Money seems to provide everything we want – comfort, security, fun, and power – but the Bible warns against becoming obsessed with wealth.
The Bible does not indicate that money is evil, yet its pursuit can cause people to turn away from Him. So what is its biblical purpose?
Provides for Basic Needs
Many misquote Proverbs 14:22 as the basis of all evil, but God never intended wealth to be seen as something sinister; when He bestowed riches upon Abraham and Solomon, He did so for their wisdom and prosperity; however, once they gained wealth, they must learn that they cannot sustain it alone.
One could easily see God was concerned with this fact; He instituted institutions like tithing and Sabbath to remind His followers not to depend on money as their sole source of security, entertainment, or fulfillment (Luke 22:3-6). Money provides necessities but should never become an alternative source of fulfillment or security (and certainly should never be a replacement for God!). Money may provide essential provisions but should never stand in for prayer!
While much of the Bible’s teaching on money is well-known, other aspects often remain obscure. Scripture clarifies that wealth can be used for good but should never become its end goal; instead, it can be used to bless others and advance God’s kingdom. Additionally, Scripture advises both poor and wealthy alike not to place all their hope in riches alone.
This warning comes in the form of a command to love one’s neighbor as oneself (Matthew 19:19), as well as an instruction against covetousness – idolatry that distorts our devotion towards God toward something else; greed and lust have their roots here, with covetousness being an equally destructive form that places more importance on wealth than on obedience to Jesus Christ as our source of fulfillment in life.
Gives to Those in Need
Money provides us with everything we need for survival and growth while giving us the means to assist those around us. Money was one reason Jesus blessed the poor, as their dependence upon Him encouraged them to submit to His rule (Matthew 5:3).
The Bible does not teach that wealth is evil; however, it warns against an excessive love of money that can turn us away from Him. When wealth serves its intended purpose without becoming an idol to Him, prosperity can bring many blessings without compromising spiritual health.
According to the Bible, true riches lie in giving freely to others and helping them succeed. Just as adding a coin into a jukebox activates it to play music, generous people build successful organizations by contributing their strengths to others in their network – making for synergy that allows for much more outstanding results than individually achievable achievements.
Illustrates God’s Power
God uses money as an illustration of His power and authority among Christians as well as non-Christians alike. He wants us to trust Him so we will give freely from our resources.
Scripture also shows us that wealth itself isn’t necessarily sinful; when approached correctly, it can bring many blessings from God so we can use it to glorify Him and His Name.
Jesus didn’t condemn a wealthy young man in Luke 18 for possessing wealth; He criticized their attachment to it.
Christ advised him to sell everything and follow Him, yet in reality, the man did not sell everything but changed his internal attitude toward wealth in favor of Jesus. This is what the Bible means by “Money can be a root of all kinds of evil; by craving it, some have wandered from the faith and suffered great piercing pain” (1 Timothy 6:10)