Savings and the Bible
Question: I am a Christian and I have been following your posts on personal finance. I have been consistent in saving money but I have heard from other believers that I shouldn’t be concerned with saving because I should depend on the Lord for provisions by faith. Are they wrong?—Asked via Facebook Messenger, name withheld by request.
Answer: I am not sure as to the context of the advice you got from others so it is not my place to determine if they are right or wrong. What I can do is give you my thoughts on the subject matter from my own understanding and conviction.
Did you know that there are over 2,000 verses in the Bible about money and possessions? People are asking me why I often quote Scriptures whenever I talk about personal finance and now you know why. The Bible is not only a historical and devotional book; it is also an instructional book for successful living. And yes, money is often a subject matter in the Bible.
Money is a subject matter that is important to God because He knows how we handle money will affect and reflect our relationship with Him.
One of the important topics with regard to money and the Bible is savings. Many believe that savings is not important to a believer of the Lord—that is not entirely correct. It is not money that separates us from God, it is the wrong understanding of money that is (1 Timothy 6:10). Money is a tool, what we do with it will determine if it will be a snare for us to sin, or something we can use to worship the Lord.
I believe savings are important and I will refer to what does the Bible say about savings:
Precious treasure and oil are in a wise man’s dwelling, but a foolish man devours it. —Proverbs 21:20 ESV
Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it. —Proverbs 13:11 ESV
A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich. He who gathers in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who brings shame. —Proverbs 10:4-5 ESV
A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, but the sinner’s wealth is laid up for the righteous. —Proverbs 13:22 ESV
For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? —Luke 14:28 ESV
On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come. —1 Corinthians 16:2 ESV
The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. —2 Corinthians 9:6 ESV
During the seven plentiful years the earth produced abundantly, and he gathered up all the food of these seven years, which occurred in the land of Egypt, and put the food in the cities. He put in every city the food from the fields around it. And Joseph stored up grain in great abundance, like the sand of the sea, until he ceased to measure it, for it could not be measured. —Genesis 41:47-49 ESV
However, be careful with your heart with regard to saving money…
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. —Matthew 6:22, ESV
No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. —Matthew 6:24, ESV
Check your heart as to your reason for saving money, is it out of wisdom or fear of lack?
If I may share my reasons for saving money, it is because I need to provide for my loved ones, prepare for our future, be a blessing to others and participate in the building of the Lord’s kingdom.
Randell Tiongson is a Registered Financial Planner of RFP Philippines. He is one of the most sought-after speakers in Personal Finance and Columnist of Philippine Daily Inquirer and Money Sense Magazine. He is a best-selling book author of Personal Finance Step-by-Step Guide.
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