The United States is one of the most prosperous countries in the history of the world. Our GDP—the total of our goods and services is nearly $20 trillion dollars a year —despite the pockets of poverty among some citizens. But with prosperity comes great risks. Moses reminded his people of this many years ago. He saw a day when God would fulfill his promise to give his people peace and prosperity. So he warned them of what could happen if they in prosperity became lax toward God. He wrote in Deuteronomy chapter 8, “When you have eaten your fill, be sure to praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you.” “Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the LORD your God and disobey his commands.” Moses knew that prosperity can breed self-sufficiency and pride; pride can cause us to forget the source of our blessings and we begin to live independent from God. So prosperity can be a trap. James Weldon Johnson put it this way, “Lest our feet stray from the places our God where we met thee; lest our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget thee. Shadowed beneath thy hand, may we forever stand true to our God.”

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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