BUT WOE TO YOU WHO ARE RICH
To the chief musician; a psalm for the sons of Korah.
1 Let all the peoples hear this; listen, all you inhabitants of the world:
2 Both low and high, rich and poor together.
3 My mouth will utter wisdom; for the meditation of my heart has led me to understanding.
4 I will direct my attention to a maxim; I will resolve my enigma to the accompaniment of the harp.
5 Why should I fear in the days of evil, when the iniquity of my supplanters surrounds me?
6 Those who trust in their wealth, and boast about the abundance of their riches;
7 None of them can in any way redeem his brother, or give to God a ransom for him --
8 For redeeming them would entail too high an expense, one that could never be undertaken —
9 That he might continue living forever and not see corruption.
10 For he sees that the wise die, that the foolish and brutish likewise perish, and leave their wealth to others.
11 Their inner thought is that their houses will endure forever, and their dwelling places throughout the generations; they call lands after their own names.
12 But a man who is in honor does not endure: he is like the beasts that perish.
13 This is their way, and it is their folly; yet their posterity speak approvingly of it. Selah.
14 They are placed in the grave like sheep; death will feed on them; and the upright will rule over them the morning after; and their form will be consumed by the grave, even by the habitation appointed for them.
15 But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave, for He will receive me. Selah.
16 Have no fear when someone becomes rich, when the glory of his house is increased;
17 Because at his death he will take nothing with him; his glory will not descend after him.
18 Though he praised himself when he was among the living — and people will praise you when you do well for yourself
19 He shall go to the generations of his fathers; they shall never see light.
20 A man who is in honor and so cannot understand is like the beasts that perish.
psalm of Asaph.
1 Surely God is good to Israel, even to those who are pure of heart.
2 As for me, my feet almost stumbled, my steps came close to slipping;
3 For I was envious of the arrogant, seeing the prosperity of the wicked.
4 For their strength is so firm that there are no sufferings connected even with their death.
5 They have no troubles like other men; nor are they plagued like other men.
6 Therefore pride gives them the most erect of postures; violence covers them like a garment.
7 They are so obese that their eyes protrude! They have more than the heart could imagine.
8 They have degenerated and, as they speak with evil intent of oppression, so do they speak against Him who dwells
9 Yes, just as they direct their mouths against Heaven, so do their tongues go about through the earth.
10 Therefore His people have retrogressed to this condition; and a full cup of waters of affliction has been poured out for them.
11 And they say, “However does God know? And could One so high know?”
12 Behold, these are the wicked: even those who prosper in the world, having attained to wealth.
13 Certainly it was in vain that I cleansed my heart and washed my hands in innocence!
14 For I notice that I have been plagued all day long, and that my chastisement has been renewed every morning!
15 If I had said, “I will speak in this vein,” behold, I would have been acting treacherously against the generations of Your children.
16 When I even thought about how one might understand this, it seemed a wearisome matter to me —
17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end.
18 Surely You have set them in slippery places; You throw them down to destruction.
19 How are they destroyed as in a moment! They are utterly consumed by terrors.
20 Like any dream when one awakes, so, O Lord, when You awake, You will despise their image.
21 For my heart was embittered, and there was a sharp sensation in my kidneys;
22 For I was so brutish and ignorant, I was like a beast before You;
23 Yet I am continually with You: You have grasped me by my right hand.
24 You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
25 Who do I have in Heaven other than You? And there is no one that I have any desire to serve along with You on earth.
26 Even though my flesh and my heart will be consumed, God will be as an impregnable position for my heart, and He will be my portion forever.
27 For behold, those who are far from You will perish; You destroy all those who turn away from You.
28 But as for me, it is good for me to draw near to God; I have placed my trust in the Lord GOD, that I might declare all Your messages.
19 There was a certain rich man who, clothing himself in purple and fine linen, was ever of a cheerful disposition, being in luxury.
20 And there was a certain poor man named Lazarus who had been placed by his gate, covered with sores,
21 Who wanted to be fed with what fell from the table of the rich man; also dogs came and they licked his sores.
22 And it happened that the poor man died, and was carried away by the angels to the bosom of Abraham; the rich man also died and was buried;
23 And in Hell lifting up his eyes, being in torments, he saw Abraham from far off and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And he called out, saying, “Father Abraham, have mercy on me and send Lazarus that he might dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in torment in this flame.”
25 But Abraham said, “Son, remember that you during your lifetime received your good things, and likewise Lazarus his bad things; but now he is comforted here while you are tormented.
26 “And besides all this, a great chasm has been placed between us and you people, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot; neither can anyone cross over from there to us.”
27 Then he said, “Let me ask of you then, father, to send him to my father’s house;
28 “Because I have five brothers; that he might testify to them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.”
29 But Abraham said, “They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.”
30 But he said, “No, father Abraham; but if someone from the dead would go to them, they would repent.”
31 But he said to him, “If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.”
How hard is it for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God? 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!
— Luke 18:24-25
— Translated by Barry I. Hyman
CHRISTIAN REVOLUTIONARY BROTHERHOOD