After reading James 5:1-6 I am left wondering, am I the rich in this passage? Back in the day this was written one would only have their immediate context to compare themselves with others and figure out if they were the rich or the poor.
Today I have many contexts I can view myself from and based on the context I might be the rich or the poor. In my community of Westown I am rich. Within the city of Grand Rapids I am neither rich or poor. In the community I grew up in I would be considered poor. In much of the world I would be considered very rich.
God is listening to the cries of the people who are being defrauded. The very wages are crying out! I don't know exactly what that means but based on the rest of the passage the rich people are fattening themselves up on their luxuries awaiting the day of slaughter.
We now live in the information age and can see how people are living all over the globe. Should that be our context for identifying ourselves as either rich or poor? If we are the rich, how can we guard against not being like the rich in this passage? The rich in this passage were hoarding and defrauding.
Am I hoarding or defrauding? I'm pretty sure I don't hoard but could I be guilty of indirectly defrauding in the things that I consume? What kind of a responsibility do I have if I end up identifying myself as "rich"?
I am glad I am in Servants community where we can wrestle through these hard issues together.