What does the bible say about money?

Just What Does the Bible Say About Money?


People have differing opinions about what the Bible says about money. Some say it says money is evil and others claim it says God wants His followers to be wealthy. Neither is quite true. Often, people have these opinions based in misquoted or misinterpreted verses. This results in people thinking of the Bible and money being like oil and water and do not mix.

The Bible has a lot to say about money, both good and bad. In 1 Timothy 6:10, it says “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves through with many griefs.” This verse is often misquoted to say that money is the root of all evil. But in reading the verse, it is clear that it is not the money that is evil but the love of it that is.

This is not to say that the Bible says people should not be wealthy. Far from it. There is no problem with having a lot of money as long as that does not become the focus of a person’s life or how he measures his worth. One verse that explains a good attitude toward money is Luke 14:12-14, which says “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.” Another verse says that a man who only wants to gain more wealth and keep it to himself will lose his wealth while a man who shares what he has with those in need will be richly rewarded.

The first five books of the Bible, which is called the Torah in Judaism, called for the minting of a special coin to be used for paying the Temple taxes. The coin is called the “widow’s mite” and had low enough value that even the poorest people would have little difficulty getting it for the Temple tax. Everyone paid Temple taxes and paid the same amount regardless of wealth or lack of wealth. The reason for this was so the poor were not humiliated because they could not pay and the rich could not boast about paying more than someone else.

The Torah also said money was to be used to pay restitution when someone wronged another person. Money was also given as guilt offerings in the Temple. Money was clearly not considered something to avoid having. How it is used is what made the difference. Attitude about money is what makes it evil or a blessing. The Bible and money are not at odds. Money is a tool that can be used for good or evil and it is up to the one who has it to determine which it is.