Money (part 2)
Greetings precious people, I hope that you are doing well and enjoying the Goodness of God. In today’s article I would like for us to continue looking at a subject that we began in last week’s article. It is a subject that is near and dear to most everyone’s hearts, money. If you would like a copy of this article or any of the others from the past two years just write or call the number at the end of the article and we will send your request to your.
The Bible, God’s Word, has much to say about money and the place it is to have in our life. Money in and of itself is neutral; it is neither good or evil. It can be used for good purposes and it can be used for evil purposes. It can be acquired legally or illegally. The Bible tells us that it is the love of money that is the root of all kinds of evil. Money has become the number one idol in our country today. An idol is anything or anyone that a person establishes in their life to take the place of the True and Living God.
Listen to what the Bible has to say about both money and idols. Concerning idolatry the first two of the Ten Commandments strictly forbid it. In Exodus 20:3-6, "You shall have no other gods before Me. "You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments." And in Matthew 6:24, "No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (money)."
Colossians 3:1-5, "If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry."
Money has a strong appeal to fallen human nature. It represents power, pleasure, prestige, possessions, independence, and much more. The problem with money is that we think if we had just a little or a lot more, then we would be happy. We have come to believe that money is the answer to all of our woes, that it will make us happy. It can never make one happy, it does not have the capability to do that. Money can never satisfy the hole that God shaped in a man’s soul. God designed it to be filled with only Himself.
The love of money, whether it is by those who have much or little, is the cause of many a sorrows in people’s lives. Look at what the Bible has to say about this. In 1 Timothy 6:3-19, "If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself. Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses….. Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life."
There is a wealth of knowledge and wisdom in the previously listed verses. I highlighted some of the major points that are made. We would all be much better off if we would take these words to heart and ask the Lord for His Grace to apply them to our lives.
King Solomon who was the richest man that ever lived, had much to say about the vanity of riches. During his time of ruling in Israel, it is said that silver was as common as stones. If you have ever been to Israel, you know how rocky it is there and have an idea of how wealthy Solomon was. Yet with all his wealth and that which it could buy, Solomon came to some very interesting conclusions. The Book of Ecclesiastes records many of Solomon’s discoveries about riches.
Ecclesiastes 2:1-11, "I said in my heart, "Come now, I will test you with mirth; therefore enjoy pleasure"; but surely, this also was vanity. I said of laughter--"Madness!" and of mirth, "What does it accomplish?" I searched in my heart how to gratify my flesh with wine, while guiding my heart with wisdom, and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was good for the sons of men to do under heaven all the days of their lives. I made my works great; I built myself houses, and planted myself vineyards. I made myself gardens and orchards, and I planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. I made myself water pools from which to water the growing trees of the grove. I acquired male and female servants, and had servants born in my house. Yes, I had greater possessions of herds and flocks than all who were in Jerusalem before me. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the special treasures of kings and of the provinces. I acquired male and female singers, the delights of the sons of men, and musical instruments of all kinds. So I became great and excelled more than all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me. Whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them.
I did not withhold my heart from any pleasure, For my heart rejoiced in all my labor;
And this was my reward from all my labor. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done and on the labor in which I had toiled; and indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun." 5:10-12, "He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; Nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity. When goods increase, They increase who eat them; so what profit have the owners
Except to see them with their eyes? The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, Whether he eats little or much; but the abundance of the rich will not permit him to sleep."
After all of this, he came to this conclusion in 12:1, "Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, Before the difficult days come, And the years draw near when you say, "I have no pleasure in them." And in 12:8-14, "Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "All is vanity." And moreover, because the Preacher was wise, he still taught the people knowledge; yes, he pondered and sought out and set in order many proverbs. The Preacher sought to find acceptable words; and what was written was upright--words of truth. The words of the wise are like goads, and the words of scholars are like well-driven nails, given by one Shepherd. And further, my son, be admonished by these. Of making many books there is no end, and much study is wearisome to the flesh. Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man's all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing,
whether good or evil."
Dear ones, don’t believe the lies that you have been told concerning the happiness that riches will bring. If you cannot be content without money and what it can buy, you will not be content with it. The only way to know true contentment is when your life is committed to Jesus Christ the Lord.
If you have any questions, comments, or prayer requests you can contact me at: Calvary Chapel of Alpine, P.O. Box 1528, Alpine, Ca. 91903 or call 619-445-2589, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Drew Macintyre is pastor of Calvary Chapel of Alpine