How Does the New Testament View Money?


If you read the Old Testament and the New Testament, the views of money have changed. In the Old Testament, it was about become rich and powerful. It was about becoming like King Solomon.  King Solomon was known for having great wealth and wisdom. 

However, Jesus Christ and his apostles brought us a new view of money.  Instead of becoming billionaires, Jesus wanted us to use the money that God gives to us to help our fellow brothers and sisters that may be in need.  Jesus taught that you can’t love God and money at the same time. 

If you truly want to please God completely, Jesus says to give your wealth away. When a young man asked him in Luke 18:22 what he had to do in order to please God completely, Jesus told him to sell all that he had and give it to the poor.  This man said that had obeyed all of God’s laws. However, when Jesus told him to give all that he had to the poor, the man walked away sad because he was very rich. 

In Matthew 6:21, the New Testament teaches that where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.  This is a teaching to let us know that what we want the most is where our heart will be.  If you are ever given a money test in your life, you may find that you don’t want to give something away because it means a lot to you. Wherever your heart is, you will put money into it.

In Romans 13:8, the Holy Bible teaches us to pay our debts quickly and don’t let anything remain outstanding. In our loan and credit card driven society, most people don’t follow this advice.  A lot of Christians find themselves getting into bankruptcy and struggling to pay bills each month because they are trying to live above their means. 

Hebrews 13:5 teaches us to be happy with what God has given to us.  This verse teaches us that God promises that he will never leave us. Why worry about money if you know that God is always going to be there for you. When you have a trust in God, you believe that God will always take care of your financial needs.  As a Christian, you are taught to live by faith.

Matthew 6:24 teaches us that we cannot serve both God and money.  Interestingly, if you live for the riches of this world, it means that you are not living for God.  How can you truly love someone if you would rather store your money in the bank while the poor amongst you are oven going hungry without a meal. There are many people in the world without a job and wealthy Christians often brag about God’s financial blessings in their life but refuse to help others because they feel it will lower their net worth.  If you serve God over money, you would give a helping hand to the poor over saving money for a new material possession. 

When soldiers asked Jesus a question about money, he told them to not extort money or accuse men and women falsely (Luke 3:14).  This is a lesson for all Christians to follow. In this way, we show God that we are honest. 

1 Timothy 6:10 reminds us that if we love money, it brings about all kinds of evil.  If you are constantly hoping and praying to strike it rich, you often do everything in your power to make more money. However, this is not God’s way. 

God wants us to be content with what he gives to us and not live for making more money. Take your time with making money.  Just work and accept the payment that God gives to you.

Don’t start taking out loans or running up your credit cards in hope to strike it rich someday.  This has led many Christians down the wrong path and often into ruin. 

In Matthew 21:12-13, Jesus made it clear that you should not be selling anything inside of a church.  He said that its God’s house and it is to be a place of prayer.  Jesus overturned the tables of the vendors that were selling goods in God’s house.  He was angry because he wanted the temple to be used for prayer and not a supermarket. 

If you are a wealthy Christian, you should read 1 Timothy 6:17-19.  This passage in the Bible reminds us that a rich person should not put their trust in their wealth because its not dependable.  Instead, put your trust in God who will always be there for you and never leave you.  It reminds the rich to be generous and to share.  It says to instead give and store up treasures in heaven where you will have a reward with God.

In Luke 12:33, we are reminded once again to sell our possessions and give it to the poor.  Jesus reminds us that we can store our wealth in heaven and not here on earth.  In this way, your wealth cannot be taken from you in heaven. 

Jesus and the apostles are constantly trying to remind us that giving to the poor is what God wants. When you see televangelists on television hoarding their money in the bank while they witness to poor and starving Christians around the world and do nothing about it, it grieves God. 

What kind of love can you have in your heart when you sit with millions on your bank account and with greed, want more?  It’s never enough. You would rather become wealthier then help the poor.  This is something that the New Testament is against.

