Money is not the root of all evil as people say all the time. It is not money that is evil, but rather the love of it. Money itself is neither good nor bad. When used properly it can accomplish much good. However, for money to become the driving force in our lives is a perilous sin. 1 Timothy 6:10 says, “For the love of money is the root of all evil”
A current politician admitted he was “Greedy, greedy, greedy, I am so greedy, but now I want to be greedy for the United States”. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOF03ZAuemE) America is greedy enough without someone making them more greedy. Greed is defined as: “A selfish and excessive desire for more of something (as money) than is needed. Example in a sentence: He was a ruthless businessman, motivated by naked ambition and greed” (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/greed).
The desire for wealth becomes a thirst which is unquenchable. A Roman proverb said that wealth is like sea water; it doesn’t quench man’s thirst, it makes it greater. The more man gets, the more he wants! Christians are to have a vastly different attitude. “Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content” (1 Tim. 6:6-8). Ecclesiastes 6:9 says, “Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire . . . .” We should enjoy what we have rather than constantly be longing for more. Hebrews 13:5 says, “Let your character be free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, ‘I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you’.
The desire for wealth is founded upon an illusion. We think it will give us security, but it brings us anxiety. The more a man has to keep, the more he has to lose. We can easily become haunted by the risk of loss. “The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep” (Eccl. 5:12). Is it any wonder that Michael Jackson, Prince, and Donald Trump just to name a few admitted their inability to sleep unaided. “Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy” (1 Tim. 6:17-18).,
The desire for money tends to make us selfish. Our thoughts become fixed on ourselves. However, the Bible says we are to have concern for the needs of others. “So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith” (Gal. 6:10). “But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth” (1 Jn. 3:17-18).
The love of money can easily lead a man into wrong ways of getting it. There are right and wrong ways of gaining money. Many accumulate riches by dishonest, deceitful and immoral means. The Christian should not work at a job that brings disgrace upon the name of the Lord. We are not just talking about illegal activities. There are certain ways of earning money that are legal in the eyes of the state, but still wrong in the sight of God: i.e., gambling (Casinos, lotto, Wall Street), producing and distributing alcohol, selling or producing illegal drugs, operating bars, night clubs or dance halls, even being a work-a-holic, etc. “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needs” (Eph. 4:28). “Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right” (Prov. 16:8).
Many preachers have fallen prey to greed. This is why we have televangelist and faith healers. They speaks soft words and use well orchestrated speeches to separate the saints from their money (Rom 16:17,18). They speak great swelling words of vanity, telling you what you want to hear as opposed to what you need to hear (2 Pet 2:18). In fact, Paul warned a young Timothy, a preacher, not to fall prey to the love of money. “If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strives of words, whereof comes envy, strife, railings, evil surmising, perverse disputing of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw yourself” (1 Tim 6:3-5). “But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Tim 6:9,10).
Therefore, if you have inherited money, aid the needy saints. If you have invested or worked hard for your money and have more than you need for your necessities, instead of spending it on vacations and luxurious houses, cars, and clothes, help those who cannot help themselves. Don’t be caught at the end of your life with millions or billions in the bank and not have aided anyone but yourself. You can’t take it with you! You can’t use it in your next life! You came into this world naked and you will leave it naked (Job 1:21). You came in to this world penniless, and you will leave it penniless. Don’t let the love of money buy you a one way ticket to hell. Even as the rich man learned the hard way, who lived sumptuously every day upon the earth, in hell you shall be tormented night and day (Lk 16:19-31). No amount of money can buy your release. Jesus warned us all when he said, “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mt 16:26). Instead of loving money, buy the truth and sell it not (Prov 23:23). Therefore, obey the gospel (Rom 10:10 f; Acts 2:38), continue in the doctrine of Christ and his apostles (Acts 2:42 f; 2 Jn 9), aid all those you have opportunity to aid (Gal 6:10), take up your cross and follow after Christ (Lk 9:23)!