“What’s God got Against Money?”
Regardless of your general Bible knowledge you’ve probably come across these two oft-cited scriptures:
“You cannot serve both God and money.” (Matt. 6:24 – NIV), and
“…the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.” (1 Tim. 6:10 – NLT)
God = good; Money = bad. This seems to be the accepted equation. But is it really all that simple? And, if it is, what’s so bad about money anyway? “What’s God got Against Money?”
To get a clearer understanding of this it’s important to notice two words in particular, one in each of the above verses.
In Matt. 6:24 the word to note is “serve” — “You cannot serve both God and money.”
In 1 Tim. 6:10 the word to note is “love” — “…the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.”
The Greek word ‘serve’ (δουλεύω) means ‘to be a slave,’ ‘to obey’ or ‘submit to.’ It is used of those who become slaves to some base power, who give themselves over to it. You could say, rather than you owning it, it owns you!
The Greek word ‘love’ in the second reference carries with it the same idea of ‘slavery’ or ‘bondage’ to a thing, whether voluntary or involuntary, actual or alegorical. It indicates a greedy desire… a willingness to gain the thing even by unethical means.
We are made to worship and will worship whatever thing we set up as primary on the throne of our heart — and there is only room for one on that throne.
Money is unsatisfying, and for that reason addictive. If we chase after it, though we may catch some of it, we find it insufficient. We seek ‘just a bit more,’ and when that ‘bit’ too proves unsatisfying the result is bondage… an unending quest. The only way out is to seek something else, to seek the Rightful Ruler, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Consider these words by the wisest man of all…
“Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income…. As goods increase, so do those who consume them. And what benefit are they to the owners except to feast their eyes on them?” (Ecclesiastes 5:10-11)
“I have seen a grievous evil under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owners, or wealth lost through some misfortune, so that when they have children there is nothing left for them to inherit. Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb, and as everyone comes, so they depart. They take nothing from their toil that they can carry in their hands.” (Ecclesiastes 5:13-15)
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