Can a Christian Be Rich? - Hope 103.2

Can a Christian Be Rich?

Does the Bible say money is the root of evil? The 'Money' podcast investigates God's word — and our wealth.

By Ben McEachenTuesday 22 Nov 2022Money: Faith & FinancePodcastsReading Time: 2 minutes

That is a very provocative question: Can a Christian be rich?

Here is another one: Does the Bible say money is the root of all evil?

Those big questions and many others are tackled by Hope’s Money podcast.

In this episode, Hope Mornings’ host Ben McEachen and accountant extraordinaire Pete Burrows don’t waste any time getting into a tricky money matter for so many.

“Yes, I think they can,” Pete said about Christians being rich.

“I’ve got rich Christian friends and clients, so I know it is possible.”

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But what about that bit of the Bible saying money is evil? Or something like that…

As the Money guys point out, if you open the Bible to 1 Timothy 6:10, you find a slightly different proposition:

“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Spot the difference?

The Bible actually describes money as a root of “all kinds of evil”, not evil in its entirety.

Such a simple nuance makes a world of difference to understanding how followers of Jesus can approach wealth.

Offering more help on this costly subject, Ben also brings up Jesus’ teaching about the camel and needle’s eye – another go-to for Christianity and money.

The exchange between Jesus and the “rich young ruler” in Matthew 19 is, basically, a real-life illustration of what 1 Timothy 6 instructs.

Now, you know this account of this wealthy guy asking Jesus what he must do to have eternal life. Jesus tells him: “Go, sell your belongings and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Rightly, we all are confronted by these “sell it all!” instructions from Jesus to Mr Moneybags. Especially when Jesus follows up a little later with “easier for camel to go through needle’s eye than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God”.

What does this mean for our money? What if I have a lot of money?

As Ben and Pete discuss, Jesus appears to be speaking out against whatever separates us from devotion to him and God… such as myriads of money.

“I think Jesus is talking much more about what is holding someone back from fully giving over to God,” Ben said.

“Jesus pinpoints precisely what it is in this guy’s life. It’s the hold money has on him.”

“Jesus says that’s the thing he has to let go of.”

Is that the word on wealth you also need to hear and heed?

Listen to the full Can a Christian Be Rich? episode in the player above or get Money wherever you grab podcasts.