Biblical Principles of Money Management: Avoiding Greed & Materialism

by Jessica Sommerfield · 0 comments

The Bible is mainly a religious text, but also contains a wealth of practical advice and piercing insight into the topic of wise money management. As discussed before, the importance of budgeting and planning one’s money and assets is covered in many portions of the Bible. The concept of good stewardship is beneficial to not only your present finances, but also your future security; effective budgeting and saving can also allow you to provide a solid financial foundation for your children.

Avoiding the pitfalls of poor money management and failing to plan for the future are vital to a healthy relationship with your finances. Excessive spending and obsession with money and obtaining possessions are equally as dangerous, no matter how balanced your budget. You also don’t have to be rich to struggle with materialism. Quite often those who don’t have the means to obtain their material desires are the ones who are most obsessed. Here are some verses from the Bible that deal with the topic of materialism:

But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil. – I Timothy 6:9-10

He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity. – Ecclesiastes 5:10

For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? – Mark 8:36

hen he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” – Luke 12:15

The Love of Money
Sometimes it seems like our culture is obsessed with money and driven by consumerism, as if life is a game of Monopoly; the whole point is to get to the end of our lives with as much stuff as possible. The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. At first glance, that seems like an exaggeration, but if you think about it, many types of crime are in some way motivated by the love of money and a desire for riches (robbery, stealing, corporate fraud, get-rich-quick scams, identity theft, etc.). This is not to say that money, in and of itself, is evil; but it can be used for either good or evil. We would be wise to see money and material goods as only tools and not the main focus of life.

Never Satisfied
It’s natural to desire a certain level of financial and material comfort. No one wants to be so poor that all they can think about is where their next meal will come from. On the other hand, many people keep grasping for more well after they are able to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle, thinking that if they just get the next thing on their wish list, they will be happier. But, of course, they never are. True happiness comes from focusing on the important things in life, making the best of what you have, and thereby finding peace and contentment.

Forfeiting Your Soul
Materialism and greed leads to the neglect of the most important things in life. Many people are so busy obtaining things that they lose focus of their personal goals and interests, become over-stressed workaholics, and worst of all, destroy their families. When relationships take a back seat to gaining wealth, families become alienated and dysfunctional. Children whose parents place money and possessions as most important in life are bound to follow in their footsteps. This is why it’s especially important to show your children that money isn’t the priority.

Life is more than Money
One of the greatest blessings and curses of capitalism is the ability to gain personal wealth. Intellectual and physical labor is rewarded with success, but success can lead to materialism. As Luke 12:15 states, we have to be on our guard against greed and materialism, remembering that life is about much more than money could ever buy.

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