dawn of light
07-10-2006, 10:00 AM
What is everyone’s opinion on this?

Do you believe that it’s wrong to have too much money and that we should keep ourselves poor to stay humble? Do you believe that rather than try and increase our wealth we should just focus on faith in God?

Or do you believe that money is a tool that can help us reach more people for God? And that God created the beautiful things on this planet for us to enjoy? Do you believe that gaining wealth can be Biblical?

I believe that in order to reach as many people for God as possible we need to use money as a tool to make it happen. I also believe that God wants us to enjoy nice things on the planet like nice homes, vacations, cars etc. I believe that there’s nothing wrong with putting effort into gaining more wealth as long as it’s done with the right purpose. I believe in tithing 10% of everything I make to God. But as I continue to increase my wealth I’ll continue to give more and more (a higher percentage) to God. (By giving to God I mean giving into any organization or cause that works to further God’s purpose on the planet. Examples: churches, missions, orphanages, homeless shelters, etc)

skynes
07-10-2006, 11:06 AM
I don't think money is wrong, but I do think it's easily abused.

Neither having nor not having money is wrong. Its what you do with what little or much you have that counts.

timmyrotter
07-10-2006, 11:10 AM
personally i think our country is too obseed with it. i believe that since our country has the most christians, and the most resources, we should be out there fulfilling the great commission. and i beleive its possible, but wont happen, at least while our wealth is our god. and like it or not the vast majority of christians, that is the case. im just as guilty though.

aliengurl7
07-10-2006, 11:43 AM
Theres nothing wrong with money,just the love of it. Rich people can continue to be rich, they earned it and deserve it.As long as money doesn't distract anybody from following God.

terrasin
07-10-2006, 12:54 PM
I'm actually amazed at the amount of christians who believe money is an evil thing to have, and that to be a good christian, you shouldn't have any. By those standards, it would mean that to be a really good christian, you'd need to be homeless.

There are several places in the Bible that talk about finances:

"A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children, but the wealth of the wicked is stored for the righteous." - Proverbs 13:22

Now I know how much I can spend, and I know how much my wife can spend, and someday, when we have kids, they will EARN everything they spend (>=]), so to have enough money to leave to my childrens children will be no easy task.

Also, concerning money being evil, nowhere in the Bible does it say that money is evil, however, it does say that the LOVE of money is evil.

We live in a money based world and sadly, there isn't much you can do without it. People who have families know how difficult it is when you don't have enough of it and unfortunately, that is usually the case with most middle class families anymore. Especially with prices getting higher, wages staying the same or being cut, and social security on the verge of collapse, not a whole lot of people have hope for financial freedom.

CJ

dawn of light
07-10-2006, 01:18 PM
Well sounds like pretty much all who have responded so far have similar opinions on this...might not make for a lengthy discussion unless someone disagrees ;) ;)

doormonkey
07-10-2006, 04:56 PM
I don't have any problems with Christians having money. I do think far too many waste their money, though. What else can you call it when a family with 2 kids drives around in a freaking Suburban? Or when parents continue pouring money into college for a kid who is too immature and ungrateful to even go to class and try to learn something (this happens to way too many people. I know, because I go to a Christian university)?

We spend too much money on things that don't matter (a late-model car, name-brand jeans, the biggest TV, the newest sound system) while neglecting the needy among us. Drive an older car. Use the money you'll save to help the single mother down the pew from you keep her gas tank full. Buy off brand jeans...and with the money you save, you can buy 2 pairs for someone who truly needs them. Don't buy that big new TV. Spend the time you would have been working to pay for it helping clean the church. Don't buy into the consumer culture that has infected America.

disciple
07-10-2006, 05:44 PM
I'd like some money. :D I could use some, maybe enough to live like "a normal person" or enough to be able to go to the doctor and not have to worry about putting my Dad in debt for the rest of his life, or something.

My family is stricken with debt; almost every day for the last year or so, I've eaten only cereal in the morning, and PB&J for lunch and supper. Almost every day for more than a year. Actually, before it was PB toast for breakfast, and PB&J for supper. Yes, I only recently started eating lunch, by sacrificing how much I eat for supper. Occasionally I'll make a couple frozen burgers, or a 99-cent pizza, but... you all get the point.

My sister? She's the one who's ill (ulcerative colitis) and she barely eats (unless you count her pill regimen)!

If money is evil, may we all starve to death.


We live in a money based world and sadly, there isn't much you can do without it. People who have families know how difficult it is when you don't have enough of it and unfortunately, that is usually the case with most middle class families anymore. Especially with prices getting higher, wages staying the same or being cut, and social security on the verge of collapse, not a whole lot of people have hope for financial freedom.

CJ
Yes, much agreed. Money isn't evil -- in fact, it's a neccessity in order to live in this world. To be wealthy is not evil, it's what you choose to do with the money that counts.

DustinRocks
07-10-2006, 09:21 PM
I like having money I don't make alot of it but also I'm a full time volunteer I really believe God provides your needs and will bless you with little extras. For me this year it was a guitar endorsement and free clothes from hollister and Old Navy. Don't ask me to explain. Also this chick whoI used to hang with mailed me a pair of brand new 7 jeans that she got at her work (nordstroms). Sometimes God just seems to give me the things rather than the money. If I had alot of money I'd prolly waste it on dumb stuff. And It's what you choose to do with the money that counts. I'm hoping to mature in that area.

theelectric3
07-10-2006, 09:23 PM
spreading the Gospel isn't cheap.

