Opinion / Columnist
A holistic Book on Finances
09 Apr 2015 at 08:13hrs | Views
"Let those who desire my vindication shout for joy and be glad, and say evermore, "Great is the Lord, who delights in the welfare of His servant. Then my tongue shall tell of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long." (Psalm 35vs27-28 R.S.V)
He is concerned
The Creator is interested, deeply committed and concerned about the welfare and upkeep of all facets of one's life - including matters pertaining to finances (see this inference from Matthew 6vs25-30). As the above quoted scripture notes, the Creator, "delights in the welfare" of those who faithfully serve and follow Him.
His Book provides instruction
So concerned is the Maker and Sustainer of all that one obtains an excellent handle/grip and/or command of the financial affairs and issues of life, that at least 2350 of the Holy Bible's (give or take) 31 000 verses contain some allusion and/or direct instruction concerning matters of finance (Source: Howard Dayton's Your Money Counts, page 10; 1996 Crown Financial Ministries, U.S.A).
Certainly then, the subject of finances is one of the key topics and/or areas which the Creator's Holy Book addresses time and again.
Cogent reasons for this emphasis
So why does the Maker of heaven and earth's sacred word contain so much direct and indirect instruction as pertaining to the financial matters/issues of life? Here are at least four such reasons (please do feel free to proffer and share even more, as that would be appreciated):.
1) For people to have a means of wholesomely enjoying the fruit of their labor: One of the Bible's most basic and beneficial instructions is found in Exodus 20vs9. That particular scriptures notes the following:
"Six days you shall labor and do all your work."(R.S.V)
The Builder of all things here instructs one to honestly labor. To what end(s) though? There are manifold and diverse an end, but at least two such are to firstly legitimately earn and acquire the monetary means of sustenance, and secondly, to work toward accruing a surplus with which to sweeten the experience of life. As the sage who was inspired to pen the biblical book of Ecclesiastes noted:
"Here is what I have seen: It is good and fitting for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labor in which he toils under the sun all the days of his life which God gives him; for it is his heritage."(5vs18 R.S.V)
Being a shrewd, judicious manager of finances will help make such an appealing scripture become a sweet reality in their life experience.
2) To be a blessing to others through charitably (i.e. lovingly) assisting the weak and vulnerable:
Vulnerable members of society (such as orphans, widows, widowers, the elderly, sick and frail, ethnic minorities et al) hold a special place in the Deity's heart. The Holy Scriptures are replete with clear, crisp instruction of how such fragile/susceptible members of society are to be treated - generally with deference, dignity and respect (see, for example, Exodus 22vs21-24 and Leviticus 19vs 33-37).
Notice now, what the Deity pragmatically instructs to those who are willing and able to do something about humanely treating the vulnerable ones of society:
"Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me. I have shown you that in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive."(Acts 20vs34-35; R.S.V)
"Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands that which is good, that he may have something to give him who has need."(Ephesians 4vs28; R.S.V.)
Again, through being a sagacious handler of finances, one places themselves in the blessed and enviable position of becoming a bringer of smiles to the vulnerable ones of society.
3) To lay a firm, advantageous material advantage for posterity and the generations to come:
The Holy Tome encourages one to think beyond today and strongly condemns a hedonistically myopic, "I don't care about tomorrow," mindset and outlook (see Exodus 20vs4-6 and 1 Corinthians 15vs32-33 for faint allusions to this fact).
Notice now, Proverbs 13vs22:
"A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children, but the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous."(R.S.V)
One is thus encouraged to (where possible) make provisions for posterity. The Bible clearly espouses this outlook as being a trait of righteousness - something that is good and right and true in most every way (Ephesians 5vs9).
Once more, prudent planning and management of financial and material resources will aid immensely toward this noble end and endeavour.
4) To have another fulfilling avenue in and through which to honor and worship the Lord:
Slightly more than two full millennia ago, some sages (wise people) of old, travelled to both see and worship the then infant Lord Jesus. If one will notice the apostle Matthew's account which also records a profound and reverential manner in and through which these sages worshipped the Lord:
"...when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child..., and fell down and worshipped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold frankincense, and myrrh."(Matthew 2vs11; R.S.V; ellipses and emphasis those of this writer).
These sapient sages set a most noble and uplifting precedent of seeking the Creator and honoring Him with a portion of the material wealth which they had legitimately acquired.
Today, it is still a wise, sapient thing to worship the Deity through obedience to His commandments, and then, as a compliment on top of that weightier matter of obedience rendered, to, if possible, honor Him with one's material and/or financial substance (notice Proverbs 1vs7; 3vs9-10; Matthew 23vs23; etc).
And so coming full circle for the fourth time, it is worth noting that astute oversight of one's financial affairs will afford them the privilege and opportunity of tangibly rendering a unique and appreciated form of worship to the Maker and Builder of all.
Committing one's finances to the Lord:
In Proverbs 16vs3 one will find that it is written, "Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established." (R.S.V)
As is evidently plain from the above scripture, one is strongly encouraged to commit their plans, hopes and dreams - including their financial plans, hopes, dreams and ambitions- to God. One should harbor no inhibitions about this, as, after-all, all that the Creator does is good, right, noble, just, true and above board (notice Ephesians 5vs9 once again); He possesses no ulterior save that of being good and doing good (note Psalm 119vs68 and James 1vs17). As has already been covered, He wants one to prosper for the purposes of wholesomely enjoying the human experience, being in a position to be a joy and a blessing to others (especially the more vulnerable and weaker members of society), to help posterity get off the ground on a more materially advantageous footing, as well as to praise and exalt Him for He is good (see Psalm 136 vs 1).
So then, do by all means dive and delve into the Maker's sacred tome to both extract and employ the timeless wisdom contained therein. It is again worth mentioning that there are at least 2350 verses of direct and/or alluded to and inferred instruction for one to draw upon for their own good and financial well-being. It is inevitable that one will both be pleasantly surprised and most powerfully and positively instructed as they pore over and practice the proven, positive principles contained therein.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father above and almighty God of infinite love; thank You for creating material and financial resources. They are a gift and resource in and through which to honor You, help and bless others; delight and sustain oneself as well as a means of inspiring hope in the posterity to follow. Please help one acquire the wisdom, drive and energy to obtain and utilize these resources in those aforementioned noble ways. Be praised and thanked dear Father in the blessed Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Tatenda Kangwende is a student of the vast field/universe that is agriculture . He is also a disciple (student/follower) of Christ and His teaching, as well as an author. He may be contacted through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or otherwise interacted with on Google Plus, Linkedin and Twitter. On Facebook, he may be found using the link/url www.facebook.com/tatendakang/info
Source - Tatenda Kangwende
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