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Money is the Root of all Evil. Really?
May 08, 2017



Early Lessons About Money

Did you learn as I did early in life that street beggars were con artists who will just buy booze or drugs with any money you give them -- and that you should pass them by?

But, someone else taught me if I help someone in need, someone will do the same for me when I am in need. That lesson took root. And in my experience it's true.

So, I always give to people on the street who ask for help and I don't care what they need the money for -- I will not judge them. It's better in my mind for a needy drug addict to ask me for money than to rob me.

But, it's not only drug addicts, alcoholics and homeless people who beg.

From Executive to Street Beggar

A few months ago just before Christmas, I was stopped for a light at an intersection. A man in his fifties held a sign that said…

"I cannot find work and need temporary help. I have three children and a wife who must stay home and care for them. Please help if you can."

Unlike most people begging on the street, this man wore a suit and a dress shirt -- no tie. Obviously he had been prosperous.

At 50 something he was probably too expensive to be hired for what his experience and knowledge were worth. So he was between a rock and a hard place -- trying to keep his home and food on the table.

It must have been very difficult for him to take to the streets to ask strangers for money.

So I reached into my pocket and there was a $20.00 bill. I held it out the car window toward him. He came over accepted it politely, said thank you and went back to his post.

Money is the Root of All Evil

As I was driving away, I began to think about money and about wealth and poverty and the old saying "You cannot serve God and Mammon".

And that's true -- but only if you understand what Mammon is.

Mammon is the lust for money -- no matter how you get it. It's dirty money, as it were.

So -- it's true -- you cannot serve God by keeping his Commandments and acquiring money by any means and for any use.

And how about "Money is the root of all evil". Sounds like money itself is evil.

That always bugged me because anyone can look around and see that money is the root of all that is good.

Money -- lawfully come by -- gets us all the material things we need and enjoy -- food, homes, cars, books, hospitals, airplanes, first communion dresses, iPhones, computers and on and on.

(Unfortunately, money can't buy love, respect or happiness. Those are things of the spirit that we can only get by other means and with other resources).

But if you rephrase, it makes perfect sense -- "Money is AT the root of all evil". Which is not to say that money is evil.

Lusting after money motivates all evils like fraud, embezzlement, bank robbery, identity theft, street hold ups, aggressive wars with other countries' for oil, gold and minerals.

Evil Money and the Ten Commandments

Evil money -- Mammon -- always violates three Commandment boundaries…

• thou shalt not steal

• thou shalt not bear false witness (lying and misrepresentation through fraud)

• thou shalt not murder (by offensive war, crusades, drive-by shootings etc.).

Evil money is not a fair exchange of value for value. Lust for money, without exchanging value for value, is at the root of all evil.

Should You Expand Your Wealth Boundaries?

All those thoughts got stirred just by giving $20.00 to someone in apparent need.

So -- here are some questions for you to meditate on…

• If money is the source of all the good material things in your life should you seek wealth?

• Do you actually have a duty to become wealthy and help others to do the same?

• Does God look favorably on your lawful efforts to become wealthy?

In tomorrow's email, we'll start to consider those questions The answers may surprise you.

Hopefully, they'll inspire you.

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