God wants us to be blessed, that's not the issue (in my opinion). it's why. so we can be a blessing to others.

why do you want lots of money? to spend it all on yourself? then you're not ready and mature enough for it, i believe.

money, if placed in the wrong hands will destroy you and lives around you.

so often we, as people, look to materialism to find happiness. but then i am reminded of those around the world, with less than us, and are happy.

does that mean get rid of all our stuff to be happy? not necessarily. i believe it reminds us where true joy is found. in God. in our relationships with one another. it's like that saying "money can't buy happiness." and it can't buy health either.

and it's not a "sin" to go out and buy something for yourself, or treat your family and friends to dinner and a movie. it's ok to enjoy it, just don't let it become your god.

DustinRocks
07-10-2006, 10:13 PM
spreading the Gospel isn't cheap.

why do you want lots of money? to spend it all on yourself? then you're not ready and mature enough for it, i believe.

money, if placed in the wrong hands will destroy you and lives around you.


Super Points

Volunteering full time at the Dream Center I've learned finaces are needed. It cost over $ 500,000 amonth to keep our facilities running this is not including Angelus Temple or the music department we privately fund ourself. dreamcenter.org

And you're right likeI said right now Idon't need alot of money and God knows that I can't handle it. I think alot of people need to admit that.

Think the parable of the sower when you're responisible with what God has given you he'll bless you with more.

alorian
07-11-2006, 12:35 AM
Do you believe that it’s wrong to have too much money

What exactly is "too much money"? Just a question.

dawn of light
07-11-2006, 05:32 AM
In my opinion there is no such thing as too much money. If you have enough for yourself and family the rest can be given away. The more money I have, the more I give away. I've heard of someone living off 10% of their income and giving 90% to God. That's awesome!

However some people believe that "too much money" would be anything over enough to live "humbly" and meagerly. "Too much money" would be enough to buy expensive things and not worry about how much they cost.

skynes
07-11-2006, 07:13 AM
In my opinion there is no such thing as too much money. If you have enough for yourself and family the rest can be given away. The more money I have, the more I give away. I've heard of someone living off 10% of their income and giving 90% to God. That's awesome!

However some people believe that "too much money" would be anything over enough to live "humbly" and meagerly. "Too much money" would be enough to buy expensive things and not worry about how much they cost.

humble living and expensive stuff will vary from place to place... so there cant be a hard and fast rule about it.

That leads me to think that in God's eyes there is no 'too much money', simply how you deal with it:

Thankful and generous nature.

Greedy and begrudging offering.

NightCrawler
07-11-2006, 07:45 PM
Well sounds like pretty much all who have responded so far have similar opinions on this...might not make for a lengthy discussion unless someone disagrees ;) ;)


How's this?

I am trying to die. DIE to this world. Fleeing from fleshly desires and all material obligations. Anything in excess must be put off. I don't need it, others do. I KNOW there are some out there that do. So why get rich? Why haven't you given all you have until you only have what you need?

"Sell all your possesions and give to the poor." The rich man went away weeping.

dawn of light
07-12-2006, 05:35 AM
That is the only person in the Bible (as far as I know) that Jesus told to sell everything. Jesus probably told him to do that because he loved his wealth more than anything. That is also one of the only thirteen people that Jesus told to "come follow me". Many Bible scholars believe that Jesus was testing him to see if he had the heart to become one of his twelve disciples. He loved his wealth more than Jesus and wasn't willing to sacrifice it in order to follow Him. I have no doubt that the other twelve would have sold everything in a second if Jesus asked it of them. (Except Judas later on)

skynes
07-12-2006, 12:45 PM
I always thought that the deal with that was Jesus was showing the guy that he WASNT prepared to do everything, not that He expected him to sell everything, He just wanted him to be prepared to.

disciple
07-12-2006, 06:02 PM
I believe I read in that verse that he was in fact told so because Jesus knew his wealth meant the most to him, not keeping God's laws.

NightCrawler
07-12-2006, 10:55 PM
I think it has everything to do with the fact that if someone is tangled down by the world and its things, he will not be devoted to God the way that he should -- his heart and obligations are not bound to God, but to terrestrial things.

So, technically it was a test, but I think it was rather a proof that the rich man just couldn't. (like how someone was saying to me that Jesus wasn't tempted so that he could show that he could turn down sin, but rather to prove that he COULDN'T sin.)

theelectric3
07-13-2006, 05:16 PM
Super Points

Volunteering full time at the Dream Center I've learned finaces are needed. It cost over $ 500,000 amonth to keep our facilities running this is not including Angelus Temple or the music department we privately fund ourself. dreamcenter.org

And you're right likeI said right now Idon't need alot of money and God knows that I can't handle it. I think alot of people need to admit that.

Think the parable of the sower when you're responisible with what God has given you he'll bless you with more.

exactly. be faithful with the little and you what you have.

it's amazing all the Dream Center is able to do and accomplish.

unshakeable15
07-14-2006, 12:09 PM
Then what did Jesus mean when he said that it was easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven?

