Seth Udinski, FISM News
Earlier this week, reports surfaced revealing that the controversial Chief Medical Advisor of the United States, Dr. Anthony Fauci, accumulated great wealth during the COVID-19 pandemic, at a time when many Americans faced financial adversity because they lost their jobs because of lockdowns or were forced to quit due to vaccine mandates.
The reports reveal that Fauci’s household net worth almost doubled from 2019 to 2021. In 2019, Fauci’s total net worth sat at $7.6 million. In 2021 his net worth had risen to just north of $12.6 million.
Many Americans and politicians have accused the doctor of intentionally profiting off the COVID-19 crisis, and whether that was his true intention or not, Fauci certainly made a pretty penny and made a name for himself as one of the most well-known figures in Washington.
OpenTheBooks CEO Adam Andrzejewski said in a recent interview with Fox News,
While Dr. Fauci has been a government bureaucrat for more than 55 years, his household net worth skyrocketed during the pandemic. Fauci’s soaring net worth was based on career-end salary spiking, lucrative cash prizes awarded by non-profit organizations around the world, and an ever-larger investment portfolio.
Fauci has become the highest-paid federal employee in Washington, making more money per-year than even President Joe Biden. Reports indicate that Fauci’s 2021 salary clocked in at over $456,000, a hefty pay raise from his 2020 mark of $434,000.
Author’s Biblical Analysis
For Christians, we must avoid the temptation to criminalize Dr. Fauci simply for being rich. Similarly, no matter how we feel about his policies, his medical prestige and celebrity status, or the general controversy that surrounds him, we must look at our own hearts and ask ourselves if we may put too much emphasis on money and wealth.
All of us, whether we have a seven-figure net worth like Fauci or whether we have far less, will be tempted by the trappings of wealth. How should respond when we consider the accumulation of earthly treasures?
I would submit to you several thoughts as you consider how to honor the Lord with what He has given you.
Wealth in itself is neither a sin nor inherently evil, but it can easily become an idol and turn one’s heart away from God.
We are told in 1 Timothy 6 that “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evils.” It is not money itself that is the only possible conduit by which evil can grow, nor is money in itself inherently reprehensible in God’s sight.
With that being said, we must think soberly about money as if it is viewed as the end goal rather than a means to more noble goals it can be detrimental to our relationship with God. Wealth and riches are potentially deadly snares, and I believe the heart of this snare is a desire to be God.
God is the giver of all good gifts (James 1) and the owner of all things in the universe (Psalm 24:1). There is no being in the universe wealthier than God Almighty, and in our sinful state, we desire the gifts rather than the giver.
I believe that we want what God has because ultimately we want to be God. This sin behind all sin goes back to Genesis 3, where the Serpent tempted Adam and Eve with the lie that they would be “like God” if they ate the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. The sad irony of the Fall of Man is that when Adam and Eve listened to the Serpent, they actually became less like God.
So if wealth is a dangerous trap, do we just avoid it? Not necessarily. I would submit to you a second encouragement, especially for those of us who have much.
The more you have, the more generous you can and should be.
I believe, without question, that we will meet many men and women in heaven who were rich with earthly possessions in this life, as we will meet many who were poor. But in no way are the rich in heaven because of their riches, and nor are the poor there because of their holy poverty!
Every single person who enters heaven is there because they trusted in the once-for-all sacrifice of Jesus Christ and Him alone for the forgiveness of their sins. Those who were rich in life are there because of Christ, and those who were poor are there because of Christ.
What is a common quality among the believers who are rich and have a biblical perspective on wealth? I believe it is this, without question — They are exceedingly generous.
Those who have much must understand that what they have is a gift from God, the giver of all good gifts, who can take it away if He so pleases (Job 1:21). Those who have much and have also trusted Christ realize the immense blessing it is for them to be generous towards others, as God is generous towards them.
Therefore, if you have much, consider the extraordinary opportunity you have to be generous, especially towards the body of believers. Perhaps you have a large home, a second home, a car you do not use often, or disposable income. How can you use your abundance for the glory of God and for the benefit of the Church? You have a great opportunity to exemplify the extraordinary generosity of God with your own personal generosity.
Believer, in all things, remember what matters most — God has asked you, simply, to be found a good and faithful servant.
Dan Celia, FISM’s founder and first president who entered glory earlier this year, always ended his daily radio program Financial Issues with these words: “Remember folks, it’s all His. Let’s be found good and faithful servants.”
May we have this same attitude of generosity with what our generous Lord has given to us.
Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord. – Matthew 25:23