Personal finance books are hot sellers in the market. Some of bestsellers include such well-known titles as Robert T. Kiyosaki’s “Rich Dad, Poor Dad,” Dave Ramsey’s “The Total Money Makeover,” and Stephen R. Covey’s “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.”
However, there’s one library of books that’s more popular than any of these and offers plenty of sound advice about money: The Bible.
Of course, most people don’t think of the Good Book as a personal finance guide. To some, it’s the literal Word of God; to others, it’s a beautiful work of literature; still others view it as a historical text that’s had a profound influence on our society.
Whatever else the Bible is, it’s also an incredibly useful source of guidance on money matters. Numerous stories and sayings from the Bible, written thousands of years ago, illustrate basic financial concepts that are as relevant as ever in the modern world.
What is MONEY?
In short, money is a medium of exchange. It’s an agreed upon item you can use to make a purchase, trade, or pay off a debt.
The medium of exchange will differ in many countries. What is more, the use of money makes it a whole lot easier to get what you need instead of having swap your pet dog for a box of cereal.
Money doesn’t have a life. It cannot act on its own. It cannot do good deeds, and it cannot commit crimes. Basically, it’s neither good or bad. Money can only do what you tell it to do.
Money is not the root of all evil. But the love of money is the root of all evil (1 Timothy 6:10). If the concept of money is so simple and it doesn’t have a power emanating from its core drawing us to it, then why do we sweat over money so much?
Why does we talk so often about money? These are great questions, which leads me to start this blog site.
The Bible says many things about money, but the heart of the matter is this: money can become something that rules our lives—an idol of sorts. God’s desire is for us to have life to the full and He knows that worshiping money will keep us from that. From the seduction of success to the lure of lust, many things in this world will vie for your affection and devotion. But the most significant idol you will face is money (Matthew 6:24).
Many people don’t believe the Bible has much to say about money.
Did you know that there are over 2,300 verses in the Bible about money and possessions?
In the New Testament alone, 16 out of Jesus’ 38 parables are about finances. There are 3 times more verses in the Bible about money and possessions than love.
The Word of God is an authority on the subject and the number of verses about money represents its kingdom importance.
2.0 God is the source of everything
Philippians 4:19 says, “My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Proverbs 8:20,21 adds, “I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment: that I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.”
And 2 Corinthians 9:8 says: “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.”
Whenever we need money or possessions, prayer is the answer. Look to the Lord, because He will provide it-according to His will.
3.0 Giving and be generous
Luke 6:38, a key verse, says, “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give unto your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.” According to Deuteronomy 14:23, one purpose of tithing was to teach the people of Israel to put God first in their lives. Invest in acts of charity. Charity yields high returns. Ecclesiastes 11:1 Be generous, and someday you will be rewarded. Ecclesiastes 11:1
4.0 Living on a margin
Everyone ought to live on a margin-a physical margin, a spiritual margin, a time margin and a financial margin. Living on a margin simply means allowing room for things to happen.
There are really only three ways a person can arrive anyplace. He can arrive early, on time or late. I used to aim at arriving right on time, and I consistently arrived five minutes late.
That’s because I allowed no margin. It’s always better to have a time margin-planning to arrive early rather than hurrying to be late.
5.0 Saving money-setting something aside for a rainy day
Proverbs 21:20 says, “There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up.”
And Proverbs 22:3 emphasizes, “A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.”
6.0 Keep out of unnecessary debt and thus avoid the debt trap
Borrowing for a house or car is one thing but taking on financial obligations one can’t keep-buying beyond the ability to pay-is another.
Psalm 37:21 says “the wicked borroweth, and payeth not again.” The minute a person goes into debt, he loses a portion of his freedom.
As Proverbs 22:7 says, “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”
7.0 Being content with what one has
Hebrews 13:5 puts it succinctly: “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
8.0 Keeping records and making a budget
God’s Word says, “Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding” (Proverbs 23:23).
“Through wisdom is an house builded; and by understanding it is established: and by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches” (Proverbs 24:3,4).
9.0 Hard work
The Scriptures spell it out: “In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury [poverty]” (Proverbs 14:23).
“He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: but he that followeth after vain persons shall have poverty enough” (Proverbs 28:19).
It is important to work. “In the beginning God created” (Genesis 1:1). Even God is at work. This is a principle throughout the Bible.
10.0 Seeking godly counsel
Psalm 1:1 declares, “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly.” A person needing financial advice should not go to someone who makes his living selling the very thing he’s contemplating buying.
“Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established” (Proverbs 15:22). Before buying a house, purchasing a car or just borrowing money, pray about it and seek the counsel of godly people. They can keep you from making a lot of mistakes.
The reason so many persons don’t seek counsel is that they don’t want to be told by someone an intended action is unsound-they just like to do what they want anyway.
As one learns to follow these eternal principles in his personal finances, he will know the joy that comes from trusting and obeying God.
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