Remember, the Kingdom of Heaven doesn't refer to the foreverafter, it refers to the kingdom Jesus set up on earth, a kingdom of Christ followers. So, it's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

theelectric3
07-17-2006, 07:09 PM
i think that is because with riches, the temptation is to get complacent. no longer are we seeking Christ or relying on Him like we did when times were tough. suddenly we place confidence in our flesh and riches - what we have accomplished (forgetting that God gave us our talents, ability and wisdom... we are nothing, and have nothing, without Him).

it's not impossible for the rich to enter Heaven... just more difficult because of complacency and false comfort (i believe).

skynes
07-18-2006, 12:22 AM
Then what did Jesus mean when he said that it was easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven?

Remember, the Kingdom of Heaven doesn't refer to the foreverafter, it refers to the kingdom Jesus set up on earth, a kingdom of Christ followers. So, it's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

Baby camel and 20 foot needle.

I think that solves it :)

unshakeable15
07-19-2006, 01:21 PM
i think that is because with riches, the temptation is to get complacent. no longer are we seeking Christ or relying on Him like we did when times were tough. suddenly we place confidence in our flesh and riches - what we have accomplished (forgetting that God gave us our talents, ability and wisdom... we are nothing, and have nothing, without Him).

it's not impossible for the rich to enter Heaven... just more difficult because of complacency and false comfort (i believe).
So then, would that mean it would be better to give it away than keep it? Better rid yourself of the temptation than have it sit around staring you in the face all day? Or is it ok simply not to seek wealth, but if it finds you, let it come and use it for God?

NightCrawler
07-20-2006, 05:16 AM
I think it is best not to seek wealth, but if it finds you, let it come and use it for God. ;)

dawn of light
07-21-2006, 05:33 AM
So then, would that mean it would be better to give it away than keep it? Better rid yourself of the temptation than have it sit around staring you in the face all day? Or is it ok simply not to seek wealth, but if it finds you, let it come and use it for God?

I find that people who love money are going to love it whether they have it or not...poor people love money just as much as wealthy people. How many poor people sit and complain, wishing they had more, thinking just a little more money would make them happy. Then one day they get their money and they're just as miserable.

It is ok to seek wealth as long as you're seeking it for the purpose of furthering the Kingdom of God.

unshakeable15
07-22-2006, 09:52 AM
Ok, i ran across this verse the other day. People above quoted the passage where Jesus was talking to the rich young ruler and said it only applied to him. This one (Luke 12:33-4) doesn't have that caveat.

"Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

It doesn't say anything about seeking wealth for the Kingdom, or using it for God if it does come to you. It simply says, give away your wealth for the poor because your heart will be with your treasure, so best to have no possession and treasure with God than be rich but poor in spirit.

NightCrawler
07-24-2006, 06:42 AM
I am convinced that the more leashes to this world that you put around your neck, the more obstacles will be in your way and make you hesitent to leave where you're at.

dawn of light
07-24-2006, 07:18 AM
note: all bible verses I quote in this post are taken from www.biblegateway.com (http://www.biblegateway.com) in the NKJV.

Luke 12:27-33 (to show this verse in more context)
27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
28 If then God so clothes the grass, which today is in the field and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?
29 “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. 30 For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. 31 But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you.
32 “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys.

These verses are talking about not being worried about worldly needs for yourself but to trust God that He'll provide them. It says that "all these things will be added to you" (the things of this world). Furthermore, He'll give these things to you in abundance that you'll have enough to give away (v. 33) and enough to be clothed like Solomon (v. 27-28 ).

It is better to have no possession and have treasure with God than to be rich and poor in spirit. But wouldn't it be even better to have your heart and treasure with God and still have wealth (resources to finance the Gospel)? Tell me, how is it possible to reach the world with the message of Christ with no resources to do so?


A few more related verses...

Joshua 1:8
8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

Malachi 3:10-12
10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,
That there may be food in My house,
And try Me now in this,”
Says the LORD of hosts,
“ If I will not open for you the windows of heaven
And pour out for you such blessing
That there will not be room enough to receive it.
11 “ And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes,
So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground,
Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,”
Says the LORD of hosts;
12 And all nations will call you blessed,
For you will be a delightful land,”
Says the LORD of hosts.

Isaiah 1:19
19 If you are willing and obedient,
You shall eat the good of the land;

Those verses show pretty clearly to me that God wants us to be prosperous but the prerequisite seems to be obedience first. Why would God bless someone (financially) if their heart is not in the right place regarding Him? God wants us to show Him that He is far more important than any worldly thing.

I realize that I only quoted Old Testament verses, usually when I'm trying to do research on a topic I like to have a good mix of OT and NT verses but I can't think of any at the moment. I'll come back in a couple hours (or a couple days) and try to remember all those verses I have swimming around in my mind.

NightCrawler
07-24-2006, 08:18 AM
note: all bible verses I quote in this post are taken from www.biblegateway.com (http://www.biblegateway.com) in the NKJV.

Luke 12:27-33 (to show this verse in more context)
27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
28 If then God so clothes the grass, which today is in the field and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?
29 “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. 30 For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. 31 But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you.
32 “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys.

These verses are talking about not being worried about worldly needs for yourself but to trust God that He'll provide them. It says that "all these things will be added to you" (the things of this world). Furthermore, He'll give these things to you in abundance that you'll have enough to give away (v. 33) and enough to be clothed like Solomon (v. 27-28 ).

It is better to have no possession and have treasure with God than to be rich and poor in spirit. But wouldn't it be even better to have your heart and treasure with God and still have wealth (resources to finance the Gospel)? Tell me, how is it possible to reach the world with the message of Christ with no resources to do so?

