We have all heard, “the Bible says money is the root of all evil.” But that’s not what the Bible says. Paul wrote to Timothy about money and said:
“the love of money is the root of all evil…” 1 Tim 6:10
Paul teaches that the love of money [or anything else] is the root of all evil. In addition to money, it could be the love of status, jobs, possessions, family, hobbies, recreational activities, etc that can be the “root of all evil. It is anything that we love and put above our love for God, that can become an idol in our lives.
So why does Paul say “the love of money is the root of all evil?” Because it is covetousness of something worldly. And that covetousness becomes a desire that controls us, demands our devotion, and, as Paul wrote to Timothy it causes some to “err from the faith” and have “many sorrows.” (1 Tim 6:10)
Paul’s admonition to Timothy was that children of God should “…flee from the coveteousness of worldly things, and desire to follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness” (1 Tim 6:11). We are to “fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life” (1 Tim 6:12) and “covet earnestly the best gifts” (1 Cor 12:31), which are gifts from God.
Such focus, dedication, and devotion are mandatory for Christians if they are to live in the Spirit and honor God. We are to:
- put nothing above Jesus
- keep our hearts devoted to Jesus
- renew our minds in the Word of God
- live in the power of the Holy Spirit
- and find rest, assurance, and security in Christ alone.
As Christians, our wealth is not found in money. Our hope and joy do not come from worldly possessions. Rather, our hope, joy, and wealth come from our positional standing in Christ. We are redeemed and regenerated, and we stand as a child of God and a joint heir with Christ.
This short parable illustrates our immeasurable wealth.
A Parable of the Poor Christian and the Tax Collector
One day, a tax assessor came to a poor Christian to determine his property and assess the taxes due. He asked the Christian, “What property do you possess?” The Christian replied, “I am a very wealthy man with possessions of great value.”
“What are they. Please list them for me,” responded the tax assessor. And the Christian began to list all of his valuable possessions:
- First, I have everlasting life. (John 3:16).
- Second, I have a mansion in heaven. (John 14:2)
- Third, I have peace that passes all understanding. (Philippians 4:7)
- Fourth, I have joy unspeakable. (1 Peter 1:8)
- Fifth, I have love that never fails. (1 Cor.13:8)
- Sixth, I have a faithful, virtuous wife. (Proverbs 31:10)
- Seventh, I have healthy, happy, obedient children. (Exodus 20:12)
- Eighth, I have true and loyal friends. (Proverbs 18:24)
- Ninth, I have songs in the night. (Psalm 42:8)
- Tenth, I have a crown of life. (James 1:12)
“I have many more possessions,” said the Christian. “Should I continue?”
The tax assessor closed his book, and declared, “Truly you are a very rich man. But your property is not subject to taxation.”
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