The Bible teaches a lot about riches but not what is popularly being taught
by André Price
There are few examples in the Bible where riches are associated with being blessed of God. In most cases, riches are portrayed as a stronghold of the cursed. Abraham, Jacob, Job, and Solomon are examples of men blessed by God with riches and among the few. A close examination of these men reveal that they regarded seeking and obeying the will of God a primary pursuit in life over riches. This is in accord with the words of Christ.
Mt 6:28-34 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
It is clear that Christ is instructing us to not be preoccupied with worrying over material needs but to focus our attention on seeking God who will take care of us. How much more the distraction if we were to spend much of our time pursuing riches? The temptations of riches are such that few are able to serve God faithfully without turning away to serving mammon.
(Christ Speaking) Mt 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Having an abundance of things is not the same as having life more abundantly.
(Christ speaking) Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
(Christ speaking) Lu 12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
(Christ speaking) Mt 6:19-21 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
As for prosperity preaching, the Word of God bluntly addresses it with a warning to those who do such.
2Pe 2:1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
Riches were proven to be a stronghold and not the focus of God's salvation through an encounter with Christ. In the following verses, a man who was righteous in almost every way refused to completely put his trust in God, but chose instead to trust in temporary riches. He wasn't willing even after being offered eternal treasure and entrance into the kingdom of God.