What Should Be The Role Of Money In Our Lives?
The role of money in our lives should be that of servitude and not domination. Money is a neutral medium that that is required for us to use in our daily lives, but we should use it for good and not for bad. We are not to love it and serve it as an idol, but to serve God and use money in a manner that glorifies Him.
Understanding What Money Is
- Money is the “medium” that has an established value to be used in exchange for something that, at least, two sides are willing to agree upon (payment for work, purchase of items, etc) and is widely accepted because its “all-purpose” exchangeability and usability. Money also includes our assets, property and resources that are in our possession and that have a certain value and can also be used for the same exchange purposes, but is more narrow in exchangeability and usability. Therefore, the “medium of money” is often more desired because of its ascribed value to almost everyone, where the “the money of possessions” is only valuable to those interested in the possession. Together, they equal the amount of a person’s wealth.
- Money is powerful because it is the “means” by which we obtain things that we need and want. Since money is so powerful it is a major subject referred to in the Bible. Its influence appeals to our sinful hearts and directly fights against God to be the master who sits on the throne of our lives. God, through His word, teaches us how to not allow money to control our lives, but instead how to control money and use it to glorify and worship Him. We cannot equally love both. We cannot equally be devoted to both. Each day we have to choose who we will serve and allow to guide our lives, God or money.
- Money is neutral, meaning that it isn’t good or bad in itself. It can be used as a tool for good or for bad. The Bible tells us that where our treasure is, there will our heart be also. Therefore, the way that we understand, manage and think about money effects the orientation of our hearts. They are connected. You lead your heart by devoting money to whatever you think is most important. So we need to ask some hard questions: Where is your investment? Where is your treasure? Is it here on earth or in heaven?
Understanding The Peril Of Money (Domination)
- The first danger of money is the “love of money” because it is the root of all kinds of evil, meaning it leads to many types of errors and sins. Rich people often fall into many problems because they often have a love for money that causes them to make many foolish decisions. Believers should flee from the love of money and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience and meekness. Some of these “evils” are:
1 Timothy 6:9-11
- Idol Worship—The love of money leads to establishing money as an idol in our hearts. It becomes the thing granted the supreme importance, influence and/or admiration in our lives. This is seen by: (1) worshipping money—meaning we have a deep affection for it and how we can get more of it; (2) having confidence in money—meaning we have a firm belief of security because of our abundance of money; (3) submitting to money—meaning we have a strong coercion to submit to money like a slave does to a master. But money is an imitation and phony god that hinders people from believing and serving Jesus. As believers, we are to have no other gods before the Lord.
Ezekiel 14:3-6; Exodus 20:3; Matthew 13:22; Luke 16:14; 18:18-30
- Greed—The love of money leads to an intense and selfish desire for wealth, often at the expense of others. Most people have a problem with greed (although most people will deny it) because they think it equals happiness or success in life. It is this excessive desire to posses more and more and not finding contentment in what really matters. Thus greed leads to establishing money as an idol of the heart. As believers, we are to put to death this idol of the heart and serve the one and only true God.
Colossians 3:5; Ephesians 5:5
- Identity Fraud—The love of money leads to finding our identity in what we posses. This means that our self-worth and financial-worth are wrongly connected, thus leading us to wrongly believe that the more we have the better we are and the less we have the worse we are. But the Bible teaches that our lives don’t consist in the abundance of the things that we have. Instead, as believers, our lives are hid with Christ in God—meaning that our identity is found in Jesus and with this security of being accepted by God we should seek those things which are above and set our affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
Luke 12:15; Colossians 3:1-4
- Materialism—The love of money leads to placing a greater value on possessions and comfort more than spiritual matters. This is the love of things and the determination to obtain them to try and satisfy our craving for happiness and contentment. As believers, we are to realize that we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out, thus we are to live godly lives and be content with food and clothing.
1 Timothy 6:6-8; Hebrews 13:5
- The second danger of money is the complete “hatred of money” or asceticism. This sees any kind of wealth (money and possessions) or anything of this world as inherently evil and therefore tries to avoid them. It sees our material circumstance as an indicator of how “godly” we are—with poverty as a sign of holiness. This is misguided because everything God created should be received with thanksgiving and used for the glory of God. Believers are commanded to work, make money and be godly stewards of it.
1 Timothy 4:3-5; 1 Corinthians 10:31
Giving Money Its Proper Role In Our Lives (Servitude)
- God should be first in our lives. Through the power of God even the most wealthy person can come to a saving knowledge of Jesus. That means they are willing to repent of their “idol of money” and turn to the living and true God by faith. Since they no longer serve money, they start using their wealth to serve God and obey His word.
- We should be good stewards of our wealth. We use it to serve and befriend others, knowing that one day all wealth will fail but that God will eternally reward those who were faithful with the money and possessions He had entrusted them with.
- What is money?
- Why is money powerful?
- Is money good, bad or neutral? Why?
- What is the danger of money?
- What is money’s proper role in our lives?