Myths about Money
We had an interesting post-Bible study discussion in our Young Adults group last night about money – and in particular giving & tithing. So I thought I’d fire out a few blog posts over the next week with the hope of sparking chat, thought, debate & a search for God’s truth.
First… let's start with some commonly accepted myths about money.
Myth 1: Money is neutral and depersonalised
Our survey says “eh-eh.” If money was neutral we wouldn’t give status to people who had it or ever be tempted to covet our friend’s salary, car or house. If money was neutral it wouldn’t be possible to be embarrassed about what type of mobile phone you own or what clothes you wear.
Jesus teaching on the matter is simple and hard-hitting (Matthew 6:19-24).
- Money is a power with a life of its own; it must be taken seriously.
- He uses the word “Mammon” which is translated Money (note it has a capital “M”) and by doing this Jesus gives it a personal and spiritual character – it’s a rival god!
- It is a power seeking to dominate us… it is a force capable of inspiring devotion… it is seductive and can win your heart.
- And like all demons… it wants us to deny its existence.
The love of stuff is a real threat to our relationship with God… here are a sample of Jesus warnings.
“Woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.” Luke 6:24
“No-one can serve two masters. Either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God & Money.” Luke 16:13
“Be on guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12:15
God is not neutral or quiet on money... it is dangerous... it seeks to control you... it wants to make you its servant. His teaching is very clear and challenging and I often find myself tempted to tone it down because it makes me feel uncomfortable.
It is not difficult to understand what the Bible has to say about money… but it is difficult, challenging & scary to live out. Jesus’ counter-cultural words not only fly in the face of everything society, family, friends & even the church at times teach us, but also challenge our privileged status in the world.
(Tomorrow… Myth 2: Money isn’t a problem for me -I don’t have any yet)