Throughout the bible there are many references to how people of different wealth got treated differently to those who were paupers. People back in Jesus’ time were of the opinion that if you were very rich and well off then it was a blessing from God and that you we’re better that the less privileged people who were thought to have been given what they deserved by God, and so were not worthy of being helped or given respect.
However, in His sermon on the plain, Jesus taught that if a person was poor in this life he would get his turn and be wealthy in heaven. And conversely, a rich man would get the worse deal in the after life. He tried to explain that however wealthy a person may or may not be, it was no reflection of what kind of person they were. In Matthew 19:24 he says “And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.”
The saying used regularly today is that ‘money is the root of all evil’ whereas, the actual scripture passage at 1 Timothy 6:10, says, “For the love of money is the root of all evil….”So then is it loving money and the pursuit of it that causes us to become ‘evil’? It could be said that the love of money causes some people to lie, cheat, steal from others to get more of it so perhaps, yes. The love of money causes temptation. The money itself doesn’t do this. Money is neither good nor bad. It is a person’s attitude toward it that is good or evil. Paul said in the word of God to
In Mathew 6:24, Jesus says “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other….” The same saying is in Luke 16:13. Although the ‘other’ master in this case is Mammon it could be argued that money is another God to some and so the same principles would apply.
Many examples were given by Jesus and other prophets as to why it’s not always better to be rich in your earthly life. A rich man, used by Jesus as an example to display the characteristics of what God doesn’t want people to be, showed three downfalls: Greed, where a person thinks only of himself. Jewish life at that time was based solely on community and sharing wealth – if one person had plenty or too much for himself he should share it around within the community; dissatisfaction, always yearning for more and; ungratefulness, generally failing to acknowledge that all the wealth given to him was a blessing from God.
The story of this rich man was that he yielded such a good harvest over the years which he stored up and stored it up until eventually he had no more room to collect anymore seed in his already vast barns. His decision was to knock down and build new bigger barns, not to share out and be generous to his community with the produce he had. God told him that he was a fool for not realising that when you die you are separated from any earthly ‘treasures’ you accumulate on earth so was pointless jeopardising your soul in God’s eyes just to be well off for the relatively short period of time we are on this earth.
God wants people to show good, humane traits and always be: generous, satisfied and thankful for what they receive from God. I think that the statement ‘the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil’ is definitely true is some respects. It’s true in the sense that it is not money it self that is evil it the person having a love for it and becoming greedy with it. On the other hand, money brings to light people’s inner dispositions; if a truly good person suddenly became very wealthy he would not also become greedy and ungrateful like a corrupt person would. In fact he might be able to do many good deeds with his new found wealth. Money is powerful and as long as it is used wisely, there is no reason not to think that the more money you have, the more good you can do.
So money cannot be said to be a cause of evil itself, only the love of it by a morally lacking person and it can at the very least show people for what they really are.