The apostle Paul says the “love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” (1 Timothy 6.10).
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus cautions his followers to seek things that have lasting value: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6.24).
And the Book of Proverbs advises God-followers to be wise in their pursuit of wealth.
Clearly, an unhealthy perspective on money can be an obstacle to a life of discipleship. So what’s the purpose of money?
Here’s what I tell my children and my students:
Money is a lever.
There’s no point in having a lever for the sake of having a lever. When you have one, though, you can move things.
I think that’s the purpose of money: when you have it, you can move things. When you don’t have it, moving things becomes more of a challenge. There’s little point in pursuing wealth for the sake of having wealth; money is useful for doing things–like providing a home, food, and clothing for your family. Or helping to meet the needs of others. This is a task God has set before us (see James 2.15-16).
Important note: having debt is not having money. Just the opposite. Yet many Americans are saddled with massive credit card debt–to the tune of $15,480 per household (as of August 2014). And many college students are graduating with nearly $30,000 in student loans.
So what to do?
How about get out of debt.
More on that soon…