Money is kind of a sensitive topic and it’s mentioned in the Bible around 140 times (i.e. coin, gold, silver, etc.). A lot of people accept the quote: “Money is the root of all evil,” without knowing that the Bible doesn’t say this, it says the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. It doesn’t say it’s the only root, it says it’s a root. The Bible doesn’t say it’s a sin to have money. If we didn’t earn money how could we donate money to charities and our churches? How could we help take care of the people in our lives?
Here are three verses from the Bible that relate to the issue of money: 1) 1st. Timothy 6:10 “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” 2) Hebrews 13:5 “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." 3) 1st John 2:15 “Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them.”
Notice the first verse reads that “some,” have wandered from their faith in pursuit of money; not that “all,” wander from their faith. The second verse clearly states to stay away from the “love,” of money and instead be content with what we have. Basically, we should count our blessings. The third verse is extremely profound in stating to not love the world or anything in it; basically, don’t love stuff.
The bottom line is the Bible doesn’t want us to love things of this world because that passion for money to buy things, often comes at the expense of our relationships with co-workers, family, friends, etc. When it’s all said and done, and we’re at the end of our journey, things won’t matter, but people will. We won’t wish we would have worked harder to buy things, we’ll regret how we didn’t work harder on the relationships in our lives. The closer we get to meeting God, often the closer we get to understanding what really matters in this world. One of God’s greatest commandments is to demonstrate love to our fellow man, so if our pursuit of money negatively impacts our ability to abide by this commandment, then the love of God is not in us. If we love others, we demonstrate love to our God.
When it comes to money, only God can judge if we use it wisely. Only he knows where our heart is. My guess is that if we only attempt to make a lot of money for selfish reasons, then he won’t be happy. If it’s only about having fancy cars, a nice home, great job title, etc., to impress other people, then my guess is he’ll be upset. If we pursue money with a generous heart to spend some of it on helping people in need, then money can be a great thing. Once again, stuff won’t matter when we’re on our death bed; we won’t wish we had gathered more shiny things, but we will want to have been a good parent, a good spouse, a good friend, a good child, etc. These things are what will occupy our minds later in life and on our death beds.
The Bible in no way states that if you’re a rich person you won’t get into heaven. It does state that for some people it can be more challenging. It’s human nature that when things go south in our lives, we tend to go to God in prayer more. In many cases, poor people pray more. So, when someone is healthy and wealthy, they don’t have a lot of needs to ask for and a lot of people (including me), aren’t very good at going to God in prayer just to thank him for our blessings. It’s inevitable, the more we talk to someone the closer we get. The more people talk to God through prayer, the closer they get to him. Therefore, the Bible said it can be more difficult for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God because some wealthy people, not all, don’t reach out to God as much.
The Bible doesn’t state that money is evil; money can do good things. The tricky part is to not let the love of money negatively affect God’s greatest commandments regarding loving people. If we get so caught into making money for selfish ambitions, then it could hurt relationships in our lives. Children and spouses spell love: TIME. If we work so hard so we can own a Mercedes and live in a huge house, that we neglect our family or others in need, then maybe the love of money is creeping in. Just my opinion, but I don’t think it’s a problem to own these things, if we’re also helping people in need and taking care of all the important people in our lives. People must come first.
The Bible lets us know that money can be a good thing, but it can also be a stumbling block for some people towards living his commandments. I mentioned in the beginning of this post that money is one of the roots to evil but there are many roots. Anything that gets in the way of our ability to demonstrate love to other people, is evil. There’s a lot of evil out there and it sometimes disguises itself as shiny things but, in the end, we learn that everything loses its luster but not everyone does.