Which is better, poverty or prosperity? We have learned in Proverbs that the answer is neither. But a poor man with integrity is better than a rich man without it. Proverbs also teaches us how to avoid poverty. But it warns us against the desire to get rich quick and easy.
A poor man who oppresses the poor is a beating rain that leaves no food. Whoever multiplies his wealth by interest and profit gathers it for him who is generous to the poor. (Prov. 28:3, 8)
Verses 3 and 8 are parallel verses. They give a matching meaning—the oppression of the poor. In v. 3, we see the effect of oppression—it leaves no food. In v. 8, the method of oppression—lending money at a high interest, thereby multiplying one’s wealth. But in v. 8, we learn the reversal of oppression by divine judgment. God will re-channel one’s wealth gained by oppression. He will give to others who are generous to the poor.
It is an irony, really. He who takes money from the poor shall lose his money to those who give to the poor.
The Making of a Millionaire: A National Survey on Wealth was designed to help the companies learn more about millionaires. It found that almost two-thirds of the $US1million ($A2million) and up crowd worry about losing their money. “Although affluent Americans generally feel confident about the future, they can’t shake the fear of suffering a serious financial setback,” the survey of more than 1800 wealthy showed. The anxiety is especially acute among “up and comers” and people with their money tied up in superannuation. (Sunday Mail 15-7-01) Cited March 24, 2012. Online: http://hotsermons.com/sermon-illustrations/sermon-illustrations-money.html
Indeed, money gained by oppression and injustice shall be lost or re-channeled to the poor.