1 Timothy 6 – The Use of Wealth & Forbes 400 List Reveals Why the Greedy Rich Fully Deserve Your Contempt and Jesus’ Too

Racism is racism, but there can always be circumstances.

I believe that most people would prefer to be with their own race, rather then another, and that is not racism, but preference.  I would prefer to be with whites then blacks, or any race.  Yet, one of my best friends is black and I would drop what I was doing if she needed of help.

It is said that the biggest race war in America is the “Blacks and Whites.”  But is it?  What about the unspoken race war of the “Rich and Poor”?

I don’t think I’m a racist, but since I’m not You, God, I don’t know for certain.  But if I’m a racist there’s only one race I despise and that’s the Greedy Rich.  I’d rather hang out with a black (or any race) poor person then a white rich person.

I don’t envy their wealth or feel inferior to them and they don’t make me gag, at least not  because they have more than I do because they don’t have more than me, I have You and they don’t (Matt 19:24).

“For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor 15:53-58).

1 Timothy 6
The Use of Wealth

1 Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honor, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed.

2 And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.

3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;

4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,

5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.

“Destitute of the truth” – they had once known the truth but had been led into error.

6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.

7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.

9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.

10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.

12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

“Lay hold on eternal life” – Timothy had possessed eternal life since he had first been saved, but Paul urges him to claim its benefits in greater fullness.

13 I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession;

“Before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession” – probably a reference to Jesus’ statements in Jn 18:33-37, 19:10-11.

14 That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:

15 Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;

“In his times” – just as Jesus’ first coming occurred at the precise time God wanted (Gal 4:4), so also His second coming will be at God’s appointed time.

“King of kings, and Lord of Lords” – see Rev 19:16.

16 Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honor and power everlasting. Amen.

17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;

18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;

19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

20 O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:

21 Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.

The first to Timothy was written from Laodicea, which is the chiefest city of Phrygia Pacatiana.

Forbes 400 List Reveals
Why the Greedy Rich
Fully Deserve Your Contempt
and Jesus’ Too

Written in September 2012 and Things are Getting Worse

The bulk of America’s super wealthy refuse to pull their weight and kill opportunity for the rest. And they want your thanks!

The list reveals that Bill Gates is still the top dog, boasting a whopping $66 billion fortune. Warren Buffett, Michael Bloomberg, various members of the Walton family, and the Koch brothers are all in the top 10. Mark Zuckerberg hung on, despite the evaporation of a big chunk of his wealth. Spanx founder Sara Blakley, who brought women a whole new world of restrictive undergarments, is on the list.

Nothing extraordinary in all that. But this year’s Forbes list has a big lesson for us: It shows just how jaw-droppingly rich the top 400 have become compared to everybody else.

Forbes reports that in the last year alone, the total net worth of the 400 people at the top skyrocketed $200 billion. The average net worth of a 400-lister jumped from $3.8 billion to $4.2 billion, the highest figure ever recorded.

Two-thirds of the individuals got richer in the past year.   Forbes, not exactly a cheerleader for income equality, concluded: “The gap between the very rich and the merely rich is widening.”

And how did the rest of us do while the uber-rich were getting richer? Not so well, according to the Census Bureau. Adjusted for inflation, America suffered a 1.5 percent drop in median household income last year.

The redistribution of wealth toward the top is clearly getting worse. In fact, despite the financial crash, the Occupy movement, and the obvious failure of trickledown economics, the Census Bureau reports that the gulf between the rich and the rest of us is at an all-time high.

Maybe that’s why the rich and their apologists are getting a bit defensive lately.

Like a drug addict turning every cushion upside-down in search of lost change, the 1 Percenters are scrounging up every timeworn myth, lame justification and absurd rationalization they can think of to convince us that the rich are super-smart, hard-working job creators instead of greedy parasites refusing to pay their share in taxes and play by the same rulebook as everyone else.

This line gets harder to sell every minute. Mitt Romney’s candidacy had done wonders to expose not only the general contempt of his class toward ordinary people, but also just how many special privileges the rich enjoy.

Romney has accumulated great wealth not only because of his job-destroying and predatory business activities, but also because he gets a special break that allows him to get away with paying the capital gains tax rate of 15%.

And that’s one big reason that the rich are getting richer. Romney and his ilk claim this is good for the economy – the old “trickledown” myth.

