The Bible has a lot to say about how we manage our money. I am no expert on the subject, and there are plenty of great resources out there if you would like an in-depth study. However, I have noticed in my personal journey that there are three mental shifts that have to take place in order for us to gain a godly perspective on managing our money (as well as other resources).
As Christians we have released ourselves to God. Jesus Christ is Lord of every area of our lives. That includes our finances. Just like foot washing, baptism, and communion, tithing is an outward sign of an inward reality. We have surrendered everything to him. Once we are awakened to this reality we find ourselves making the first shift: (1) The shift from giving out of religious duty to giving out of glad worship.
Now we are ready to approach the second shift. We are tempted to think highly of ourselves as we sacrifice 10% of our earnings to God. However, the faulty thinking lies in the little pronoun. Our earnings are not, in fact, our earnings. Moses warned the Israelites of this mentality: “Otherwise, you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’ But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth” (Deut. 8:17-18). All that we have, including the ability to make money, comes from God. Once we are awakened to this reality we find ourselves making the second shift: (2) The shift from giving 10% of “my” resources to giving 10% of “His” resources.
Now we are ready to approach the third shift. The Scripture has much to say about the other 90% of His money that you are managing. There are over 800 verses in Bible that deal with money. Over half of Jesus’ 39 parables deal with money and/or management. When Jesus taught on righteousness more than half of the time he illustrated righteousness with good stewardship and unrighteousness with bad stewardship. Tithing 10% of your resources is only the beginning of the biblical teaching on money management. God wants us to be wise stewards of the other 90% as well. Once we are awakened to this reality we find ourselves making the third shift: (3) The shift from giving 10% of His resources and spending the rest freely to giving 10% of His resources and stewarding the rest wisely.
did you happen to come by an extensive list of those 800 verses dealing with money? I’d be very interested in reading them.
Great idea! I would like to develop my own list as a followup. Depending on which verses you count as “dealing with money” the list can be as large as 2000+ verses. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to compile my own list, but in the meantime check out this exhaustive list, as well as this reference-only list. Let me know if you find some others!