No resources? Say I give my money to the church. The church uses the money. I won't have it, but it will be used for God. The world will be reached through the Kingdom of Heaven -- the Church.


A few more related verses...

Joshua 1:8
8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

Malachi 3:10-12
10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,
That there may be food in My house,
And try Me now in this,”
Says the LORD of hosts,
“ If I will not open for you the windows of heaven
And pour out for you such blessing
That there will not be room enough to receive it.
11 “ And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes,
So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground,
Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,”
Says the LORD of hosts;
12 And all nations will call you blessed,
For you will be a delightful land,”
Says the LORD of hosts.

Isaiah 1:19
19 If you are willing and obedient,
You shall eat the good of the land;

Those verses show pretty clearly to me that God wants us to be prosperous but the prerequisite seems to be obedience first. Why would God bless someone (financially) if their heart is not in the right place regarding Him? God wants us to show Him that He is far more important than any worldly thing.

I realize that I only quoted Old Testament verses, usually when I'm trying to do research on a topic I like to have a good mix of OT and NT verses but I can't think of any at the moment. I'll come back in a couple hours (or a couple days) and try to remember all those verses I have swimming around in my mind.
You can read 'prosperous' in each of those verses to mean something other than worldly wealth and riches. As in, not monetary or material accumulations -- but rather in spiritual blessings.

dawn of light
07-24-2006, 09:18 AM
No resources? Say I give my money to the church. The church uses the money. I won't have it, but it will be used for God. The world will be reached through the Kingdom of Heaven -- the Church.

Exactly. The more money you have, the more you can give away. Therefore the more that can be used for God. If all Christians believe that it's wrong to achieve wealth for the purpose of financing the Gospel the funds are going to be pretty meager. Show me one example of a modern day church that believes (and teaches) that seeking wealth is wrong and I'll show you a church that isn't reaching as many people as they should and could if they had more resources.


You can read 'prosperous' in each of those verses to mean something other than worldly wealth and riches. As in, not monetary or material accumulations -- but rather in spiritual blessings.

It'd be nice to see some scripture to back that up, that way we have something to base your assumption on.

What about "good of the land"? In the OT, that usually refered to a land that was flowing with milk and honey (like the promised land). A land that is flowing with milk and honey usually means there is a lot of cows (cows=wealth, back then) and a lot of flowers (healthy land)! Why would God give them a land like that (and promise it to us) if He didn't want us to prosper and have (monetary) wealth?

Luke 6:38
38 Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”

What will be measured back to you? It. What you gave will be measured back to you. What if you gave wealth and riches? According to this verse, wealth and riches will be measured back to you.

Ecclesiastes 5:18-20
18 Here is what I have seen: It is good and fitting for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labor in which he toils under the sun all the days of his life which God gives him; for it is his heritage. 19 As for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, and given him power to eat of it, to receive his heritage and rejoice in his labor—this is the gift of God. 20 For he will not dwell unduly on the days of his life, because God keeps him busy with the joy of his heart.

Hmmm, it seems pretty clear to me. I don't know what else to say. When you read scripture it needs to be read in context. And under the context of these verses (and the ones in my previous post) it seems to me to be talking about financial and material things perhaps as well as spiritual blessings. Throughout the Bible when God blesses people usually it comes in multiple ways, spiritual and financial.

I believe that any doctrine or belief needs to be backed up with multiple verses, and when looking at the Bible as a whole, I see a God who loves to bless His children in every way possible, and a God who is so passionate about loving people and wanting them to turn to Him. God wants us to enjoy the amazing things on this earth afterall, He created this world for us. I see a God who wants His children to help return the lost to Him. Reaching the world for Christ is impossible without money.

NightCrawler
07-27-2006, 07:20 AM
Exactly. The more money you have, the more you can give away. Therefore the more that can be used for God. If all Christians believe that it's wrong to achieve wealth for the purpose of financing the Gospel the funds are going to be pretty meager. Show me one example of a modern day church that believes (and teaches) that seeking wealth is wrong and I'll show you a church that isn't reaching as many people as they should and could if they had more resources.

I never said it was wrong to achieve wealth for the ministry, I said to seek wealth is wrong. I work two jobs, I don't do it simply for the money. If it were for the money I wouldn't be working at Wendy's. I work because I am called to use my hands and minister. I acquire money, but I feel like I am really just earning it for two reasons: to pay for college (so I can get formal education for seminary, eventually) and to give to others. I don't really see that as seeking wealth. I see that as being an active Christian.

It'd be nice to see some scripture to back that up, that way we have something to base your assumption on.
Well, re-read the passages and put in some synonyms, like 'good success' does not mean with necessity that it is 'success' in the world's eyes -- money, things, other lusts fulfilled. I doubt God would support worldly desires. So I put in some synonyms.

Why I wouldn't think that God would really support seeking wealth is seen here:

BTW, these are all from biblegateway.com
Matthew 6 [niv]:
19"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22"The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money."

Amplified ver:
24"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stand by and be devoted to the one and despise and be against the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (deceitful riches, money, possessions, or whatever is trusted in)."

So what I take from that is that one can use money, one can have money, but one should not seek money. Why? Because you are not devoted to money by any means; according to this, you are to 'hate' it, 'despise' it. You wouldn't seek something you 'despise', right?

What about "good of the land"? In the OT, that usually refered to a land that was flowing with milk and honey (like the promised land). A land that is flowing with milk and honey usually means there is a lot of cows (cows=wealth, back then) and a lot of flowers (healthy land)! Why would God give them a land like that (and promise it to us) if He didn't want us to prosper and have (monetary) wealth?