But as New York Times columnist Joe Nocera points out, that canard is easily exposed: “In 1986, when Ronald Reagan was president, the differential between capital gains and ordinary income was eliminated — and the economy soared.”

Interesting, isn’t it? Nocera adds that the capital gains rate was higher during the Clinton years than in the George W. Bush years, yet the economy miraculously did better under Bubba.

Doesn’t sound like a low capital gains tax rate that lines the pockets of the rich is what the doctor ordered, does it?

Let’s take a closer list of who is on the Forbes list. Financiers make up a big chunk. Around 40 percent inherited their wealth.

The vast majority, some 65 percent, came from circumstances ranging from very comfortable (Mark Zuckerberg went to the fanciest schools) to downright plush (Donald Trump inherited his dad’s company).

The billionaire Koch Brothers may be the greediest people alive.
Don’t let their kindly grandfather faces fool you; the Koch Brothers are pure evil.

Like Grover Norquist, the Koch brothers don’t get enough media attention.

I’ll bet that 95% of the United States population has never heard of the Koch Brothers and their evil actions.

The billionaire Koch Brothers are already worth nearly 50 billion dollars, yet these greedy jerks still want more.

They won’t be happy until they own the entire United States.

A mere 35 percent came from backgrounds that could be described as middle- to lower-middle-class.

Most of the folks on the list got great breaks in life. And yet in a recent survey conducted by Salon, only 2% of people in this Happy Billionaires Club said they would be willing to pay more in taxes (Warren Buffet, Todd Wagner, James Simons, Leon Cooperman, Mark Cuban, John Arnold, Herbert Simon, and George Soros).

Which is proof that not all of the rich are unpatriotic and rapacious? But they are lonely voices in a storm of greed.

Charles Koch, CEO of Koch Industries and funder of conservative causes, summed up his opposition to the idea of forgoing special tax breaks: “I believe my business and non-profit investments are much more beneficial to societal well-being than sending more money to Washington.”

Ordinary Americans are plainly getting screwed, and the vision of America as a land of opportunity is increasingly becoming dimmed. And yet a recent article in Fortune magazine,

“Stop Beating Up the Rich,” shamelessly calls for an end to what author Nina Easton describes as “diatribes against the 1%.”

“America stands out among Western nations for its grudging, and often fawning, admiration for the wealthy classes it produces,” explains Easton. (It’s hard to argue with that. Score one point for Easton).

She continues: “With the road to riches seemingly wide open, Americans favor aspiration over resentment, envy over animus.”

The key word here is “seemingly.” It seems like anybody can make it, because the press makes much of those Horatio Alger rags-to-riches stories.

Unfortunately, as economist Joseph Stiglitz frequently points out, those stories make the news for a simple reason: they are rare. And becoming rarer all the time.

By Easton’s own admission, “today American upward mobility (especially for men) lags behind Canada’s and some European nations.”

Easton goes on to complain that the Occupy movement, the most recent incarnation in America’s traditional disdain for cheating, hording fatcats, is wrong in its 99% versus 1% frame.

”Sadly, it is a confusing and flawed prism,” sniffs Easton, “marred by hyperbole, half-truths, and unnecessary pessimism about what it means to succeed in America.”

She goes on to whine that “if Americans really understood who the 1% are, they would be more likely to stop the name-calling and shift the debate to the dire task at hand – getting millions back to work.”

All righty then. While we’re trying to get back to work, we’ll try to forget that Wall Street’s reckless casino games crashed the economy in 2008, destroying millions of jobs.

And we’ll see if we can ignore the fact that corporate-friendly policies pushed by the greedy rich have made decent wages and job security a thing of the past for many.

And we’ll pretend that all the people at the top of the pyramid are ordinary folks who had the same chances as everybody else and made it through hard work and grit.

And we’ll make an effort to discount the fact that it is the super-rich who should be thanking us, for our job creation, and our tax dollars that build their roads, educate their workforce, provide the research needed to make their products – and, oh wait! – lots of them don’t make or do anything, they just bleed money out of the real economy and deplete the government of revenue with their special tax breaks!

While we’re at it, we’ll see if we can forget the famous teaching of Jesus, uttered after a rich young man came to ask how he could be saved.

And Jesus. You just sell your worldly possessions and become a follower of my teachings. But the young man was overly fond of his worldly possessions, and turned away.

To which Jesus said:

“…Again I say to 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” (Matt 19:24).

That Jesus. He sure did beat up on the rich, didn’t he?

…the Book of 2 Timothy.