This week we’re trying to see the difference between a follower of Jesus, and someone else, in terms of how we see and use money.

Maybe you’ve seen a video going around the Internet with Kevin O’Leary, of Dragon’s Den, saying it’s just fantastic that the richest 85 people in the world have as much wealth as the 3.5 billion poorest.  He says it’s fantastic because it will inspire the poor to get rich themselves.

We’ve attached it if you’d like to watch.

The Bible thinks quite differently about the relationship between rich and poor, in the passage that immediately follows what we read yesterday:

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life. (1 Timothy 6:17-19 ESV)

Paul uses the same language Jesus is known for using – he refers to storing up treasure in heaven.

When we are generous, sharing with those in need, we are actually doing something of real value and eternal value that Paul calls a good foundation for the future.  That is truly life.  When others hoard, they are missing the point.  They are living a false life with limited value and longevity.

Finding that balance is of course always hard.  How much is enough to gain, save, and give? Yesterday’s reading set a low bar: But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.

I have always liked a sermon preached by John Wesley centuries ago on the topic of money, that could be summed up as: Gain all you can, save all you can, give all you can.  In isolation, each part would bring destruction, but together they make sense.  You have to make money to be generous, but if you pursue making too much, you will crash or lose faith.  You also have to save money to give money – wisely spending to have some left over, and by having stability in order to help others.

Question: How else do you think a follower of Jesus looks at money differently from someone else?  How does gaining/saving/giving all you can impact retirement, debt, etc.  Why?

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