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Money - root of all evil?

Discussion in 'Non-denominational' started by TruelightUK, Jun 2, 2002.

  1. Material prosperity is a blessing from God - a covenant right for all Christians

  2. As Christians, we should give all that we have to the poor and live in holy poverty

  3. Material possessions are held in trust from the Lord, to be used as He directs

  4. If you are poor and a Christian, you must be either sinning or lacking in faith

  5. As Christians, we should own nothing, but have all things in common

  6. Wealth is a snare from the devil

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  1. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    Ummmm?? Andrew, most of your references are also b4 the cross - what does that have to do with anything??? Just curious why you said that.

    ******* Regarding wealth and/or riches *******

    Matthew 6:19-21 "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

    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 (riches)."

    Matthew 13:22 "Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word and he becomes unfruitful."

    Matthew 19:21 "Jesus said to him, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me."

    Matthew 19:23,24 "Then Jesus said to His disciples, "Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you , it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

    Luke 12:33,34 "Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a tresure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

    Acts 2:44,45 "Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need."

    Acts 4:34,35 "Nor was there anyone among them who lacked; for all who were possessors of lands or houses sold them; and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles' feet; and they distributed to each as anyone had need."

    I Timothy 6:9-10 "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.

    I Timothy 6:17-19 "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."

    James 2:5 "Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?"

    James 5:1-3 "Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming upon you! Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days."

    James 5:5 "You have lived on the earth in pleasure and luxury (indulgence); you have fattened your hearts as in a day of slaughter."

    Revelations 3:17,18 "Because you say, "I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing - and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked - I counsel you to buy from ME gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed ..."
     
  2. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

    +62
    Christian
    Married
    US-Libertarian
    Andrew, did you want me to show you a faithful christian that is poor? Christian doesn't=worldly wealth. That's wrong, always was and always will be. If you wanna talk OT, lets talk about Jerimiah....or some of the other prophets...We can also make reference to Christ himself who was very very poor being only a carpenders son.
     
  3. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    +21
    Non-Denom
    quote:
    "BTW it's b4 the cross. rightly divide the word pls."

    "Ummmm?? Andrew, most of your references are also b4 the cross - what does that have to do with anything??? Just curious why you said that. "
    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Rightly dividing the Word is simply a method of studying the Bible. ie we must see whether it applies to the church today. in this case, if we want to follow John the Baptist 'poor' lifestyle, then why not also follow his teachings? No we shld interpret scripture in light of what Christ has done on the cross.

    BTW you list scriptures that talk about man being lovers of money. ie man who puts his trust in money not God. that's totally off track from what i'm talking about. What about looking at scriptures where God prospers his people? I'm talking about that, not worldly men who are after money.

    -------------------------------------------------------
    "Christ himself who was very very poor"

    that's the saddest thing I've ever heard. open your eyes. A man who could feed more than 5,000 with 12 basketfuls extra, give a net breaking boat sinking load of fish, turn barrels of water into top-quality wine? heal incurable diseases... you call that "a very very poor man"?? your religious tradition has really blinded you. and we're not even talking about the glorified Christ!
     
  4. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    Oh good grief!!!

    I was referring to the "b4 the cross" statement - I know how to rightly divide the Word. :rolleyes:

    I didn't know if you were not accepting scripture before the Cross (i.e. Old Testament) which didn't make sense because you used them in your references. Never mind about that.

    As to the question at hand ... perhaps you could define for us what YOU think is a "prosperous" Christian and how that differs from being "rich" in the worldly sense of the word. While you're at it - please explain why some Christians are not prosperous.

    Thank you :)
     
  5. TruelightUK

    TruelightUK Tilter at religious windmills

    441
    +1
    It seems to me there is a big difference between 'prosperous' and 'rich' - Jesus didn't have a bottomless bank account from which to pay for the 5000+ packed lunches, nor did he own a chain of Fish-burger shops to do the catering! However, he did have faith in God who was able - on very specifc occasions - to do the miraculous to provide for a real need. And note too that the 'need ' being met was that of other people - did he ever do a miracle to feed himself, or even his immediate disciples (who we see chewing on whaet from the cornfields to quench their hunger!).

    Being 'prosperous' to me means knowing that God who feeds the birds of the air etc. cares for me and knows my needs.

    But there is no infallible Biblical 'law' that God 'must' pour riches upon his faithful followers - sometimes "the righteous perish and noone cares" (Is 57:1) By contrast, ever heard the question "why do the wicked prosper?"

