The Bible vs Get Rich Quick Schemes

The world has lots of rich people. Many of those people have written a book to get richer. What does the Bible have to say on money and plans to make lots of money? Is it wrong to want to be rich?

Questions addressed

  • What does the Bible say about get rich quick schemes?
  • Why are get rich quick schemes generally bad?
  • What does money have to do with Christianity?
  • What does the Bible say about money?
  • What does the Bible say about wealth?
  • Does God want me to be rich?

Related Bible verses

Transcript

Hello, this is Ryan McKeel from the whybemerelyhuman.com website, and I’m reading a book called “The Unemployed Millionaire”. It’s given me lots of interesting ideas on things that I can put on my lifetime dream list such as an 150-foot yacht with a helicopter landing pad, satellite communications systems (gotta have that!), wave runners and a ski boat (that’s just one of the goals, there’s another nine of them!). A private, secluded island, with a port for my yacht; have close, personal friends on every continent; lots of interesting ideas he has here that conflict with another book that I like reading called the Bible. So, what is it that is wrong with the “Get Rich Quick” schemes? Doesn’t God want us to be happy and blessed and rich? Maybe if we had more we could give more away, right? Well, I’m going to have a little bit more lemonade [sips from a glass in his hand and then puts it down]; don’t worry, I’m not drinking on the job! Here’s a couple of verses I pulled out of the Bible, spent a little bit of time on biblegateway.com and looked up the words rich and wealth and things like that; found a lot of references in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes that, if you read the Bible, you might already know about, but here are a couple of verses for you: “Do not overwork to be rich. Because of your own understanding, cease; will you set your eyes on that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings, they fly away like an eagle toward Heaven.” That’s Proverbs 23; Proverbs 28 says, “Better is the poor who walks in his integrity than one who is perverse in his ways, though he be rich.” I have a good personal friend – actually, he’s a pastor and he works at a car dealership where there are a lot of rich people who get rich doing not great things. If you’ve ever been to a car dealership then you might know what I’m talking about. There are of course honest car dealers out there, but he works at a place where they aren’t. The thing is, the more money you have, the more people help you spend it – the more “friends” come along the way to pretend to be your friend but actually just want your money or your goods. I was listening to a podcast from Mark Driscoll who is a pastor at Mars Hill Church, and he made a good point; he said, “Do you serve God or money? Here’s a good test for you. If somebody came up to you and said, ‘I’m going to give you a blank check. Write whatever you want on it to stop going to church and to stop reading the Bible’. What would that be worth to you?” and he made the point that he was worried that some people in his congregation would go for as low as $1,000. What’s your price? Maybe it’s a million dollars, or five million dollars, that money would be enough to bypass the blessing of knowing what God’s will is in your life and the blessing of knowing the Lord. The idea is that there shouldn’t be any value of money that’s enough – God owns the “cattle on 1,000 hills”, God created the Earth, so He’s the richest guy around! Not really a guy, but you get my point. So, what should you seek after? Solomon said that wisdom was better than gold; Proverbs 16:16 says, “How much better to get wisdom than gold! To get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.” In Matthew 6:24 Jesus said, “No man can serve two masters; he will either hate one and love the other, else he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Mammon.” Popular culture sees glimpses of truths in the Bible, but a lot of times popular culture is blinded to the truths in the Bible, or it doesn’t even bother asking, but the truth is that there is more wisdom and knowledge in here [holds his Bible up] than you’ll ever find in a million books like this [holds up The Unemployed Millionaire]. Culture has started to figure this out – there are studies that say “Money Can’t Buy Happiness”, and American psychologists have found that cash and popularity do not bring happiness – a lot of people win the lottery and lose it all quickly. And you can say, “Yeah, but I would be different.” But the thing is, you probably wouldn’t be! We’re not that much different from Adam, we’re not that much different from anybody else who sins, we’re sinners, we have a depraved nature, and God is the One who can reform our lives. Trust in the Lord, trust that He is good and that He has more valuable things than money can buy. Hopefully you don’t have to get rich in order to find out these truths. Maybe you can take Solomon’s word for it because he was one of the richest men is history. His house took years and years to build and was still larger than the temple of God. So I hope you enjoy this podcast; if you want more information, go to the Bible! Proverbs is a great source; if you want to read online biblegateway.com is a great search and look-up reference – you can look at Bibles in different translations. I really hope that you don’t have to learn the hard way that the Lord and His truths are better than the world and what they think is true. Take it from lots of people who have written from inspiration from the Lord, instead of people who have gotten rich and think that you can put your feet up and be content and happy. I think a lot of rich people are not happy, are not fulfilled. So thanks for listening, have a great day! [Knocks over the glass of lemonade while standing up]. And, I guess I won’t be drinking the rest of that!

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