“The biblical perspective is for us to live in wholeness, which includes a generous sufficiency of things. Poverty is a bad thing; God wants us to have all we need for a joyous life. God wants no one to be poor.” God wants no one to be poor.
Luke 6:20-21 (NIV)
“Looking at his disciples, he said: 'Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied.
Financial limitations or total loss of income can be orchestrated by God in the lives of his chosen ones to help us manage our income well and strengthen our faith.
The Bible issues several warnings against the love of money and the snare of wealth (1 Timothy 3:3; 6:10), but in Proverbs 30:8–9, Agur, the gather of wise sayings, asks that he would have neither poverty nor wealth.
God does not want us to live in poverty; we have discovered that there is nothing inherently spiritual in poverty. Neither is there any sin in wealth. However, God does not desire for a Christian to live in worldly lavishness while His work needs money and other Christians go without food and clothing.
Proverbs 14:23 (NIV) – “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.” Ask the Lord to relieve you of financial debt, by enabling you to pay back what you owe.
Money will not make us happy.
1 Timothy 6:17 says, “Instruct those who are rich in the present age not to be arrogant or to set their hope on the uncertainty of wealth, but on God, who richly provides us with all things to enjoy.” We all must use money. However, having money or spending money cannot be the end goal.
But Scripture tells us that God loves the poor. He is on their side simply because they are still persons worthy of respect. And in their helplessness, they put their trust in God.
Jesus can and ultimately did provide a way for rich people—and all who believe in Him—to enter God's Kingdom. Peter seemed stunned by Jesus' statement that it's humanly impossible for the rich to inherit God's Kingdom. He said, “We have left everything to follow you!” (Mark 10:28, NIV).
Deuteronomy 8:18 New King James Version (NKJV)
“And you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.
The Bible is clear that when something is borrowed is should be paid back. Someone refusing to repay reveals a wicked heart and not the generous and giving heart God wants us to have. It's imperative that when we engage in any borrowing, we consider our ability to repay.
Proverbs 19:17 In-Context
17 Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.
In the New Testament, Christians were warned to not go into debt, as we are free from bondage due to the redemptive work of Jesus. 1 Corinthians 7:23 “You were bought with a price; do not become bondservants of men.”
In the Bible, it is clear that those in poverty are close to God's heart. Jesus himself was born into poverty and gave up his heavenly riches when he came down to earth. Constantly, the poor are said to be “blessed” and we are instructed to value integrity over riches.
Jesus cared deeply about the poor and the downtrodden, demonstrating his compassion in tangible ways: giving sight to the blind, touching the leper, healing the sick. But he also preached the good news of God's love and salvation.
Anyone who lacks “sufficient money to live at a standard considered comfortable or normal in a society” is considered poor. There are many reasons someone could be poor. Sometimes poverty is the result of foolish decisions (Prov. 6:10-11, 10:4, 14:23), and other times poverty is no fault of one's own (John 9:3).
Nothing harmful, hateful, upsetting or unkind. Nothing, sad, bad, or mad. Nothing harsh, impatient, ungrateful or unworthy.
Finally, 1 Timothy 6:17-18 offers divine instructions for the wealthy among us. The passage reads: “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.
In Jesus' parable, the rich man's sin was not that he was rich; it was that he refused to care for a person in need. His stony heart ignored the call to share food with the hungry and to provide shelter and clothing for people in need (Isaiah 58:7).
Saving Honors God and Serves Others
Yet the Bible actually encourages us to set aside for expected, future needs. Proverbs 21:5 says, “The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty” (ESV). Saving honors God because it values money as a gift that He has given to us.
When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven! Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven."
The more debt we take on, the fewer options we give ourselves when it comes to where we work and how we spend our time. Instead of making decisions based on what we want to do, we find ourselves thinking about what we have to do. Debt will always leave us feeling stuck, and Jesus wants so much more for our lives.
According to God's Word, there are four fundamental purposes for money: to provide for basic needs, to confirm direction, to give to those in need, and to illustrate God's power and care in provision. Understanding these purposes allows you to see how money relates to God's work in your life and community.
Although the tithe is no longer in force, 10 percent of our gross income is a good rule of thumb and feasible for many of us as a starting point. Discuss this with the family. Incorporate your giving as a definite part of your budget — give “off the top” at the beginning of the month or pay period (1 Corinthians 16:2).
Proverbs 8:10-20 In-Context
10 Prefer my life-disciplines over chasing after money, and God-knowledge over a lucrative career. 11 For Wisdom is better than all the trappings of wealth; nothing you could wish for holds a candle to her.