Matthew 6:1-4 teaches us to give to the poor silently. When you give a poor person money, don’t brag about it.  The Bible teaches us that if you brag about it, you won’t get a reward for your good deed in heaven. You have already received your reward by having people pat you on the back for your good deed. Instead, give and say nothing about who you gave money to. 

A lot of people love to brag about giving to a charity.  Often, you will see a celebrity on television saying that they donated $10,000 to a charity in order to make themselves look good.  The Bible teaches us that they are more of a hypocrite for doing such a thing and will have no reward in heaven for that.  Peoples praise to them is already their reward.

Peter told a man in Acts 8:20 that he should perish along with his money because he thought that he could buy Peter the Apostles anointing. When Jesus gave his apostles power to heal the sick and raise the dead, a man wanted to have this power and was willing to pay for it.  However, Peter clearly told him that its not for sale with money. 

In Mark 12:41-44, Jesus saw many rich people putting in large amounts of money into an offering.  However, a poor widow gave a small amount of money.  Jesus said to the crowd that this poor widow gave more than all the rich people that were there. 

This goes to show you that your heart is what God is after.  What is your hearts intention?  If you give up something that means a lot to you or something that you can’t afford to give up, it pleases God.  This kind of sacrifice is what God wants to see in each of us. It’s not how much we give, but its where our heart is that matters to God.

Jesus warns the wealthy again in Revelation 3:17. He tells the rich that they may think that they have everything that they need, but they are pitiful.  Why are the rich pitiful?  If you read the New Testament, you will see that its because they have forgotten about the poor and how to love their fellow brother and sister.  How can you say that you love people when you see the poor around you suffering and you do nothing to help them but smile at all the money that you have in the bank?

In Matthew 13:22, the Holy Bible reminds us that even though we can now see the truth about money, the worries of life and the way that wealth deceives you corrupts your acceptance of God’s word.  How often do Christians want to give to the poor and worry to much about giving because they are afraid that they won’t be able to pay their bills or won’t be able to save up for a new material possession?

Acts 4:34 teaches Christians about pooling their money together with other Christians so that everyone has enough food, clothing and housing to live.  How nice this would be if Christians began pooling their money together and having it distributed equally. This is what God would want us to do.  However, our greed and fears keep us back from doing what the Lord would want us to do. 

James 5:1-6 warns the wealthy that God has heard the cries of your workers that are being paid unfairly.  Did you know that they cry out to God and God hears them?  These scripture voices warn that you are living out your life in luxury while your workers are suffering. 

The major difference between the way that New Testament looks at money and the Old Testament is that in the New Testament, God wants us to give as much money as we possibly can from the heart. 

He wants to see us being cheerful givers.  In the Old Testament, people gave because they had to.  It was around 10% of their money.  On top of the tithe, they also had to pay taxes and often give more money to the poor on top of the tithe.  People would often grumble because it was more of a law, rather than a gift from the heart. 

God is pleased when he sees us striving to give as much as we can.  We can be like the poor widow and give what God lays on our heart. 

Prosperity gospel preachers will often try to confuse the Old and New Testament when it comes to tithing and giving. Old Testament laws of giving money were given to the Jewish people whom had to abide by other laws as well.  In return, God promised to take care of their needs.  He never promised that he would give anyone millions of dollars as prosperity preachers would want to have you believe. 

The truth is that most Jewish people are not rich, and the laws of tithing are still in effect.  The New Testament teaches us that Christians should take care of the poor because it pleases God. Instead of hoarding your money in the bank like the world tries to teach you, God wants you to use it to give to those that are in need. 

Most Christians today don’t want to follow that concept because they worry that they may not have enough money to live if they do that. They also may want to become the next Warren Buffet.

However, living like Warren Buffet does not please God. He holds onto his wealth and tries to get wealthier.  As you can see in the New Testament, Jesus shows us repeatedly that he desires for us to use our money to help people.  The main reason is because we will not be here on earth forever.

Through faith, we can believe that God will give us our reward for giving to the poor in heaven. It comes down to your trust in God. Do you trust that having eternal rewards is more beneficial?

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