    In the N.T., there is little guarantee of material prosperity - rather we are told to 'deny ourselves', lose our earthly lives in order to gain spiritual Life, give up families, houses etc. in this life in order to inherit blessings in the next, to follow a man with nowhere to lay his head. The Apostle Paul knew how to abound, but also how to go without - and rejoiced in both extremes. We are not promised freedom from suffering etc., but exhorted to share in the sufferings of Christ, following his example of emptying himself of all rights to be well-provided for in order to become a blessing to others. The early church suffered persecution and resultant poverty with rejoicing - I see no record of them rebuking the devil and confessing that they were 'the head and not the tail' and that 'the riches of the heathen were converted unto them'! Rather, they looked for an inheritance in heaven, where their treasure lay.

    I could go on, but, to summarise, we are to see ourselves as 'dead to sin', 'crucified with Christ', and 'slaves to righteousness': dead men and slaves have no rights! Sometimes, if folk spent more time thinking about what God was asking of them, and less about what he can do for them they might just be a bit closer to the spirit of the Gospel!

    Anthony
     
  6. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    :clap: Well said!!! :clap:
     
  7. TruelightUK

    TruelightUK Tilter at religious windmills

    441
    +1
    My own take on the original question is that money itself is neither good nor evil; it is our attitude and use of it which determines its worth either way. Thus, for the poor as well as the rich, it can become an idol which absorbs our attention - earning it, (or praying for it!), spending it, protecting it etc. Or it can be a source of great blessing, if used wisely and kept in perspective - with God firmly in the foreground - but not essential to our ultimate well-being, nor a proof of our being 'in God's good books'!

    There's a Scripture somewhere which says "In godliness with contentment there is great reward" (or words to that effect), which is good counsel to us all.

    Anthony
     
  8. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

    +62
    Christian
    Married
    US-Libertarian
    "you call that "a very very poor man"?? "

    Yes, christ was poor. He went from place to place never having a home to "rest his head" nor a horse for that matter. Why do you think he told the rich man to sell everything he had give it all away and follow him.
     
  9. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    +21
    Non-Denom
    Hmmm....You guys are still pretty much fixed in the "as poor as a church mouse tradition" so I wont bother explaining cos your mind and hearts are closed at this moment.

    Suffice to say, Abraham, David, Boaz, Joseph, Soloman etc were very rich. So go figure that out.
    :)

    While you are at it, me and my church will continue to prosper financially too!
     
  10. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    Oh I know all about those old Testament guys :)

    Are you saying we should live like them and not like Jesus?? :)

    How come the disciples were not "rich" or even middle class citizens ... Paul said that he knew what it was like to be hungry ... but he learned that "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." 1 Tim 6:6-8

    "Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be satisfied with what you have. God has said, "I will never leave you; I will never forget you." Hebrews 13:5

    Proverbs 30:7-9 "I ask two things from you, Lord. Don't refuse me before I die. Keep me from lying and being dishonest. And don't make me either rich or poor; just give me enough food for each day. If I have too much, I might reject You and say, 'I don't know the Lord.' If I am poor, I might steal and disgrace the name of my God."

    God gives us what we NEED - exactly that and no more. The more you have the more you are accountable for ... as to what you did or did not do with your money.

    *************The Following is a Joke*************

    Sometimes when we pray, as the Bible says, "We don't know what to pray for."
    That leads to some interesting dilemmas. That was the case for one pastor.

    "I want to tithe," a man told his pastor, "I want to give 10 percent of
    my income to my church. When my income was $50 a week, I gave $5 to the
    church every week. When I was successful in business and my weekly
    income rose to $500 a week, I gave $50 to my church every week. But now
    my income has gone to $5,000 a week, and I just can't bring myself to
    give $500 to the church every week."

    The pastor said, "Why don't we pray over this?" The pastor began to
    pray, "Dear God, please make this man's weekly income $500 a week so
    that he can tithe again..."
     
  11. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

    +62
    Christian
    Married
    US-Libertarian
    "So go figure that out. "

    Umm...so? What does that mean? I can name just as many biblical people that were poor.
     
  12. Messenger

    Messenger Simplicity of Life

    +37
    Christian
    Hebrews 13:5
    Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have: for he has said, "I will never fail you nor forsake you."

    Hebrews 13:16
    Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God

    I don't believe we need to live wealthy and our neighbors hungry. There is always someone in more need than us and therefore we should always share. It is difficult at times but to give is what is right. Jesus didn't live a wealthy life and let the children in other countries starve.

    Love and God Bless.
     
  13. Catchup

    Catchup Active Member

    917
    +1
    Christian
    Private
    Money is not evil. Making money is not evil. How are we to help others if we are too dumb or lazy to make and manage money properly? You all make it sound like it is a sin, to work hard and know how to earn money and invest. Christians should strive to prosper so that the wealth will be in the hands of those that will use it for the good of others. How many sheep can a poor Christian feed? Do you really think Jesus is going to reward you for not doing your best?

