Biblical Finance 101: Cash Flow Conspiracy 4

This last topic on the Cash Flow Conspiracy focuses of sin, which is probably the biggest causal factor of financial bondage. One may ask, "How in the world can sin be the reason for financial bondage?" I think that it's important to first look at a couple of scriptures to get some guidance. First, James 4:17 says, "To one who knows the right thing to do, and does not do it, to him it is sin." Summarily, sin is not doing the right thing with one's money as well as spending it on the wrong thing. Second, Christians are accountable to God for 100%, not 10%. Deuteronomy 8:18 says, "But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you the power to make wealth...." God's grace gives us the ability to make money and enjoy the fruits thereof.

Scripture gives us guidelines on many things we should be spending our money on: support those in the ministry (I Cor 9:14), provide for the family (I Tim 5:8), and to help those in need (II Cor 8:14). On the other side of the coin, if money is spent on the wrong things, as determined by scripture and the Holy Spirit's conviction, then sin occurs.

Many Christians get into this spending trap by not taking everything to the Lord in prayer. A friend once told me that God gave us the intelligence to make most decisions without prayer. That sounds good in theory but the evidence proves otherwise. Spending without prior prayer leads one away from God-sufficiency to self-sufficiency (James 4:13-15). The ending result is one living beyond his/her means. This usually involves credit abuses because income is insufficient to support spending habits; financial bondage is inevitable; and financing kingdom work will be nil. The solution: put your spending and financial decision-making under the lordship of Jesus Christ and He will lead you out of financial bondage.

Gary Ellis, MBA, CFP
Association Stewardship Director