The following are some Biblical solutions for overcoming the problems involved in relating to different people of different ECONOMIC CLASSES:

1. Ask for the Lord's help in overcoming any tendency to show favoritism to your own people. James wrote, "My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism. Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet," have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of Him to whom you belong? (James 2: 1-7)

2. Do not engage in social class jealousy, envy or resentment. Solomon wrote, "The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, and He adds no trouble to it." (Prov. 10:22)

3. Do not let your wealth or your poverty be an excuse for being spiritually immature. Solomon wrote, "One man pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth." (Prov. 13:7)

4. Teach the wealthy to use their money and connections for God's purposes. Solomon wrote, "The poor are shunned even by their neighbors, but the rich have many friends." (Prov. 14:20)

5. Learn to be content with your own social standing. Paul wrote, "Godliness with contentment is great gain for we brought nothing into the world and it is certain that we will take nothing out." (I Tim. 6:6-8)

6. Avoid the tendency of letting wealth, power or social position to go to your head. Solomon wrote, "A poor man pleads for mercy, but a rich man answers harshly." (Prov. 18:23)

7. Affirm the Godly characteristics of a person in any social class. Solomon wrote, "Better a poor man whose walk is blameless than a fool whose lips are perverse." (Prov. 19: 1) The rich and poor have this in common: The Lord is the Maker of them all. (Prov. 22:2)

8. Take advantage of the opportunities you have and try not to fall into debt. Solomon wrote, "The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender." (Prov. 22:7)

9. Do not be party to any effort to oppress or stifle the progress or opportunities of any social class. Solomon wrote, "He who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth and he who gives gifts to the rich - both come to poverty. (Prov. 22:16)

10. Learn all you can from people of every social class. Solomon wrote, "A rich man may be wise in his own eyes, but a poor man who has discernment sees through him." (Prov. 28: 11)

11. Realize that wealth often gets in the way of doing God's will. Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again, I tell 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. 19:23,24)

12. Teach all men that those who find their security, comfort and satisfaction in the things of this world will live to eternally regret it. Jesus said, "But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort. Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry. Woe to you when men speak well of you, for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets." (Lk. 6:24-26)

13. Follow the example of Paul who lived a simple life to advance the purposes of planting and growing Christ's church. Paul wrote, "As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing. As poor yet making many rich. As having nothing, yet possessing all things. (2 Cor. 6: 10)

14. Follow the example of Jesus Christ. Paul wrote, "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ that though He was rich, yet for our sakes, He became poor. That we through His poverty might become rich. (2 Cor. 8:9)

15. Warn people of the temptations of riches and high social standing. Paul wrote, "But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction." (I Tim. 6:9)

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