In turning his attention to the rich, James denounced them for their love of riches and for the methods by which they had amassed their fortunes. These were unbelievers and probably some unfaithful Christians who had oppressed Christians. Instead of using their wealth to aid the poor, they had actually robbed them in various ways.
James informed the rich of the miseries that would come upon them when they faced God in the judgment. Their expensive garments would be consumed by moths and their precious metals would be corroded because of a lack of use. Their possessions and evil lives would witness against them in the judgment. They were guilty of covetousness, oppression, extravagance and persecution.