I'm just gonna' go ahead and say it, money is evil. Jesus said it. I believe it. that's all I need to say. My blog is finished. I hope you got a lot out of that thought and live it out in your daily life. You see, we are bound by an evil society that uses this evil medium to make anything and everything happen. So, we are roped into using an evil thing, money, to do anything we try to do. So, we can't win, can we? To even do something good, we have to use something evil.
Only Jesus never said that. And that would be true if that's what Jesus said. The closest He ever came was when He said that we are to use "unrighteous mammon" to accomplish His purposes by doing 2 things: making friends and being faithful with it. However, the apostle Paul does tell us in 1 Timothy 6 that "money is the root of all evil" (1 Timothy 6:10, HCSB). Again, that's probably one of the most mis-quoted verses in the Bible. It really doesn't say that at all. Here's what the Bible says to us in context:
For the love of money is the root of all evil (italics mine): which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. (1 Timothy 6:10 KJV)
So, what we learn very quickly is that money is not the problem; it is me and my wicked heart. I know. I know. I can hear you saying what I have said many times before, "I don't want to do evil things with it. I just want a little more." Have you ever said that? I know I have.
So, you and I look around and find money lovers. The ones that are the real problem. We then say, "Thank the Lord I'm not one of them" and feel good about ourselves. The people we focus on are the ones that ruin lives and take money from widows and orphans and re-possess houses and cut off electricity just before Christmas. While I'm not saying that these people are not money lovers, what I am saying is that the circle is a bit larger.
Solomon, the wisest and arguably, one of the wealthiest men that ever lived identifies with laser sites what "money love" looks like. And, to tell you the truth, it makes me pretty uncomfortable. Here's his thoughts:
The one who loves money is never satisfied with money, and whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with income. (Ecclesiastes 5:10 HCSB)
While you can determine exactly what that means to you, I can say with relative confidence that there are too many believers who fall into the trap of spending whatever they make. When they get that raise that they thought would answer all their financial problems, it doesn't. They simply have come up with "new" ways to spend all that "new" money.
If that is you (or me), that is an indicator that we love money. That means that if our new additional income, which at times is necessary, doesn't help us get ahead, we are "money lovers".
The antidote for "money lovers" like me is not hoarding or saving or being stingy or being ruthless; it is found in giving. When we tithe and give to God, it is our "Money Lovers Anonymous" meeting. My tithe is my confession that I will always be a "money lover" unless I am giving it away.
How about this for your next prayer? Instead of asking God for more stuff, why not say, "Lord, where do you want me to start giving?" That attitude alone can make all the difference with what and whom we love.
The answer to our greed (as a fellow "money lover"), is not found in holding back, but in giving in. Loving our God means letting money serve us as we serve Him. How do you want to use money?
Pastor Trey Rhodes
Get involved this week at OCEANSIDE CHURCH
"Strapped" series continues this week. Getting down to nuts and bolts. See you here at 10:30 a.m., Sunday Morning at Oceanside Church
Joins us in ministering to our community spiritually this Thursday at 6:30 p.m.
Valentine's Banquet coming soon. Sunday night, February 10.