Managing money can be of benefit. For a large number of people, finances are one of the most problematic areas faced in life. When the dollars don’t add up, stress shows up and impacts our mind health, marriages, daily lives, and those around us.
No one wants to live under that pressure. How do we take the resources we have and do all we need to do? Greater than that, does God have any advice on the topic? The answer is a big YES!
How the Bible Speaks About Managing Money
The reason why many people miss the Bible’s instruction on money management is because it’s not always apparent. It requires general understanding that when the Bible speaks about things like treasure, wealth, and substance in certain places, those also relate to money as well as earthly goods.
Obvious scriptures about money are mostly in the form of warnings such as Hebrews 13:5 which states “Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have…”. This can lead to the mindset that God doesn’t understand our needs or that we are to accept our current condition and not take action.
God not only sees what we are experiencing, He understands. In so many ways He provides a landscape of prevention by encouraging us to not owe anyone anything except love (Romans 13:8), not to co-sign for someone else (Proverbs 22:26-27), etc.
The Difference Between Money and Wealth
Money is a part of wealth, but wealth doesn’t always mean lots of cash on hand. Wealth is measured by all the assets that we hold that have value. Think house, jewelry, savings, etc.
When in doubt, ask yourself if what you have can be exchanged for money or be put up as collateral.
When the Bible speaks of wealth, it’s not always talking about our money and possessions. God also wants us to see the wealth in the intangible. It may seem a little crazy when what you need is a physical thing, but wealth in the spirit is priceless!
People with Managing Money Issues in the Bible
Did you know that managing money wasn’t just a modern day issue? Ananias and Sapphira had issues with releasing their wealth to God’s purpose.
When everyone else who was a part of the church were selling all they had and donating it to the Kingdom, this couple held back part of their proceeds from the sale of their property. They decided to go back on their committment to God and then lie about it. Acts 5:1-11 tells of their end.
The prodigal son of Luke 15:11-24 took his wealth before time and wasted it all. He found himself in the midst of a famine where he should have been okay had he either stayed home under his father’s care or managed his money well.
Instead he had to take a job serving pigs. He became so hungry that even the slop the pigs ate looked good to him. Thankfully he came to his senses and returned home.
These are just a couple but the point is that lack of money is not the only issue we face. Greed can set in or we can fail to trust God with all that we have. Wealth inherited or gained too early can be deadly if we are not wise enough or mature to handle it.
The desire to get rich can lead us to habits or desires that don’t align with God.
The answer to all of this is seeing what the Bible has to say and applying it.
Bible Verses from Proverbs About Money
The Book of Proverbs is a good starting point when looking for scriptures related to finances. The verses are quick reads with powerful insight. Through them we learn about managing money from the perspectives of how we earn, how we save, and how we honor God with our wealth. Here are a few:
“Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it. “
“The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.”
“Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.”
“Precious treasure and oil are in a wise man’s dwelling, but a foolish man devours it.”
“A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.”
“Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household, but he who hates bribes will live.”
“Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.”
Each one of these verses focuses on a different area, but we can see that intentional action is required.
Getting Started Managing Money Based on Biblical Principles
The next step is application. What is your takeaway from these verses? How can you apply them to your pace of earning money, savings, etc.?
God left us clear instructions that we should be wise in how we handle our monies. We should plan for the unforeseen and be ready for the winter seasons.
We should be honest in how we earn money and not a lover of money to the point that we’ll do anything to obtain it. We should put our trust in God by sowing into Kingdom ground and relying on His guidance through the Holy Spirit and the hands of those graced to be in financial advisory positions.
There are some things that we can do on our own as well such as budgeting and creating a “rainy day” fund. We can pray and surrender this area to God. We can asks for wisdom in the same manner we asks for other areas of our lives. Finally, we can choose to allow God to guide us to provision.