I never said that wealth was bad. I said seeking it. I believe God wants to bless us more than we can ever imagine. If He gives me wealth, I will not use it for myself, really. I personally take this monetary wealth on more of a spiritual tense: I recieve money, but it is as a token of God's love. I won't store it up for myself, because if I am seeking myself then I am becoming spiritually dead.

Luke 6:38
38 Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”

What will be measured back to you? It. What you gave will be measured back to you. What if you gave wealth and riches? According to this verse, wealth and riches will be measured back to you.

yeah.

Ecclesiastes 5:18-20
18 Here is what I have seen: It is good and fitting for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labor in which he toils under the sun all the days of his life which God gives him; for it is his heritage. 19 As for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, and given him power to eat of it, to receive his heritage and rejoice in his labor—this is the gift of God. 20 For he will not dwell unduly on the days of his life, because God keeps him busy with the joy of his heart.
The joy of his heart? If my joy is in wealth, what the crap?

Hmmm, it seems pretty clear to me. I don't know what else to say. When you read scripture it needs to be read in context. And under the context of these verses (and the ones in my previous post) it seems to me to be talking about financial and material things perhaps as well as spiritual blessings. Throughout the Bible when God blesses people usually it comes in multiple ways, spiritual and financial.

I believe that any doctrine or belief needs to be backed up with multiple verses, and when looking at the Bible as a whole, I see a God who loves to bless His children in every way possible, and a God who is so passionate about loving people and wanting them to turn to Him. God wants us to enjoy the amazing things on this earth afterall, He created this world for us. I see a God who wants His children to help return the lost to Him. Reaching the world for Christ is impossible without money.

I'll get you more verses when I feel like it.

Here is something I DID say earlier:
I think it is best not to seek wealth, but if it finds you, let it come and use it for God.

terrasin
07-27-2006, 07:42 AM
Nightcrawler, You should really read this:

http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a394/terrasin/BookGPFP.jpg

CJ

dawn of light
07-27-2006, 07:43 AM
Can you tell me more about that book CJ? I've never heard of this author, has he written anything else?

(btw, I my beliefs about finances were really changed when reading the book The Midas Touch by Kenneth E Hagin. I do like to read multiple views on doctrinal beliefs though and pray about it, weigh it against scripture, etc.)

I'm always curious about new books, I never want to stop learning.

NightCrawler
07-27-2006, 10:16 AM
Can you tell me more about that book CJ? I've never heard of this author, has he written anything else?
Yes, please.

I'm always curious about new books, I never want to stop learning.
Amen!

terrasin
07-28-2006, 03:23 AM
Can you tell me more about that book CJ? I've never heard of this author, has he written anything else?
Gorman is a minister recently from TN (his house and base was destroyed in Katrina) and apart from being a minister, is also involved with a business that I am also involved with. He's one of the most entertaining people I've ever met and has several books and tapes, both surrounding faith and business that he puts out. One of the main reasons he put this book out was because, since he has his own business, he would constantly be asked by Christians things like "Is it ok to have money being a Christian" and "How much money should a Christian have?" So he wrote a firm, scripturally based book on it.

The book has a lot of great information in it. In the later parts, it gets into the importance of tithing and the different types of giving and the differences between them. The one thing that did put me off a bit about the book was that he uses examples of people who sent in letters talking about how they have given to his ministry and been blessed. It kind of gives the impression that the book is about donating to his ministry, though while I'm sure it's appriciated, I know that was not the intention of adding it to the book.

I would seriously suggest getting this book if you want an indepth and serious look at Biblical finances.

You can get it from www.markgorman.com

CJ

NightCrawler
07-28-2006, 10:57 AM
Let's also look at Pentecost.

People were filled with the Holy Spirt, then they sold everything they had and made sure everyone had what they needed. Boom, coincedence?

terrasin
07-28-2006, 11:24 AM
Now days that would be pure stupidity. Sell everything you have? Going to be spiritual and homeless. You can't be a good samaritan anymore without $$$cash$$$.

CJ

NightCrawler
07-28-2006, 04:10 PM
Now days that would be pure stupidity. Sell everything you have? Going to be spiritual and homeless. You can't be a good samaritan anymore without $$$cash$$$.

CJ

You think living the world is any better? Paul and many other apostles were starving and on the streets. Jesus said He had no place to call His own/lay His head. The disciples said "We left everything we had to follow you!" Jesus reassured them, You will get many times more back, in the next age, eternal life.

You can't give your life (your time and your energy)? Money is something that God uses, but you do not need it. Yup, I'll say it again. You don't need money!

Again I say, God will bless you and you will be less entangled with and leashed on to the world if you just plain don't seek it or treasure it (store it or otherwise keep it for yourself).

Who says being homeless is bad?

disciple
07-28-2006, 06:51 PM
Who says being homeless is bad?
Please tell me that was an exaggeration. People die because of homelessness, people who could have lived on longer preaching the Word.

terrasin
07-28-2006, 08:50 PM
Who says being homeless is bad?
Sorry, this makes me laugh. Obviously you've never been homeless before. I have. In another country on another continant at that. Believe me when I say that it's not fun at all. Two other times I've been forced to live out of my truck. Once in the middle of winter in the frozen north, once in the desert durring spring. Trust me when I say that A: it's not fun. B: it will do nothing now days to help your witness to others. C: times aren't like when the disciples were homeless. D: the only thing you have to look forward to is things getting better. Things getting better for a homeless person require cash. So you are back to square one.

