Luke 2:[21] And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.[22] And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord [23] (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) [24] and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.”

Luke 2:22-24 – Jesus was born in poverty. Luke goes out of his way to tell us about the sacrifice that Joseph offered in the dedication of Jesus. It is the offering the poor offered because of their inability to buy a sheep (See Leviticus 12:6-8).

If the Son of God had come in the way that the Jews thought the Messiah was going to come – as a triumphant king, and lived in great luxury and riches with servants and every temporal desire satisfied with a simple order to a servant, then it would still be true that Jesus “became poor that we through His poverty might be rich”. For the King of glory who has lived as the sovereign Creator of all that is, to become human and live here is a great act of condescension and love, even if He was unbelievably rich.

But Jesus did not just become human. He became a poor human. And He was not only a poor human. His family received gifts from the wise men which would have funded the eventual trip to Egypt ( Matthew 2:13-15). He lived off the largess of others. This is a pattern that continued all throughout His life even to His death. He was buried in a borrowed tomb. (No problem there though – it wouldn’t be used by Him for long. The original owner would not need to purchase another). Jesus did not just identify with us as humans. He identified with the poor of the world. He is born in a stable and his first bed is a manger. He lives without a home of his own as an adult (Luke 9:58).

What a lesson for us. Even believers get enamoured with the rich and what riches can obtain. We strive for more. We envy those with plenty. And the One we claim to follow had nothing and lived off the charity of others all His life. We measure everything wrong. We get everything back to front. We need to remember that Jesus, the eternal Son of God, had nothing in this life. We need to remember that we are called to follow His example. We need to remember that our station in life is not the crucial issue and that if God does bless us with much it is for the purpose of giving it away (Ephesians 4:28).

Don’t follow the world in chasing after riches. Do not even desire to be rich (I Timothy 6:8-9). Don’t believe the nonsense that tells you God wants all believers to be rich.

You can do much better than that. You can be like Jesus instead.