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Dealing with the Economic Crisis (Part 3 of 3)

General Bible Principles on Finances

... In previous articles, we saw Bible principles to help avoid and get through a financial crisis. This time we’ll look at some general rules for everyday life. A good place to search for principles applicable to modern finances is in the book of Proverbs. Here is a sample:

... “Treasures of wickedness profit nothing, But righteousness delivers from death.” (Proverbs 10:2) For sure, you only want honest money in life! If this verse were the motto for Enron a few years ago, a lot of employees might have retirement money today.

... “The LORD will not allow the righteous soul to famish, But He casts away the desire of the wicked.” (Proverbs 10:3) Following God only leads to a good end, but those walking in the wrong lifestyle will lose out.

... “He who has a slack hand becomes poor, But the hand of the diligent makes rich.” (Proverbs 10:4) Be diligent in your work to gain a sound income.

... “He who gathers in summer is a wise son; He who sleeps in harvest is a son who causes shame” (Proverbs 10:5) Don’t miss opportunities to work—prepare in the summer before winter comes.

A Key Rule About Money

... A key Bible rule is not to let money be the center of your life. It has been said, you need money to live, but you shouldn’t live for money. In fact, Jesus asks the pivotal question on money. “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26)

... Believe it or not, there are things more important than money. What about your health, or love from family and friends? Another example is wisdom. “For wisdom is better than rubies, And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.” (Prov 8:11) Surely, with God’s wisdom you’ll be able to handle money properly instead of having it handle you. This reminds us of a promise from the Almighty. Jesus said, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33) Seek God and He will provide.

Do These Bible Principles Work?

... I have seen these principles work in my own life. When times were good, I lived within my means, did not buy things I could not pay for, and saved a little for emergencies. Now that the economy has taken a hit, not having a credit card bill is one less thing to worry about. I am blessed to have a job but I am feeling the housing crunch. Because of a work transfer I had to move, but my former home did not sell and became a huge concern. Though the house wasn’t terribly expensive, even people interested in renting it could not pay enough to cover the mortgage. I could have said “it is hopeless”, lost the house, and ruined my credit, but giving up would not have been the right thing to do. Instead, I found a renter just to cover part of the mortgage. I have to pay about 1/3 of the mortgage on that house, but I count myself blessed not to be paying all of it myself. Thankfully, because I am used to living within my means, I have the ability to cover that unwanted expense. God’s guidelines have kept me out of serious trouble.

... Now keep in mind, the Bible does not promise a life of ease on earth, and God is not a genie waiting to give us three wishes. Remember all joy and no sorrow is only promised for Heaven. However, when you follow God’s rules, you acknowledge that He knows what is best, you avoid preventable problems, and allow Him to walk with you in both good and hard times.

... These thoughts show just one of many areas where the Bible is applicable to us today. Challenge yourself to read, learn, and apply its great truths!

For more information on Bible principles for money management, visit www.crown.org

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