But by all means, if you believe otherwise, go ahead and sell your computer and move out of your house and believe what you will. But while you're praying for a miracle, remember that you could have been providing that miracle for someone who has been praying for one for a long time.

CJ

john316
07-29-2006, 08:12 AM
In my opinion how much you give or dont give should depend on how God leads you to give.I know ppl who did sell everything they had and sent into the mission field...it was what God wanted in their life and there needs were always meet...however they got alot of support from ppl who give to their ministry...if everyone quit their jobs who would fund ministries like the rescue mission,salvation army and the many churches who help the needy.

I see a good example in Luke...in chapter 18 a rich young ruler asks Jesus how he can gain eternal life...Jesus told him to sell all he had and give to the poor. apparently he loved his riches more then God because he couldnt do it. In chapter 19 we see that Zacchaeus tells Jesus that he will sell half of his goods and give to the poor...Did Jesus tell Zacchaeus that wasnt good enough...that he had to sell all he had?...No...Jesus saw that Zacchaeus didnt love his possessions more then God. I my opinion Jesus may not have commanded the rich young ruler to sell all he had if he had seen his heart was in the right place with God.

I feel that everything i have is Gods in the first place so i will give as i feel the Holy Spirit leading.

NightCrawler
07-29-2006, 06:41 PM
Disciple: Yes.
CJ: Umm... try replying to the rest of my post?

I feel that everything i have is Gods in the first place so i will give as i feel the Holy Spirit leading.
Amen!

terrasin
07-29-2006, 07:36 PM
CJ: Umm... try replying to the rest of my post?

I pretty much did with that post and the previous posts I've made in this forum.

As I have said before, I firmly believe that God wants to bless us financially so that we can use money for both spreading the word and also so we can enjoy the things this world provides for us while we are here. Kings of old died with a love of money over a love of God. Does that mean that anyone who has a ton of money is going to hell? Not hardly. There is a difference between having money and loving life, and loving money more than God.

"My contention is that most of the people who love money, don't have any." -Mark Gorman

CJ

dawn of light
07-31-2006, 06:05 AM
You think living the world is any better? Paul and many other apostles were starving and on the streets. Jesus said He had no place to call His own/lay His head. The disciples said "We left everything we had to follow you!" Jesus reassured them, You will get many times more back, in the next age, eternal life.

Actually Jesus owned a home in Capernaum, the only reason He "had no place to lay His head" was because He was travelling to another city.

"My contention is that most of the people who love money, don't have any." -Mark Gorman

Exactly! That's what I was trying to say earlier.

One of my personal goals is to become wealthy enough so that I don't have to work, and volunteer at my church full time, while still giving to God's ministry. A short term goal (before I'm 30) is to give God $5000 a year over and above my regular tithe (10% of my salary).

NightCrawler
07-31-2006, 10:17 PM
Faith and risk go hand in hand. If you don't have risk, you will not have faith. Have faith that God will provide what you need. It takes more faith if you have less money, so what I am saying is do not go into excess -- even if you don't 'love' it. Just do not pursue it for its own value.

terrasin
08-01-2006, 07:54 AM
If that is what you choose to believe, no one will try to stop you. But you will miss out on so much more that God has for you, never be able to take your kids anywhere, never go on vacations, have nice things, get new cars, etc, etc. Yes, they are material, but I don't believe for one minute that God wouldn't want us to enjoy them while here.

CJ

dawn of light
08-01-2006, 08:06 AM
God created the earth and everything here for us to enjoy. John 10:10 "I have come that you might have life and have it in more abundance..." (I paraphrased that).

Abundance means (in the greek) inumerable in quantity and superior in quality. Everything that life has to offer, God wants us to have the best!

disciple
08-01-2006, 11:24 AM
Yes, they are material, but I don't believe for one minute that God wouldn't want us to enjoy them while here.

CJ
In that case, buy me an XBOX. ;)

No, but seriously, I agree. I think video games, movies, and stuff like that -- those are god examples for a person like me.

And vacations, but I can't legally drive yet, so yeah. ;)

I think it is a bit too far to assume God would not want us to be happy in our time here and enjoy some comforts this world has to offer, like air conditioning. :P

unshakeable15
08-02-2006, 11:51 AM
But at the same time, should we sit in our large houses with flat screen HDTVs, Olympic-size swimming pool and a staff of 5 if we can live more meagerly (smaller TV, or no TV, smaller pool, or none, smaller house that fits your family) and give that extra money we would have spent to a missionary, to fund a young homeless man through college, to build a shelter for the oppressed.

How much good could Bill Gates do if he gave away his wealth and lived more meagerly than he does. How many homeless could be set free from their penniless ? How many sick could be cured? How many oppressed could be freed from their situations?

The Lord may choose to bless us, but to seek wealth with the idea that God is blessing you is wrong. You may just be talented at making money. It may not be a blessing at all, just smart money-sense.

Better to live for God and never be rich than to live seeking riches and lose God in the process.

dawn of light
08-02-2006, 12:17 PM
Where do you draw the line then? If that's what you want to do, why not live in an even smaller house? (They pack amazing amounts of people into tiny apartments in China). The extra money could go to God. Why not eat a diet of rice, beans, and vegatables instead of steak and potatoes? The extra money could go to God. I totally see what you're saying, I hate it when people waste money on things they don't even want or use. But I think it's ok to allow yourself a certain level of comfort in your life (as long as you're continually giving to God) while ensuring that God is your priority.

