I was at a fundraiser for brain cancer this weekend and I was approached by someone and asked what I thought about the financial bailout bill. After I offered my opinion and we talked about it for a few minutes, he sighed and said, “Well, it doesn’t have any eternal consequence anyway.” I joked that if we asked God what he thought about the bailout, he might say, “What bailout? Do you mean the bailout where I sent my Son to die for your sins?”We are in the middle of an unprecedented time in the global economy. I think it is easy to get caught up in the panic and forget the ultimate goal. Until this weekend I hadn’t thought about what God would think of what is going on right now, and I fear it might be the same for many others.I would be interested in the Bible’s perspective, and yours as a church leader, of whether our economy and the way we handle our finances does have eternal significance. I think it would be an interesting topic for a sermon or blog. What do you think?
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, 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 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.
My reading of this scripture is that the way that we handle our finances does have eternal consequence. If we make money an idol and place its importance above God in our lives, I believe that it is a serious issue and that we need to change directions. How we handle our finances is a matter of discipleship. Our life of faith is not separate from our life of making and spending money. I am not aware of any passages that specifically address the economy in the scripture as there was a completely different economy than it is today. Maybe someone can give some suggestions to passages that may be directly associated to the economy. Suggestions?
As far as I can understand personally, the economy is made up of the choices of individuals and groups of people. Economic conditions can make a big difference in the lives of individuals. Putting these things together the economy has an impact on our ability to live out God’s call to transform the world. The discrepancy between the richest and the poorest in the world is a tragedy.
Are the current choices of the US and other governments bringing us closer or farther away from God’s kingdom becoming real on earth? I honestly do not know. I hope and pray that good choices are being made.
What do you think?