Are Wealthy Christians setting the right example? Well, that's a difficult question to answer for several reasons. One, as believers we tend to be very uncomfortable even talking about money, and then there's a great divide as to whether or not Christians should actually have money. Let's go back to the Old Testament. We know that there are a couple of examples of people that God specifically blessed as a sign of His blessing. That would be Abraham, and we could see it as well with Job. Now we think, "Okay. Well that's great. Those are Old Testament examples, but what about in the New Testament?" Well, there are also a couple of opportunities for us to see in the New Testament. Jesus was surrounded by people that also had money. We had Joseph of Arimathea, and then we had Zacchaeus.
Now we see that Jesus never tells those guys to go sell everything they have, and then they can follow him. Zacchaeus volunteers to do it if he's wronged anybody, but Jesus doesn't tell him to go sell everything. Yet, most Christians are very familiar with the passage where Jesus sees the rich young ruler, and tells him that he has to go sell everything, and then he can come follow Jesus. We tend to hone in on that particular passage and think, "Well, look. Christians shouldn't have money. It says so right here. He told this wealthy guy to go sell everything." Somehow we take that one example, and then we ignore anything else, and any other interactions Jesus had with wealthy people where he didn't admonish them to go and sell everything they had.
So, how do you balance these two things? What does it really mean to be wealthy? Can and should a Christian be wealthy? Well, in order to leave an inheritance for your children's children, you have to have a substantial amount of money to do that. So, obviously, if we take the totality of what the Bible says, we can see that there are some elements there where God does want us to have wealth. The problem is that many believers haven't learned skill sets giving them the ability to establish wealth. When I've taught seminars, I've met many believers that said, "If I had more money I would establish this program. I would go and give more money to my church. I would go and send this missionary more money. I would go and do more mission work. I would go and do all these things." Their desire is to use their wealth do those kind of things.
Out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks, so we know that is something that God has laid upon their hearts. That's their desire, and the thing that's keeping them from doing that is having more money. Well then guys, I think that if God has laid up these desires in our hearts, and He wants us to do even greater things, that we shouldn't let non-believers monopolize this area of finance. For some reason, the church has decided that we're going to leave finances alone, like somehow God doesn't care about that element of our lives. I believe that's absolutely false. I believe God does want us to be in a position where we have the opportunity to create wealth, and do incredible things.
We don't need to just leave that element to non-believers because that tool called "money" actually can influence other people. It can influence elections. It can make a major difference in what we're able to do with that physical tool. It allows us to impact other people's lives. So, perhaps you're one of those people that thinks, "You know what? I just don't know that Christians ought to have money," or maybe you've been taught that. What I want to encourage you to do is to take a little more time. Think through the totality of scriptures, and to see if perhaps God does want believers to have money, and if we can use that as a tool, and find some great things to do when God does bless us monetarily.
I believe God does want us to be in a position where we have the opportunity to create wealth, and do incredible things.