Better to live for God and never be rich than to live seeking riches and lose God in the process.

Absolutely! Living for God should be far more important than riches. Sometimes God calls people to give an incredible amount of money to His work though, and the only way to do that is to make an incredible amount of money.

NightCrawler
08-02-2006, 01:04 PM
If that is what you choose to believe, no one will try to stop you. But you will miss out on so much more that God has for you, never be able to take your kids anywhere, never go on vacations, have nice things, get new cars, etc, etc. Yes, they are material, but I don't believe for one minute that God wouldn't want us to enjoy them while here.

CJ

Yes, because I have deluded myself into some heretical, backward thinking. Backward maybe, but mainly to the world. I never said not to enjoy it when you have the chance. By all means, enjoy it! But do NOT seek it! Go read Matthew 6. Don't chase after money, don't seek it. Seek God! Worrying about money isn't good, nor is storing up money so you don't need to have faith in God that He will provide.

God created the earth and everything here for us to enjoy. John 10:10 "I have come that you might have life and have it in more abundance..." (I paraphrased that).

Abundance means (in the greek) inumerable in quantity and superior in quality. Everything that life has to offer, God wants us to have the best!
Do you want me to jump on ya for taking that outta context?
In that case, buy me an XBOX. ;)

No, but seriously, I agree. I think video games, movies, and stuff like that -- those are god examples for a person like me.

And vacations, but I can't legally drive yet, so yeah. ;)

I think it is a bit too far to assume God would not want us to be happy in our time here and enjoy some comforts this world has to offer, like air conditioning. :P
Ya ever go to youth group or hear a sermon or anything like that about God wanting us to get out of our 'comfort zone'? Umm, well... from what I heard, they were right. But again, enjoy this life. Just don't seek 'things' to fulfill it.

RE: Mike and Rachel --
Exactly. Downsize. For the benefit of others, that they may not be in poverty, and for yourself that you may not spend so much time on things (i.e. passive worship) that you don't keep God as your focus.

P.S.
I wonder if John the Baptist got this much flack.

disciple
08-02-2006, 04:50 PM
flak* No, he got more. :D


Kidding, sorry, I needed to start with a joke. :P


Ya ever go to youth group or hear a sermon or anything like that about God wanting us to get out of our 'comfort zone'? Umm, well... from what I heard, they were right.
I haven't been to a Youth meeting or a sermon in years.

But again, enjoy this life. Just don't seek 'things' to fulfill it.
Agreed.

skynes
08-03-2006, 12:07 AM
When does the 'risk' stop and testing God start?

John the Baptist didn't get flak, he got a platter.

dawn of light
08-03-2006, 05:57 AM
Do you want me to jump on ya for taking that outta context?

I didn't take it outta context.

John 10:9-11
9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.

NightCrawler
08-03-2006, 07:01 AM
I didn't take it outta context.

John 10:9-11
9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
Well, let's see what is implied when you post that verse in this thread. 'I came so that you can get material wealth because I want to bless you.' Or am I mistaken over what you were trying to convey?

dawn of light
08-03-2006, 07:38 AM
No that's not what I was trying to convey. I was trying to convey that He came to give us more abundant life, in every area of life, which happens to include finances among other things. I believe that God wants us to have blessing in all areas, spiritual, mental/emotional, and physical.

NightCrawler
08-03-2006, 08:40 AM
John the Baptist wore the bare minimum: camel skins. He didn't eat common, or even uncommonly luxurious food: locusts and wild honey. You don't get much cheaper than that. He was humble and didn't require things, no need for them.

"...'Til the king took the head of this Jesus-freak."





So, umm... repent! The Lord is coming soon. ;)

-Jon


No that's not what I was trying to convey. I was trying to convey that He came to give us more abundant life, in every area of life, which happens to include finances among other things. I believe that God wants us to have blessing in all areas, spiritual, mental/emotional, and physical.
Okay... so do I.

But I think of the money I have (that God hass thorouhgly blessed me with) as God's money. So why would I spend it selfishly? (as in, purely for myself)

dawn of light
08-03-2006, 08:55 AM
I see where you're coming from, I think of it as God's money too. But are you saying that you want to live with absolutely the bare minimum? Because that's what you seem to be saying from what I'm understanding. Do you live in a nice house? Buy nice clothes or go out to dinner once in a while? That could be seen as wasteful with the ideas you're presenting. What did you have for dinner last night? Anything more than rice and a salad (without dressing) could be seen as wasting your money. Where do you draw the line?

NightCrawler
08-03-2006, 10:47 AM
I see where you're coming from, I think of it as God's money too. But are you saying that you want to live with absolutely the bare minimum? Because that's what you seem to be saying from what I'm understanding.
It is my goal to live on only what I need, and make excellent use (by giving, mainly) with any excess. Goal, I haven't gotten there yet.

Do you live in a nice house? Buy nice clothes or go out to dinner once in a while? That could be seen as wasteful with the ideas you're presenting. What did you have for dinner last night? Anything more than rice and a salad (without dressing) could be seen as wasting your money. Where do you draw the line?

