About ten years ago, I started a new fresh life in MO. I build up from the ground, but I also was able to live comfortably, slightly above the paycheck-to-paycheck stage. Generally, I had money left over and was ready for minor emergencies should one show itself. Then when I got married, I managed to help my wife to get to that point and now she is a month ahead on all her bills. I started the Dave Ramsey method and had hit the milestone of first $1,000 savings and started paying down debt. Then the pandemic came along. Instead of falling to the pandemic, we made it work for us. We built up our savings and started a long-term savings as well. Recently we had to discontinue paying down debt due to decrease in income and two major auto repairs that are paid. We feel financially okay but could be better.
Word from God
1 Timothy 6:10
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
Five weeks ago, we started a new series titled “Life According to…”. It is a five-part series and each week we will learn one secret of life and as we move forward how each secret relates to the other.
The first week of the series we learn the first secret and the anchor is “Faith”. Nothing happens less you have faith. The second week, we learned about the second secret of life – Family. We discovered that families started back in the book of Genesis with Adam & Eve. This makes us descendants of Adam & Eve, but we also belong to God. The third week we learned of fitness. We took a week off and this is our fourth week.
As we look at our passage today, we look at Paul condemns the greedy motivation of the false teachers. Paul claims that these people have erred in their understanding of doctrine, as well as in their conduct.
Love of money (not money itself) is the root of all kinds of evil. Let’s think about that just for a moment and how money can get us into trouble. I think of debt, bankruptcy, greed, and even selfishness.
Just look at the pandemic of recent. Some, not all, got all this extra pandemic cash along with protections from evictions, and they wonder why they are being evicted now. Unemployed getting all this extra cash on unemployment and they are saying why should I go back to work I am making more money not working. This has led to an employee shortage or at least part of the reason.
It is reported that 42% or 51 million Americans have increased their credit card debt since Covid. 44% of these people blame it on the pandemic according to a study by CNBC. In order to help people, recover from the national disaster of Covid, the government has spent over 6 trillion dollars. The treasury has had to borrow substantial amounts of money.
Paul here describes a deep desire and commitment to possess money over and against loyalty and love for God. Like the young widows who put their desire to remarry before Christ
1 Timothy 5:11 But the younger widow’s refuse: for when they have begun to wax wanton against Christ, they will marry;
Young widows refer to those under the age of 60 and still eligible for remarriage.
1 Timothy 5:9 Let not a widow be taken into the number under threescore years old, having been the wife of one man,
Then there are those who love money allow their allegiance to Christ to be compromised because of selfish desires. Jesus also spoke on the idolatrous pursuit of riches.
Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Proverbs 22:7 The rich ruleth over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender.
Rather than encourage the action of bring someone under dominion or control of the impoverished, this proverb reflects upon the fact that the rich have prominence while the poor must depend on others. It also serves as a warning to live wisely.
Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
The statement “I will never forsake thee” is an imprecise citation from the books of Genesis, Deuteronomy, and Joshua. Each of these Old Testament contexts provide hope in the face of uncertainty. This message is particularly relevant to the initial recipients of Hebrews, who were facing adversity and persecution.
1 Timothy 6:17-19 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
Paul reminds Timothy that material wealth is temporary and that believers must not adopt the world’s values concerning wealth. Some false teachers promoted an ascetic lifestyle (lifestyle where absenteeism from satisfaction of bodily and social needs including but not limited to sleep, drink or food to name some), denying good things for the sake of what they claimed was holiness (or piety). Paul argues that true godliness leads to gratitude and generosity toward others, not asceticism.
The question that must be asked is how many of you have worked the Dave Ramsey formula or something similar. Time to consider that. You start by saving money, then paying off debts, then moving onto being totally debt free. Instead of spending that dollar you just received, why not save it and the next one, on and on and eventually you will find you in a better place.
Now you ask how this works with the other secrets of life such as faith, fitness, and family. If you handle your finances properly, you will feel better that will lead you to want to be in better shape. As well if you handle your finances correctly, you family will benefit from it as well.
As for faith:
Leviticus 27:30 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s: it is holy unto the Lord.
The ten percent goes all the way back to the book of Genesis where the tithes went to support the Levites who in turn had to tithe to the priests.
Proverbs 3:9 Honor the Lord with thy substance, and with the first fruits of all thine increase:
The law dictates that the Israelites must provide the first fruits of their harvest to Yahweh. Today we are expected to give 10% of our earnings received. This shows faith in the Lord when you do.
Money gets us into trouble, Faith gets us out