Day 87 - Issue 42

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1 Timothy 6:9-10

'People who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.'

This is one of the most misquoted verses in the whole Bible. It is often said that money is the root of all evil. It isn’t. It’s the love of money that’s the real problem. Money is neither good nor bad. It is part of the world that God has made and like everything that he has given us it can be used for our benefit or to our detriment. Time, sex, possessions, creation – and anything else you care to name – can be used to build or to destroy. It’s the love of money that is the problem, because it’s the worst possible love affair. Money promises so much and delivers so little. It promises happiness, security and peace but it cannot buy any of them. The problem with loving money too much is that it becomes like salt water: it leaves you permanently thirsty.

It’s no wonder that Paul speaks so bluntly about money. He is keen that Timothy shouldn’t fall for the temptation himself and that he should teach clearly on the subject to his congregations. In our deeply materialistic society, it is absolutely crucial that our churches should also hear clear, positive preaching about money. To be honest, I get nervous when I hear ministers talking about their reluctance to preach on the subject. I believe such teaching is vitally important if we are to grow in our Christian faith. Our society will constantly try to lure us into wanting more and more money and we need to be strong in standing up to it.

Jesus spoke often on the subject of money. When he pointed out that it was impossible to serve both God and money, he got right to the heart of the issue. You can only do one or the other. Having money, even a great deal of money, is not the issue. It’s the love of it that is the problem; what God wants is that we should have a love affair with him and him alone.

Question: How important is money to you?

Prayer: Lord God our Father, thank you for the money that you have entrusted to me. Help me to use it wisely and never to allow it to dominate my life. Amen

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