I live in a nice house. I don't own it. My parents, however, are letting me stay in the basement free of charge. I own one pair of shoes for work (ordered FOR work, slip resistant) and my other pair is falling apart and has huge holes in them. I don't have much nice clothes. I had chicken that my parents cooked for me. I only eat at Wendy's, typically, when I do go out to eat. Ya know why? Because I get over 50% of the meal for free. (I work there) And even when I do, I don't entirely feel kosher about spending $1.56 to make sure I am full.

I am already fairly wasteful. But to say that being wasteful or self-seeking would be a) unjustified [even though I live in a rich society] and b) a lie.

Essentially, what I am saying is that we have our lives fairly handed to us. Or maybe it is just me. I am aware of this and I am thoroughly disturbed by it, while I know of dozens of homeless in my town alone. While I know of millions elsewhere. Looking to the Bible, I find no support of living in luxury, for it is wasteful and not being a good steward of God's money.

So I am trying to head in the opposite direction from what my TV (when I watched it) would tell me to be: rich, wasteful and self-seeking.

dawn of light
08-03-2006, 11:17 AM
There's a difference between living wastefully and living comfortably. I don't agree with living wastefully either. You seem like the type of person that would want to minister to homeless people and buy them food and clothing and awesome things like that. You seem like to want to be the type of person that they can relate to. But don't you want business people and "well-off" people to be able to relate to you as well? Those people need Jesus just as much as the people living on the street.

When people look at our lives as Christians they should see something that they want. We should be presenting ourselves to people in a way that says "I have something that's amazing. Something that changed my life. I have Jesus, and if you accept Jesus you can have an amazing life as well. (on top of being saved from hell)" Not many people will say "you're living on the bare minimum? Well that sounds like fun, maybe I'll accept Jesus so I can live in poverty too." People don't always understand all the spiritual stuff that Christians do, right away. They don't understand about "being washed by the blood of the lamb" and other Christian-ese sayings. But they do understand the things that we can show them like joy, hope, love, acceptance, forgiveness, and yes, even a nice home and nice things.

God created the earth and everything in it for us to enjoy. He WANTS us to have a great life on this earth!

disciple
08-03-2006, 01:15 PM
I recall Lydia in the bible; she had to have been at leats close to rich (purple die was expensive back then) because she made purple robes and the like. I know this is short, but I also remember a few others in the New Testament who lived comfortably and sheltered other believers who traveled in and out of the area, or held some of the first Christian church meetings in their [sizeable] homes. Maybe my memory is distorting it, but I recall reading about Christians like those, Christians that Paul lauded. *shrug*

NightCrawler
08-03-2006, 07:51 PM
There's a difference between living wastefully and living comfortably. I don't agree with living wastefully either. You seem like the type of person that would want to minister to homeless people and buy them food and clothing and awesome things like that. You seem like to want to be the type of person that they can relate to. But don't you want business people and "well-off" people to be able to relate to you as well? Those people need Jesus just as much as the people living on the street.
Good point.

When people look at our lives as Christians they should see something that they want. We should be presenting ourselves to people in a way that says "I have something that's amazing. Something that changed my life. I have Jesus, and if you accept Jesus you can have an amazing life as well. (on top of being saved from hell)" Not many people will say "you're living on the bare minimum? Well that sounds like fun, maybe I'll accept Jesus so I can live in poverty too." People don't always understand all the spiritual stuff that Christians do, right away. They don't understand about "being washed by the blood of the lamb" and other Christian-ese sayings. But they do understand the things that we can show them like joy, hope, love, acceptance, forgiveness, and yes, even a nice home and nice things.

I agree. But think about the reasons.

On a side note, I will refer to a guy I used to argue with on another forum. He sins so that grace may increase, unbiblical. Now, his rational is that he is going to sin because he is a sinner. And that Christ covers over all his sins. So why try?

The other thing he said (this is why I mention this) is because when he is witnessing to non-christians, how does he want the gospel presented? A lifestyle with a ton of rules? Or freedom?

He claimed that showing people his freedom ['in Christ'] would attract them more than a bunch of rules. While true, it is still unbiblical to live a life of sin -- unrepentant heart.

So what does this have to do with this thread? Well, we could make the gospel look more appealing; for example, by saying that everyone can store up treaures on earth, where their heart will be.

I don't want to live in poverty, however :P

dawn of light
08-09-2006, 06:50 AM
So what does this have to do with this thread? Well, we could make the gospel look more appealing; for example, by saying that everyone can store up treaures on earth, where their heart will be.

I understand what you're saying. Don't "lure them in" so to speak with promises of wealth. As much as I believe that God wants to bless everyone, I wouldn't go so far to say that someone will definitely become wealthy if they become a Christian. God often blesses people by "blessing the work of your hands" and if someone not producing anything, how could God bless it? Becoming a Christian doesn't ensure wealth.

unshakeable15
08-09-2006, 03:20 PM
As for the point that the "well-to-do" and "wealthy" wouldn't be able to relate to a Christian who has given all they have to the poor, i disagree. Ask anyone on the street, literally anybody, and 90% (or more) will say that Mother Teresa was amazing. She lived meagerly and lived for the destitute and dying, to help make their lives better in their last moments. And people like the Princess of Wales (Diana) lauded her for it and even worked with her in other areas of need.

There will be some who think you are crazy, but am i supposed to live my life worried about scaring people off of the Gospel of God? i doubt it. i'm sure God cares more about my heart towards him than he does about how i present myself towards those around me.