His followers not to worry about material possessions even such as food and clothing (Matt. 6 v25 & 28).

Think in your use of your time over this past week, how much does it show you seeking first God’s kingdom and righteousness or for material things?

Those who live for material possessions can become so obsessed that they don’t mind trampling on others to achieve their success (v4-6). The children of God must not be like this but always have integrity and fairness. Do you show such characteristics in speaking to others? What about how you speak to shop assistants when something has gone wrong with your order or with something you bought? Do you act as Jesus would have acted?

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
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