The Love of Money, Not Money, Is the Root of All Kinds of Evil

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As a Christian, I am amazed how certain political and religious groups have decided that wealth is evil. Many of the heroes of biblical faith, of world history, and of our nation were very wealthy, including King David, Solomon, Job, and most of our Founding Fathers. There is a negative mind-set justifying money mediocrity that is maddening. Wealth is not evil, and people who possess it aren’t evil by virtue of the wealth. There are rich jerks and poor jerks.

Dallas Willard, in his book The Spirit of the Disciplines, says to use riches is to cause them to be consumed, to trust in riches is to count upon them for things they cannot provide, but to possess riches is to have the right to say how they will or will not be used.

If you are a good person, it is your spiritual duty to possess riches for the good of mankind.

If you are a Christian like me, it is your spiritual duty to possess riches so that you can do with them things that bring glory to God.

The bottom line is, if you take the stand that managing wealth is evil or carnal, then by default you leave all the wealth to the evil, carnal people. If wealth is spiritually bad, then good people can’t have it, so all the bad people get it. It is the duty of the good people to get wealth to keep it from the bad people because the good people will do good with it. If we all abandon money because some misguided souls view it as evil, then the only ones with money will be the pornographer, the drug dealer, or the pimp. Simple enough?

To Give You Hope

I think you can tell by now that The Total Money Makeover is more than just a discussion on money issues. The Total Money Makeover makes you face the man or woman in the mirror. Facing that man or woman makes us face emotional, relational, physical, and even spiritual aspects of our lives. The wealthy people that I know who are fulfilled didn’t just have a Total Money Makeover. They had a life makeover. Because personal finance is 80 percent behavior and 20 percent knowledge, you will either make your life over in this process, or you will end up miserable. I’m being very spiritual here at the end, but the spiritual is a legitimate aspect of behavior. I see well-rounded, mature people who become all God designed them to be when they get their money closets cleaned out. God has a plan for your life, and that plan isn’t to harm you; it is a plan for your future to give you hope (see Jeremiah 29:11).

Hope is what I want you to walk away with from this book. Hope that you can turn your money troubles into money triumphs. Hope that you can retire with dignity. Hope that you can change your family tree, because by building wealth you leave an inheritance. Hope that you can give money in a way you have never given before. It is time for you to become a gazelle. It is time for you to leave the reading and the classroom behind and apply these principles. They are age-old principles, and they work. Tens of thousands of ordinary people just like you and me have become debt-free and even wealthy using this plan. It isn’t magic; it is common sense. The exciting thing is, anyone can do this — anyone. Are you next? I hope so.

Excerpted with permission from Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey, copyright Thomas Nelson.

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Your Turn

Are you ready for a Total Money Makeover? Ready to get out of debt? Ready to save money and build wealth? Ready to glorify God with the way you manage the resources He has entrusted to you? Come join the conversation on our blog. We would love to hear from you about godly financial stewardship!

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. His four New York Times best-selling books –Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership – have sold more than 7 million copies combined.The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations and iHeartRadio. His latest book is Smart Money Smart Kids: Raising the Next Generation to Win with Money, co-authored with his daughter, Rachel Cruze.

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