We dwell on money quite a bit. It’s the basis of many of our decisions throughout the day. The Bible has a lot to say on the topic as well. Some argue that it is a blessing, while others say it is a worldly evil. Because money is such an important part of our lives, it’s imperative that we learn what God has to say about it.
Please understand that this article isn’t about tithing, finances, or charity. It’s about how society views money in general. It’s also about if and how such a worldly creation of man can fit into God’s righteous plan.
What Some Think
Money is not evil. It may seem strange to have to point that out, but the fact is that many people do believe money is evil. Of course, most people who hold this view don’t have a lot of money. Jealousy and resentment taint their perceptions.
There are also many who think that those who have money are the true evil. Great examples are the many government officials who warn us about money and the malicious wealthy and middle class. These officials want to do things like constantly increase taxes on the wealthy. Ironically, they never want to do away with the money itself. They just want to reallocate it from your pocket to theirs. They think that because you have money and they don’t, you actually owe some of your money to them. Again, this is rooted in jealousy and resentment.
Some try to use the Bible to support their view that wealth is evil. They are quick to quote the verse that says money is the root of all evil. The problem with this is that the verse is almost always misquoted. The verse actually states:
“For the love of money is the root of all evil” (1 Tim 6:10)
Money Isn’t Evil
Read the Bible for yourself. You’ll find that the Scripture never says money is evil. It is only the love or worship of wealth that is evil. Money is just another thing – neither good nor bad. It’s allowing the thing to become more important than God that is immoral. Anything can take the place of God in our lives. When we dedicate our time, resources, love, or worship to anything besides God, then that “other” thing becomes our god.
For some people their god may be work, fishing, watching TV, exercising, a social cause, or even money. I’m not saying spending time on these things is wrong. In fact, I find them very enjoyable. It’s when we pursue something to the point of forsaking God or putting Him on the back burner that it becomes wrong.
So, What about Wealthy People?
If money isn’t evil, then surely it must be those who have the money that are corrupt. As I said before, this view is based on jealousy and resentment. “I’ve worked hard and lived right, but I’m still poor. Therefore, those that are wealthy must have amassed their fortune by exploiting the working class. You have it, but I deserve it.” That’s how many think, whether they’re willing to admit it or not.
Everything in this world is of God’s design. We’re part of a much bigger picture that we can neither see nor completely understand. We have to learn to accept this fact. They can choose to follow a moral path just as well as they can choose wickedness – like everyone else in this world.
Of course there are some evil rich people in the world, some whose wealth has corrupted their sense of morality. However, there are just as many whose poverty has corrupted them to the point of being wicked. How else would you explain the vast number of criminals who steal, vandalize, and kill to get their hands on money? Money always brings with it added challenges and temptations, but it does not make someone evil.
It Can Even Sponsor Good
Money can actually be seen as a blessing. Many verses describe how God rewards proper behavior and unwavering faith with monetary gain. We should not be afraid of wealth or those that have it. In Ecclesiastes, the Bible even says that riches and possessions are a “gift of God”. If we live how He asks, He will help us prosper.
There are specific things mentioned as being worthy of monetary rewards. Caring for the poor, striving to increase our wisdom, and providing for our family are just a few. God especially delights in work – even when it is in pursuit of wealth. In fact, we are told to make every effort to do well for ourselves while remaining faithful, so that others will praise us as being good role models.
Another way currency contributes to the greater good is by furthering God’s work. The Scripture instructs us to worship with money. The Lord often refers to wealth as gifts and offerings to the Church. He expects us to use tithes and other monies to honor Him by funding His work and His ministry.
How Does God View Money?
Some see offering money to God as a confusing contradiction. Money is a creation of Man, of an immoral being. How can such an object be used as a proper offering to God? This is no different than offering our body to glorify Him.
He says that worshiping with our hands and voices pleases Him. He loves it when we make a “joyful noise” in His name. Even Jesus, His only Son, assumed the body of a man. This is the ultimate example of how worldly items can be seen as pleasing gifts in Heaven. Since God has no problem with us using these carnal things to worship, exalting God with money isn’t a contradiction either.
Money can be used for good, or it can be used for immoral pursuits. My father once framed it perfectly when he said, “It is the condition of our heart that matters, not the condition of our wallet.” however one might add that how we use what’s in our wallet may well indicate the condition of our heart. God commands us to use that which He gives us wisely – including money – for His praise and honor.
~ Written by Aundrea Richardson