    :) LOVE
     
  14. ZiSunka

    ZiSunka It means 'yellow dog'

    +276
    Christian
    This all has been very interesting reading. It shows me how much some Christians cling to worldly wealth as a sign of God's love (but maybe a sing of lack of faith in God). God said to pray that He would meet our needs day by day (give us today our daily bread). It means that He wants us to look to Him everyday to meet our needs for that day.

    It doesn't mean that we can't have a savings account, or that we shouldn't invest for retirement or anything, it just means that we have to acknowledge that every day, everything comes from Him.

    But there are enough passages in the Bible that speak about the follies of the rich, and how independent from God the rich think they are, and how riches make one vulnerable to satan, that I think a Christian shouldn't hoard money, but give away the excess to people who don't have enough.

    God doesn't give us an excess to spend merely on our own pleasure.
     
  15. Catchup

    Catchup Active Member

    917
    +1
    Christian
    Private
    The best things in life are free.

    But I love to make money so that I can help to lift the burden of life of others... so that their hearts can be free to enjoy the beauty that God has given to us all.

    So when you see the fancy clothes and sharp car do not be so swift to condemn. It takes money to make money. Would you trust your portfolio to someone who dressed like a bum... lived in a shack... and drove a beat up pickup truck? :rolleyes:

    :) LOVE
     
  16. Martin

    Martin Senior Veteran

    +12
    Christian
    Married
    Whatever position you hold, the key is that you trust God (or have faith in Him)....
     
  17. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    The scriptures teach that if a man does not work - he should not eat ... I know all about hard work and how we should earn/make our own bread - I don't have a problem with working and saving money and using my money to help others (especially missionaries).

    But I do not see in the scriptures where we are suppose to be striving to build a mansion or business empire or see how many "toys" we can have before we die.

    It is "enough" to have a home, a car and "some" comforts - but there are people out there that are of the mind that God must give them a $30,000 car when an older, "standard" vehicle will do (and is often what He has in mind). There's a great deal of pride that goes in with having a more expensive or luxurious model car. I've seen people practically worship those type cars - washing, waxing and polishing it for hours - when they could be spending time with their family or doing God's work.

    Missionaries are some of the hardest working individuals in the world - they are on the front line of the battle bringing lost souls into the Kingdom. Yet they do without most "materialistic" things that are common to the average (American) home. Many do not even have a car and if they do it's a well-used, often breaking down and in need of repair model. Some don't even live where there is running water or electricity. Why is it that those who are taking the "commission" to heart and going into the uttermost parts of the earth as God has commanded are living without any of the luxuries that some of our poorest Americans have??? They put in long hours, days, weeks and years without any improvement in their living conditions.



    Maybe because they are storing up their riches in heaven.
     
  18. Catchup

    Catchup Active Member

    917
    +1
    Christian
    Private

    You can not see that we are all part of God's picture?

    I may never have what it takes to rough it as a missioner. But I am doing what God as given me the talent to do. This world will only get better when people stop trying to fix the wrongs of their neighbors and instead take a good, hard, long, look in the mirror.

    Do you realize what would happen if everyone in America took your ideas seriously and started living like the poor? Stocks would plunge to the bottomless pits so fast, the down draft might pull us all into hell. People would lose their jobs. Companies would crumble. Our government would falter because of lack of tax monies. You would no longer have the option of caring for your neighbor. Your day and night worry would be ... How can I feed my own family?

    You guys are messing where you shouldn't be messing. You are condemning what you do not understand.

    Now be good American Christians...Go out today and buy something! :D If it makes you feel better give it to the first person you see. But BUY !! Keep America strong. Do not listen to the evil propaganda of the World. We are the most loving, generous, and caring nation on the face of this Earth! :clap:

    God has truly blessed America!

    :) LOVE
     
  19. LilyLamb

    LilyLamb The Lord is My Shepherd

    588
    +1
    I didn't say you had to live like you were poor - those missionaries have everything they "need" to live - if God thought they needed more then wouldn't He bless them like Abraham and give them more??

    Just because you can afford a $150,000 house or $30,000 car doesn't mean God wants you to buy them. We bought a house way less than what we could afford - both our cars are used - but they get us where we are going - just because I can buy designer clothes doesn't mean I have to buy them - as a result living frugally and wisely we are not heavily in debt and are able to contribute more to the furthering the gospel.

    Not striving to have a bigger or newer home or keeping up with the Jones reduces the amount of stress on the family, too. We are happier than so many people we know who live paycheck to paycheck with two car garages and swimming pools.

    I'm not saying you can't have money or even saying that you can't have a LOT of money - but if you are spending that money on unnecessary "show" of wealth while a missionary is unable go to or return to the field because they cannot raise enought support then something is wrong.
     
  20. BigJon

    BigJon Insanely Huge

    71
    +1
    the LOVE of money is the root of all evil, as is anything you put in front of service for God, so there for have as much as you want just use it for him and dont let it distract you from His will for you.
     
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