Just the Poor

Today's devotion from Jeremiah 5. The message of Jeremiah 5 is powerful in general, but when applied to the context of our current society, it is extraordinary. As the message continues, we are informed that there is not one just person pursuing righteousness in all of Jerusalem. Now, the implication of verse 2 is that there are many who feign piety, but their hearts are not anywhere close to godly.

A thought occurs that, perhaps, the problem is just with the lower class, the poor, the uneducated, and the common. So, he will go to the powerful and well-to-do. Surely, those of the better breeding will be more familiar with the expectations of God. However, he found that they, too, had, "broken the yoke and torn off the chains." (Jeremiah 5:5, CSB)

This reveals a prejudice the exists in many areas in our current society. Our culture looks down on those who are assumed to be poor due to low breeding and poor decisions. The general culture would seem to view this class as being filled the ignorant who cling to their God and their guns. However, there are those within the church who would look down on them for milking the system and being too lazy to get a job.

The outcome is the exclusion and neglect of entire communities. I've seen it in the urban environments I served in Memphis along with the rural areas in farming towns. The result is an unannounced but blatantly obvious class system that separates and divides. The poor are just thugs in the ghetto or white trash in the trailer park that neither the culture or the church really care much for.

Jeremiah 5 reveals that both are capable of the same depravity, it just looks different in each community. We see this alive and well in our own modern culture. Many who would look down on the poor exalt the rich and look up to Hollywood socialites. Stars tell us how to vote and starlets scold us for being close-minded. However, their culture is not perfect either. Just look at the recent events that are identifying predators that have taken advantage of innumerable aspiring artists. They created a culture in which certain sins were taboo and others were overlooked.

No. Neither culture nor class can solve the issues in our lives. Answers can only be found when we turn our hearts, rich or poor, back to the God of Scripture.